Design Classic: Pia Wallen Cross Blanket

I was thinking of starting a little series on here about design classics. In a way I have already set the ball rolling with my posts about Ollie Eskell’s Cocoa Eyes poster, Welsh blankets and the Papa Bear chair. So I might as well add another tag to my collection and try to make my future posts a little more professional!

I am not an expert on design by any means, but I know what I like and I do like to gush on here about the things that I love! And if this gets me blogging more, then its all good!

If you have read my blog before then you will know that I am a big fan of all things mid century modern, in particular the furniture and the architecture from the period.

Today I am going to write about an item that was designed in 2011*!

I know, I know, shock horror, not an item from the mid century period!

But as well as being a fan of interiors from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s, I also love Scandinavian inspired interiors. One of my design heroes is Anna Dorfman from the Door Sixteen blog. I love how she has decorated her house and apartments over the years. She mixes mid century pieces, with stuff from Ikea in such an inspired way that makes me want to paint all my walls black (which really wouldn’t work in my house) and copy everything she does! It was Anna who first introduced me to todays design classic the Pia Wallen Cross blanket. She is obsessed with it and owns one which looks amazing in her bedroom.

At first, I was a bit ‘meh’ about this blanket. You could take it or leave it as far as I was concerned. But over the years, just like the Eyes poster, it has really grown on me. It is simple, beautiful, graphic, neural and, in my opinion, has become a classic with its timeless design that works well in a variety of interior styles and will never go out of style.

It is eyewateringly expensive though. I would never pay 1888SEK (with the postage it works out to around £154) for what is essentially just a fleece blanket which my cat would ruin. I don’t care how limited they are and ethical the bloody cotton used to make them is! And dont get me started about how expensive the original Crux blankets are! I cant even bare to think about the cost of them without needing to sit down with a brown paper bag in case I have a panic attack!**

To be honest, I love them, but I don’t aspire to own one. I don’t think that it would fit in with my bedrooms decor. I am quite content to admire Cross blankets from afar on blogs and Pinterest. I would much rather a Welsh blanket. One day I will find one cheap in a charity shop. A girl can dream eh!

Click on all images for links to the original posts and credits to photographers and sources.

Image from sugarandcloth.com

Image from sugarandcloth.com

Image from myscandinavianhome.blogspot.co.uk

Image from myscandinavianhome.blogspot.co.uk

image from myscandinavianhome.blogspot.co.uk

image from myscandinavianhome.blogspot.co.uk

Image from littlebigbell.com

Image from littlebigbell.com

And two images of the original Crux blanket from Pia Wallen

Image from housetohome.co.uk

Image from housetohome.co.uk

Image from myscandiavianhome.blogspot.co.uk

Image from myscandiavianhome.blogspot.co.uk

However, there is a way of owning a bit of Swedish cross action without needing to remorgage your home. This cushion from Ikea is similar in style. Ok not really, but it is monochrome, Swedish and kind of a cross pattern! I own this cushion and am very fond of it for its easy on the eye pattern. It blends well in so many different interior settings. (Read that as this cushion is everywhere as pretty much everyone owns one. However, it always looks good!)

The Stockholm cushion. Image from Ikea.com

The Stockholm cushion. Image from Ikea.com

Our sofa with our Ikea cushion

Our sofa with our Ikea cushion

Image from emmas.blogg.se. I love everything about this photo! The Marrimekko bowl on the coffee table, the Eames bird, the cheeky WG vase and Hornsea plant pot peeking out in the corners!

Image from emmas.blogg.se. I love everything about this photo! The Marimekko bowl on the coffee table, the Eames bird, the cheeky WG vase and the Hornsea plant pot peeking out on the edges!

*The original Crux Blanket was designed in 1999. The cheaper Cross blanket with the smaller crosses was launched in 2011.
**£774.80 before postage if you are interested.

Design Classic – Cocoa Eyes

Back in the late noughties when I first started reading blogs, in particular interior blogs like Apartment Therapy, Decor8 and Design Sponge etc, the Keep Calm poster was everywhere.

Fast forward to 2014 and the bloggers favourite words of wisdom in the form of a print has all but disappeared (overkill maybe?) These days blogland is currently obsessed with house plants, that moon postermacrame wall hangings, the Its Ok banner and everything yellow.

All things that I heartily approve of.

However, I do try to not let myself get too influenced by the internet trends, overwise this would happen – A) I would be broke after spending a fortune on Etsy and vintage stuff. B) My house would be filled to the brim with lots of bad half finished DIY projects involving neon washi tape and gold spray paint. C) My house would sort of look like everybody else’s on the internet.

Image from Someform.com. Original sources linked in post.

Image from Someform.com. Original sources linked in post.

However……I really want this poster! Maybe you have spotted this distinctive poster around the internet and in interior magazines from time to time. Its a bit of a strange poster really, just two staring eyes on a plain background. But the clean lines and simplicity of this print really appeal to me. The more I see it, the more I like it. It has really grown on me!

Image from apartmenttherapy.com

Image from mamamekko.blogspot.uk

Image from mamamekko.blogspot.uk

I think it would look perfect hanging in our bedroom. (Full tour coming…..you guessed it soon!!)

Recently I finally discovered the name of this poster. By discovered, I really mean that I read it on a blog. Its Cocoa Eyes by Swedish graphic designer Olle Eskell. I did some further research and discovered that was designed by him in 1954 for a Swedish Cocoa company.

So yeah, designed in the 1950’s and graphic. What more could I want? Its perfect for our home!

P.S Check out this Pinterest board!

Design Classic – Welsh Blankets

Around two years ago I started subscribing to Mid Century magazine, and amongst all the amazing articles and home tours, I spotted my first Welsh blanket.

Its funny, I showed a magazine to my Mum and mentioned how much I liked the blanket in the picture. Her reply was something along the lines of “ugggh, we’ve had all that type of stuff before and we were glad to get rid of it!!!”

Sometimes she just does not get my love of good bad-taste! If you are interested, here is a B+W Instagram snap of a vintage blanket that used to belong to my grandparents that I now own and love. One persons trash is another persons treasure eh!

At the time I had no idea that the blankets I was admiring were specifically Welsh blankets. A craft industry product which still to this day are woven in local Welsh mills and are so bloody expensive! Have you seen how much these bad boys go for on eBay? Or brand new?

One day I might treat myself to one. In the mean time here is a visual treat of welsh blankets looking damm fine in other peoples houses.

image from design sponge

image from design sponge. I love this sneak peek!Image from thedesignfiles.net. Another dreamy blanket from another dreamy home tour.Image from thedesignfiles.net. Another dreamy blanket from another dreamy home tour.Image from themodernhouse.net anther amazing holiday let!Image from themodernhouse.net an amazing holiday let!Image from themodernhouse.net. An amazing holiday let!Image from themodernhouse.net. Another amazing holiday let!

Want to feast your eyes on more tasty bedrooms? Then check out my Pinterest board where I lost a few hours down the internet rabbit hole one rainy Sunday afternoon!

Chairs I Want My Bottom To Meet

I think I might have mentioned that I like Mid-century modern furniture on here, ooh – maybe once or twice?!!

I started to admire this period’s furnishings around 5-7 years ago, or maybe I just finally realised the term (M.C.M) and researched the history of a lot of the pieces that I had long coveted back then?

Then the stars aligned for me almost three years ago, when we moved into our 1950’s house and a lot of the cheap furniture we had previously bought just because we needed it, was falling apart and needed replacing (you get what you pay for folks). So it was the perfect opportunity for me to go to town and decorate the ***k out of our house.

I also must mention (again!) that I am the main decision maker when it comes to the decorating in our household, and luckily Rob (mostly) likes my choices. If not then too bad! Although I have threatened mentioned to him that I quite fancy getting some lacy doilies for the bedroom! Think granny chic people! – The poor guy!

Rob said the most wonderful thing to me the other day. We were talking about our dining room chairs, and he basically said that he wished we did not buy the cheapest copies that we could find, that we waited instead and saved up to buy the fiberglass versions. He also said that he would always want Eames DSW chairs for our dining table. OMG! I just melted! That was the most romantic thing he has ever said to me! OK it isn’t really, but its probably the best thing to ever come out of his mouth that I have wanted to hear! It was music to my ears! – Yeah, I am a bit odd!

Anyhoo, my point to this blog post is that you know how you always have wish lists? Be it places to visit, things to cook, or cars etc? We, well mainly me, have a furniture wish list.

I am a bit of an interiors/furnishings geek and happily, since moving house I have crossed a lot of items from my wish list, like a teak sideboard, an Eames rocker, and a G plan astro coffee table. But its always fun to daydream, and some of the items on my lust list will never fit into our house or budget. They include an Ercol loveseat, a pink Smeg fridge, a 50’s kitchen unit/dresser type thing and some string shelving for me. It is a massive shed/workshop, a scalextric room, a massive TV and a more masculine bedroom for Rob BTW.

Eames-Lounge-Black-with-Cherry

The seat of dreams. If only my arse could be so lucky. Click on image for source.

We both mutually agreed that at the top of our furniture wish list is an Eames lounge Chair and this has been our number one aspirational object for a long time. Alas, we are not going to own one any time soon, for one main reason – space. Forgetting about the cost of them for a minute. Yes, we do have a sizable lounge, but we also have two sizable settees in it and two doorways, so it is just not going to happen. No can do, sorry.

But recently the Eames lounger has been relegated to the number two position on the list (well for me anyway). It has been knocked off the top position by the papa bear chair.

Sigh! My fickle heart has fallen for this chair in a bad way! It was designed in 1951 by Hans J Wegner and in my eyes is the stuff of dreams!

living-area

click on image for source

I am a long time admirer of M.C.M, but I have only recently come across this chair! I first spotted two of them in this post here. In Rachel Griffiths‘s home, randomly.

Image from Apartment Therapy

Image from Apartment Therapy

It was love at first sight. And I now got it bad. I look out for them in all the home tours I come across online, just to try to catch a glimpse of one. And every so often I will google image stalk them like some dirty chair pervert!

Yes, I am mildly obsessed with this chair and I would love to own one. But it is not to be, from what I can gather originals are quite rare, plus we have no room for it. This is a kind of “if I ever win the lottery” type of situation here. A girl can dream!

Will Ferrell has one in the bedroom. Click on image for source.

Will Ferrell has one in the bedroom. Click on image for source.

So why have I fallen hard for this chair? Its a combination of its name (how cute and appropriate – it does look like a bear!) and its shape. It has just the right amount of M.C.M signature curves and tapered legs, and yet it somehow seems to have a slight Addams family-esq vibe about it. – Well I think so anyway! This is a very good thing in my book BTW.

Plus every Tom, Dick and Harry seems to have an Eames lounger these days. And why would we want to kick back on a super comfy lounger, when we can have a slightly rigid, strange chair in our lounge I ask you!