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A Warm Apartment in Berlin with Mid-century Touches

It's Friday, the sun is shining in Malmö (for what feels like first time in months!) and we're pedalling a little extra fast as we move into the weekend. Woohooo! I hope you've got some relaxing / fun plans! Before we all hit the pause button, here's one final home tour for the week. 

Eagle eye readers might recognise the living space, as I featured Tim Labenda's home a few years ago as part of a feature about my friend Igor Josif's book Plant Tribe. So much has changed in terms of the furniture arrangement and style that I felt a new tour was definitely in order. Captured by Laura and Nora (of Our Food Stories fame), Tim and his boyfriend Hannes Kraus' Berlin home is full of contrast, mid-century furniture, danish design (including my favourite Hans J. Wegner Flag Halyard Chair) plants and quirky touches (look out for the fabulous art behind the bed - more details at the bottom!). Buckle up friends, you're in for a treat! 

I have to say, I especially love the main living room with a dining area, work space and sitting room combined. It looks so warm and inviting! 

We've been seeing dark wood in the kitchen a lot lately, and I'm a big fan. Do you like them too? 

And of course, there's the art behind the bed. It took me a while to figure out what it was - a mural? A rug?  A painting? Nope, actually it's a strip of Heron wallpaper by Gucci. Smart idea! The side lamps (I couldn't resist finding out more about those too!) are Satellite pendants by Gubi. 

Read a full interview with Tim and see more pictures of his home here

Got a little more time today? Why not look back at the other home tours I've shown this week including a wonderfully charming rural cottage in Norway and a dream holiday cabin in Latvia. You might also like to check out the archive full of Swedish homes and small spaces

Right friends, that's it from me this week. Have a fabulous weekend, see you Monday!

Niki

Photography: Our Food Stories - shared with kind permission. 

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Tiny Homes: A Dream Holiday Cabin in Latvia becomes a Reality


Originally from Latvia, Ilze Upatniece and Gunars Upatnieks have lived in Berlin for ten years. They have long harboured a dream to own a house in Latvia as a place to return to for vacations with their children.  Three years ago, their dream became a reality when they found a plot of land near Saulkrasti on the east coast of the Gulf of Riga. Read on to find out more about the build and see pictures of the fabulous holiday cabin they've created! 

What was the plot of land like before you started?
It was a forest plot which meant we had to do everything from scratch. The electricity was already connected but we had to arrange water and sewage as well as countless other things! 

What was your vision? 
Originally, we wanted to build a larger house, but soon understood that with two full-time jobs on the side of Europe and two young children, a prefab tiny home was perhaps a better idea. For inspiration, I spent half my life on Pinterest, reading different interior blogs and following numerous cabin and tiny homeowners on instagram.

Who did you work with for the prefab cabin?
We chose a small, young, local company in Latvia to help us develop the idea of having three tiny houses connected to one another via terrace. 

(The cabin as built through My Cabin in Latvia - also available in the USA).

What is the idea for having three different houses connected? 
My husband is an orchestral musician, so it was important for us to have enough space for practising his double bass. So, we decided on a 'living house', a 'sleeping house' and a 'sauna house'. Despite working with a prefab, we made a lot of personal changes including adding a triangular window, installing a second toilet and upgrading to higher quality materials.

How long did it take to build? 
Altogether it took over a year. I think evert building project has critical moments. Ours was no different. But looking back, we can say that we learned a lot, met great people along the way and are really happy with the result! 

The result is beautiful, it would look equally in place in Scandinavia, would you say there are similarities between Scandinavian and Latvian design?
In my point of view, Latvian design has developed in a very exciting direction. It has many similarities with Scandinavian design, for example, minimalist and clean shapes, and also the choice of material such as wood, glass, linen etc. At the same time, Latvian history also brings in other tones - the close existence with various eastern nations during the Soviet period, or Latvian folklore and the tradition of pagan mythology, which is relatively actively lived here. 

How big is the cabin, and can you tell us about the layout? 
Our 'living house' is about 25 m2. It has a well-equipped kitchen with all modern convinces. In the bathroom we have walk-in shower, washing machine, washing machine and a water filtration system. Furthermore, we have a living room area with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the garden and forest. There's also a sleep loft one rate kitchen. 

Our 'sleeping house' is 15 m2 and has a bed, wardrobe and guest WC with washbasin as well as a second sleep loft. 

Our Finnish sauna with a woodburning stove is about 12 m2. 

Can you tell us about the interior design and the inspiration behind it? 
We wanted to keep the design simple and functional. Most of the furniture is custom made from solid wood and was made by regional carpenters. Since we sometimes spend as much as 6 weeks at a time at the cabin and like to cook together with family and friends, a well-equipped kitchen was important. 

We used a lot of natural materials, natural colours but since we rent the cabin on Airbnb we were also keen for the furnishings to be resilient and not too expensive, so we have also bought furniture from IKEA, Jysk and H&M Home

Can you tell us more about the garden?
Since our plot is 2300 m2 and we like to do outdoor sports together, my husband said 'let's build a beach volleyball court'! So we did! We also added a basketball court and hot tub. Then the small terrace grew to 170m2 and our garden was made! We planted hedges and foliage as well as many grasses that like to grow in forested coastal areas. We also plan to grow fruit and vegetables. 

What are you most happy with? 
Although building the cabin became a bit too challenging at times, w are super happy with how everything turned out, it's our little paradise! We love the secluded beach and watching deer roaming the garden. We also love our summer evenings on the terrace, playing games together and cooking. For us, it's the opportunity to slow down from our fast-paced life in the city and enjoy moments together as a family in a conscious way. We hope that through our vacations at Cabin Jūrada, our children will also call Latvia home.

What a lovely project - and such a beautiful result too! Id' happily wile away my summer here, how about you? 

In case you're tempted, you can rent Jūrada on Airbnb here - and see more pictures at @cabin_jurada.

I was fascinated to hear about the garden as I'm starting to plan our tiny cabin surroundings soon, no easy feat! I'm now thinking we need to add a few fun things - even if it's just an outdoor table tennis! 

Looking for more inspriation? See more cabins and tiny homes in the archive. 

Happy mid week friends - half way there! 

Niki

Photography courtesy of Cabin Jūrada


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A Charming Rural Cottage By a Norwegian Fjord

Allow me to take you back in time today. Well, you'd be forgiven for thinking so but actually, this charming Norwegian cottage belongs to Liv Sandvik Jakobsen - a freelance journalist, who has carefully restored the property, while being careful to keep the original charm. Liv and her family live in near the village of Kviteseid, 3 hours' drive West of Oslo. The cottage has views of the fjords, which are equally spectacular in the winter as they are in the summer, and all seasons in between!

Inside, the wood panelling has been painted in soft earthy blues and greens to reflect the colours of the surroundings, and antique furniture provides cosy spots to gather around a table or keep warm by the fire. Ready for the tour? Welcome to Liv's cosy world in the Norwegian fjords! 

Liv has used piping over the stove to store 'knekkebrød' - traditional crisp bread. 

The interior is mainly made up of vintage and antique furniture, however you occasionally spot a modern touch, such as the wall lamp beside the dining area. 

Mittens and other linen are hung to dry over the wood burning stove, which is also used to boil the kettle. 

Liv is a keen knitter and has co-produced three popular knitting pattern books with knit designer Lene Holme Samsøe. I am actually learning to knit right now (thank you Farmor!) but making such slow progress. It's my dream to knit one of these beautiful Norwegian jumpers one day! Can you knit? 

Come summer, the light transforms and with it, the fjords turn a wonderful blue-green hue. Would you like to see how it looks outside in summertime? Here are a few pictures! 

How incredible! This has made me miss the Norwegian fjords so much. I really need to make a return trip some point soon. Norway is a magical country! Have you ever been? 

See more of Liv's charming cottage and life in the countryside at @livslyst. You might also like to explore these Norwegian country homes today: 


You might also feel inspired by my trip to the Hardanger fruit trail a few years back. Read all about it here

Klem!

Niki

Photography courtesy of @livslyst, shared with kind permission. 

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Friederike's Warm and Inviting Home with Historic Charm

Ready for a feel-good home this Friday? Friederike's German apartment is the type of place you would want to pull up a chair and stay for a while! The building itself is seriously charming with it's magnificent exposed wood beams, high ceilings and large windows and Friederike has furnished it with a feel-good factor to match! Think a blend of antique and vintage finds, sofas you'd like to sink into, a wood burning stove - and one very happy dog! Keep an eye out for modern touches too, like glass partitions, which ensure a the natural flow of light. Ready to take a look? Welcome to Friederike's cosy world! 


So lovely! I wish we could have seen more of the kitchen and bedroom. But from the glimpses we do get, the rooms look just as cosy and packed with charm as the rest of the apartment. 

Anyone else wishing they could spend the weekend here?

See more of Friederike's charming home over at @fredi.freude.eierkuchen

Did anything catch your eye? 

Here are some more warm and inviting homes to enjoy this weekend: 

Trevlig helg! 

Niki

PS I have loved reading all your comment this week, they are always so interesting and add so much to each post. I haven't had a chance to respond to all yet but have set aside a little time this weekend. Keep them coming! 

Photography: @fredi.freude.eierkuchen, shared with kind permission

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