Introducing the brass section

Pair of Georgian antique brass candlesticks | H is for Home

We did a product review for Wayfair the other day in which we created an autumn table setting – all dark and dramatic – with shimmering metallics, fruit, berries, pine cones and so on. It was a pleasure to take the photos as we love this time of year (Justin prefers it to summer, actually). It got us in the mood for autumn pleasures. If the weather is kind, there are glorious autumn walks to be had amongst the turning leaves, inviting country pubs to rest in… and then hunkering down in a cosy house.

Detail of a pair of antique Georgian brass candlesticks | H is for Home

So what makes it feel cosy? How do we achieve our Pennine version of Hygge! Well, there’s the beloved wood burning stove to start with (now in both the lounge and a bedroom). Then all the little extras – woolly jumpers, thick socks, warm blankets, mugs of hot tea, fairy lights… and of course candles. We had them accessorising the aforementioned autumn table setting – and have them dotted around all over the house.

Nothing beats the twinkling light of real candles in the evening – and we’re often amazed at what bargains there are to be had in antique centres, charity shops and auctions when it comes to candle holders – in particular, vintage brass ones. The pair shown are a recent acquisition and demonstrate the point perfectly. A very sweet pair of small Georgian brass candlesticks – £12 in our local antiques centre.

Underside of an antique Georgian brass candlestick | H is for Home

We often see nice examples when we’re out and about. We love the mellow colour of antique brass – it’s got such warmth – and the way candle light shimmers on the reflective metal surface. The combination of brass (and other metallics such as copper and pewter) with the dark paint shades that are very much in vogue in home and restaurant interiors at the moment, looks really fabulous. The antique examples are such good quality too – they have good weight, craftsmanship and nice detailing to them.

Pair of antique Georgian brass candlesticks | H is for Home

And don’t worry about finding pairs. Some were made as single candle holders of course, but even if they were made as a pair and one’s missing its partner, just make a collection of the odd ones. The different shapes and heights look fabulous grouped together.

Three antique Georgian brass candlesticks with mid-century modern brass horse figure | H is for Home

So, here ends the promotional advert for the brass candle-holder association!! No not really – and we haven’t got a job lot of 500 brass candlesticks to sell either. We just thought it was worth highlighting the amazing bargains that are out there – and hopefully get you in the mood for autumn too!

Designer Desire: Wolf Karnagel

Mosaic of Wolf Karnagel designs | H is for Home

The most well-known designs by Wolf Karnagel (b. 1940) are ones he produced for German companies, Lufthansa and Rosenthal.

In the 1980s, he designed around 120 food service items for the airline. From cutlery, cups & saucers, tea & coffee services, drinking glasses, condiment sachets and napkins to the trays it was all served upon.

Latterly, he has produced award-winning designs for KPM Berlin and Kahla. Functional and tactile, his designs are influenced by Walter Gropius and the Bauhaus movement.

His work is regularly available on Etsy and eBay.

Wolf Karnagelcredit

Designer Desire: Al & Lena Eklund

Mosaic of Al & Lena Eklund designs | H is for Home

Al & Lena Eklund are Swedish product designers. Much of their work has a Pop Art feel with it’s bold patterns and bright, contrasting colours. Their designs can be found on lots of different homewares such as trays and coasters, thermometers, oven gloves, egg cosies and storage tins.

Information about the couple was more or less non-existent until in 2012, when a Swedish blogger by the name of Helena Viale seized the initiative and went hunting for some primary research material – she wrote Al a letter!

Al & Lena Eklund
Al & Lena Eklund

Apparently, they met at Beckmans College of Design (which Lens’a mother, Göta Trägårdh, co-founded) and soon after leaving began designing textitles for STOBO – Al’s Ornito is featured in our mosaic above. The couple are much more well known however, for their designs on paper, metal and plastic which they produced in collaboration with Laurids Lønborg (known as ‘Sunny’ to his friends). The email reply went on to say that Lønborg was less artistic than the Eklunds, but was an astute businessman and negotiator with suppliers and distributors.

Lønborg also worked with Gunnar Flørning on the wooden figures of animals… but enough about him, this post is about the Eklunds – perhaps he’ll be the subject of another of our Designer Desire posts!

The Eklunds emigrated to New York for a time in the 1970s where they worked on textile and wallpaper designs. Lena passed away in 2007 after a short illness at the age of 72.

Additional image credits:

Etsy | Flickr



Vintage bakeware

Collection of vintage bakeware with bag of flour | H is for Home

We picked up a good quantity of vintage bakeware at the weekend – lots of small moulds and tins in particular. Perfect for small pies, bite-sized cakes, jellies, custard tarts, panna cotta and so on.

Collection of small vintage metal pie tins and moulds | H is for Home

We’ve kept a few pieces with future Cakes & Bakes posts in mind, and have also added some to the What’s Cooking department in our webshop.

Large orange floral vintage Worcester Ware cake tin with original box | H is for Home

In addition, Adelle treated herself to a new cake tin to store the results of her efforts. This probably won’t end up in our shop, but we thought we’d share a couple of photographs.

Large orange floral vintage Worcester Ware cake tin with original box | H is for Home

Worcester Ware produced some wonderful metalware products in the 1950s & 60s – perhaps it introduces a new name to look out for to some of our readers.

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Gimme Five! Cast iron candle holders

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selection of 5 cast iron candle holders

Last night, we had the fire in our den lit for the first time this autumn. We welcome autumn & winter in our house when they come around. Ours is a real cold weather, snuggle up with blankets and cushions and fairy lights kind of home!

At this time of year, at the end of each day, we love to retreat upstairs; and part of the evening’s routine involves getting the fire started and getting the tea lights and candles lit. We have a selection of tea light and candle holders dotted around the room – on tables, on the mantlepiece and crannies in the stone wall. The twinkly, flickering light the candles give is really relaxing and atmospheric. Welcome back autumn!

  1. 3-piece Eric Hoglund Boda wall sconce holders & candle holder: US $849.00, eBay
  2. Pair of vintage cast iron taper holders: £25, H is for Home
  3. Danish Modern hairpin cast iron candle holders: £26.43, Etsy
  4. Iittala Allas round single candleholder: £25, Amara
  5. Japanese cast iron candle stand ginkgo leaf: £22.52, Etsy

Charity Vintage: Dansk silver plate turtle / tortoise paperweight

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vintage silver plated Dansk Design tortoise being sold on eBay for Charit in support of Sense Scotland
(ends 20 Mar, 2013 14:46:21 GMT)

Dansk is one of the best Scandinavian metalware manufacturers. Their modernist, minimalist designs include cookware, tableware and other ornaments. This tortoise, being sold in support of Sense Scotland*, is one of a range of animals they produced that includes a polar bear, giraffe, elephant, rhino and penguin.

*Sense Scotland is an innovative, ground breaking charity working with children and adults with complex communication support needs for over 25 years. We work with people with deafblindness, sensory impairment, learning and physical disabilities, for all of their lives.