The backyard seating area is one of my favorite spots of our house. Here I enjoy my first cup of coffee in the morning and plan the day ahead while listening to the birds. It’s also our second dining room and a perfect place to relax with a glass of wine at the end of the day.
To create a warm and inviting space we painted the rear wall of the house a soft yellow and hung an array of lanterns from the rafters. A large mirror reflects their light as well as the greenery from the garden. Additional candle holders on the table and jewel tones round off the dose of Moroccan flair. An old street sign adds a touch of tongue-in-cheek.
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Villa Fryd means Villa Joy in Danish. A perfectly appropriate name for this centennial home bought by Charlotte and her husband more than 10 years ago. Since then the owners have invested countless hours and their prodigious creativity to restore it and filled every nook and cranny with cheerful bright Nordic country style and shabby chic seasoned with French country elements.
Amazingly most of this transformation has been achieved on a shoestring budget, in part thanks to Charlotte’s singular ability to uncover hidden beauty in unlikely places.Her motto is: “Everything can be used and anything can be beautiful.”
I would like to thank Charlotte for letting me share her awesome home with you. All the images are hers. In case you want to explore more please visit her blog Hos Villa Fryd.
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Wherever my travels take me, markets are invariably on my to-do-list. Fruit and vegetable markets, spice markets, flower markets, crafts markets … their colors, their smells, the cacophony of sounds and voices immerse me and for a short while grant me the illusion that I belong.
Some are famous, highlighted in guide books, others are hidden treasures; one stumbles upon them by accident when turning a street corner or driving down a country road. Often I like those best. The produce is grown by the sellers in their own gardens, the arts and crafts are made by a family member or a neighbor and each piece tells a story.
Here are impressions of markets from around the globe, some I’ve visited, some are on my bucket list and some just struck my eye for the beauty of the images. I invite you to let your mind be transported.
Like most Brazilian cities Belo Horizonte, the state capital of Minas Gerais has a covered market in a central location, aptly named Mercado Central. Whenever we go to the “big city”, we make sure to pay it a visit – to shop, to have lunch or sometimes just to take in the atmosphere. Being – almost – regulars we know where to find the best variety of spices, the best deals on Portuguese olive oil or my cherished German style pickles.
Stanley Market is one of the tourist attractions of Hong Kong. You can find just about anything there, from traditional Chinese foods and typical items such as china, fabrics and crafts to knock-off designer handbags and electronics.
On the other side of the globe in La Paz is the Mercado de las Brujas or Witches Market. No trip to the Bolivian capital would be complete without visiting it. Here you can find medicinal plants, potions, good luck charms as well as dried frogs and lama fetuses. The latter are used as sacred offerings in Aymara rituals and are frequently buried in the foundations of buildings to protect the construction workers from accidents.
The Grand Bazaar of Istanbul is possibly the most famous market in the world. It is certainly one of the largest with 61 covered streets and over 4,000 shops which attract between 250,000 and 400,000 visitors daily.
During our last visit to Paris we were lucky enough to stay at an apartment minutes from the famous Rue Mouffetard. Located in the 5ème arrondissement this narrow street is closed to traffic and the stores lining it extend the display of their culinary delights onto the sidewalks. A paradise for food lovers!
Legendary French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson has immortalized the street with his iconic picture of a boy carrying two wine bottles:
One of the numerous Parisian outdoor markets is the Marché Monge, on Rue Monge.
The Viktualienmarkt is an open air market in the center of Munich complete with adjacent beer garden. Beloved by locals and visitors alike it dates back to 1807 and has recently been landmarked by the State of Bavaria.
Most German towns have farmers markets, like this one in Tübingen. Some are held twice weekly, some every day.
As you stroll down La Rambla in Barcelona you will pass the famous Boqueria Market – a true feast for the senses. Despite its location on one of the great tourist thoroughfares of the city, a surprising number of locals shop here and prices are competitive.
In the Mexican state of Chiapas the customers are as colorful as the products for sale.
The floating markets in Thailand and neighboring countries are a testimony to the importance of the waterways as means of transportation.
And finally some impressions from our own market in Diamantina. The Mercado Velho (Old Market) is also known as Mercado dos Tropeiros, which means Muleteer’s Market, because – you guessed it – the merchandise used to be brought here from the surrounding farms and villages on the back of mules. It was built in 1835 and is duly landmarked. Today it is home to a fair only on Saturdays. On some other days it is venue for cultural or popular events.
Of course there are countless other markets on this planet and millions of photographs to attest to their fascination.
I hope you enjoyed our little journey. Maybe it inspires you to go exploring on your next trip or to rediscover the markets of your own town.
Thanks for visiting. And remember to look us up on facebook.
Mexican decor is unmistakable: the rich wall colors, the vibrant textiles, the intricately designed hand painted talavera tiles and pottery. Not to mention the amazing range of magnificent arts and crafts.
Below are some inspirations for transforming a backyard or patio into an inviting outdoor room with South of the Border flair. A wall or two painted in lively shades create the most profound impact – besides it won’t break the bank and is also easily reversible. Add colorful cushions and tablecloths to existing furniture for another easy and inexpensive upgrade. Wrought iron tables and chairs are typical, with some luck vintage pieces can be found at yard sales or thrift shops.
Of course plants are a must. The more the merrier. There is hardly a limit to creativity when it comes to containers. Traditional terracotta pots, the famed talavera pottery, but also humble metal cans, zinc buckets or pots and pans retired from use in the kitchen all make great planters.
For Mexican flavor on a smaller scale check out these ideas below.
Got inspired? Take it from here and let creativity take over.
The Red Brick Barn is a rustic retreat located about 90 minutes from Melbourne. It was created by Daniel and Glenny with acute attention to every detail, blending European and Early Australian antiques with flea market finds to bring about a charming laid back atmosphere brimming with great style.
Many of the materials used in the construction and decoration were repurposed or recycled. Wood is dominant throughout and accounts for the inviting feel of the place.
Aren’t you in love with the place already? Best of all you can move right in, as Red Brick Barn is available for vacation rentals.
The world is getting smaller, cultures mix faster than ever. What was exotic yesterday may be part of our everyday experience tomorrow. Add to that the mind-boggling amount of information available at our fingertips. For those looking for it, inspiration from around the globe abounds, be it in the arts, design, fashion, architecture, just to name a few.
Interior decoration is a way to make this inspiration come to life, be it a reminiscence of past travels, a dream of future ones or the simple desire to bring a distant corner of the world into our home.
Brazil owes a large part of its cultural heritage to Africa. Music, dance, visual arts reflect this legacy, but also religious traditions, food and even superstition.
So I think it’s only fitting to start the journey in that fascinating and for many of us mysterious continent. The earthy color palettes, natural materials and geometric patterns set a mood that is warm and inviting yet at the same time sophisticated.
During royal court affairs, tribal chiefs and dignitaries in the Cameroonian kingdoms wear a spectacular headdress known as the tyn, or juju hat. The feathers are symbols of prosperity, and represent the wealth of positive qualities associated with birds. The pieces, in natural hues or bright colors, which are woven onto a raffia base, splay out into huge circles and make impressive wall art.
Hope you enjoyed the trip. Stay tuned, as we will continue to bring you inspiration from the four corners of the world.
Restoring a 1867 Pennsylvania farmhouse is the mission Megan and Neil have embarked on – with stunning result. Each room is painstakingly and lovingly decorated. Many of the items are salvaged or flea market finds, attesting to Megan’s keen eye for beauty in disguise. It’s also proof that you don’t have to spend a fortune to create a living space that’s at once stylish, individual and comfortable.
This cheerful and inviting house in Buenos Aires is the home of artisan Pato, director of photography Pablo and their two children Catalina and Juan.
In the 15 years they’ve lived here, the house has undergone several transformations. It is mainly Pato who is in charge of the interior decoration. Frida Kahlo and Beatriz Milhazes are two of her favorite artists and not surprisingly Mexican arts and crafts and vibrant colors are defining elements of the decor.