Our house has undergone a major facelift within the past few weeks and I must say that it is lookin good. Remember what it looked like before? Brick with a red tile roof. Our landlords, who live on the bottom two floors (we live on the top), have replaced the roof with a black tile roof, plastered it and painted it white and added really lovely windows. And we are most happy that there is now insulation. Yes, after they tore off the roof it was discovered that there was none, which explains so much about why it’s just as cold inside as it is outside during the winter.
Without further ado, we’d like to introduce Lynne Millar.
This fine art collection is perfect for your library, kitchen, sitting room, or your home office (something most of us currently have, whether we planned it or not!) I’m a huge advocate of making your space as beautiful as it can be, especially right now. Since we’re spending so much time at home, hanging some art on the walls brings a special quality you can’t find in a bland waiting room or doctor’s office (we’re trying to make you forget about going out…is it working?)
I am very excited to be offering such high quality art in such an affordable way. That was always been the goal of our Print Shop! This collection can be ordered framed in a variety of sizes and materials. Or you can download a print yourself for just $20 to get printed and display however you like! These options make filling your home with quality, conversation-starting art can finally feel do-able.
Fine Art Prints New to Our Shop
Lynne’s paintings offer a window into beautiful landscapes that we’d love to escape to: green rolling hills, trailing pink clouds, and calm pastoral scenes. An artist from California, Lynne also enjoys painting gorgeous still lifes, a few of which we’ve shared in our print collection!
Cotswold Hills Print
Using layered brush strokes and ethereal colors, Lynne created this lovely snapshot of the Cotswold Hills. This one would be a dream in a library with a green velvet couch!
Click here to see this print.
One of two floral still lifes in this collection, the strokes used to create the gladiola petals almost look like wings! We think this one would dress up a bathroom or vanity nicely.
Click here to see this print.
Rose Fall Print
Gentle purples and pinks cascade against a dark background, creating much-needed contrast for your nursery, bedroom, or living room. This print would be gorgeous next to a dark wood bookshelf or above a stained sideboard!
Click here to see this print.
Stone Fruit Print
Citrus fruits are one of the best parts of winter, and you can embrace them all year long with this still life graced by nimble birds.
Click here to see this print.
This one might be our favorite still life. The simple design would add sophistication and a subtle pop of color to any room.
Click here to see this print.
The Secret to Hanging Art
…is that there really isn’t much of a secret. If it’s in your home and it’s art that you like, you’ll be happier looking at the art on your wall than wondering where to hang art. Yes, really.
Make a decision
Yes, it’s that simple. Just pick one piece (it doesn’t even have to be that good). Base the rest of your pieces from there! Loosely coordinate colors or subjects, or put everything in matching frames. Scratch that – if you don’t want anything to match, let your taste be the unifying factor. Once you’ve decide where to hang your art, it will come together. If that lack of directions drives you crazy, pick a theme like plants, photography, animals, abstraction, portraits, watercolors, you name it.
Build Your Collection
Consider this section the inside scoop – if I could select art for your home, these are some pieces I would choose. Abby Low’s pieces offer a shot of color and geometric print and are a great place to start. Flowers are beautiful, and I can never get enough of them! I love Adriana Picker’s work. Also Picker is just the perfect name for someone who paints flowers. Consider the location of your art – these food prints by the amazing Amanda Jane Jones would be so cute over a dining table. Looking for something a little more high-brow? This cubist-style piece is a fave of mine! Photography is oh-so chic, and Chaunté Vaughn’s compositions are drool-worthy. A little bit of cheer is always welcome, and I found just that in Erin Jang’s print!
Put it somewhere fun!
Deciding where to hang art is the last step. And the fun part! I rarely see a piece of art and think it doesn’t belong where it’s at. That’s the fun part about art – it makes wherever it is placed more lovely! Growing up, my dad decided he wanted control over where the art would be placed and guess where he put it. The bathroom. All of his favorite pieces of art, including the pre-k finger paintings went in the hall ball. His rationale went like this: “Where in the house has the highest foot traffic? Where are guests most likely to see?” Though it might seem like a strange place to put your most treasured works, it kinda makes sense.
One trend that I’ve noticed lately and loved is art just… leaned up against a wall. This is an awesome example because it shows the organization well enough to replicate it. This is another example of art leaned gracefully, nay, artfully, against a wall. I love the way this particular arranging method works with transparency.
Bookcases are another clever place I love to put art in! Let’s be honest, books are art. Add to the look with a framed piece like this or like this. Perhaps you have a lot of art to show off, and it just won’t fit in a bathroom, bookshelf, or propped up somewhere. The gallery wall is the perfect way to showcase your pieces! My friend Meta Coleman wrote a piece for us a while back on how to style the perfect gallery wall, or salon wall as they used to be called. It is a gamechanger!!
So no more head scratching over where to hang art! There’s no need to hire a pro when you can learn do-it-yourself online.
You can find all the art pictured in this post and much more in our shop! Check it out, and maybe you’ll find a new favorite artist.
I’d love to see how you hang art in your space. Tag us with #LarsAtHome to share.
Go check out the full line at The House That Lars Built Etsy shop.
What do you consider yourself? Example: Artist, designer, illustrator, maker, business person etc.?
I guess all of the above.
My background is in visual art and stage design. Over the years my work has evolved towards a mix of illustration, painting, craft and design.
I started my career in London as a stage and costume designer for the theatre. I have been working with lots of different media from making small scale models in the conception of a stage design to orchestrating large sets with carpenters.
For over 10 years, I have been running my own business Famille Summerbelle where I design a line of illustrated products for the home. I love the creative diversity involved in my work, from paper cutting illustrated maps, researching and sketching, to handling the production, styling, shooting and editing the images of a new product and finally bringing it to market.
Who helped you “become” who you are?
It’s a combination of how I was brought up, my life experiences, and inspirational people I have worked with along the way. Most of all though, I would say that my family has shaped me most.
I have inherited the creative side of my mother. As a child, if I liked a piece of clothing that I saw in a shop my mum would say “you can make it yourself, it’s so much better!” So we would go to buy fabric and then design and create it together.
My parents were doers, very hands on, always renovating homes, and many creative side projects.
I am the second of five children and I am very close to my siblings. Family means so much to me and how I have developed creatively. As kids we were very resourceful and independent. There were too many of us to have the full attention of our parents! Also I wouldn’t be doing what I do today without my three children. Famille Summerbelle started as we started our own family. Making art with my children is what I enjoy most. It’s a constant work in progress.
What more would you like to “become”?
So much more, I don’t think that ever finishes. I like to see it as a lifelong journey! There are so many skills I would like to improve and new things to learn.
Becoming better at painting, learning new languages, being better organized, more patient, better at running a business, those are all goals of mine.
I am often juggling too many balls at once! I have three children that are still young so my days seem often too short for all the things I would like to do on the side of running my business.
Where did you study, and what did you study?
I’ve always been lucky enough to be educated in a creative environment. All my primary years were spent in a Waldorf school so thinking creatively and using my hands to make things was very much part of my upbringing.
I studied Visual Arts in Paris at l’Ecole Supérieure des Arts Appliqués et des Métiers d’Art. In my graduation year I saw a play by Robert Lepage ‘The Far Side of the Moon’ that blew me away. I then wanted to become a stage designer, so I moved to London to study a BA in Stage and Costume design at Central Saint Martins. My time there was amazing. Being in London was incredibly stimulating creatively. I was seeing the best art exhibitions, fringe to West Ends plays and Operas to underground art installations. While studying I was assisting set designers like Es Devlin, who had a big impact on me. I loved my life in London so much that I ended up staying for 10 years.
Was it an easy decision to begin working as an artist?
Yes, it was an easy decision. I was working straight after I graduated designing for the stage in various theatres in London. Also I worked on many TV commercials and film sets which was very exciting.
How did you get started doing art/design?
I always loved drawing and I knew from an early age that I wanted to do something related to art and design. As a teenager I would take the train to Paris every Saturday to take life drawing classes. We would go to the Rodin or Louvre museums to draw sculptures and study the masters. I was passionate about art in general. Studying in art school gave me a solid base in art in general, to think creatively and solve problems. However it doesn’t really prepare you for being a professional artist and working with clients. This is something I have had to learn along the way.
When did you discover your love for art/design?
As I mentioned above, I had a very creative education. We would study music, dance, sculpture, painting, calligraphy, wood work as much as the other more classical subjects. This is where I realized that art was a great way for me to express myself freely.
Were you scared when you first started looking for jobs? How did you overcome this?
Of course! I was dreading contacting people and selling myself. I still do. This is not something you learn in art school. I learned it while assisting art directors and set designers. Also by making errors and asking for help. You get more confident as you gain experience.
What’s your dream job?
Bit boring as an answer but honestly it’s my current job. I’m very happy with it and as much as I challenge myself I can never come up with something I could imagine more fulfilling.
What are you most proud of in your career?
As a general point I would say that I am most proud to have created and maintained a developing business over the last 12 years while having lived in four different countries and juggling the chaos of having three children.
If there is one project that I am most proud of, it’s difficult, but perhaps I would say the collaboration that I did with Issey Miyake and my world map papercut. I have a really deep affection for Japan, visiting many times and working with great Japanese partners. To see my designs in Issey Miyake boutiques across the world was something really special, somehow cementing my relationship with this country and culture.
How did your childhood influence what you have become?
As kids we would spend our summers in the South of France with our cousins in the small village where our grandparents lived. As long as we were back for lunches and dinners we had a lot of freedom to run errands on our bikes in the village, build cabins in the woods, dress up and organise a new show every evening for the grown-ups. This family bond with my siblings and my cousins is still very strong. None of us would miss our annual summer trip to see each other. It is so fun now to watch our kids following in our footsteps.
Did you feel pressured in any way to pursue a certain career path?
Not by anyone else but me. From an early age I knew that I wanted to do something in the creative field. We were lucky to have open minded and supportive parents who encouraged us to be independent and pursue our dreams. I knew I had to work hard to get to where I wanted to be but as it was something I was passionate about I was always putting in the hours. I quickly realized that I wanted to be my own boss and create the work instead of waiting that it would come up to me.
Did you have anyone along the way that was instrumental in the trajectory of your life?
My husband Simon always supported me in my career choices and he played a big role in the making of Famille Summerbelle. He helped me turn my creativity into a real business. Famille Summerbelle has been and remains a family affair!
What’s your work space like?
Since we moved to Germany 2 years ago, I work from home. We are lucky to live in a beautiful house from the early 19th century with very high ceilings and big windows. My studio is located on the first floor in a large room with a balcony. I have the sun pouring in all day which is a blessing – I couldn’t work without natural light!
I have three desks in my studio: two along a wall, one for my computer work, another higher table for packing the orders and a third very long table in the middle of the room where I draw, paint and do all my paper cutting. Hanging on this long and high wall are colourful cutouts, postcards, paper samples and paintings that I am working on. On the other side of the two desks, I have all the Famille Summerbelle stock with my prints, paper cuts, trays, wallpaper and so on.
What’s a piece of advice that you’ve carried with you and who is it from?
I can never remember or attribute quotes or specific advice. Somehow everything I have absorbed, all the advice I have received, manifests in a few key thoughts: I strive to be present, be open to changes, trust my feelings, stay focussed, stay true to myself and enjoy the process. Whether in my personal or professional life.
What does your dream retirement look like?
I don’t feel that I ever want to retire, I will keep on making things for as long as I can! I would love to have a big studio in the South of France so I can paint all day with the windows open with a view of a blue sky and the smell of the eucalyptus trees. Of course I would have a big kitchen table for long family lunches!
What artists/designers/creatives do you look up to?
Makoto Kagoshima, Ulla Johnson, Jonas Wood, David Hockney, Picasso, Matisse, Es Devlin, Sanna Hannukka, Erin O’Keefe, Anna Kovesces, Ilse Crawford, Hella Jongerius, Mizuki Goto, Alexander Girard, Ellsworth Kelly, Miroslav Šašek, Sempé.
You were one of the first artists I ever followed on social media. How has social media influenced your work?
Oh thank you and it is reciprocal! Lars was one of the first blogs I read that inspired me to start my own creative business and my blog back in 2008.
Living abroad, I am delighted to be part of this creative online community and to interact with people interested in my work. Of course, as an artist with an online shop, being on social media is essential. I love Pinterest and Instagram to discover the work of talented designers, artists and photographers that I could never have found elsewhere. It is an amazing tool for all creatives but which also has its limits.
Personally I am much more creative and efficient in my work when I am not connected. My inspiration comes from my daily experiences, my travels, my books and especially my imagination.
Who is your work intended for?
Honestly I would say that I first make everything for me and for my family home. I made the House Boxes for my kids bedroom and my studio as I wanted a fun box to store away all of our small objects and toys. The first city map I made was of London, a city I love and where I lived for 10 years. I designed it as we were returning from our long world travels settling in France. It was designed as first for us as a souvenir of our time there. I make and test all my products in our home first and of course I always just hope that other people will be inspired by what I make and would want to have it in their home as well!
What’s inspiring you lately?
Most things Japanese! I am currently designing a map of Tokyo after just launching a map of Berlin. For the 11th anniversary of Famille Summerbelle, I did an exhibition of my work in Tokyo last year at the Galerie Doux Dimanche and while I was there I made lots of sketches and took photos of the different places I wanted to feature in my paper cut map. It makes me so happy to dive back into my research. I still have lots of drawings to make before I will start cutting the map.
What did you want to be when you were young versus when it was time to decide what to actually do?
I tried fencing, ballet and the violin. None for more than a few weeks! Boring as it perhaps sounds I have always loved drawing. It’s still my favourite hobby even when it’s my work and income.
Where to find Julie’s work
They ship worldwide from www.
Portfolio site: www.juliemarabelle.
Photos by A.Lecuyer and Julie Marabelle
We’ve been long time lovers of the himmeli for a while now, evident here and here. Himmeli is considered the quintessential Christmas decoration of Finland, but is popular in all Nordic countries. It is a geometric straw mobile or chandelier and can be transformed into a variety of interpretations. The Swedish word for chandelier is takkrona, which means ceiling crown. I love the idea of having homemade ceiling crowns all over your home. I feel like it captures Scandinavian design perfectly: clean and simple but stunning and interesting. This book, Himmeli: Geometric Home Decor Past and Present by Swedish author Eija Koski is a beautiful compilation of Himmeli projects and the ultimate go-to book for all things himmeli.
We loved our DIY Bias Tape Weaving so much that we knew we had to make something with it! The trick was deciding exactly what to make with it. After much deliberation, the Bias Tape Weaving Pillow was born! This eye-catcher is the perfect puff to grace your couch this summer. In punchy colors, it adds a splash of color and an interesting texture. It would look equally lovely in muted shades for a more subdued look. Just pick your palette, whip out some bias tape using our tutorial, and get weaving!
See how to make your own Bias Tape Weaving Pillow!
You’ve probably seen this amazing bead chandelier before, as it has made its way around the internet (others found here and here and here). I love how relaxed and elegant it feels – that’s a difficult but essential pairing. The layers of cascading beads have such a graceful look, but the natural wood keeps it fresh and easy to incorporate into any setting. And the tiers remind me of the scallop trend that is super hot right now! So often I see pieces I love but have a hard time imaging in my space. This one though fits right in! I think it could look good in any space.
A Penny Saved…
Is a penny earned! This Pottery Barn Hack for a DIY Beaded Chandelier will save you so much money. While I love the original chandelier, the $800 price tag would present a big dent in the monthly budget. In times like these, I don’t exactly want to spend that much on anything nonessential. Save where you can so you can splurge where you can, right? You don’t have to splurge to have nice things, but you do have to be willing to try new things.
You CAN Do-It-Yourself
Since I just had to have this piece, I automatically started to think of how we could replicate this beauty. With a box of wooden beads, a handful of embroidery hoops, and a season of Friends (yes, this one’s a bit time-consuming folks), I got just what we wanted! This DIY Beaded Chandelier could easily pass for the original. If you’re feeling particularly creative, you could even play around with different colored beads. While I didn’t actually put a lightbulb in mine, you could easily find a cheap hanging lightbulb like this one and place the your DIY beaded chandelier over it. Let your imagination run wild! We’ve taken care of the rest with our DIY instructions.
If you’ve got pennies to pinch and time to spare, this is the project for you! Total cost of supplies, $170. Score! See here how to make it.
Learn how to get the DIY below!
I put together a back to school themed roundup of my favorite school supplies and dorm essentials, so if I can’t start a new semester in a few weeks at least I can shop as if I were!
Lars-Approved School Supplies
If you look at them the right way, school supplies are the educational version of craft supplies. At least I get excited about them as if they were. Here are my current favorites!
I also put together a list of my current favorite laptop covers and stickers, which you can see here. Another great addition to your back to school supply list is this DIY beeswax wrap and this reusable lunch sack.
My friend Michele Brummer Everett designed these back to school stickers, and they’d be the perfect addition to your water bottle, notebook, or laptop.
Dorm Room Design
In the college town where I live, the end of August means lots of new students being dropped off at dorms for their first-ever foray into living outside their parents’ house. That means that there are LOTS of fresh-faced students moving into drab, depressing dorm rooms and shabby apartments. Check out this post full of rental-friendly interior design hacks to level up your space. And here are my favorite additions to any student housing situation:
Any time you buy something from our affiliate links, we get a small commission at no cost to you! Hooray!
We partnered with them earlier this year on some new pillows for my living room and some custom fabric to make a lampshade (see here) so I was already familiar with their great quality and options. And, because I had already done a lot of research on artists and fabrics, I knew exactly where to look. Their marketplace can be overwhelming because of the sheer amount of designers and products, so I spent a good deal of time making collections for each room. That was the easy part. Narrowing down the favorites list was the tricky part. You know the feeling, right? You can take the design so many different directions so you don’t know where to start???
What do you do??!
How to concept your interior design
Start slowly! I decided to start with mock-ups by placing the products together to see which ones were really pulling me in.
Playing around with options I was able to visualize how to put together different patterns and colors, one of my favorite things to play with. I had so many favorites that I knew it would be tricky to put them together so this helped me narrow down.
To custom headboard or not?
I contemplated making a customized headboard, especially because the beauty of Spoonflower is that you can pretty much customize ANYTHING you’ve ever wanted. They have the ability to put any design onto any products and now, even more so! There are curtains, throws, wallpaper, bedding, you name it. Ultimately, I decided against the custom headboard because I wanted to save on time and headache so I knew I was probably going to find a solid colored one, since those were my options out on the market. Because of that, I wanted to add something decorative to the walls.
There’s one designer, Amy Vail, who references a lot of William Morris patterns and I’m INTO it! Look at this beautiful leaf pattern. I thought it could be fun to play around with some red gingham, like this one from another favorite designer, Peacoquette.
I’m loving on some pink right now and wanted to try it out on my walls. Here’s how it goes:
I also contemplated this fun berry and vine stripe pattern in pink from Danika Herrick. I still love it so much, but I think I’d love to try it for a girl’s room one day. Danika also has some really lovely chinoiserie patterns.
I knew I wanted a wallpaper, especially since theirs is renter friendly, so most of my mock-ups kept that in mind. However, in case my landlords wouldn’t go for it, I came up with a solid color paint choice that would still work. A beautiful grey/blue could do the trick:
There’s already a blue theme going in Jasper’s nursery (see here) and I knew it would be fun to switch it up a bit so I tried out a blush pink (you know, because we haven’t seen that color ANYWHERE these days 😉
I love bringing greenery into a space because it really refreshes it, so when I found this green botanical print, once again from Peacoquette, I thought it would fit the bill beautifully. Then, I spotted this black and white striped headboard that would allow me to play with color and patterns all along with these pink art nouveau daisies that would be in the Spoonflower curtains. Top it off with this calico throw pillow and we’re good to go!
The more I looked around and played with the arrangements, I was able to gain a stronger sense of what I wanted so I started bringing in more furniture. My natural inclination lead me to go to the yellow headboard and that’s what I ended up basing my decisions off of.
When I have elements that are more whimsical and botanical like the butterfly bedding, I typically like to have a few other elements that are more streamlined like the lighting fixtures. I found this rad surface lamp from Cedar and Moss called Belle and though it could have leaned too modern, I love how it toned down the whole design and made it feel less, for lack of a better word, “frou frou”. Plus, I loved the idea of bringing in traces of black throughout the room because of the black in the butterfly bedspread.
I’m SO into rattan and wicker right now. You too? I love that it’s slowly been making its way into our vocabulary again, and not in the 80s overdone, fluffy way. It’s become cleaner yet still warm. If found these sconces that did not break the bank and I love them so much! They add the perfect amount of texture.
Finding the right side table has been a bit trickier. I still haven’t bit the bullet yet. I loved the idea of bringing in another color and pink would be great so I found these side tables that would be great but then I also love this peacock blue one. Which one would you go for?
Now, before we get more into the final photos, I want to show you the mess that we were working with. You ready for this? Big gulp….
OUCH! This hurts. I didn’t even clean up for you! You’re welcome! It’s a small room, about 10×10’ with plastic vertical blinds, beige carpet. I painted it white a few years ago so at least there was that. I like to say that the worst before pictures make the best after photos.
Now, you ready for the full reveal???
Final bedroom design
This chair above is one from my grandparent’s home. I haven’t changed the fabric at all, but I kind of like how it works.
I had a little helper who loved jumping his way into the scene. Can you spot him? I’m sure it’s tough 😉
Who doesn’t want glorious bedding to sleep in? This duvet, sheets, and shams not only make the design pop, they also make your bedding luxurious. The bedding pieces are made of cotton sateen, which has such a lovely polished look and feel. Jasper loves to snuggle up in it and spread his cracker crumbs everywhere. Yay!
Ok, sorry, I got distracted there…here’s the rest!
I decided to continue the stripe from the walls to the curtains. I loved the idea of an all over pattern (anyone remember Chloe Sevigny’s bedroom?!). And with this particular stripe, it’s just small enough where it’s not too contrasty and because it’s all over it begins to feel more like a solid. I wanted to add a bit of pizzazz into them so I found some yellow trim and handstitched it onto the edges. Love how it turned out! Voilà!
Spoonflower offers SO MANY choices (over 750,000 patterns) which can be overwhelming but more importantly inspiring! I loved that there were so many choices for the throw pillows and I had many options to mix and match. PLUS I love supporting independent artists and Spoonflower brings them all to one convenient place. You can find the links to the individual pillows in the product round up below!
Here’s the gorgeous surface mount I was telling you about from Cedar and Moss. Isn’t it so pretty in the space?!
And let’s end on a few more of the Boo because he just makes everything better.
So sweet–trying to hit the camera lens. Doh!
I was showing my good friend, Merrilee, pictures of my new room and she reminded me of one of my favorite inspiration images of all time that I realized I was unconsciously referencing. Right?!
This was also one of our This Girl’s from a few years ago. Take a lookie here.
Here’s a round-up of all the Spoonflower products we used to make this bedroom happen. From the curtains to the wallpaper and bedding, it was all Spoonflower!
- Stripe wallpaper
- Throw Pillow
- Throw Pillow
- Throw Pillow
- Throw Pillow
- Throw Pillow
- Throw Pillow
- Throw Pillow
- Bed sheets and Pillowcase set
- Stripe Curtain Panels
- Queen Duvet Cover & Shams
And here are all the accessories and furniture I used and/or I need your help deciding on!
- Cedar and Moss surface mount
- Curtain rod from Anthropologie
- Pink side table from West Elm–should I go with this one?
- Rattan Sconce from World Market
- Velvet mustard headboard from Target
- Peacock blue side table from Schoolhouse Electric–or should I go with this one?
- Metal side table from Schoolhouse Electric–or this one??
The flower decorations below the sconces are vintage items that I found at the Brooklyn Flea ages ago!
I really do love working with Spoonflower because of the limitless opportunities to customize and find great designers. I know that if I want to tweak the color for whatever reason I can approach the designer. I didn’t do that in this case, but it’s good to know that I can.
This post is sponsored by Spoonflower. Thanks to the brands who allow us to focus on clever and original content for you!