Friday, November 30, 2012

Friday's Favorite Snapshots

Before I'm taking you on a little inspirational travel through the orient, I want to tell you the story behind it first: My family stems from southern Serbia. It's the bordering area between Serbia, Macedonia, Albania and it has always been the orient for me when I was a kid. I was born and raised in Austria, in a typical Western European society, landscape, and visual world. But every year when we traveled down to what then was Yugoslavia, I was embarking on an adventure from 1001 nights. I felt like a kid on a magic carpet discovering a region full of people dressed in folk costumes, cities dotted with mosques and churches, colourful and loud bazars. It was the adventurous life of spending summers at my grandparents' house, dining under the vine covered porch, sitting on lumbar kilim cushions, meeting friends at the village's well. Today, all this seems like a far-away fairytale. 

This private background must be the reason why I still love oriental home accessories like my vintage kilim rug and cushions, hammered metal bowls, mosaic vases. Well, there is one thing from my childhood that I sort of disliked. My mother would always ask me to grind the coffee in one of those old bronze coffee grinders. She would then prepare Turkish mocca. As much as I disliked the grinding as a kid, today I own my mother's old coffee grinder as a dear souvenir of a happy childhood. And a memory of my roots. Happy Friday!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

Thursday, November 29, 2012

All About Nesting: My Guest Picks

What would you do if a design retailer told you to browse their shop and pick your favorite 25 goodies to style up your home? You would't say no, would you? Well, truth be told, I wasn't actually running through a store and picking 25 design items for my home (uhm, you remember my apartment's size, I couldn't even fit in 25 design items). But when the British interiors store Nest asked me to present my guest picks on their site, I wasn't hesitating a minute! After all, I love everything nice and beautiful for a personalized interior design. I love the great assortment of designs offered at Nest - whether it's the big names of furniture design or unconventional, young creatives: Nest offers a wide array of products for a happy home, from large furniture pieces to little cute home accessories.

So if you wonder what I've picked as my 25 highlights and if you wanna read the full interview, just click here. Hope you gonna like it as much as I do. Oh, and by the way: Do you have a particular favorite out of my picks?

Photography via Nest

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

5 Happy Inspirations: Details For A Happy Home

Today I am super belated with my post (as some have noticed). Sometimes I am just challenged with my daily job and evening appointments that leave me short of free time to blog. But this pace of life can't keep me from cherishing cute details for happy homes. This week's favorites? The agate coasters by Leif, the handmade baubles from 'Asleep from Day', the quirky 'Henrietta' vase by Danish design duo Meyer-Lavigne, the oil and vinegar set in transparent aqua by Terrain and the vintage kilim rug. Of course, all of these are going up on my Christmas wish list. Apart from the kilim rug: This one's already in my happy little home! 

Happy (belated) hump day!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Why This Room Caught My Eye

I strongly believe in the unrivaled power of colours in interior design. Whether it's bold and strong with colourful walls, a painted ceiling or flooring, big and bright accent furniture or rather playful and individual with colourful accents such as textiles, art, home decor - when wisely executed, the first and foremost feeling is one of joy and happiness. I also understand the other side: people who prefer calmer,  less vibrant and monochromatic spaces. But truth be told, I can't live with at least a little dash of colour. So when I spotted this room, I was all smiles. And here is why:
  • Cluster of quirky lampshades: What a fun idea to highLIGHT your room. Whether it's a design piece or a DIY model: this pendant will make people talk!
  • Colourful gallery wall: I love the character of a gallery wall that exudes the personality of the home's owner. Arrange your favorite prints, posters, photos into a very personal gallery wall to make an arty interior design statement. 
  • Cool & urban tray tables: This set of bright blue tray tables act as a flexible coffee table and the detachable trays have a double function. 
So, now I am curious about your verdict? Love or loathe?

Photography via Alvhem

Monday, November 26, 2012

From Place To Space: Paris, Canal Saint Martin

A new week is just about to start and as you know it is right then when I like to take you on a little inspiring trip to fight the Monday blues. Last week, I told you about five reasons why I love Paris. Today, I want to take you on a little stroll through the buzzing and creative quarter around Canal Saint Martin in the 10th arrondissement. Off we go!

This area is attracting a good load of tourists as well as a young and creative local crowd to settle. Ever since Amélie Poulain was pondering over the world and throwing stones from the famous bridge over the Canal Saint Martin, tourists keep coming and pondering over the unique Paris lifestyle. My starting point for this quarter was a visit to the über-cool and super hyped Ten Belles Café, allegedly serving Paris' best coffee. I don't know if it's the best coffee or not, but it is very, oh very good. And so are their homemade cakes and patisseries. Try the salted caramel and chocolate tarts or the chocolate peanut butter brownies. Oy!

The café is located in the Rue de la Grange aux Belles. This street features some other fine little interior stores, cafés and art and design galleries in the lower part close to the canal. For more inspiration just cross the canal and stroll down the Rue de Lancry and the Rue des Vinaigriers. Moreover, you will spot the famous 'Hotel du Nord' facing the canal. French people know it and some other do too - the hotel is known from a big French movie made back in 1938 depicting this are and its people. 

For the rest, I'll let the pictures speak for themselves. À bientôt, mes amis!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Ideas For A Happy Weekend

Yesterday's post was all about 'colourful happiness'. But there is another side to happiness, too. I love black and white photography. Especially shots of foreign countries, cultures, people. These days I've stumbled over the fascinating work of one of Greece's greatest photographers, Kostas Balafas who passed away last year. Many books have been published with his amazing black and white photographies taken in the past century. I particularly love the book 'Ta Nisia' (The islands) depicting the life of the inhabitants of the Greek islands. Here are four favorites from this book - I would love some plain copies to stick to my wall as eye-catching art pieces. Incredibly gorgeous. Incredibly sumptuous. Incredibly fascinating. I am wishing you a fascinating weekend!

Photography via Kostas Balafas

Friday, November 23, 2012

Friday's Favorite Snapshots

Today I want to talk to you briefly about my concept of happiness. I consider myself a happy man. I think of factors like family, love, friends, professional life, my blog, my readers (yes you!). All these bits fuel my inner balance, my positive attitude towards life, my optimism and thus my happiness. For me, these elements fortify the base of my happiness and all those other little tidbits that I blog about let it grow on a daily basis. Just like my last visit to the Muji store.

I headed to the local Muji store cause I had to stock up on coloured pens for a guest blogger project. Once in the store, I couldn't help but roam around and get inspired by the simplicity and sophistication of Japanese design. And the great colour pops. Consequently, I brought back some coloured pens as well as a cute little notebook with multicoloured pages and tiny post-its. The final result are these two snapshots - I love how the colours come to life and remind me of the joys of life. I hope they will bring a tiny bit of happiness to your Friday, too! 

Photography by Igor Josifovic

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Home Tour: Welcome To My Home!

I've promised it for quite a while: a little home tour of my tiny rooftop apartment. Well, welcome to my home, friends! I am sharing a few snaps of my abode here and hope you gonna like it.

My flat is really small - I call 32 square meters my home so you can imagine that I am always challenged when it comes to new buys or rearranging my stuff. My living room and bedroom are adjacent and connected by a round arch. These are the main areas of my daily life whereas the more practical spaces like kitchen and bathroom are very tiny and rather utilitarian in the back of my flat. I have no particular style in my home, it is more like myself: a bit of this, a bit of that!

Sometimes I feel like I would love to live in a bigger apartment. On the other hand, I like the cosiness and intimacy of my small home. Moreover, it is great to be challenged when it comes to interior design and home decoration: I avoid too much clutter and try to find creative ways to reinterpret the small space. 

So, what do you think of it? Anything you like or dislike in particular? Anything you would change? Let me know!

Styling & photography by Will Taylor and Igor Josifovic

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

5 Happy Inspirations: Quick Ideas

Today I will know, marketing talk, I will 'keep it short and simple'. I had a fun evening hanging out on Google with a few great German fellow bloggers as we were discussing some ideas for the near future. As a result, I ran short of time to compile my blog post for today so I won't bother you with too much 'Igor talk', instead I am leaving you with five happy finds:

1. A fun, geometric art print by Judy Kaufmann as seen on Pretty Dandy.

2. A beautiful glass canister for the bathroom or bedroom as seen on Anthropologie.

3. A soft blanket for a proper cuddle session as seen on 'by mölle'.

4. Warmly glowing votives from Iittala as seen on Connox.

5. A smart and stylish notebook as seen on Etsy.

Hope you like my happy finds! Enjoy this hump day!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Why This Room Caught My Eye

Every Tuesday I am musing about a room that caught my eye. And this Tuesday is no exception. So I roamed the net and found a room that on the first sight probably lacks that flashy, catchy happiness factor, but still it kept my attention through its lived-in, cosy and very personal styling. It is a room to be. A room to live. Hence, I'd say it's happy after all! Here are three elements that caught my eye:
  • Statement art piece: Opt for a personal art piece. Think of a photography that you've taken or a good friend. Nowadays you can even get your Instagrams on canvas (you remember this) so you can add a very personal statement to your room.
  • Rough, linen bedspread: Go for a rough, crinkled linen bedspread in a muted hue to bring the calmness of the winter nature into your home. And the tactile feel is unrivaled. 
  • Vintage lighting: How about sourcing some vintage desklamps on a flea market and transform them into sconces for your bedroom? A little touch of industrial style definitely accentuated this room and adds interest.
So, anything you liked here? Let me know!

Photography by Madeleine Söder for Sköna Hem

Monday, November 19, 2012

From Place To Space: 5 Reasons To Love Paris

For those of you who are my regular guests, it comes as no surprise that I am a frequent Paris traveler. I keep on posting my little discoveries here and hope not to bore you to a distressful fatigue with my Paris love story. However, I'll take the risk and show you five reasons (among many, many others) why I love Paris. Moreover, I will show you more inspirations from Paris next Monday. So stay tuned!

Let's discover the 'City of Lights' together. One of the reasons why I love this city are sunny bright mornings when I am off to the 'boulangerie du quartier' to buy warm baguettes for the breakfast. I never leave the bakery without my favorite fig baguette. To die for!

Another reason are all those manifestations and events that keep on entertaining and surprising me - no matter how often I keep coming back. This time I went to the annual 'Salon du Chocolat' and discovered a wide array of fabulous chocolates in all shapes, tastes and - yes, colours!

The absolute highlight this time, however, was a tiny and very intimate blogger meet-up. For the first time I met my favorite Paris blogger, Lindsey of Lost in Cheeseland. She is an American expat living in Paris and I must confess - she is a wonderful and inspiring person. I loved chatting with her (in French by the way - we are so international) in the new Betjeman & Barton tea salon on the Boulevard des Filles du Calvaire.

Ok by now you also know that I have a sweet tooth so yet another reason to love Paris are its fabulous pastry boutiques. I love to forget about time and indulge in those little art pieces made of chocolate, cream, fruits and other delicacies. 

A fifth reason? Well, we can't miss interior design, can we? Every time I'm in Paris I can't help but look out for new, inspiring shops offering (vintage) furniture, home accessories, decoration items and so on. This time I've even discovered a Tolix design outlet offering reduced originals from exhibitions etc. The little boutique 'Persona Grata' is located in the Rue Croix des Petits Champs 38. And for vintage lovers head to the shop 'Canal 6' on the corner of Rue Rambuteau and Boulevard Sébastopol. 

Happy Monday, friends!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Ideas For A Happy Weekend

Nothing merits more than a good and relaxed weekend! And while I am typing these words, my little to-do list rests on the table next to me with a few little tasks for this weekend. Like going to the market to get some fresh greens for my home, food shopping at my favorite organic grocery around the corner, stopping at the post office to mail a little goodie, snapping a few wintery images of Munich, preparing the blog post of my own home tour and discovering a little gem of a bakery. And even though it's not written on my list: enjoying a long and relaxed breakfast. It's one of my favorite weekend to-do's! Have a great one, folks!

Photography via The Wandering Girl

Friday, November 16, 2012

Happily Ever After: Sweet Paul Magazine

Hello folks! Actually, I planned to blog today about a mini shooting I did a few days ago at home. However, I've decided to postpone it to coming week since I thought it would be nice to spice up this Friday by sharing my favorite tear sheets from the holiday issue of Sweet Paul Magazine. Truth be told, there is another little reason: The festive issue features a travel special on Munich written by my blogging brother Will Taylor

When Will visited me in Munich and told me about his coverage for Sweet Paul Magazine, I was more than excited to show him around and take him to some of my favorite spots, shops and restaurants. This is exactly what we did and now I love reading about it and reminiscing. Moreover, Will mentioned my name and Happy Interior Blog in this issue which adds a bit of happiness to this Friday. Thank you!

Well, I warmly recommend you read the feature on Munich and if you ever decide to visit, I will proudly show you around. Plus, don't miss the other great articles in this beautiful issue! Happy Friday!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Win A Suzani Cushion And Get Inspired

I have a soft spot for home textiles. And I certainly love traditionally produced and locally sourced pieces from around the world. Today I would like to take you to central Asia, to be precise to Uzbekistan, the home of traditional Suzanis and Ikats. 

The colourful designs, rich patterns, handmade embroideries add textures and interest to any home. Sometimes the bold designs and vivid colours could be scary, but don't be afraid, a Suzani or Ikat cushion could be blended into nearly every interior. Whether you go for a statement piece in a rather monochrome home (think of a white room, grey hues, black and white interiors) or you decide to go eclectic and bold like in the first two pictures by my fellow blogger and impeccable stylist Justina Blakeney, handmade Ikats and Suzanis from central Asia will definitely add interest to your home. 

A crucial fact when sourcing traditional textiles is its origin. I love to learn where the textile comes from, how it was sourced or produced. And I've found a great source for you: the Etsy shop Ikatsuzani. There you will find handmade pieces, new and vintage ones, all sourced from Uzbekistan. It can't get any more original. 

So my friends, be brave! Be playful! I'd like to give one of you the chance to try it in your very own home. Thanks to Ikatsuzani shop you can win the Suzani cushion cover as shown here. It's a Lumbar vintage Suzani that is hand-embroidered and rich in colours. All you have to do is visit the Ikatsuzani Etsy shop and leave a comment here under the blogpost telling me which piece is your personal favorite. 

The giveaway is open worldwide and runs till coming Thursday! Go for it, friends!

Photography: Coffee table and bedroom by Justina Blakeney, all other pictures via Ikatsuzani

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

5 Happy Inspirations: A Boy's Room

What defines the term 'boy'? Age? Looks? Behaviour? Nah, I'd say it is defined by a young and happy spirit, by the ability not to forget the joys of life and that every new day is an adventure we're embarking. And this has nothing to do with age. Hence, I am defining myself as a 'boy'. Pretty much forever. 

Bearing this in mind, I've decided to compile '5 Happy Inspirations' for that boy vibe in a room. Playful, colourful, surprising. Ready to embark on this blog adventure? Here we go!

1. Zip, unzip, define, redefine: the 'Zipillow' by designer Sandra Trividic is handmade in San Francisco and come in flashy colours. You decide if it's a couch, a guest bed, a pouf, a bench or a cushion. Unleash the 'boy' in you!

2. If you need more inspirations for an 'Appartement de Garçons', just have a look in this fabulous Edition Paumes book from Japan. You don't need to travel around the globe for it, just get it off the amazing 'Gifts for him' list in the shop of Bodie and Fou.

3. With all these goodies here I am trying to quench your thirst for design and happiness in your home. For the real thirst opt for this simple yet stylish carafe from Ikea. By the way, I got it for myself last weekend.

4. Never forget to have a free spirit and let it fly high - from time to time. As a visual reminder get yourself one of these happy fellows: the 'Kay Bird' by Kay Bojesen as seen on La Mesa. 

5. The smart boy goes for a fine rug - sitting on the floor and reading a book is absolutely ok! As long as you rest your heinie on a handwoven Dhurrie from Jaipur, India. Soon on sale at Mini Moderns.

Here's to a happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Why This Room Caught My Eye

Tuesdays equal a room that caught my eye! And today's dining nook is such a happy place and so up my alley that I keep on asking myself why this isn't actually in my home. Anyway, I am pretty sure you will share my passion and happiness regarding this room, won't you? Here are three reasons that really caught my eye:
  • Colourful cord & exposed bulb: A modern, cool and happy way to interpret lighting above a dining table. Opt for a big, round bulb and make a colour statement with a bright cord. This reminds me that I have to install my new colourful cord in my hallway...but I digress!
  • Playful art: I am a real sucker for illustrative art. I keep on buying new illustrations although I am beyond the point of having space for them. But hey, illustrations can be easily exchanged from time to time and thus add a fresh flavour to your interiors. Love this playful and bold example in the pic!
  • Black accents: I am absolutely attracted to the juxtaposition of the colourful elements to the black accents of the chairs, the rug and the cabinet as well as the black poster background.
What's your opinion about this room? Do you like it or is it too bold for you? I am curious!

Photography via Scandinavian Deko 

Monday, November 12, 2012

From Place To Space: Fuerteventura - Part Three

For the past two weeks I have taken you along my little voyage to the beautiful and charming Canary island of Fuerteventura. With today's third part I am rounding this inspirational trip up and hope to have managed to send out some warmth and happiness from the island.

I was very inspired by the island's variety despite of its relatively small size. Divine beaches are counteracted by a rugged and wild countryside with abandoned Cochinilla farms (used to produce real crimson red) and forsaken little villages. 

It is the island of goats and excellent goat cheese, beautiful pottery, succulent aloe vera plants, white washed houses and sandy beaches.

If you ever consider a trip to this island, I can warmly recommend the Sheraton Fuerteventura Beach, Golf & Spa resort in the town of Caleta de Fustes. You will be welcomed with a cold glass of champagne and hosted with excellent service. Three restaurants, an extensive pool and wellness area and great rooms will treat you very well.

I will let you grasp the idea of what I mean with the pictures here. I hope this makes for a good start of a new week! Stay happy!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

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