COLLECTION_ DIY’s for the holidays

With the holidays approaching rapidly, a little Christmas inspiration is in order! As some of you may know, I’m always spending the holidays in Portugal, which means that a Christmas tree seems like too much of a hassle.  However, that doesn’t mean I don’t like to get my home into the holidays spirit!  In this blogpost I’ve collected all kinds of inspiration, from gift wrapping ideas to alternative Christmas trees and from DIY ornaments to festive decoration ideas.  Have fun and if you do try one of these, don’t hesitate to send me the result in a DM!  I’d love to see what you come up with…

  1. Furoshiki is the Japanese art of wrapping a gift in a reusable material, such as a linnen napkin, or leftover cloth which can be used again and again.  It’s a no waste approach to gift wrapping that looks good and feels good too!  Learn how to do it here.
  2. Can’t find the kind of ornaments that you’re looking for? Then why not make them yourself!  Molly from Almost Makes Perfect explains how to make these hand ornaments yourself here.
  3.  This yarn and eucalyptus wall hanging by Poppytalks  looks (and smells!) especially great during the holiday season, but you can definitely keep it around a lot longer.   Discover the DIY here.
  4. Not quite ready to dress your home in green and red?  Try this subtle dry flower wreath by Paper & Stitch here.
  5. If you’re in it for the ornaments but not quite for the tree, this image by Sostrene Grene is a good solution.  A bare walls and some washi tape is all you need.
  6. Ana Morais elegantly combined dry flowers, brown craft paper (the most sustainable option when it comes to gift wrapping paper!) and furoshiki to wrap her gifts.  For more images of her excellent gift wrapping skills, look here and don’t forget to swipe.
  7. This wall hanging is the solution for those who don’t have enough space for an actual tree.  Find the DIY by Almost makes Perfect here.
  8. Abi from These Four Walls combined paper decoration and a foraged brand for a minimal and elegant christmas arrangement.  Have a better look  here.
  9. Zwoste used pine as tassles in this cream catcher, making it the perfect addition to a boho home for a subtle nod to the holiday spirit. Read more here.
COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be COLLECTION_ Christmas DIY's, via aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be

COLLECTION_ gifts from Belgium

Belgian gift ideasWhile we’re spending money on Christmas presents for our loved ones, we might as well make sure they’re not the only one benefiting from our gifts, right?  My first choice always goes to local,  sustainable, second hand, made by a small business or an experience instead of something materialistic.  To help you a little on your hunt for the perfect gift, I’ve kept every budget in mind and collected nine ideas that are designed and/or made in Belgium or are Belgian initiatives.    Need more inspiration?  Make sure to dive into my archives.  Happy shopping!

    1. The elegant, timeless and practical Mariko handbag by Lies Mertens, made out of bio leather and built to last.  Get it here.  For a more affordable design, discover the wallets (one of which is named after me!) in her Antwerp boutique.
    2. Corian disk earrings by Anna Rosa Moschouti, made out of surplus materials from kitchen and bathrooms.  Buy them here.
    3. Silkscreen print based on Michael Graves’ resort in El Gouna, handmade by Astrid Nieuwborg.  Order it here.
    4. Stained glass mirror by GLASenGLAS, available in different sizes and colors.  Find it here.
    5. Terra table lamp, originally a handmade gift from Antwerp based Lauren Van Driessche to her partner, now (thanks to Serax) available for us as well here.
    6. testhereThese These vintage vases are just one of the many treasures sold by Orence store.  Second hand is the most sustainable option and budget friendly as well!  Find them here.
    7. The museum pas, which gives you one year of free access to more than 150 Belgian museums.  Bonus points if you give a pair to a couple, or give yourself one as well: one year of cultural dates guaranteed!  If you order now, you can get a limited edition that features De ijsvogels by Emile Claus. Discover it  here.
    8. Mambo baskets is a Belgian based company that sells baskets made in Kenya, by women who are now able to send their children to school and pay their medical bills.  Get them here.
    9. A flower subscription is a gift that keeps on giving.  For Antwerp locals, I recommend Wilder, a flower subscription that follows the seasons, bringing you long lasting dried flower bouquets during winter.  Read more here.

 

COLLECTION_ interior & architecture books

interior architecture books

The end of the year is approaching and thus it’s about time I shared some gift ideas with you.  Up first, nine books that will make your fellow (interior) architecture lovers swoon. From monographs on renowned architects to collections of inspiring interiors, there’s something for everyone with a heart for design in here.

  1. “Ricardo Bofill, visions of architecture”, a monograph on the iconic Spanish architect known for surreal and poetic spaces and one of my personal favorites! Buy it here.
  2. “Think Radical Vintage” is another book in the inspiring “Think…” series, this time featuring interiors that combine vintage design in the most interesting ways.   Get it here. (By the way, you can already get a sneak peek of that cover interior on the blog!)
  3. “Vincent Van Duysen, works 2009-2018” is already the second book of one of Belgium’s most renowned architects.  With pictures by Hélène Binet, one my favorite photographers, this one is an absolute gem.  Order it here.
  4. “Vincenzo de Cotiis, works” features the Milanese architect and artist who is always exploring the ambient tension between crumbling antiquity and futuristic minimalism.  Find it here.
  5. Gio Ponti is considered as one of the most influential architects of the 20th century and a great source of inspiration for Vincenzo de Cotiis, so his monograph “Gio Ponti, archi-designer” had to be included on the list. From architecture and furniture to installations for private homes or public buildings, this book is brimming with inspiration.  Click it home here.
  6. In “Axel Vervoordt, interieurportretten”, you’ll find 17 projects by the Belgian art collector and interior designer.  FYI: Kanye West and Kim Kardashian are already fans… Buy it here.
  7. “Wild at heart” is the second hook of the duo behind Coffeeklatch, this time focusing on beautiful homes that are shared with pets. For sale here.
  8. Vincenzo de Cotiis’s other architectural hero couldn’t be excluded from this list either.  “Carlo Scarpa, architecture and design”, covers all 58 of his structures. Get your hands on it here.
  9. Norm architects and Kinfolk joined forces for “The touch: spaces designed for the senses”.   The book features beautiful homes, hotels, museums, and retail stores— from contemporary designers by Ilse Crawford and Bijoy Jain to classic cases by Arne Jacobsen. Discover it here.

EXPLORED_ Maison Jackie

EXPLORED_ maison jackie bohème- hannelore veelaert for aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be

Gather a few talented women, each with their own super power, give them a building to use as a blank canvas and what do you get?  A whole lot of female energy and a wonderful place called Maison Jackie.  Founder Jackie Bohème, née Ellen Wauters, has a heart for real estate, an eye for beauty, a soft spot for understated luxury and a drive that gets things done.  During her morning scroll through our country’s real estates websites (a habit she kept from her former career as a real estate agent), she instantly fell in love with this former convent and knew she just had to have it.  She gathered a few talented woman around her, from the architects of Studio Sober, the sisters and contractors Adriaensens, textile designer Nathalie Van Der Massen, kitchen designers Ask og Eng, steel welder and designer Esther De Vos,  carpet designer Tata Tapis, ceramist Alex Gabriels, and let them work their magic.  Fast forward a few months and Maison Jackie opened its doors for the public.  The house in Niel will serve as Jackie Bohème’s office and the showroom for Atelier Jackie, a lifestyle collection with pillows, scarves and kimono’s which will launch in the near future (you’ll find a sneak peek below).  Maison Jackie is too good not to share though, so you’ll be able to rent the house for photo shoots, boutique events and vernissages, or short (or longer) stays to escape the city.  One thing is for sure, no matter how long you’ll be staying, Maison Jackie will feel like your home away from home.

Maison Jackie - Dorpstraat 36, 2845 Niel - website - instagram 

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COLLECTION_ ikea ivar hacks

Because you all seemed to love last week’s post about my new bedroom interior and the accompanying Ikea Ivar hack, I’ve collected eight more ways to customize the popular  storage system.  The options to adapt the Ivar cabinets to your wishes appear to be endless: you can hang them or add legs to them, paint them in a contrasting color or give them the same tint as the walls, dress up the doors and add door knobs or leave them plain and let one element shine or combine as many elements as you like.  See, I told you options were endless!  I’ve collected a few examples, some super simple, some a little more challenging, that I hope will inspire you to make the Ikea Ivar cabinets your own!

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AT HOME_ my bedroom with ikea ivar hack

Ikea Ivar hack wardrobe - Hannelore Veelaert for aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be

When I wrote about my bedroom before, I already hinted at the big changes coming up in my home, and it’s time I showed you the result!  If you follow me on Instagram you probably already picked up on the fact that my boyfriend moved in over the summer.  While he didn’t bring a lot of furniture with him, he did need a proper workspace (we both work from home) and thus we quickly decided to swap the bedroom and the home office.  The result?  A much more spacious atelier for the both of us (which I’ll show you later), and a very cosy bedroom, which (thanks to its cute balcony and green view) often feels like it’s somewhere in Paris rather than Antwerp.  Click read more to read about our decoration process and to discover our Ikea Ivar hack!

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FRAGMENTS_ Collectible 2019

Collectible 2019 - Hannelore Veelaert for aupaysdesmerveillesblog.beA few months ago I visited Collectible, the Brussels fair dedicated to design that balances on the fine line between art and design.  It’s safe to say, Collectible feels more like an expo than an actual fair.  The pieces displayed vary greatly, from reissues of old classics by Pierre Paulin, to the intricate fabrics by Nathalie Van der Massen or the pillar inspired chair by Destroyers/Builders (who was named Designer of the year just this week).  One thing they do have in common, these design are here to stay, no matter how long it’s been since the fair took place.   Needless to say, March 6-8 2020 is already marked “Collectible” in my calendar!

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EXPLORED_ La Muralla Roja

EXPLORED_ la muralla roja by Ricardo Bofill - Hannelore Veelaert for aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be

Some things on your bucket list disappoint when you can finally cross them off, others are exactly what you hoped they would be.  Then there are those that leave you speechless and let you return home with hundreds of photos to edit… La Muralla Roja, or “the red wall”, is definitely in the last category.  The housing complex in Calpe was designed by Ricardo Bofill at the end of the sixties and is an abundance of pink, red, purple and blue, poured into geometric shapes and complimented by luscious green here and there.  With its countless bridges, staircases and vistas (inspired by traditional casbah architecture), wandering through La Muralla Roja is a true adventure.  Not only does there always seem to be a new staircase or view to discover, the building seems to change with the sun and the clouds, surprising you time in time again.  Complete with a rooftop swimming pool, solarium, sauna and rooftop terraces, Bofill‘s design was well ahead of its time and a dream come true for any fan of architecture with a dash of pink!

If the picture overload in this blogpost convinces you to pack your bags and travel to the Costa Blanca yourself, please note that you’re only allowed to enter the site of La Muralla Roja when you’re staying there.  Several apartments in the building are for rent through airbnb, I’ve included the one we stayed at below.  Its interior is not as jaw-dropping as the building itself, but it has everything you need.  Even though you will undoubtedly run into other tourists exploring the building, it’s a quiet place to stay and if you’re lucky (as we were) you have the rooftop pool all to yourself!

La Muralla Roja, e - airbnb (click here for a discount if you're a first time user) - Ricardo Bofill

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WORK_ timeless bungalow by Eddy Francois

timeless bungalow by Eddy Francois - Hannelore Veelaert for aupaysdesmerveillesblog.be

Ever since I turned photographing interiors from a hobby into a career, this blog has been a bit neglected… but that doesn’t mean I’m not still very fond of my own little internet corner!  So, to breathe new life into this blog of mine, I wanted to share one of my favorite interiors shoots of the past few months.  At first sight, it’s hard to pinpoint when this house was built, as this single story house designed by late architect Eddy Francois feels timeless while also referencing those typical bungalows from the seventies.  With its green surroundings, interesting mix of materials and textures and owners Alexandra and Peter’s impeccable selection of furniture, this home is high up on my list of dream houses. If you’re curious to find out more about the house and its owners, have a look at the original feature here  (only in Dutch).  For related interior inspiration have a look here  and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram for regular updates!

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WHERE TO GO IN LISBON

where to go in lisbon After living in this city for five months and countless city trips to Portugal’s capital ever since, I had to compile all my favorite hangouts in one handy city guide.  So, if you’re wondering how a semi-local twenty-something spends her time in Lisbon, this is it!

At the end of this post you can find a google map with all my tips, that you can open on your smart phone while you’re traveling.  On that map, you’ll find even more tips that I’ve collected from my most trustworthy sources, and intend to try out myself in the future.    Have fun!

Last update: December 2018

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COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways

COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - where to sleep on a city trip in Belgium

Exploring cities close to home might not sound that exciting, but it’s something I’ve always been a fan of.  Spending a few days in a city that’s only a train ride away, to catch up with old friends and discover the city’s newest additions… Sign me up anytime, really!  Staying in a beautiful hotel or holiday home brimming with interior inspiration is the cherry on the proverbial cake if you ask me.  To convince you to take a city trip in Belgium for a change, I’ve collected nine places to sleep all over the country.  Ranging from luxurious hotels to affordable Airbnb’s, there’s surely something for everyone here.   (By the way, if it’s your first booking on Airbnb you can get a discount through this link.)  If you just can’t get enough of this list, I recommend you to take a dive into my archives for a lovely cabin in the woods and stunning B&B’s in Bruges and Knokke-Heist.

  1. Rooftop loft with a fantastic view over Brussels, book it here.
  2. One of my favorite examples of Belgian architecture, the brutalist home designed by Juliaan Lampens.  Make your reservation here.
  3. Cosy room in a bright and airy house in Ghent.  Tested and approved by yours truly!  Arrange your stay here.
  4. The Boho Cave in Rica Guesthouse brings Ibiza vibes to Ghent.  Make sure you check out their Apollo Suite too!  More info here.
  5. The architects of Blancooo hosts no less than three holiday homes in Antwerp, all impeccably decorated with young Belgian designers.  Discover them here.
  6. You might never want to leave Bea b&b on the Belgian seaside. It’s ran by interior designer Bea Mombaers so expect to be wowed!  Book your stay here.
  7. Graanmarkt 13 is not only the home to a mouthwatering restaurant and a beautiful shop, but it’s also a gorgeous holiday home, designed by famous Belgian architect Vincent Van Duysen, for 6 people in the center of Antwerp.  Find more info here.
  8. Clouds 9000 is a coffee shop meets webshop meets b&b in a former chapel on the outskirts of Ghent. Make your reservation here.
  9. Hotel Pilar is the place to sleep in the South of Antwerp, while simultaneously taking care of your food and shopping cravings.  Discover Pilar here.
COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Graanmarkt 13 COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Clouds 9000 Gent COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Rica Guesthouse GentCOLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Gent Tim Rogge COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - hotel Pilar Antwerpen COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Brussels rooftop loftCOLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Juliaan Lampens COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Bea Mombaers COLLECTION_ Belgian getaways - aupaysdesmerveillesblog - Blancooo Antwerpen
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