A Visit From Two Grand Old Danes At Our Little Cabin

This post is kindly sponsored by Carl Hansen & Søn, all words and photos are my own

While we're at the cabin, friends and family often stop by. But it's not every day we get the pleasure of a visit from two grand old Danes (not to be confused with Great Danes - which would have been fun if not a little chaotic in such a small space!). I'm talking about the furniture variety. Last week I had the honour of capturing the iconic FH38 Windsor Chair around our cabin table. Designed by Frits Henningsen in 1938, this fine specimen has recently been reissued by Carl Hansen & Søn - and it's just as delightful and beautifully crafted today as it was back in the thirties. Read on to see more pics and find out more! 

The designer
Often, when it comes to understanding the history of these fine iconic design pieces, the designer is a good place to start. Frits Henningsen had a passion for high quality craftsmanship, and unlike most cabinetmakers at that time, always designed his own furniture. He had a vibrant personality and liked to give new expressions to traditional designs, taking his inspiration from the French Empire, Rococo and British 17th century furniture. 

The moment I took these fine high-backed chairs out of the box and examined their solid wooden saddle-shaped seats and spindles, familiarity washed over me and I was immediately transported to my childhood in England. Variations of the Windsor chair are said to have been in British homes from as early as the 17th century. Even so, I'm not sure I remember them being quite as elegant as this! 

The details
Frits' take on the Windsor chair is really special. Made from solid FSC certified oak using multiple carpentry techniques, it's a perfect example of traditional craftsmanship fine-tined over centuries. I particularly love that it's still sanded by hand today. 

The design is somewhere between a dining chair and a lounge chair, so theoretically, you could use it in the kitchen or sitting room (a leather seat cushion is available for extra comfort, although the gentle curves do mean it's surprisingly comfortable as it is). 

What a great visit, and an honour to shoot such an iconic chair. Who knows, maybe I'll invest in my own FH38 Windsor Chair one day (they come in the choice of three different types of oak - oil, smoked oil, and soap oil, this is the oil version, in case you're also curious). 

Very tempting, I must say! 

Oh, and in case you're wondering what's in the bowl on the side: 

Our neighbours have an incredible plum tree. Every morning they leave a basket of the most sweet and juicy plums by the fence for us. My mother-in-law made a great batch of plum chutney with them last week so we'll be enjoying them well into the autumn now! 

Right (slaps thighs English style), time for the weekend! I hope you've got some relaxing plans ahead? We'll be spending some days up here, most likely reading in the Plico chair, while eking out the last few days of summer - I spy a 13 C / 55 F on the forecast next week - worrying indeed!

Vi ses på Måndag, vänner!


At Home With The Beautiful OW58 T-Chair From Carl Hansen & Søn

MSH partnership, all words are my own and I only ever work with brands I love and think you will too. 

Trust the Danes to design a chair that's practical, comfortable, unique and above all else beautiful! This fine OW58 T-Chair was originally designed by highly esteemed Ole Wanscher in 1958 and Carl Hansen & Søn has recently relaunched it, while maintaining a deep respect for materials, craftsmanship and function. Last week I received a pair to test out in oiled oak and upholstered in Balboa by Sahco for Kvadrat and I have to say, it's even more exquisite in real life! Read on to take a closer look. 

So, who was Ole Wanscher? Having studied under Kaare Klint, Wanscher was integral to the aesthetic and functionality of modern Danish design. In 1958 the Danish newspaper Politiken wrote:

"Owning a Wanscher chair is an adventure every day, and will be so even several hundred years from now, for this is how long it lasts". 

Wanscher had a passion for sleek, refined shapes and the sculptured T-Chair is instantly recognisable by it's T-Shaped backrest and exquisite carpentry. 

A loyal tribute to the original design, Carl Hansen & Søn have maintained the distinctive expression and beautiful craftsmanship while adjusting the height to provide optimum ergonomics for today's world (we're a lot taller today than we were in the 1950s!). 

One of the distinct features of the chair is the T-shaped backrest which smoothly merges with the back legs, giving it a cool three-legged appearance. 

Over the past week, I've discovered the chair works equally well as an individual piece as it does an entire set, hence why I hogged one all to myself and placed it by my side of the bed! 

Incidentally, if you're incredibly eagle-eyed, you might recognise the spotted top - I wore it the day I visited the CEO and Founder of Carl Hansen & Søn, Knud Erik Hansen at his home: Hellerup Manor in Denmark! Knud Erik made me feel instantly at home and I was always ready with a fascinating and at times humorous story from his extensive experience in the design world. We filmed this tour of Hellerup Manor during my stay.  

Anyway I digress! One of the things I love most about the T-Chair is how it embodies both classic and modern lines. Take a closer look (under my spotty top!!) and you'll notice the smooth joints - the result of careful processing and many, many carpentry hours. 

Isn't it fantastic? I can totally see how this chair could live on for hundreds of years - both in terms of quality and its timeless design. 

The OW58 T-Chair is available in oak or walnut with leather or fabric upholstery. 

Could you imagine having a set of these in your home?  

I'm already dreading the day they're being collected. Maybe I should invest in my own set! 

Right folks, that's it from me this week. I'm all wrapped up in knits at my desk today while the snow falls silently outside. It's pretty - but cold here in Sweden! BRRRR!

Stay warm and have a fabulous, festive weekend! 


A big thank you to Helen Sturesson for working with me remotely on this shoot. 

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6 Ways To Create A Timeless Home - Scandinavian Style!

You're likely to have seen this apartment before. I first featured Karen Maj Kornum's home back in 2015, and then again in 2017 and even included it in my book The Scandinavian Home (I'll never forget the day I spent there!!). The fact is, I could probably feature this home in ten year's time, and it would still feel relevant. So, what makes Karen's living space stand the test of time, while others feel distinctly out of date after a few years? I've compiled a list of 6 'timeless' lessons to learn from her stunning Frederiksberg home! 

1. The neutral backdrop: Colours and wallpaper patterns come and go (think Laura Ashley in the 80's!), but white and off-white shades will never go out of style and serve as a perfect blank canvas with which to layer the home. 

2. The statement piece:  Look closely at the back wall and you'll see that it's a picture (or 'wallscape') rather than extra room (Karen picked it up at Bless in Berlin and feels sad that if she ever moves she won't be able to take it with her). Whether in the form of a one-off work of art, unique textiles or a piece of unusual furniture, adding something eye-catching like this will give your home its own distinct character while still maintaining its timeless vibe. 

3. Make it personal: I love the idea that a home is never 'finished'. It might seem obvious, but it's so important to remember to take your time to layer a home over the years with pieces you've collected on your travels, things your children (or ancestors) have made, photographs and favourite books. Sure, you might like to add the odd on-trend accessory, but the bulk of the look should be truly unique and personal to you. 

4. Mix it up: When I interviewed Karen about her home for my book, she said that she loves to blend styles and furniture from different eras. Look closely and you'll spot an entire blend of antiques, vintage finds and contemporary pieces - all of which help to give the interior longevity - and ensure your space doesn't lend itself to one particular era that could quickly become out of date. 

5. Invest in timeless, iconic design pieces: Furniture that has been made by a reputable designer / craftsperson and made from good, solid natural materials can be maintained over time. If you opt for pieces with a simpler design, they'll blend into any room, while still adding a magical iconic touch. 

6. Follow your heart: Sometimes this is easier said than done (trust me, I often feel blinded by trends, especially when I work in the industry!). The thing is, trends are designed to come and go - where as your natural sense of style will likely stay quite consistent over time (give or take - I mean, I wouldn't have a poster of Morten Harket (of A-Ha fame) on my wall these days - yep, clearly always been drawn to those Scandinavian men!)! 

I have to add, I love trends and I notice some wonderful on-trend pieces in Karen's home too (like the Berber rugs) but if you truly want to create an easy-to-maintain timeless home - it's important to decorate the bulk of your home with pieces that you love simply because they hit a chord. 

What do you think? Do you have any other suggestions about what makes a home timeless? If so, please do share in the comment section below! 

If you love Karen's style as much as I do,  check out her online shop (for the most beautiful rugs!) and see more of her interior styling work at Another Ballroom.

In other news, I'm excited to take you on an armchair journey to Norway tomorrow - and have some exciting news which will allow you to bring a little piece of Norway home. Intrigued? Stop by to find out! 



Photography: Home / styling: Karen Maj Kornum. Photography: Jonas Lundberg

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The Inspiring Norwegian Home of a Danish Design Hunter!

Goooood morning! If you love discovering new instagram feeds as much as I do, here's a great one for you: @mr_aardal! Thomas Aardal has recently sold this beautiful early 20th century house in Sandnes, just south of Stavanger, Norway. I couldn't resist sharing a few snaps before he turns the key. The good news is, he's taking all his iconic Danish design furniture with him and I can't wait to see what he does next! Enjoy the tour! 

I love how there's a Danish treasure around every corner - Klint, Wenger, Jacobsen - this place reads like a who's who of Danish design! Mesmerising! 

Is there anything that stood out to you? 

If you'd like to see what Thomas Ardaal does next, follow along on instagram here: @mr_ardaal

There's a load more fabulous danish homes to discover in this archive today (hey, it's Monday, you've got to ease your way into the week in a nice way!). 

I've just arrived in Cologne, Germany for IMM Cologne - one of my favourite fairs! I'm going to do my best to check out all the latest trends and product news and report back. Follow along on instagram stories if you're curious! 

Have a great start to the week guys! 


PS There's absolutely no way I'd be able to have an open wardrobe like Thomas's. I wish I was as neat as this, but I've resigned myself to the fact that I never will be (sorry Kondo!). 

Photography courtesy of Thomas Aardal shared with kind permission. 

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A Delightful Pared-Back Oasis In The Heart Of Copenhagen

Why, hello there! How are you today? This weekend we had a bit of a spring clean and sent a load of stuff to the local loppis (flea market). It felt surprisingly satisfying but at the same time I have a niggling doubt that I may have been over zealous. Help! What would Marie Kondo say?! Do you ever feel like that too?! I have a sneaking suspicion that this is why I've chosen to share this incredibly pared-back Danish home with you today (minimalinspiration!). Despite enjoying life in Copenhagen, Pernille Bastrup sometimes finds the hustle and bustle of the city overwhelming and has deliberately kept her apartment 'light and airy' to carve out a place where she can find peace, think and focus on what matters most in life: good times and being with the people she loves. 

& other stories linen trench coat*

Kamut Print, Sebra cot*, Georg mirror, Source a similar Moroccan rug here*, Mira 4 Opal light

There are so many pieces to love in Pernille's apartment (I guess if you're going to whittle down your possessions to only a few, you'd better make them count!). 

My favourites are the Skagerak plant pot and the pear storage basket! Did anything stand out to you?

Check out more of Pernille's home on her blog and instagram - and tour a whole load of other inspiring spaces in the Danish home archive

Have a wonderful start to the week friends!


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Design Spotlight On: Erik Magnussen

I recently broke one of my prized Porcelight pendant lamps over my dining table. More than upset, I made contact to see if I could replace it. It was a chance mail which led to me feeling truly inspired by the deceased designer - and realising that I also owned several other pieces by Erik Magnussen - including the classic Stelton vacuum pitcher. Today Magnussen's designs live on through the family business. I caught up with his son Magnus to find out more about the award-winning designer and found his humbleness, struggles with dyslexia and background as an inventor a true inspiration.

Porcelight - Made By Hand (photo My Scandinavian Home) 

How did Erik's Younger Years Influence His Profession?
Erik grew up in a home influenced by art. His Father was a scientist, inventor and an engineer and his Grandfather was an artist (also named Erik Magnussen) who counted Danish architect Thorvald Bindesbøll and artist Svend Hammershøi as friends. Erik was severely dyslexic (he could barely read), but went to a creative-minded primary school which allowed him to spend a lot of time drawing and playing with clay. When Erik was twenty, he built a ceramic workshop in the basement of his parent's home with the help of his Father. A year later he was offered a job at Danish ceramics manufacturer Bing & Grodahl.

Did Erik consider himself a designer?
Erik never called himself a designer, but his passion for crafts began with clay and he always spoke of himself as a ceramicist. However, in his early years at Bing & Grondahl, his work would mostly be described as art. He primarily made sculptures, and the focus was on small productions. But he was eventually drawn to mass production and his projects evolved into porcelain for kitchens - both for private use and businesses.

Porcelight - Made By Hand (photo - My Scandinavian Home)

Did you ever work closely with your Father? If so, how was he in his workspace?
I wasn't working in the company when Erik was active, but his studio was attached to my childhood home and he worked from there since I was born. He very much enjoyed being self-employed, he had complete autonomy over his work and still had the ability to be very productive. Erik got inspiration from everywhere and it felt like he was always working. He spent very little time at his desk, but when he did, he was sketching or working with clay models. He liked the partnership he had with Stelton and Engelbrechts Furniture and he worked closely with the product development departments until the day he passed away.

1960s Z Folding Chair by Erik Magnussen for Torben Orskov (photo courtesy of 1stdibs

What did his creative process look like? 
Erik looked to solve problems he experienced in everyday life, whether it was designing an ergonomically shaped chair, or a thermos jug you could hold with one hand while reading the paper in the other. A lot of his design stemmed from readily available products that annoyed him. He once said:

"Certainly, there is no real need for more stuff. There is so much crap around. And unless you can somehow raise the quality, make everyday life a little bit easier for the end user, only then can you justify adding to the pile." 

He always carried out a lot of research to see what was already available and worked closely with the product development department to keep the production process as simple as possible.

Petit Plateau Lounge Chair / Erik Magnussen for Engelbrechts (2009) (Photo courtesy of Engelbrechts). Erik found inspiration for this chair by contemplating the shape of his left hand. He made the first model from clay.

What was Erik like as a person?
Erik was just as tolerant as his designs. Nobody was too small. There wasn't a clear divide between his work and private life: he worked with people he liked, and many became good friends. He was very humorous, and people often tell me his designs reflect this. He had a concept which he called 'fine-thinking' - it was kind of a joke, but there was some truth to it too. He would lay on a sofa in the living room, put on Miles Davis and close his eyes. To me, it looked very much like he was asleep, but after thirty minutes he would get up and go straight to his workspace and draw something as though he had drawn it hundreds of times before.

Erik has helped shape Scandinavian design in many ways. What set his work apart?
Erik had a different approach to design from other earlier Scandinavian designers. He was more like a scientist. Aesthetics was never his top priority. He had an extraordinary interest in materials, comfort, the production process and making everyday life easier. He took the concept of 'simplicity', which so often characterises Scandinavian design, to another level. Simplicity formed the basis of everything he did. He simplified the process for both the user and the factories in a way which hadn't been seen before. He also wanted to keep the prices down so that they were accessible to more people. I don't think you can find many iconic pieces with prices as low as Erik's. He moved away from creating sculptures for upper-class family gardens to creating mass market products for that very reason.

Erik Magnussen Ship's Lamp 1004 (Photo courtesy of Stelton

Was he ever aware of this?
I think he was aware, but I don't think he thought a lot about it. He was professionally engaged but did not feel the need for attention from the media etc. That's probably why his products are far more famous than his name.

Was there a key turning point in Erik's career?
While Erik was working as a ceramicist at Bing & Grondahl he was headhunted by Stelton to take over the position of in-house designer from Arne Jacobsen. He went on to design one of the most successful vacuum jugs of all time.

The iconic, best-selling Press Coffee Maker and Vacuum Jug which Erik designed for Stelton (photo courtesy of Stelton).

What did your Father think of the success of the Vacuum Jug?
Popularity was not really my Father's thing; the rest of his family was way more excited when it appeared in movies etc! However, I think he appreciated that he had designed a product that people like to use, and it opened up doors for him as a designer and gave him the peace of mind to take on only projects which he felt passionate about.

Did he focus on items solely for the home?
His work spanned many areas. He was known for table top items and furniture, but he also designed interiors for sailboats, navigation equipment and even mixing chambers for the intravenous treatment of cancer patients.

How do you continue his legacy today? 
My vision is to tell the story about Erik in the right way and bring his favourite products back to life. We are currently working on a new website for Erik Magnussen Design, that will tell the story of his creative process and how he worked. It will represent the way Erik mastered simplicity, and how simplicity was more than just straight lines. I hope to see some of his early products go back into production. Some of them have been removed from the market due to business merges, but the products are still there, and it’s up to us to find the perfect manufacturer.

Will you create any new products for the brand?
This has been a sensitive subject since Erik passed away, because we want ‘Designed by Erik Magnussen’ to mean exactly that. However, there have been several product launches since his death, where we worked with smaller details that hadn't been dealt with by Erik. This has been carried out in close collaboration with professional designers who knew him and what he stood for. This autumn we launched an electric kettle with Stelton, which is based on the classic EM77. Erik had already produced a lot of sketches for the kettle, but there were small details that needed to be solved in
order for it to go into production, and we were very happy to get help with the final 1% of the product. We also bring new colour ways to the classic EM77 each year which enables us to refresh the products without changing the design.

EM77 press tea maker & EM77 electric kettle. Photo Brian Buchard, Stelton

Thank you so much for taking the time to tell us more about your Father's designs! I shall look at my wonderful Porcelight and Stelton Vaccum jug in a new light from now on (and certainly be way more careful with them too!

Do you have any Erik Magnussen designs in your home?


Top photo: Erik Magnussen, Plateau chair (Engelbrechts), EM77 (Stelton).

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