Issue № 5 FALL 2011 $12.00 US
Letter AS A KID, most of my family
vacations entailed piling into the station wagon and hitting the road. We’d usually end up in Nevada or Southern California, where we’d crash with relatives or close friends. It wasn’t until I was in high school that my trips started to include hotel rooms and plane rides. And it was even later than that—while planning my honeymoon seven years ago—when I finally had a reason to get a passport. These days, I travel as often as my work schedule and bank account will allow. (It’s never enough!) I also enjoy learning about other people’s experiences; their stories and photographs make me look forward to my next journey even more. For this issue, Meg and I tapped into this notion of travel as inspiration. In our “Conversation” (page 12), we visit with a buyer who scours markets and meets with artisans in countries big and small. In Europe, we were charmed by a pair of colorful and fun residences. An artist in Argentina offers an illustrated view—yes, illustrated!—of her digs
(“Drawn-Out Decor,” page 50). A blogger takes us into her Kuala Lumpur home (“Design Fusion,” page 99), and we tag along with an entrepreneur who started a nanny service for creative types on tour (“On the Road Again,” page 75). The entertaining story set in Paris (“A Postcard from Paris,” page 113) made me so nostalgic for the City of Light. And the feature on Stockholm (“The Swede Life,” page 56) has moved the Scandinavian destination way up on my list of places to visit. Whether you’re reading this from the comfort of your couch, or seated in a plane, train, or automobile, perhaps this issue will fuel a little wanderlust of your own.
Anh-Minh Le Editor in Chief
Contents Fall 2011
CALM, COOL & COLLECTED
Filled with curated flea market scores, a loft residence has the aura of an art gallery.
THE SWEDE LIFE
A Stockholm native divulges her favorite things to do and places to go.
An Argentinean illustrator puts pen to paper for a unique apartment tour.
In Malaysia, a young family’s home blends Scandinavian and Asian influences.
IN LIVING COLOR
For a photographer and food blogger, a sweet Vietnamese pudding brings back fond memories.
Bursts of color add plenty of personality to a blank canvas of a home.
A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE
The co-founder of a fashion label takes a vibrant approach to her home and business.
A POSTCARD FROM PARIS
A Vancouver abode awash in bold hues represents a well-traveled life.
AROUND THE WORLD STYLE
A party to celebrate a chef ’s new cookbook turns out to be quite the global gathering.
An online boutique delivers handcrafted global wares right to your doorstep.
IN EVERY ISSUE
In Berkeley, an artist works with crepe ribbon to create stunning surprise balls.
A NEW POINT OF VIEW
We asked a handful of photographers to share images from their most life-changing trips.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN 75 An entrepreneur finds a way to meld her passions, including her love of touring with bands. ADVENTURE ANYWHERE
EDITOR’S LETTER 2 CONTRIBUTORS 4 MAKING THE MAGAZINE 6 SHOPKEEPERS’ PICKS 8 MARKET REPORT 10 CONVERSATION Keith Johnson of Anthropologie RESOURCES 123 BY THE BOOK 125 PRIZED POSSESSION Suki Cheema 128
A travel guide that works in any destination? It’s genius—see for yourself!
Cover photograph by JENNY HALLENGREN 3
Keith Johnson developed a passion for travel, art, and antiques at a young age. His father, an art dealer, “was always sending interesting things home from Europe,” he says. “I remember the excitement when a new shipment of things would arrive.” These days, Keith is the one traveling and sending goods home. In his role as the art and antiques buyer at Anthropologie (anthropologie.com), he constantly meets with artists and sources new merchandise from all over the world. His shopping excursions have been documented in the Sundance Channel series Man Shops Globe. And his finds make their way into Anthropologie stores in the United States, Canada, and United Kingdom—as well as into the pre-war apartment in New York City that he shares with his partner, Glen Senk. “We try to spend time there, but of course I spend a huge amount of time traveling,” says Keith, who has been away from home as much as six months out of the year.
Photographs by KELLY ISHIKAWA
CAREER PATH: I had my own company
for several years where I made and designed tabletop products. When I started working for Anthropologie we only had one store. My life partner, Glen, was running the company and wanted antiques for the store. We had no budget, so at first I was just part time. I don’t think I was even paid for the job. I have never really had a title. DESIGN ADVICE: Keep it personal. I hate
formulaic interiors. BEST
YOUR HOME: I bought an amazing sculp-
tural chair made by a Spanish designer, Nacho Carbonell. It’s from Rossana Orlandi in Milan—hands down the world’s most inspiring home store. CURRENT OBSESSION: A new line
of upholstery by Draga Obradovic that I’m bringing in from Italy. She is handpainting and -screening the fabrics. I love her; she is a real talent. YOUR OWN ARTISTIC ENDEAVORS:
I grew up in a family of artists, but never thought of myself as one. Something clicked when Glen started riding horses again. Although I don’t have any formal training, I love connecting to him and his horses in this way. Since I’m always in antiques markets I easily find interesting materials to craft my horse sculptures with. TOPICS OF CONVERSATION: People
seem to love the vintage Alexander Calder curtains in the library (purchased at a flea market) and the wooden arc lamp in the living room (from Paris). They also love a photograph I have of an elderly Swedish dress designer. I love that people love her like I do. 14
“You only regret the things you leave behind. So many people tell me stories of things they wish they had bought.”
ARTIST TO WATCH: My favorite art objects are two
pieces I own by Pieke Bergmans, a glass artist whom I found at a graduate show in Eindhoven. She has become very successful and I’m proud that we had her things in the gallery at the Rockefeller Center store early on. COLLECTIONS: I collect things that have a variety
of forms but the same function—like vintage espresso machines. I also love collecting plates. My latest are from Ruan Hoffmann, a South African artist. ARTFUL ATTRACTION: I love sculpture, usually
made from found objects. The Urs Fischer wax candle sculpture at the Venice Biennale—a full-scale replica of The Rape of the Sabine Women by Giambologna—was the most beautiful thing I’ve seen in years. It filled a cathedral-like space in the Arsenale and was incredibly
In Lance DeWalt’s home, pieces of varying age and style—such as candlesticks picked up during a trip to Provence and an Eero Aarnio Bubble chair—happily coexist.
CALM, COOL & COLLECTED A Philadelphia loft serves as the perfect backdrop for showcasing a flea market aficionado’s many finds Text by LAUREN MCCUTCHEON Photographs by SETH SMOOT Styling by KENDRA SMOOT
Clockwise from top left: Lance’s bed is
elevated on Ikea’s Malm four-drawer chests. Among the throw pillows are some made from old Swedish postal sacks. A graphic designer friend created the wall vinyl by scanning one of artist John Willie’s iconic covers of Bizarre magazine.
“IF YOU FALL IN LOVE WITH IT, BUY IT. AND WHEN YOU TRAVEL, PACK LIGHT, SO YOU HAVE ROOM TO BRING THINGS HOME.” chandelier, a needlepoint-seat chair, a curio cabinet, and frames (one for a full-length mirror, another for a black-and-white photo of his parents that dates back to their days acting in a local theater production). For Lance, acquiring items is often an adventure—but living with them can be, too. He is constantly rearranging his home’s layout, as well as the vignettes throughout. Given his extensive experience with flea markets worldwide, surely he must have some words of wisdom. His advice is simple: “If you fall in love with it, buy it. And when you travel, pack light, so you have room to bring things home.”
TREASURES With these artful surprise balls, it’s not only what’s on the inside that matters—the outside is rather spectacular, too Text by CHANTAL LAMERS Photographs by AYA BRACKETT
This page and opposite :
Anandamayi Arnold fashions exquisite surprise balls in her Berkeley studio—her old bedroom in her parent’s house.
FOR ANANDAMAYI ARNOLD, crafting hundreds of curious surprise balls each year requires a vivid and substantial inventory of crepe paper, miniature folk toys, and boxes of throwback candies. The decorative bequests are so remarkable, the recipients may be hesitant to unearth their contents. The Berkeley artist isn’t the earliest architect of surprise balls, yet she’s elevated the craft beyond its kitschy incarnation. It’s believed that a southernbased company popularized the novelty balls midcentury with the slogan, “The Toy You Destroy to Enjoy.” While the presentation has evolved, the idea is the same: 10 teensy treasures, individually wrapped in yards of multicolored streamer paper, swaddled into one neato ball. Where Anandamayi’s interpretation differs is that for her, the toy- and treat-filled ball is only the beginning of the process. The ball becomes the foundation for an elaborate and often realistic crepe paper sculpture: from sea anemones with flowing tentacles to perfectly textured lemons dangling from floral vines that look so genuine you’d swear one bite would produce a mouthful of tart juice.
A special German crepe paper is essential to Anandamayi’s highly accurate and detailed work. Opposite : The unraveled
pieces reveal a trove of sweets and little toys.
While the balls are considered Americana, her technique is rooted in traditional Japanese paper-doll making, trompe l’oeil, and historical costume design. When she was 11, a trip to the Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival in San Francisco led to three years of doll-making classes. Her mother drove her into the city every Saturday for sessions with Yuri Nakamura. “I think it gave me a feel for how to make paper be three dimensional,” says Anandamayi. “Which I think obviously really influenced how I handle paper.” At the age of 15, she began making flower ribbons for Berkeley shop Tail of the Yak. After college (she majored in ancient studies at Brown University and took drawing and painting classes at the Rhode Island School of Design) she began working there. “My mom
said, ‘You should make surprise balls for the store.’ So I made some rabbits and brought them in. And ever since, they’ve kind of wanted me to do nothing else.” That was 15 years ago. Anandamayi now makes surprise balls exclusively for Tail of the Yak. The bounty reflects what she sees seasonally: bearded iris in the spring, plums in the summer, bright white snowballs and sparkly hunks of coal in the winter. They range in price from about $25 for a geometric ball to $39 for a pomegranate to $90 for a bunch of waxed lilies. “It’s amazing that I’ve sold thousands and thousands, and people keep wanting to buy them,” she says. “I think in a way it’s the perfect gift for someone who has everything because you’re not responsible for what’s in it.” Each ball begins with a collection of trinkets and treats that Anandamayi carefully composes. “It’s supposed to be something I would like, but I appreciate a wide range of things,” she notes. (A recent addition: brightly colored plastic warbler whistles.) As she wraps each toy in American-made paper streamers, she measures them against each other to ensure just the right shape when they’re clustered together inside of the ball. What comes next is essential to the art: German crepe paper that another Berkeley store, Castle in the Air, imports. “It’s really all possible because of this wonderful crepe paper I use. It has amazing body, and because it’s creped you can make non-linear
IT’S IMPOSSIBLE TO UNRAVEL ONE OF ANANDAMAYI’S CREATIONS AND STILL SALVAGE THE divine PAPER SCULPTURE.
Text, Recipe, and Photographs by GIAO TRAC
A photographer and food blogger shares a dessert that recalls cherished childhood memories, as well as her homeland
n 1979, my family arrived in America from Vietnam with a few dollars in our pockets and the clothes on our backs. Growing up in an immigrant family, I learned the true value of every dollar, dime, nickel, and penny that came our way. Although we didn’t have a lot, I never felt deprived of the things that mattered. My parents spun simple pleasures into memories worth their weight in gold—memories that I carry with me to this day. In the summer and early fall—when the evening light stayed out late—we would finish dinner, wash the dishes, and then my dad loved to announce with the rigor of a ringmaster: “Who wants to go for a drive?” Those words were pure bliss to me. My heart billowed with excitement as the three of us—my parents and I—piled into our little Honda and cruised the streets, windows down, soaking up the balmy air and telling inconsequential stories. We never had a plan or a destination. We simply drove—that was it. Yet, somehow, during those drives, my small world filled with harmony. Upon returning home from the drive, it was Mom’s turn to make an announcement: “It’s time for chè,” she’d say, with the biggest grin on her face. Dad usually reacted with a song and dance, inching her smile wider still. While the other kids I knew ate pie for dessert, I ate sweet bean pudding, a staple of any Vietnamese household. As we swallowed spoonfuls of chè, my parents reminisced about our old village in Vietnam. They talked about stepping out of the house after dinner, heading down any street, and finding the lady who sold chè. Her chè sat in two baskets, each hanging on the end of a rod she rested on her shoulders like a perfectly balanced scale; she was a walking dessert shop. As they recounted the varieties of chè she sold, I heard joy in their voices, tinged with a wistful echo. I would close my eyes and just like that—I was right there with them, wandering the village streets in search of chè for dessert, deep within the country we left behind.
VIETNAMESE DESSERT PUDDING WITH MUNG BEANS AND TAPIOCA Serves 2 ½ cup dried yellow mung beans 3 tbsp dried small tapioca pearls piece of tangerine rind, 2-3 inches long (white parts removed) ½ cup coconut milk 3-4 chunks rock sugar, each about 1-inch in size
1. Place mung beans in a medium bowl, add enough water to cover by an inch, and soak overnight at room temperature. 2. Drain and rinse mung beans in a strainer. Place tapioca pearls in a small bowl, cover with water, and soak 15 minutes. Drain and place pearls in a small saucepan. Add enough water to cover the pearls and bring to a boil uncovered over medium-high heat. Once boiling, turn off
heat, cover, and let sit 30-40 minutes, until pearls turn translucent. Drain in a strainer and set aside. 3. In a medium saucepan, add 1½ cups of water, drained mung beans, and tangerine rind. Bring to a boil, uncovered over high heat, then reduce heat to low and simmer 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Continue to add more water, a few tablespoons at a time, to prevent beans from drying out. When beans soften, gently mash with a potato masher. (There should not be any excess water to drain.) Stir in coconut milk, rock sugar, and tapioca pearls and simmer until sugar has dissolved. Taste and add more coconut milk and/or sugar if desired. Discard tangerine rind and ladle into small bowls or jars. Serve immediately or at room temperature. GIAO TR AC is a food, editorial, travel, and lifestyle photographer. Her blog Kiss My Spatula (kissmyspatula.com) offers recipes accompanied by beautiful imagery and storytelling.
A Brooklyn-based surface designer embarks on her regular pilgrimage to her homeland and shares some favorite haunts Text by LOTTA JANSDOTTER Photographs by JENNY HALLENGREN 57
I moved to the United States in 1991 and now travel to Stockholm once or twice a year; in many ways, it still feels like home to me. Whenever I return to Brooklyn—where I currently live with my husband Nick and our four-year-old son August—I bring back some Scandinavian flair in my bag (a new coat or shirt, perhaps) and plenty of design inspiration in my head. Comprised of 14 islands, Stockholm is not very big, yet there is no shortage of things to do. The city is filled with live music, great museums (the city boasts about 100!), exciting restaurants, and an abundance of cafes (spend an afternoon at one and you’ll no doubt witness some fun fashion statements). 58
I always tell people that Stockholm is an easy destination. Most Swedes speak English quite well and are eager to practice their language skills on visitors. While public transportation— which includes buses, ferries, and a subway system—is simple to figure out, Stockholm is also great for biking and walking. There are bike lanes all over the city and many hotels rent bikes on an hourly or daily basis. Even better: Stockholm City Bikes makes bicycles available to the public, free of charge. Their website (citybikes.se/en) lists the locations where you can pick one up. Over the past decade, the culinary scene in Stockholm has become increasingly diverse. You can now find practi-
cally any cuisine you desire—with perhaps the exception of Mexican, as I have yet to find a burrito there. Swedish fare encompasses much more than meatballs, moose meat, and pickled herring. These days, it’s not uncommon for chefs to come up with fresh approaches to traditional Swedish foods. One of my favorite restaurants is Aarts, which serves a lovely chanterelle soup, salad made with locally sourced beets, and delicious lamb and fish dishes. When visiting Stockholm, I usually stay in Söder, a neighborhood in the southern part of town that’s considered rather bohemian. This is where my close friends live and where most of my favorite shops are located (very convenient indeed). As a shop owner and surface designer (I create patterns and motifs, as well as design fashion accessories and home products), it’s important to visit a lot of stores and exhibitions. I call it market research. I pick up ideas and inspiration, or find new items to stock. I go to my usual places, but I also like to add to my repertoire by visiting new businesses. Some I find out about ahead of time through word of mouth, others I happen upon during my city walks. During a recent trip, for instance, I discovered MUD, a ceramics studio on the second floor of a yellow apartment building. Going out for coffee and taking snack breaks are also high on my list of things to do in Stockholm. It’s an excellent way to catch up with friends, plus I need fuel to continue my market research, right? These respites are fondly referred to as fika. Popular in
Growing up in Stockholm, Lotta (above, seated at Vete-Katten) developed an appreciation of nature that continues to influence her designs.