Russian modern art

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Having my Msc from St. Petersburg University of Architecture and Civil Engineering, i was never able to draw. Sketches - yes, town plans - certainly - diagrams - of course. But real art and drawings - never. My friends just laughed and I have made several attempts to actually start to do it and just gave up. But some folks in Russia definitely never gave up and look at this pieces of art - stunning is the only word that applies to it. Great inspiration for my Sunday!

Alex Chernigin "Summer"
Serge Marshennikov  
Alexander Vozmush

Need more inspiration, please check out  here

Time to stay in the Artist Residence!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

It is quite rare that I am writing stories about the hotels here on the blog, and there are certain reasons behind it: I write only about the best ones. And in this case, I have a perfect example for you:  Artist Residence in London is a gorgeous, sophisticated, charming place - something that you dream about for your place to look like.  So let's start: prepare yourself for a lot of wonderful pictures and also a huge amount of inspiration. As i understand, that is why, you are still reading my blog:)

It is fun to talk about opening your own B&B or hotel , or even buying a house. But in reality it takes  humanguous amount of work and patience, and of course resources. You need to be responsible for everything, as it will be not only your face now, but also something that you will see in the eyes of other people when they enter the space.

I don't remember really how I came across pictures of Artist Residence, but it immeaditely caught my attention, as i thought: " I want this , and this, and this, and also this corner to have similar table, and this couch is phenomenal, where did they get it from?".


I was very happy when one of the co-owners of the Artist Residence - Charlie Newey decided to have a short blitz interview with me. I am sure you will enjoy it too and prepare yourself to write down some very good tips about interior design shopping, especially if you visit London soon.

Very amazing to see that the building was restored in a final version in 2014 and dates  back to 1852. I can imagine it was very hard to achieve it. What did you base it on (materials, books, art works)?

When we took over the building it was really dilapidated. The 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors were being used as staff quarters, the pub space on the ground floor was really dark and the basement was this huge cellar with no natural light. My partner Justin and I started doing a lot of research into other successful businesses in terms of layout. We then started sketching different layouts so that we could see how all the different spaces could work. A lot of design inspiration came from Pinterest and design books. The design of the interiors evolved very organically - we never actually had any set inspiration boards or a plan in our heads, although we found we really loved the juxtaposition of luxe items with rustic materials and vintage/industrial furniture pieces and lighting. One day we stumbled across The Old Cinema in Chiswick which is an old cinema turned into a ‘department store’ for industrial, vintage and antique furniture and lighting pieces. We bought a few pieces from here such as the vintage coffee table in the Club Suite made out of very heavy industrial wheels and polished reclaimed boards. We took it back to the building, put it in the room, painted Farrow and Ball paint swatches on the wall, and it all went from there!

I just adore all the rooms in your property and design of it. It is so homy, that it doesn’t  really feel as a hotel.  How did you come with this concept?

Thank you - we are so pleased you like them! The concept originates from Brighton where we started off doing artist decorated rooms. We then started experimenting with our own style of ‘House Rooms’. We have always strived to create somewhere very homely and individual, not the generic style of hotel room. We have also wanted to always create an element of ‘fun’ and ‘interest’. The particular style in the London rooms originated from a fascination with Farrow and Ball paint colours, exposed brick, reclaimed wood floors juxtaposed against vintage and industrial furniture and lighting.



How did you select a furniture for the rooms? Any tips for people, who would like to create similar atmosphere in their houses?

We bought what we loved! We would suggest collecting a few key pieces that you truly love and then designing the space around this. For instance, we find that a darker wood such as mahogany or elm goes really well with richer, darker colours. We also love using a lot of textures, such as exposed brick, luxuriously soft blankets and leather or vintage linen, to give the space a visual and playful feel. We recommend taking a visit to The Old Cinema (Chiswick), Retruvious, Lassco for vintage and reclaimed items, as well as sourcing interesting and quirky pieces online such as Rockett St George and Rose & Grey. For lighting we love Alex Macarthur, Urban Cottage Industries and Lighting Matters  For us, we find that the juxtaposition of design features in the rooms is really important. This can be anything from juxtaposing something reclaimed or antique with more of a quirky high street buy, to the juxtaposition between materials such as linen with leather. The impact that art can have in a room should also never be underestimated, choose something you love - it really can change a space and the ambience within a room.



Your favourite designers, any secret places to shop for interior pieces in London?

We found a lot of inspiration from Abigail Ahern (love the use of bold dark colours) Retruvious (love the use of reclaimed materials and architectural salvage) and Alex Macarthur (love the rustic grandness of her interiors). Our favourite places to shop in London are The Old CinemaLots Road AuctionsThe French House, Retruvious, Lassco… and John Lewis for some simpler high street buys! The Other Art Fair is also fab for picking up art at a fair price for undiscovered artists.

I would like to thank very much the Artist Residence London for this amazing tips and inspiration!  And I am sure that we will hear about them very soon!






Photography and styling kindly provided by Artist Residence London

Obsession with books

Friday, November 28, 2014

The only safe obsession that I have found in the world so far is - reading. Pretty much reading everywhere, and what I have noticed:  less and less people are doing it. Last week, a friend of mine has made my day by showing me this amazing application called Bookmate. Now i am having at least 4 books waiting for my attention and time, and one of it is almost finished. The big relief for me is, and that is something that may be expat people can understand, possibility from time to time to read the literature in your own native language. Even though i speak English fluently, dream in English, and work in it. I still believe that mother tongue, which in my case is Russian, should not be forgotten.

But we are not only obsessed with books online, at home we also bring books with us everywhere. Our living room has even a dedicated closet to it, but still we have lot of them lying down in every single corner. Our bedroom is almost tidy like on this interior design pictures, but instead of having one book on your night stand, we have like an invasion of all the possible choices you can imagine. Here is a book about " being more strong and positive (for those days)" and also something like science  fiction (Star Wars forever!) and of course 1-2 fashion/ lifestyle magazines and a lot more.

Home Designing


For me, considering that i am also obsessed with cleaning, and  interior design images, it is very difficult sometimes to admit, that i will never have a clean night stand with some pretty flowers (Pepper will eat it anyway very quickly):)  But i am sure even this looks absolutely gorgeous in our interior, like here.

la-la-LOVELY-things
Improvised Life

Looking for a House Doctor? :)

Saturday, November 1, 2014

I don't know how about you, but sometimes our home really needs a House Doctor.  It can be a change of the colours of the pillows, but also a new nice carpet or accessories. However, the most important here is to get a feeling that with this change your home became more healthier and happier. The interior design company " House Doctor" totally agrees and supports this concept. It was created as a family business, so you can imagine how much warmth and care is put here on the daily basis in the products. When i see the styling pictures of this company, i am thinking that this is how my house in the ideal life will look like. Clean, dramatic, dreamy, with a nice rough touch.


When autumn just came to Amsterdam we didn't realise, but all the colours that i have used for the decoration of our bedroom have just became .... boring, and not appropriate.  Considering, that i got totally obsessed with a mustard colour, i have decided it is a time to reboot. And now our bedroom (which i will try to show you soon), is looking very different and i adore it. I definitely advise you to reconsider how certain things are looking at your place, as days are becoming shorter and nights longer, and the colours and shades are not anymore the same. And if you have a doubt, call a House Doctor:)



Photography and styling by House Doctor 

Texel. Love.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Every person in the world should have this kind of place, where all the thoughts will get into balance and also where physical/ emotional routine just goes away. For me it is Texel... Love from the first sight (i am talking a lot about love lately;) Texel is super famous for all the great battles but also as a place where good surfing in Holland meets event better skydiving opportunities.

In order to get to the island, you would need not only to take a train from Amsterdam to Den Helder, but also have a ferry ride across the North Sea. I was very lucky last Friday to get this amazing summerish weather there, as we have been mission from my company to clean several beaches on the island. If you are in love with seas, oceans, rivers, small ponds of water as I am, you would definitely understand how important to do this at least once in a while.

People were constantly smiling there, and it was a good sign that this island exists for real;)

"Adventure" poem by   Adelaide Crapsey

Sun and wind and beat of sea,
Great lands stretching endlessly…
Where be bonds to bind the free?
All the world was made for me!


Photography by Liubou Minniyeva/ Kleinspace

Birthday in a british style

Sunday, October 19, 2014

I need to admit to this now before something will go wrong, but I love Mac book. I got one from my work another day and i am just simply In Love. Classy, shiny, glossy, i don't know - life changer. My manager told me, that i can not go back to normal after this. And who wants? :) Anyway, i have been away too long, and of course can admit that my Mac love poem is not an excuse. But workload was really high this last month and my brain could only function one way and I am sure if i published something in the blog that will be : uehehFIHifh...)

What i wanted to share with you today is my birthday trip to Eastbourne, in UK. Many of you might not even know what I talk about, so I am proposing you quickly to take your time and watch this movie.


The video report is promising that Eastbourne is a city not like anything else, as the variety of activities, fresh air, views and culture is on the top level there and i can tell you : it is all - truth.

The water had this amazing "Sardegna" style colour, which i totally didn't expect from the coastal side of Britain. However, Dany has explained to me that it is an English Channel and the water here is actually very different than Atlantic ocean or anything else i saw before in England.






I loved that one day there we had completely sunny summarish weather and another i was trying to cuddle in the wool throw that we have bought from the local community shop. Tea, pies, bar food and also the warmth of the people living in the cold country, that is the best you can get for your 20smth birthday:)

Cottage in the Oaks

Photography by Liubou Minniyeva/ Kleinspace

Bare walls or may be it is Juniqe?

Friday, August 29, 2014

Good morning sunny people! It is almost weekend, and I am already on a short vacations, enjoying visit of my Mum to Amsterdam. One of the things that she always notices when she comes here, as how people are free with their open windows view, especially if you are living on the ground floor. I would even propose another type of city tours - windows hopping. As you can already get so many nice ideas how to decorate your own space while, you are observing others.

What also can pop up in your eyes is if people are living with the bare walls or not. It can be hidden, but you can immediately understand if a person has a poster from Ikea, or may be a painting from the traveling, wallpaper or anything else. Me myself, i need to have a balance between bare walls and also art work/ posters that we were buying during all this years.

Recently, i have decided thoughtfully to look at my walls and decorate it in the way that will benefit the whole space in general, make it look brighter, funnier, more like we are. Looking through tones of web-sites was very difficult to organize myself, however a friend of mine recommended me to try - Juniqe.


I have immediately found some very cool art-prints there and started to look into the frame work. But as you know me, i wanted to find a little bit more about the product and who stands behind it. And today i have a short interview with one of the founders of Juniqe - Lea Lange.

Lea Lange

Tell me a bit more how it all started !

“Juniqe was founded in late 2013 by Marc, Sebastian and myself. All three of us share a passion for art, print and design and have extensive experience in the world of e-commerce. We discovered that there is a huge demand for affordable art. Our mission is to offer exciting and contemporary art to everyone. We curate a selection of new designs several times each week. We want to see art everywhere. That’s why we offer artworks printed on apparel, phone cases and home accessories as well as posters, canvases and acrylic glass.”

Juniqe reminds me a little bit of the English word “unique”, did you have this in mind when you named the company?

“Yes, we did. Juniqe is unique. Our online gallery is an antidote to big brand BS. We scout out the best independent artists from all over the world. Our hand-picked artworks make us a magnet for those who like originality and uniqueness.”

Anyone who grew up in a Soviet country remembers that Germany produces high-quality products. Did you consider starting your business in any other countries or was it always going to be Germany?

“The quality of our products is very important to us. We work with a handful of manufacturing partners based in Germany who use the latest printing techniques and adhere to the highest quality standards. Our carbon-neutral clothing is made from organic cotton and produced in accordance with the Fair Wear Foundation. Our heavyweight, museum-quality paper is printed with archival inks — and lots of love — and finished with a UV-resistant coating. We’re based in Berlin because the German capital has an exciting, inspiring art and design scene but we already ship to 13 European countries: Germany, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Great Britain, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden and Spain.”



Do you decorate your own homes with posters and art prints?

“Yes, I love decorating my own home and of course I have quite a few prints from Juniqe adorning my walls.”

Any tips on how to combine posters with other items in the house?

“Most of our art is very colourful and expressive. The prints can complement a plain sofa and can bring a white kitchen to life. By choosing from the wide variety of images Juniqe has on offer it’s easy to decorate a room in a certain theme or predominant colour.” What is the most popular item in the shop (please, provide also picture of it here) . Best sellers are “Wild Neon” and “Geo Flamingo” from the art studio Three of the Possessed.
“Wild Neon”

Do you have any plans to develop your product range to focus more on interior design, with say, furniture or wallpaper?

“We already offer bed linen, cushions and tea towels and we plan to extend our product line. We will come up with new home accessories in the next few months to offer some more interesting gifts for Christmas.”

Geo Flamingo

I would like to thank Lea and her amazing team for giving us a small insight into the Juniqe world. I am sure, that soon we will see more of their work through the open or not windows of Amsterdam and may be more often than bare walls.





Photography and styling : Juniqe
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