Designer Desire: Birger Kaipiainen

Mosaic of Birger Kaipiainen ceramics | H is for Home

We’ve mentioned ceramic designer, Birger Kaipiainen (1915-1988) before on our blog – we have a cup & saucer that he designed for Arabia. A place where he claims he was, “able to grow like a weed”.

Whilst researching this post, I’ve discovered a plethora of brilliant works by him. He produced an impressive mural – 9 x 5 metres – for the 1967 World Exhibition in Montreal entitled, Orvokkimeri (Sea of Violets). Most of his other works are on a much smaller scale; vases, platters, chargers and table and serveware.

Vintage examples of his work can occasionally be found on 1st Dibs, Bukowskis, Etsy and eBay. The Finnish Design Shop sells a few of his designs that are still in production.

There was a book written by Harri Kalha to accompany a 2013 exhibition of Kaipiainen’s work that’s found its way on to my wish list!

Portrait of Birger Kaipiainen

Image credits:

Bukowskis

You’re an angel

Vintage 1968 angel painting by Renate Doktor | H is for Home

This was an interesting recent buy. It’s a rather lovely painting of an angel. Archangel Michael or Gabriel perhaps? The wonderful colours and stylised nature of the piece really grabbed our attention.

Vintage 1968 angel painting by Renate Doktor | H is for Home

It was produced in 1968 by Renate Doktor – and there’s certainly something very distinctive about the treatment of the subject matter that puts it in this era. It’s painted on board – unframed, but mounted on a Hessian backing – again very common of the period.

Vintage 1968 angel painting by Renate Doktor showing signature | H is for Home

We think it’s very charming. If you’d like this particular angel to watch over you, just drop us a line. We’ve priced it up at £75.00.

Join our club!

Pair of vintage leather club chairs | H is for Home

Anyone after some vintage leather club chairs? We picked this pair up last week and they’ve just gone into our shop space.

Detail of a vintage leather club chair arm | H is for Home

When we bought them they looked very tired, dry and dusty. So we had a TLC day applying leather cream and wood wax – and also tacked and glued some small rips and loose Hessian lining. We’ve put a bit of warmth and colour into them. The patina will continue to improve with continued handling (rubbing your hands along the arms as you sit in front of a wood-burner with a glass of wine always helps!).

Vintage leather club chair | H is for Home

They’re very comfortable indeed, so sitting in front of a fire with a glass of wine shouldn’t be too much of a chore. They’re available to collect from here in Todmorden – they’re priced at £795 the pair. Any questions, just drop us a line.

Get their look: Vintage minimalist kitchen

Vintage minimalist kitchencredit

Jes and Caleb describe their style as ‘Vintage Minimalist’ which is plain to see in the kitchen of their Pennsylvania home.

The space is pared back and simple – and, whilst not devoid of interesting objects on display, it’s free of unnecessary clutter. There’s lots of natural light which bounces off the brilliant white paintwork and Marmoleum flooring. A feature wall in a much darker colour adds interest – the mushroom shade picked up in the flecked flooring pattern and cupboard doors. Both the light and dark combine well with the natural wood of the counter tops, chopping boards and wall clock. It looks like a very comfortable and practical space in which to live.

  1. Cactus salt & pepper shakers
  2. Mrs. Anderson’s Baking wire pastry blender
  3. Vintage black tiered cake stand
  4. Vintage Spring Blossom green Pyrex cookware
  5. Gorenje ORB153C tall fridge – cream
  6. Truly Taupe interior paint
  7. RÅSKOG trolley
  8. Marmoleum flooring

Check out some of the other rooms we’ve featured in our Get their look series.

Get their look: Vintage minimalist kitchen | H is for Home

Ooh la la!

Vintage Parisienne and Paris Café pattern side plates | H is for Home

We bought these two lovely vintage Paris side plates this week – what classic 1950s designs!

Vintage Rigeway Parisienne side plate | H is for Home Vintage Alfred Meakin Paris Café side plate | H is for Home

They’re quite similar, both featuring French café scenes, but were produced by different makers – namely Ridgway and Alfred Meakin.

Back stamp from vintage Rigeway Parisienne side plate | H is for Home Back stamp from vintage Alfred Meakin Paris Café side plate | H is for Home

The illustrations are gorgeous – café society, stylish ladies and gentlemen, parasols, hats… and poodles!

Detail from vintage Rigeway Parisienne side plate | H is for Home Detail from vintage Alfred Meakin Paris Café side plate | H is for Home

They display very well – catching your eye and drawing you in for a closer look – something different to notice each time. Available to buy in our webshop now.

Ken Law Oldham Landscape original

Original Ken Law Oldham Landscape, etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

We’ve mentioned a few times previously that we love the work of artist Ken Law – and have a small collection of his 1960s prints – Hampstead High Street, Tower Bridge and New York Bridges, to date. Well, I was browsing a well-known online auction website a couple of weeks ago – and did a quick search for Ken Law to see if any of his vintage prints were currently for sale. My jaw dropped when this original oil painting appeared before my eyes – only just listed. Straight away I thought, “Oooooh, early 50th birthday present?!”.

Detail from original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

The painting depicts Oldham – a Lancashire (now Greater Manchester) mill town about 15 miles from here. Perhaps former mill town might be more accurate now; at its peak, it was the largest cotton-spinning town in the world. Justin grew up in the neighbouring town of Rochdale and often went to Oldham on Tommyfield’s flea market day – and for nights out in his youth! So this landscape is very much in his psyche – and mine too, as an honorary Northerner, residing here for nearly 20 years now.

Detail from original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

It’s a classic Northern Industrial scene – factories, terraced houses, chimneys – the Pennine moors in the distance. This picture captures it on a winter’s day, sun low in the sky, snow covering the rooftops and vehicles slipping & sliding down the hill!

Detail from original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

Ken used oil on gesso – the surface being painted, scratched and gouged. It’s full of character and texture. We’re still researching, but we think that this painting was exhibited at The Royal Academy in the late 1960s.

Detail from original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

By this point, you’ll realise that we can describe it quite accurately and have taken lots of photos – yes, it did become my 5oth birthday present – it arrived today!

Detail from original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', showing signature, etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

I just couldn’t let the opportunity for a genuine Ken Law depicting favourite subject matter slip through my fingers. There are certainly no regrets now it’s arrived – it makes me happy just looking back at the photos in this post.

Reverse of original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 | H is for Home

Much loved already – I’ll always remember when it came to live with us. A real birthday treat!

 Original Ken Law 'Oldham Landscape', etched oil on gesso, circa 1969 with jug of flowers | H is for Home