Thursday, May 21, 2015

Urban Jungle Bloggers: My Plant Gang & Airbnb Apartment In Bordeaux

This month's Urban Jungle Bloggers topic comes a bit earlier than usually. Which included a major challenge for me - I was on vacation until last Sunday in France. Consequently I had no time to style up and shoot my plant gang at home. But you know, challenges trigger creativity, right? So instead of making night pictures at my home, I simply decided to share my plant gang at home away from home - in the fantastic airbnb apartment where I was staying in Bordeaux, France. So today's Urban Jungle Bloggers post is about my Bordeaux-bound plant gang and a little home tour. On y va!

The idea to set my plant gang into the airbnb apartment in Bordeaux was triggered the very first moment when I entered the apartment. I loved its light flooded rooms, the minimal styling, the magnificent old wooden flooring and there was one large plant in the living room - a big and healthy Pachira tree. But one plant is not a gang, right? On the other hand, an Urban Jungle Blogger is not a simple tourist, but one that visits plant shops too, right? Thus one morning I found myself exploring a plant shop in the neighborhood and doing my way of 'souvenir shopping' - I got myself some nice plants.

I was beyond happy to find two plants that I had on my wish list for quite a while (I mentioned them in our interview on The Sill) - I bought a cute pink Sedum rubrotinctum and an Aeonium cyclops (both of which I brought back to Munich). I also bought a tiny Lithops plant, a Nerium oleander and what I think to be a Gilt Edge plant. Voilà my plant gang at home away from home!

The airbnb apartment in Bordeaux was a perfect choice for my city trip. It is located in the city's old town overlooking a lively square, the Place du Palais with magnificent building. The apartment features an airy living room with an integrated kitchen, a bright bedroom, a small corner room and a second mezzanine bedroom plus a bathroom and restroom. I loved all the old details in the apartment: the already mentioned wooden flooring with its outstanding pattern, the high ceilings and plastering, the beautiful windows, the old brass window handles - in one word, this will be my place of choice again if I return to Bordeaux one day. Soon I will share more about this beautiful city in the southwest of France. In the meantime I am off to see all your plant gangs!

Urban Jungle Bloggers is a monthly series initiated by 2 bloggers: Igor (Happy Interior Blogand Judith ( Every month we share ideas to create an urban jungle through styling ideas, DIYs and green tips & tricks. You can find additional inspiration on our Urban Jungle Bloggers Pinterest board and keep up-to-date on our website and Facebook page. Want to join? Use #urbanjunglebloggers on Twitter and Instagram. Or let us know and we'll share the badge and upcoming topics with you. Let's bring some green into your homes and blogs!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Illustrator Zoë More O'Ferrall

Creative people are one of the sources of inspiration I love (their work and their homes). I do not consider myself too creative as I am not executing a creative job per se - I am not a designer, an architect, a potter, a textile designer, an illustrator. Those creative minds inspire me to seek more creativity in my daily life and try to see things from a different perspective.

One of those creative minds I had the honor to meet shortly during our Bloggers Tour in London last March. Zoë More O'Ferrall is a London based commercial illustrator and has a very distinct, quirky style that makes me smile in an instant. When I heard that our friends from at{mine} teamed up with her for the Bloggers Tour London, I was excited to say at least. When I heard that she is going to illustrate our tour, I was very excited.

Zoë has worked for major names like the Vogue, The Times, Mr Porter, New York Times Magazine, Harrods and many more. Now imagine how humble I felt that she also set her pen onto paper to illustrate my face among others!? Ha, I love the outcome! I think we all look very cool as illustrations (I felt the urge to shave afterwards obviously LOL)  and the map perfectly captures our busy but super exciting London Design Bloggers Tour.

See more of Zoë's work HERE.

Image and illustration via Zoë More O'Ferrall

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Spring Getaway To Lake Como

This week is packed with travel posts (as I am traveling simultaneously) so after the last blog post from Palermo I am taking you up north to the other end of Italy: to the magic Lake Como. A few weeks ago I spent three days at the famous Lago di Como (and please don't ask me if I met George Clooney. In fact I had an espresso with him) as part of a workshop for Ikea. Workshop sounds like work and it was. Yet, I had some time to explore the beauties of Lake Como.

Spring at the Lake Como is truly enchanting. Everything is in bloom, it smells divine, it is warm and sunny. Even though this is a lake and not the Mediterranean, it already feels very mediterranean with the lush vegetation, beautiful, colourful villas and little boats. However this lake is not a tiny one, in fact it is pretty large and stretches from north to south over 46 kilometers whereas its width is rather small and makes it ever charming as you can always have a look at the villages and towns tucked on the opposite hillside.

I was staying in the far south of the lake in a picturesque village called Cernobbio, not far away from the name-giving town of Como. Since free time was short during my trip, I only made it with the ferry up to the serene and almost dormant village of Torno. It was so nice to walk around without a plan, discovering narrow alleyways, smelling the flowers, eating ice cream - and all this with my two good friends and fellow bloggers Ricarda from Germany and Sarah from Canada. We had lots of fun!

Lake Como is located pretty close to Milano so it is absolutely worth a prolonged weekend trip to enjoy sunshine, nature, good food and cruising this beautiful lake. A la prossima, ragazzi!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

Monday, May 11, 2015

Loft92 In Palermo, Italy

Well here we go: Now that I am traveling again this week (hop over to Instagram to see where I am this time) I thought it's about time to blog about the very cool design loft I stayed at during my Sicilian trip and visit to Palermo. I found the cool Loft92 after a short research on airbnb and it was an immediate scorer - it was unlike many other accommodations and had a very special look to it. So it was click, chat, book - and I did not regret it a minute!

This is definitely a place you should pick next time you travel to Palermo, Sicily. Why? Because it's unusual and special - it is a huge sort of hall, I don't know what exactly this building used to be (as it is clearly older) but the structure is more suitable for a storeroom or something similar. Maybe it was even a sort of factory or mill, who knows. Only thing I know is that the owner transformed it into an open and airy space with a minimalistic look (so unlikely in Italy).

The apartment is located in the city center of Palermo which makes it even better. You can literally walk to every important sight in Palermo from the apartment. And can you imagine my Urban Jungle Bloggers eyes when I arrived at the entrance of the apartment packed with all kinds of plants? It was an instant love affair.

The apartment itself is spacious and can host two people. It has a large entrance hall with an ancient fountain in one corner, a huge bed sofa to relax after long walks, a little open-space kitchen and a bathroom. Dramatically suspended stairs lead to the upper floor which is in fact a mezzanine and the bedroom. A big and comfy bed, a few seats, another bathroom and a closet - that's it. No clutter, no shenanigans. And with no shenanigans I mean none - so don't expect a TV there.

If you like what you see and you plan a trip to Palermo, have a look HERE to book it.

Happy new week!

Photography by Igor Josifovic

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