Art + Design + Places + Travels

Stockholm! Part two.


Remember when I went to Stockholm like three years ago? OK, it was last month, but geez, could it take me any longer to put a second post together? I know I’ll regret it if I don’t do it, though. Last night I was talking to a friend about how my blog still serves as a rough diary (albeit a very selective one) for me to refer back to, and how legitimately sad I feel that I haven’t written posts about a lot of stuff. My memory isn’t as good as I’d like it to be, and it’s comforting to be read old posts and see how I felt about things in my life when they happened. OK, so now that I’ve explained the arcane concept of a diary…haha.

The schedule on my second day in Stockholm was, to put it mildly, bananas.

10:15am — Get on bus to Skeppsholmen.
10:30am — Presentation about the history and design of both Hotel Skeppsholmen and the Nobis Hotel, both designed by the studio Claesson Koivisto Rune. Tour of Hotel Skeppsholmen.



During the presentation at Hotel Skeppsholmen (which, by the way, is very beautiful), my eye wandered across the room to this AMAZINGLY FABULOUS textile hanging on the wall. I couldn’t stop looking at it. Unfortunately I couldn’t get a great full-size shot of it without moving the banquet table (don’t think I didn’t consider it), but you get the idea.

I asked the hotel director if he knew anything about it, and he said he was a little unsure but that he thought it was from the 1890s. This seemed a little bit maybe not right to me, but I wrote it my notebook and decided to look it up later.


As I was looking at my photos, I noticed these details in the corner: The number 1961 (which seemed much more likely to me as the year of origin than 1890) and the initials MR. A little bit og Googling later, and I had answers! The textile, called “Karneval,” was designed by Marianne Richter (MR) for the Märta Måås-Fjetterström AB studio in 1961. If you have a whole bunch of money, keep an eye out for auctions! One recently sold for about $12,000. Gulp. (The photos at the auction link are much better than mine, by the way.)


Visiting the Moderna Museet wasn’t on the agenda, sadly, but I did gaze longingly at it from the window while I was in Skeppsholmen.

11:30am — Walk to Arkdes for presentations on Swedish design at the Arkitektur– och Designcentrum. (The presentations were excellent and I took loads of notes, but I’m not sure how well they translate into a blog post. They did, however, give me an awful lot to think about when it comes to the future of design, Swedish politics, and sustainability.)


1:00pm — Quick stop at the offices and library of Svensk Form, the Swedish Society of Crafts and Design.

I could easily have stayed there all day looking at the bound issues of Form Magazine, the world’s oldest design magazine, reaching back to 1905. I was in heaven…but only for 15 minutes. It was at this point that I started feeling very sad about having to adhere to such a strict schedule, but there wasn’t anything I could do about it. Next time. (I said “next time” a lot during this trip.)

1:15pm — Bus to Pizza Hatt, where designers from LAST introduced their new brand and collection of design pieces.


2:30pm — The event scheduled for this slot was canceled, so the bus dropped us off at Svenskt Tenn for about 20 minutes.

Svenskt Tenn was on my list of places I really wanted to visit, so I’m grateful for even that short bit of time to quickly zip around the whole store and take in as much as possible. I admire Josef Frank and his work so much, and seeing it in this context was overwhelming and emotional (and over all too quickly…next time). As I was leaving, I noticed Barnaba Fornasetti on his way in! I was immediately star struck, and could barely manage to sneak a quick picture, much less introduce myself.

I later spotted Fornasetti and his son at my hotel eating breakfast, waiting for a cab on the street, at baggage check at the airport, again while going through security, and then buying a banana and browsing design magazines at a new stand. I think maybe he thought I was stalking him. And yes, he dresses like that all the time. Style for days. (When you have a minute, go look at this slideshow of Barnaba Fornasetti’s house—it is fabulous.)


3:00pm — Bus to Snickarbacken 7’s art space, where woven vinyl pioneers Bolon were presenting their new collection. A short film by choreographed by Alexander Ekman (who was in attendance) was presented.


While loitering around on the sidewalk waiting to get on the bus, I noticed that seemingly all of the businesses in Stockholm had lit up lanterns on the ground outside their doorways at dusk. The effect was so beautiful and welcoming, and all I could think about was how having an open flame on the ground in public in NYC couldn’t possibly be legal, and how sad that is. Then I remembered a story my mother told me about a Christmas tree decorated with candles (!) catching on fire when she was a child, and I started to question whether Swedes are committed to fire safety. Then I realized it had been about 20 hours since I’d eaten anything, and went back to enjoying the lanterns.


4:30pm — Visit to ICEBAR by ICEHOTEL, where Monica Förster introduced her new designs.

The ICEBAR is exactly what you think it is: a bar made out of ice. The walls are ice, the bar is ice, the chairs are ice, even the glasses are ice. The floor is not ice. Helpers drape you in very heavy, very warm, surprisingly flattering capes before you enter. Drinking out of a glass made of ice is unsurprisingly unpleasant, but the lingonberry and vodka cocktails are delicious.


5:45pm — Visit the FÄRG & BLANCHE design studio for the release of an art/dance/design film by architect Erika Janunger and choreographer Oskar Frisk.

There were fresh oranges and hot tea at the FÄRG & BLANCHE event, so I was able to fuel up a bit and get my senses back in order! The film was really beautiful, and a nice (if abstract) way to introduce a furniture line. The designers behind the line, Fredrik Färg Emma Marga Blanche, were very charming and graciously showed us around not only their showroom, but also the workshop at the back of their studio where they produce all of their pieces. I’ll be keeping an eye on them in the future…



7:15pm — Exhibition and dinner at Note Design Studio.

Note’s studio is a knockout. The whole thing is white and glass from floor to ceiling, with black dots marking the tops and bottoms of the stairwells. A bunch of their designs were on display, and I fell in love with the Silo lamps. I fell in love with everything, actually, including the chef who went out of his way to prepare a beautiful vegan meal for me (after I sneaked into the kitchen and did a little bit of begging). Shaved fennel, radishes, and cauliflower with slivers of toasted bread. I don’t know what he used as dressing, but the flavor was both delicate and full at the same time—very subtly vinegar-ish and a bit sweet. I could eat like that all the time.

11:30pm — Arrive back at hotel, crash, burn.

The final installment in my Stockholm adventure, Part Three, is coming soon! For real soon, too, not two weeks soon. That’s the most fun day, the Furniture Fair!

Here’s Part One, if you missed it.

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  • Reply Lee March 10, 2014 at 1:53 am

    That chartreuse upholstery — WANT!

  • Reply Christina March 10, 2014 at 5:26 am

    This is my dream trip, well one of them anyway. That tapestry, AND you went to Svenskt Tenn!

    • Anna @ D16 March 10, 2014 at 4:36 pm

      I know, the tapestry alone was worth the trip!!

  • Reply Simone March 10, 2014 at 6:11 am

    How lovely to read more about your trip, thank you. That textile is gorgeous.
    We had candles in our tree once, but it required a full pail of water next to it at all times. Gives a lovely kind of light, also it is different than with lights, lights you turn on and ten forget about the whole thing altogether, candles take about 10 minutes to light and you have to watch them, so it is more considered (if you know what I mean) it requires a different awareness. Have a wonderful day!

  • Reply Katja March 10, 2014 at 8:53 am

    Stockholm, Skeppsholmen: that brings back some of the best memories from my time as a design student.
    I had the great pleasure to stay at the Kungliga Konsthögskolan / Royal Swedish Academy of Arts back in 98 as an exchange student for half a year. Beeing a student in Sweden at the Konsthögskolan was fantastic: to every student a little studio was provided for free. I wanted to study there, because the had the most beautiful and spacious printing departement – and I was not disappointed! People where friendly, helpful and openminded, I could use all the printing equipment till late at night an even got free material for my projects and every support I needed.
    The Konsthögskolan is right next to the Moderna Museet – it was perfect.
    Also it was the year, when Stockholm was European Capital of Culture – so there where exhibitions and Music and all kind of events going on all over the place.

    • Anna @ D16 March 10, 2014 at 4:36 pm

      I definitely need to go back and spend more time in Skeppsholmen! It’s amazing how much cultural activity is crammed into that one little island. 🙂

  • Reply Kelly March 10, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    This is just amazing! Stockholm was always on my “must visit” list, but it is definitely closer to the top now. Swedes know how to LIVE. Did you get to do any shopping at all? A visit to & Other Stories?

    • Anna @ D16 March 10, 2014 at 4:35 pm

      Kelly, I only had a couple of hours of free time in the afternoon on the day I arrived (Sunday), and most shops were closed. I did go to & Other Stories briefly with Emma, but I was too tired to even think about shopping!

      Other than that, I literally did not have even 5 minutes of free time—I was with a group on a very tight schedule.

    • Kelly March 10, 2014 at 4:39 pm

      Definitely sounds like a tight schedule. Well, that means you definitely have to go back soon!

  • Reply Cleshawn March 10, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    Awesome! I’ll be taking an extended trip to Sweden + Denmark next month and I’m so excited! I can’t wait to see the last round of your pictures!


  • Reply Zalea March 10, 2014 at 8:31 pm

    Gaah! I want that textile!

    Thank you for writing about your trip to Sweden. My mom and I are going in May for our annual “do something together” trip. Did you have a chance to go outside of Stockholm? We’re making stops in Gottenburg & Copenhagen so any tips are welcome. 🙂

    • Anna @ D16 March 10, 2014 at 9:12 pm

      Hi Zalea, no, my trip was literally 2 1/2 days long! I barely even saw Stockholm, haha. Next time!

      (Well, I did have an hour layover at the Copenhagen airport, and it was definitely the most beautiful airport I’ve ever seen.)

  • Reply jodi March 11, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    that tapestry is AMAZING! so glad you were able to track down more info about it.

    also? i totally read pizza hatt as pizza hut. :/

    • Anna @ D16 March 11, 2014 at 5:42 pm

      Hahaha, my mother was SURE that we were going to Pizza Hut when she saw my itinerary. Hah! It’s definitely Pizza Hatt, though. It’s a very cute little brick oven pizza place that some people from Cheap Monday started.

  • Reply Elena + deco March 14, 2014 at 3:48 am

    I love the tapestry! Yesterday I went to see an amazing exhibition on English painters from the Victoran era and the colours of the paintings remind me an artist called Alma Tadema who I totally love.

  • Reply Joss March 21, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    Thank you for the tip on the Bridge…I’m in love with Copenhagen, and I promise you I will watch The show. A police procedural set on that bridge? For me, there could be nothing better more interesting. I don’t even notice subtitles after a bit. BTW the homes are fascinating in Copenhagen. Ancient houses redesigned for modern living in the old sections of town, often with an eight inch strip of soil where a climbing rose is espalier’d against the front house wall. I especially liked the deep windowsills which host geraniums, and the wax polished floors enjoyed through sox not shoes. And then there is Salte Fisk, the salted fish shaped licorice candy. Try them!

  • Reply Christina April 9, 2014 at 2:44 am

    Wow, as I was scrolling through your blog (as per usual), I stumbled upon this post once again. Love it again! The tapestry, visit to Svenkst Tenn, Icebar, all of it..

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