Friday, 29 May 2009


Hope everyone has a lovely weekend and enjoys the good weather while it lasts!

(Image by Ingela Arrhenius)

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Ingela Arrhenius Interview - Part 2

Above: An illustration for You Magazine by Ingela Arrhenius

Here is the 2nd part of our interview with vintage-inspired illustrator Ingela Arrhenius. I loved hearing about some of the illustrators from the 50s and 60s who have inspired her work.

3. How do you find time to balance family life with your job?
I feel that I´m privileged because I have a studio that is really close to where I live and my husband just quit his TV-job and is now a freelance writer so we arent that stressed in our lives. And the kids' school is around the corner. BUT I feel that I sometimes miss the focus that I don´t have any more now when I have other things in my life that means so much to me. I wish I had more time so that I could do more projects on my own and experiment more.

Above: Some photos taken around Sweden by Ingela that feature on her blog

4. What's the best thing about living in Stockholm? Is it a good place for design?

It´s a good place! It´s beautiful and people are very interested in design. Maybe it´s a bit standardized. I haven´t been to New York for 10 years now but I remember that it was SO inspiring with all the different impressions and styles, if you understand what I mean.

5. What other artists/illustrators do you admire?

I admire both contemporary illustrators such as Calef Brown, J Otto Seibold (author of the brilliant pop up book version of Alice in Wonderland, shown above), Lane Smith, Jockum Nordström. And I love many French childrens' book illustrators like Marc Boutavant. And illustrators from the past: Alain Gree, Jim Flora, Mary Blair, Alice and Martin Provensen, Paul Rand, Roger Duvoisin, Olle Eksell etc etc. To be honest I am not so updated with contemporary illustrators as you maybe notice.

Above: Characters designed by Marc Boutavant

Above: Illustration by Alain Gree

Above: A new book about the work of Jim Flora from the 40s to the 90s

Above: A book spread by Mary Blair
- Thanks Ingela!

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Illustrator Interview: Ingela P Arrhenius - Part 1

I first saw Swedish illustrator Ingela Arrhenius's work on Book by Its Cover, and was taken by her portraits for a recent exhibition entitled 142 Actors (pages from the book shown above). Ingela's illustrations are inspired by work from the 50s and 60s and various vintage items she finds and details on her blog. She is an avid collector of vintage board games, records, sugar bags and other items she finds in markets. Ingela has kindly agreed to answer some questions about her work and how she got started in design. Part 2 follows later in the week!

Above: A children's book illustration for a chocolate shop in Sweden

1. How did you get your first illustration job?

After graduating from art scool I started to work as a freelance illustrator in a well-known illustrator group in Stockholm which was a good start. People knew about this group so I had a lot to do from the beginning. My first job there was a map and some computers, not the coolest assignment but it was big for me.

Above: Illustration for an article on healthy eating in Elle Magazine

Above: A roller blind designed for Stromma Sweden
2. What has been your favourite project to date?

Right now I really enjoy working with patterns and products, such as children´s clothes, stationary, rollerblinds etc.

Above: Posters in a series for an exhibition in Bologna
And I love when I create projects for myself which I don´t have time to do so often. The two last projects were fun; posters on an italian theme after a trip to Bologna and then my portraits project where I took time to paint. Since I work a lot at the computer I felt I had to work with acrylics and brushes. To show myself that I´m able to do that.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Handmade Theme: Tea & Cakes!

Here's another round up of all things handmade to do with another of my favourite things; a good cuppa!

From top: Dormouse Knitted Tea Cosy by DevonBear Designs, Crocheted cocoa & cookies, by NadiasPlace on etsy, Felt cakes by Mommy24cs on etsy, Garden teaparty necklace by muchlove on etsy, Battenberg charm bracelet by Mixed Up Dolly on Folksy, Time for tea kilt pin by Annetta Norris Jewellery on Folksy.

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Doodlers Anonymous

If, like me you are a little obsessed with seeing other people's sketchbooks then this site is a pretty good place to start. It features the work of some brilliant illustrators like Kate Bingaman-Burt, author of the Obsessive Consumption blog in which she draws a purchase made every day. (As seen above)

The sketchbooks encourage me to do more doodles of my own as well! I'm off to colour in some drawings...

Sketchbook page by Chris Piascik

Drawing Club

This week I went back to the Drawing Club, at the Hand & Heart Gallery on Derby Road. It is now being run by a lovely lady called Paula, whose friend Rachel sits and poses for people to sketch. It's very casual and free to drop in so I think I will be back next week for more drawing practise!

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Fabric Wall Monograms

I really love these custom made fabric letters, made by fabricfarrago on Etsy, they'd make lovely gifts and would be really simple to make yourself.

(First seen on Decor8)

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Jon Burgerman Coasters!

These cool coasters are available now at the Broadway Cinema in Nottingham, when you buy one of their Reel Ale beers. I need to get me a set!

Saturday, 2 May 2009

Amsterdam - Part 2

I went to a few museums in Amsterdam, namely the Van Gogh museum, the Katten Kabinet (a museum dedicated solely to cats!) and a sculpture park near Apeldoorn called the Kroller Muller museum.

At the moment there is a special exhibition on at the Van Gogh museum, called Van Gogh and the Colours of the Night, centred around the famous Starry Night painting. The night time scenes are my favourite of Van Gogh's works, I much prefer them to his still lifes, so I really enjoyed having a closer look at the works on show.

The Katten Kabinet is a funny place; its owner apparently started it in memory of his dead cat (shown above!) But it's worth a visit, especially as there's a brilliant selection of cat posters to be bought at the shop!

The website explains:

"The Cat Cabinet was founded in commemoration of the red and frisky Tom Cat John Pierpont Morgan, the life-long companion and buddy of the museum's founder, Bob Meijer."

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