Sunday, April 4, 2010

The gift of self..

I have a couple of special 'THANK YOUs' to two of
the awesome girls I have met through the world of blogs. 

Firstly, dear & gorgeous Lotta Helleberg of 'Inleaf Design'.

Swedish born Lotta is an amazing talent and a lovely friend.

Inspired by her passion for gardening, nature and her seamstress
mother, she works as a textile artist and designer. Her works are
hand-crafted and hand-printed onto natural & organic fabric using
a technique called 'Leaf Printing'. All inks & dyes are water based
and non toxic, and most often Lotta also uses organic and locally
made supplies - all to ensure minimum environmental impact.

Her designs are as beautiful as Lotta herself, and her big heart
shines through in her work that includes a range of items such
as bags, pillows, quilts, purses, textile collages and much more.

I am in awe of this beautiful woman's talent and enjoy following
her life and creative journeys via her blog, and my heart leapt
when the other day I was tagged by Lotta in this posts.

The tag ritual is so much fun, and calls for the selected people to;
1. open their first photo folder on your HD
2. scroll to the tenth picture in this folder
3. post the photo and the story behind it
4. tag 5 more people

So here we go, here is my 'no 10' in my most recent picture folder..

Meet my son Oscar. It is not the best picture of him but it is
indeed the 10th one in the first picture file on our hard drive.
The photo was taken whilst enjoying the second lap of the 
Ferris Wheel at the famous 'Luna Park' amusement park here
in Sydney. Having recently been to Sweden where we had an
early celebration of his birthday and similarly were showered
in presents over Christmas, we felt that a 'fun-filled weekend'
was an appropriate gift for his recent 7th birthday. Oscar quickly
invited his best mate Felix for a seep-over weekend that included
an early evening swim followed by pizza on the beach, breakfast
at his favourite cafe the next morning, followed by a trip
to Luna Park. The latter was an intense but fun 5 hour ordeal that
made us so exhausted that we nearly overslept on the Monday..
See the dimples in his upper lip.. He gets them when he is
particularly pleased or happy with something.. I love them!!
I also love those amazingly blue eyes of his - they are not an
ordinary blue but rather a rare shade of deep blueberry blue.
My husband and I both have green eyes, and nobody in our
immediate family have this particular shade of blue eyes... so
I put it down to having had some serious (!) & consistent
cravings for fresh blueberries whilst pregnant with Oscar!  :)
I love my little man and am so grateful & proud to be his mother! 
 ..and now before I start crying tears only a proud mother can shed
I'd like to ask Monika, Leigh, Maria, Rachel and Donna to share.

Dearest girls, consider yourselves tagged! x

Tusen tack igen Lotta! xx


Now to the amazing Donna, who since 2007 has run a
brilliant blog called 'A Perfect Gray'. Our paths crossed only
recently and I am so glad they did. I read her blog every day
and love her take on design, style and life in general. She not
only writes well, she is warm, funny and has wonderful taste!

A lover of antiques and vintage quirkiness since college, she went
from being a professional antique dealer to collecting for herself.
There are snippets of her home on her blog, and from what I have
seen it is an amazing place full of her creative talent and traces
of the loving family she is part of. So many great things Donna!!

You will LOVE this post about her amazing antique panels with mirrors..

..and this post about the knobs in her kitchen!

..and how clever isn't this!!? Another of her great achievements!

When she is not searching the corners of the world & web for the
one perfect shade of grey wall colour, she cycles, raises money for
 hospice care (care for the terminally ill), creates stunning growth
charts with her son, manages to always stay personal and in touch,
whilst continuing to create post after post of fabulousness on her blog!
Apart from personally not finding David Letterman sexy :), I
pretty much agree with everything else this woman says & does!

Donna knows I love candles and casually mentioned that she'd
be posting a 'candle post' this week.. Little did I know that this
post also included a nomination for a 'Beautiful Blogger' award.

Before I go on to the award I just also want to say thanks to the
woman who inspired Donna to start her blog, Mrs Blandings.
Without her we would not be able to enjoy A Perfect Gray. That
thought scares me so thank you Mrs B - I am so grateful!!
(P.S. Though I am not obsessed, I too love chairs! :) )

So to the award.

As with most of these blog awards this too is designed to bring
bloggers closer and to get to know each other better. And as
Donna so rightly said in her award post "The gift-of-self is the
best gift we can give". So here are some snippets about me..

1. I love candles...

via From The Bottom Of My Ironing Basket

..but you already knew that.
I light them morning and night at our dining table and
can't fully relax without them around the house.

2. I have a thing for sheepskin...
Particularly the curly grey ones like these. Photo by Stellan Herner

..and in our house we have a wonderfully thick sheepskin mattress
cover that makes the bed so fantastically cozy and soft. Actually,
even our cat has a sheep skin bed.. Truly! Both kids and I have
Swedish made sheepskin slippers (this despite living in the
country of Ugg boots..). I have a stunning grey sheepskin pillow
from divine Gotland on our sofa, a lovely sheepskin rug
that I use for a number of things pending the season..
I could go on.. you get the picture..  :)

2. I collect Dala Horses..

..since I was little, but the collection slowed down
for a few years until my husband and I decided to buy a
horse each time we visit Sweden. Though this only happens
once a year, at least the herd (or is it harras?) is growing again.

3. I love trees.

 Myong Ho Lee photograph. This is amazing!! 

I find them incredible in every sense and have since forever
loved photographing, painting, drawing, hugging & sitting under
trees every where in the world. I also love my big Birch Tree wall
hanging by Marimekko that I bought on the spot out of a shop
window in Sweden a few years ago. It adorns our stairway.

4. I adore Rodney Smith and find his work brilliant!

 Photo by Rodney Smith

This man is a genius in my book! Not only does he take amazing
pictures (with a conventional SLR!! I.e. not digital!) he also has
a fantastic take on life and expresses this so well in both writing
and in visuals. I have done a couple of posts on him before (1 & 2)
and highly recommend you to visit his site and to follow his blog!

5. I love books...

 'Reading Nest' book holder by David Design

...and bookstores but feel uncomfortable in public libraries.
Have no idea why because any other silent room full
of books and comfy chairs feel like heaven to me..

6. I love to paint.

Most of you will have seen the link to my other blog, and know
that I do art and styling for children. It is something that I started
for real after I had my first child and when I had made the decision
to leave a hectic career in brand-creation and marketing behind to
be a stay-at-home-mother. I have always painted, drawn and created.
It started at childhood and will continue until I die - it is part of me.

Now I would like to pass this award onto the below list of
amazing blogs. They are indeed lovely reads with even
lovelier girls behind their gorgeous blog banners.

I hope they all accept the award and that that we
will be able to enjoy their little 'gifts of self'.
Linen and Lavender
Rajee Sood 
Malvini Belgium

Big hugs to all of you and thank you for
your amazing blogs and friendships!

Thanks again to Lotta and Donna!



Simone said...

Wow, thank you so much, I am very flattered, that's really kind of you.

Lovely to know that you enjoy reading my blog.....I have a feeling I am going to enjoy yours just as much, it looks wonderful!

Off to explore....!!

Happy Easter :)

Charlotta Ward said...

Yay - Simone, I am so glad you accept! I adore your blog and can't wait to read your list of self-gifts..

So glad you are here.


A Perfect Gray said...

Charlotta, yeah for sheepskins, trees and books; just wish I was as talented a painter as you are. how can I ever say thank you for the wonderful words about my blog? I am so touched. AND delighted to play tag along with you. (please give me a few days to work this one up...) YOU are a treasure....Donna

Greet said...

Dear friend,
I am honoured really!!! I love you!!!! Your the best! I enjoyed reading about you. Your son is a sweet boy! You can see that!!!
Maybe our sons will meet some day (hopefully)!!!
I refer to my blogposts where I told about myself! I hope you don't mind!
Happy Easter my friend!

~lb said...

Charlotta! Thank you! I am so touched that you included linen and lavender. I just received praise from Greige Design lots of love being passed around. I feel very honored. It may take me a day or two, but I'll be sure to share something.
I loved learning about you. I'm a tree hugger too! Wish I was an artist. :) Your little boy is such a cutie. Sounds like you lead a wonderful, creative life. Thank you again!

tinajo said...

Hittade dig genom Splendid willow - man kan inte annat än älska internet som ger en möjlighet att hitta och uppskatta så många kreativa människor! :-) Lägger bums till dig i min länklista och återkommer. :-)

Charlotta Ward said...

Award girls - I am so happy you all accept this well deserved nomination! I love you and your blogs so much and appreciate all the time & heart you put into your posts!
I consider you my dear friends and am so happy to have met you, and look forward to reading your responses to the award. Please drop me a little note when you post these. xx

Tina - valkomen hit. Sa roligt att du hittade vagen. Monika ar underbar och hennes 'Splendid Willow' en av mina absoluta favoriter. Jag hoppas att du ska trivas aven har och att du besoker mig ofta.

Stor kram / big hugs to all!


MALVINI FF said...

Thanks so much charlotta! I'll study THE passing on of the award! Something i'll do as soon as possible!
Sonoes Ii make à list of what i like And give 10 lovely blogs the award! Where to start!!

Charlotta Ward said...

Veronique - you are welcome!
Your blog is great and I love reading your beautiful finds.
Between you and Greet (Belgian Pearls) I feel Belgian style is portrayed in the most magnificent way possible!

I can't wait to read your list and to get to know you better.

Please let me know when you post.


Michael Mattison said...

Charlotta -- Thanks very much for your comment the other day (very sweet), and congrats on your award here. I've only had a chance to look at a few of your posts (e.g. loved your piece on Mauritius), but it's obvious that your articulate writing style combined with your choice of subject matter makes for the kind of reading and inspiration I like returning to again and again.
Hope you're enjoying your Easter weekend.
All the best,

lotta said...

I am blushing. Thank you for your kindness and for the nice mentions about my work. I am equally thankful to have found you through the blog world. Too bad we are half a globe apart, but one of these days we will meet up. I know it. Oscar is the cutest one, I can see some similarities there... Thank you for playing along with the photo challenge. And thanks for introducing me to Donna's blog, I'll be visiting there often. XOXO.

Vintage Simple said...

Oh, I'm a big fan of Lotta..! You wrote such a wonderful tribute to her and her work..! And thank you for tagging me... I'll have to dig through my files at some point. Oscar is precious and I, too, love his dimples and his blueberry-colored eyes. :) I think he and Noah would get along wonderfully..!

I'll have to visit Donna's blog, for sure. And congratulations on the award - so well-deserved!

I hope you've had a wonderful weekend, dear.

much love,

Splendid Willow said...

Well deserved Lotta sis! And many good friends here! (:

Also, thank you for the tag/photo game. I am not quite sure how to do it.. But I will figure it out...

Oscar is adorable! But so are both of your children.

Cyber hug,


Porchlight Interiors said...

Your little man is adorable! I have an Oscar too...great name! Tracey xx

shari @ little blue deer said...

Oh, this was such a lovely post, Charlotta, I really enjoyed it. I can't wait to go now and do some exploring, thanks to you!

beauty comma said...

hello charlotta, thank you so much for nominating me for the award! i'm not good at tag stuff because i never know which lovely blogs to nominate - there are so many great ones... plus i seem to get stuck between "what if she doesn't want an award?" and "what if i leave out someone who wants an award?"

nevertheless, i'm honoured that you mentioned beauty comma =)

Karin A said...

Hej Charlotta!

Tack för din kommentar hos mig, som också gjorde att jag kunde hitta till din blogg. Ser fram emot att läsa mer här!

Kul att läsa mer om dig och om två härliga bloggerskor. Nu ska jag klicka mig vidare in på deras bloggar.

Ha en fin vecka!

Charlotta Ward said...

Michael, welcome to my blog. I am so glad you are here and that you like my posts. Your blog is fab and I am so enjoying your Paris stories.

Lotta my dearest - I am so happy I was able to feature your work here. About time. You are truly amazing girl and your talent great! Thanks again for the tag. xx

Maria & Monika - Thank you sweet ones for your comments. You know I love you both and I look forward to 'no 10' in your first photo folders.

Tracey - yay for little Oscars! They are the best and yes, the name is great. In our case we had great-grandfathers on both sides of our Swedish-Australian families named Oscar - with a 'c'.

Shari - Welcome to my blog. Am so glad you are here. Your blog is lovely and I am glad we'll be visible in each others worlds now. x

Trudi - I am glad you came here to accept the award, and totally respect if you don't want to post it on your blog. It is a personal preference and don't worry I am not offended. I hope you visit again - I sure love reading Beauty Comma.

Karin - hej/hello. Sa roligt att du hittade hit. Du ar sa duktig pa fotografering och din blogg jatte fin. Sa glad att jag hittade dig igar - du kommer att se mig ofta.

Kram / hug and thank you to all!

xx Charlotta

Fiona Cartolina said...

hello Charlotta - I meant to write to you yesterday. Thank you for passing this award on to me - I am very flattered. I am new to your blog but I am looking forward to checking it out in the next few days.
I am going to follow you - and then I won't miss a thing!

Thanks again - Fiona

Charlotta Ward said...

Hi Fiona - sorry if I was on your tail, I am just so eager for you to know just how fabulous I think you & your blog are!!

So glad you are here now and thank you for accepting the award. I look forward to learning more about you.

Thank you also for following my blog - I hope you'll enjoy the journey and that I will hear your voice often.

xx Charlotta

Brabourne Farm said...

Hi Charlotta

Apologies for taking so long to get here - things are so very hectic at the moment! Thank you so much for including me in your list - I'm thrilled to be among such wonderful company. Leigh

Sarah @ Maison Boheme said...

Charlotta, thanks for your note today! I've spent the last 45 minutes pouring over your blog and loving every post. So great to find you... and yes, how weird that our words of "thanks" to Donna at A Perfect Gray are so similar! Great minds...

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hi Charlotta
I've just popped over from Monika's blog after seeing your fantastic artwork.. you are so talented.. and your love and creativity shows in your work... they must be two very lucky children to have a mum with such a wonderful imagination... I'm off to look at your work blog now... Julie

Charlotta Ward said...

Sorry for my delayed response girls.. This detox I am on is absorbing me... pathetic I know.. :)

Love that you are here to accept the award Leigh - you are so welcome and I want you to know that your blog and you are wonderful!
Have you posted your list? I must look.

Sarah - I am so glad.. almost teary actually. I love it when people find my little corner and more importantly that they like what I post. I hope you come back often. I love your blog!!

Julie - any friend of Monika's is my friend. I love that woman!
Thank you for your comment and lovely remarks on my art. Yes my kids are always preview to my vivid imagination and the creativity is always high in this house. I love that this has rubbed off and that they are both showing a great interest in art.

Lovely to hear from you all - I really mean that. It makes me so happy to receive comments. Love that you are here!

xx Charlotta

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