a factory full of furniture

On my hunt for some furniture for a project, I paid Fabrieknl a visit, in the south of the Netherlands. It's been a while since I last went there, but it was worth the trip again. I bought my couches for my own home here.
The old shoe factory is big (5000 square metres) and packed with the most beautiful vintage furniture. Some parts of the factory are set up as tastfully decorated living rooms or dining rooms, so you can get a feel how the furniture will look in your own house. The rest of the factory leaves room for your own imagination.

hotel De Goudfazant

Yesterday we spent a nice evening with friends in Hotel de Goudfazant. That may sound a bit strange, but eventhough the name suggests it, it is not a hotel. It is a restaurant, one of the nicest in Amsterdam. It is quite remote, way up in the northern part, but worth the trip. Even though the weather was a bit dull, we still enjoyed the view of the city on the other side of the canal. And the lovely food, the inspiring interior and the friendly staff, of course.


Eddo Hartmann is a Dutch photographer who does projects all over the world - he even took pictures in a Russian fake space ship that they use to test future astronauts (and photographers) on their abilities to function in zero or double gravity, a cooperation with artist Bradley Pitts.

His images are mostly of strong, impressive, empty environments with strong lines and big horizons, like White Sands.
Currently he is working on a very special project called An unsuspected visit to a very familiar place. A touching and beautiful series of a house, with a very special story. It will be published in a book, for which he is now very busy looking for funds. (If you happen to have a a sack of money lying around: this is the perfect destination.)

And since yesterday we're the proud owners of three beautiful images made by him of our two lovely little girls. It was the gift that he gave us when they were born, and finally in May they were old enough to do the shoot. He used this technique once before for Volkskrant Magazine (art direction by Heike Gülker). Our twins have completely different characters, even though they are identical twins. And he captured it exactly, and that is a gift by itself. Thank you!

toilet drawings

Yesterday I finally remembered to take pictures of our toilet while the sun was shining. "Why?", you may wonder. Because recently Olga Scholten made some beautiful, funny little drawings in a corner near the ceiling, because I designed a closet for her.

Olga Scholten is a graphic designer based in Amsterdam, and works for several companies like Het Zuiderzeemuseum and Het Concertgebouw. She also make really funny animations, if you have a moment to spare, check her website and play.

Two years ago she was invited by Dave Eggers to be a part of his exhibition at Apexart 'Lots of Things Like This' in New York, and now she's organising an exhibition like that herself with drawings by different artists from all over the world, to open sometime next year.

She also published a book with lovely, poetic and funny (and also sometimes sad) drawings, that you can order through her website.

And she made some cute little drawings with edible ink for some cupcakes for the book Happiness is a Cupcake, that I made with Sanne Dirkzwager.Happiness is a cupcake set
Happiness is a cupcake set
Stephanie Rammeloo & Dirkzwager, S.

Julie Cockburn

Today I was working on a colour scheme for a beautiful house that a new client bought. I started with collecting images for a mood board, and I refound this beautiful image of a nice, cool and sleek toilet, in an Elle Decor from a year or two ago. The atmosphere would fit nicely in the house, which is already breathtakingly beautiful. But what caught my eye especially was a lovely artwork on the wall by Julie Cockburn
Julie Cockburn makes touchingly beautiful sculptures and paintings created out of printed image, or books, and other objects she found. Like Plasticine Flowers, from a still life painting, or An Attempt to Copy a Drawing I Made When I was 5 (like the title explains: a drawing she copied, in embroidery). Or, the one that made me curious about the artist, a sculpture of pages of a book, the Keats Flower book. More recent work you can find with Re-Title.


A few weeks ago I mentioned the website I was working on: kleurinspiratie.nl. My work is online now on this website. You can find six colour forecasts for the coming season for inspiration for you own house, plus a tool with which you can test these colours on an image of a room in your house. It is in Dutch, but if you don't speak the language, you can still look at the images. I made the colour forecasts with Maaike Koorman, plus I wrote the texts.

mood boards

When I'm working on a design for a house, or a cook book, or an interior production, I like to work with mood boards. They they give me inspiration before I start working, they really make me happy and excited about my work when I'm making them, they make sure I stick to the idea that I first have (which most of the times is the best idea) and they give other people a general idea of the direction your working in. Plus they look nice. At home I just stick them to the walls in the spaces that I happen to be working in at that time.
The images are taken by Paul Barbera

styling production for VT Wonen

While I was cleaning up my computer, I found some images of a production I did last year for VT Wonen, a Dutch interior magazine. I did the styling with Maaike Koorman, I designed the ideas for the bird cage, the mirror inside a picture frame, the clothes hanger made of a piece of leftover fabric and lace. Tjitske van Leeuwen (www.tjitske.com) was the photographer. The production was called Intstant Styling, to show everybody that a nice atmosphere can be created in a short time.

a discovery in my own country

To my big shame I have to admit that only last weekend I discovered that my country has a part that is at least as beautiful as parts of France (Brittany) and England (Cornwall) that I love visiting so much. So now I don't have to travel all the way there anymore. It is called Het Groene Hart, the green heart (quite appropriate) and it is a perfect area to go if you want to have a break from the big, busy city. We took our camper for a little testdrive, because it has got a new motor, and stayed two nights on an eco-friendly campsite that is part of a small farm, in Snelrewaard. We became a member of www.natuurkampeerterreinen.nl so now we can visit all kinds a beautifull, green small campsites in the Netherlands.

food of the season

Now that the weather is getting better and better, I'm reminded of the time I will be spending this summer in the south of France. And that again reminds me of the work I did there a few years ago for the cook book Mijn Keuken van de Zon, which is translated in French, German and Finnish. We even won a price with it! The book shows images by Anna de Leeuw and recipes by Virginie Besançon. She cooks only seasonal food, and it all tastes even better than it looks. The book has only recipes for vegetables and fruits, so perfect for vegetarians and people that want to cut back on eating meat. I did the styling, part of the production and edited all the recipes.

Mijn keuken van de zon
Mijn keuken van de zon
V. Besancon

gardens bij XandL

For me, the interior designs by XandL are amongst the best I have seen. They are timeless and at the same time way ahaid of their time. They transform an ordinary house in a beautiful piece of art that is practical at the same time. But what I admire also is that they not only design beautiful interiors but can work their magic on gardens as well, as you can see in the images.
Check their website for more beautiful and inspirational images www.xandl.nl.

Paul In Holland

Paul Barbera, the photographer from Australia that I wrote about earlier, is in the Netherlands again. I can't wait to work with him again. That counts for other people, because he's flying to Milan for the design fair on monday. But after that, I hope to do some work with him. Here's some examples from his beautiful work, that you can also find on his website where they create (see my links).

about Frank Visser

I promised to tell some more about Frank Visser. I can tell you about how I love his imagination, his styling, his set designs and all his other creations, but the images with his work tell it all. The first image is taken by Josie Sykes, the second and third by Mirjam Bleeker.

spring lunch last sunday

Last sunday I organised a spring lunch, to celebrate the new season (amongst other things). I put together a little menu with Marlein, who cooked and filled in the missing links. Marlein cooked, as only she can, so we could all experience what spring tastes like. As an appetiser she made little salty tartlets filled with pea-mint-ricottacream. Then watercress soup with radish-toast, followed by torta verde, salad with grilled haloumi. pink grapefruit and pomme granateseeds, grilled chicken with lavender and lemon. The best part came last, as always. She made the most beautiful and best tasting cake made with almond cake, whipped cream with raspberries, decorated with real roses.

The lunch took place in the perfect setting: Studio IJm. This is the studio of Frank Visser, a Dutch stylist, who creates the perfect dream world, in real life and as a set designer/stylist for interior magazines as Elle and Vogue Interior. Fedor van der Valk, who also works at the studio, makes string gardens, hanging plants, that made the whole spring look complete.
check for more of their work on www.ijm.nl and www.stringgardens.com


One of my biggest dreams (now) is to open my own shop one day. And then I will sell the beautifull accessories designed by Nest.
Check www.nestprettythings.com for more of these lovely, sweet necklaces and bracelets.

spring lunch

Next sunday I'm organising a spring lunch for a few friends. Luckily Marlein Overakker, my favourite food stylist, has time to do the cooking (next year I will do it myself again, promise). Not only because I don't have time to do the cooking myself this year. But also because she cooks much better and prettier than I do. When we meet we mostly talk about food, and she makes the best tasting and prettiest new combinations in food. She also made some of the cupcakes in our book Happiness is a Cupcake.
Miep Jukkema was the photographer of the images shown. Frank Visser did the styling, more about him later, together with John Biesheuvel.

suitcase full of surprises

My friend Celia, who is always full of creative and crazy ideas, had set up a new business: custom made fancy dress suitcases.
That is the best new idea for a christening gift I have heard in ages! (And a nice birhtday gift. If anyone wonders what to give my twin girls for their birthday?) The bespoke suitcases (or flight cases, hat boxes, whatever you like) will be filled with dressing up clothes that fit the style of the parents or the kid, if she (or he, off course) can already speak. The price depends on what is in the suitcase, and the suitcase itself, naturally. Want one? Send her an email: [email protected]

yes, design can make you laugh

Sometimes design (with a capital D) can take itself too seriously. The blog unhappyhipsters.com shows how designs like that can only make you laugh. If you ever sigh about the mess in you own home (like I sometimes do), just have a look at their blog. You'll be glad that you spent the day living instead of cleaning.

Ina Matt

In a week or two I'll be starting a new project, a renovation of a house near Amsterdam. The plan is to add a few metres to the house, so the kitchen will be nice and big. The owners also want a restyling of their attic, so their two sons can share a room there. For inspiration I look at magazines and websites, and recently I was directed to a website of two other designers, Ina Matt (www.ina-matt.com). I love their clean way of designing, that brings a lot of light and space to a house.