Thursday, December 18, 2014

Christmas stress? No thanks!



Every year, all the editorial office staff spends the months of October and November talking about all the things we want to prepare for Christmas. This happens naturally when we start planning the magazine Christmas editions and the features. We make Advent calendars for our children, parents or girlfriends. We create our own Christmas decorations with materials from the forest – preferably together with a bunch of girlfriends so that we can chat and share a bottle of wine at the same time. Christmas cleaning, including sorting out all cupboards, has to be done before we unpack all the boxes full of Christmas ornaments, and of course we need to add some new, homemade ornaments this year as well.
Then we want to bake and make confectionery together with our children, friends and family who can’t wait for the (homemade) delicacies that we serve afterwards. Then there’s Christmas lunch with all its traditional, homemade dishes. We arrange shopping trips including coffee house breaks and visits to various exhibitions and Christmas markets. And we do need at least one Christmas movie to get in the mood. In my family we also do Christmas cleaning and house decoration, including homemade lunch, at the family seniors’ house, and in between we have quite a few birthdays that need to be celebrated properly. Just the mere thought of all these tasks and the planning makes you short of breath. Before you know it, every single day is crammed full of things that need to be done. Instead of enjoying the Christmas season we face lots of unwanted obligations. This is simply frustrating. The only solution is to reduce expectations of each other and not least of yourself. We need to prioritize the important ( = cozy) tasks and figure out some easy solution for everything else. Celebrating Christmas together can be just as wonderful even though the confectionery or the cookies are not homemade and the birthday party is just a simple brunch. I personally prioritize my ability to plan my day spontaneously: going for a walk if the sun is shining or getting up on Sundays and having plenty of time to just be…without lots of plans. My TO DO-list turns shorter and shorter every day….not because I manage to do a lot but because I remove some of the tasks. What a relief! I’m never stressed at Christmas.

We wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy New Year
Lonnie og Vivian

A new, blank year seems to inspire

For some reason New Year’s Eve is an epoch-making event for many of us. A new, blank year seems to inspire us to reflect on the past year and dream of changes in the year to come. That’s how we feel here at the editorial office. One of our new initiates is the column that starts with this January edition. We continuously receive input from our dear readers about all kinds of exciting topics, and we often want to share this input with all of you. Another one of our new ideas is something that we actually implemented a few months ago; our articles "All about the style". Each month we feature an article about something that defines this style. We show you how to use that item in your interior design and tell you the story behind it. This month it’s something as classic as French church candlesticks. We also show you how to furnish your home within different budgets by making two arrangements: one with Nordic flea market finds and one with French antiques. In 2015, we plan to let you take a peek behind the scenes here at the editorial office, starting with pictures of us, the staff members, and a description of our everyday work. In addition, we begin the new year with the slightly different theme of dressing rooms that are finding favor in many homes these days. Add to all this lots of wonderful winter homes, delicious food and some inspiring "do-it-yourself" articles – you’re in for an exciting magazine! Enjoy!
 




 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


It truly warms our inveterate country style hearts that everybody is talking about how this particular style is becoming trendy again. Recycling and flea market finds are as popular as ever and so are the good, old kitchen utensils; simple food made from scratch with natural, good-quality ingredients; bouquets of roadside flowers and other natural materials, and all kinds of "do-it-yourself" projects. This is exactly what this magazine is full of and what brightens up our everyday life. We’ve been running our small company with the French-Nordic style as the main theme for 10 years now, and apart from our loyal fans, the interest shown in this style has always been fluctuating. However, we’ve never given up...for the simple reason that we’re in love with this style and don’t know how to do anything else. Or at least we don’t want to. Throughout the years, many of our customers and readers have told us that they always know where they stand with us and what to expect both in terms of products and the magazine. This makes us very proud! We promise you that we’ll never switch to a different style – no matter the current trend. This is also how we plan to proceed in 2015.

Obviously, we do have plans for improvements and changes within our concept, and you will find out more about this in the year to come. We’ll tell you all about it in the up-coming issues. Right now we want to focus on Christmas – a time of traditional style that doesn’t change much at least in our part of the world. Most of us stick to our favorite, personal traditions, and luckily for us they are often nostalgic and romantic in line with the country style. Through this Christmas issue we hope to be able to inspire you again this year with lots of Christmas ideas, and in this, the last issue in 2014, we want to thank you for having been a loyal supporter in the past year. See you in 2015!

Happy reading! /Lonnie og Vivian








White christmas dreams

Dear Reader
 
At the editorial office we decided long ago to save the Christmas features for the November edition because we feel that Christmas starts way too early in many other places. Some magazines and shops start talking about Christmas as early as in October when we are still enjoying the wonders of autumn. However, once we pass November 1st and we have been peeking around in the shops for a few weeks, we really step on it both at the editorial office and at home. Many of us here at the office jump-start Christmas by going for a long walk in the forest to look for natural decoration materials for our Advent wreath, Christmas decorations and perhaps a special wreath for the front door. This edition provides you with plenty of inspiration for all these lovely Christmas projects. We personally love making all kinds of Christmas decoration vines for my windows because they seem to add a perfect Christmas feel in an instance. This year we will definitely also be trying out some of Dorte’s big crackers and Lonnie’s decorations made of parchment paper. There are plenty of ideas for a nice, creative afternoon with our girlfriends or the children. We are already looking forward!
 
Happy reading! / Lonnie og Vivian
 
 


 
 
 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Anno 1808

Perhaps you remember some of the articles that Janne Toftegaard from the company ”Anno 1808” wrote for the magazine? She’s been doing handmade decoration items for us on a freelance basis and we’ve had a great and inspiring co-operation on many levels. One of Janne’s first articles was about the making of these nice cotton wool Santas that really resemble the old ones. Here you can find instructions on how to make these great Christmas decorations yourself. /Vivian

In addition, Janne has just published her first book about this fine craft. Find out more at: www.anno1808.dk


Monday, October 20, 2014

Delightful changes

We haven’t been blogging much lately but for a good reason: we’ve been working hard – and still are – on finishing our new book full of exciting do-it-yourself projects involving our paint and wax products. As we have decided to only show completely new projects in our book, we’ve gotten ourselves into a lot of work. Although the paint is very easy to use, it’s still very time-consuming to develop the ideas, get all the pieces of furniture, and paint and patinate them. Hard work but lots of fun because we just love painting and being creative! We have a great team here at the editorial office and in the company as a whole, and such a project requires everybody to work extra hard next to all the everyday tasks. We want to thank all you lovely people in the Jeanne d´Arc team for making this happen. We’re really looking forward to showing you our book…but for now you’ll have to do with some simple blogs. /Vivian


Do you like what you see?



















The book will be published in Danish, Swedish, Finnish, Dutch and German. An English version will be printed, when the paint is available to overseas areas.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Creative October

Now is the time to get started with creativity indoors. To many of us creative people, getting our very own space for these pursuits is the greatest happiness... In this edition of the magazine, we focus on creative space. This has resulted in some interesting articles with great ideas for the decor. Fortunately, old crafts that are about to fall into oblivion are taken up again and make a comeback as hobbies. At the slightly more ordinary end, we show you several examples of lovely fall wreaths which you can easily make yourself, and we take you inside different, cozy and inspiring homes. Happy reading. /Tina






Friday, September 26, 2014

Autumn...

Suddenly autumn. In fact, autumn arrived from one day to the next. Here in Denmark the late summer has been really good to us, and September has been great. We even went to the beach last Saturday! The kids went swimming in the sea, and we enjoyed a couple of beach mat hours and a picnic. It was as warm as on an average Danish summer day. Just fabulous. We spent the mild, calm evening outside doing a BBQ. Three days later there was frost on the grass in the morning, and the kids wore gloves and woolly hats cycling to school. Today it’s also cold and rainy....the perfect weather for a cozy day indoors that makes you want to bake a cake, be creative, huddle together under some soft blankets, light some candles, read...Every season has its charm, and we are looking forward to some true autumn coziness in the months to come... /Vivian

Monday, September 8, 2014

Paint, paint, paint

At times we get so excited about something that we lose ourselves completely. This is what has happened with our Vintage Paint that we started selling in March this year. We just paint and paint…creating items both for the magazine and the inspiration that we bring you every month, for up-coming books and for ourselves.

When we get to work Monday mornings we speak all at once and are all excited to tell each other what we have created on the weekend because we just love to share our experience and ideas.

We get new ideas all the time, either in our editorial office or when a customer, a girlfriend or a reader asks us questions.

We are constantly working on new areas of application and new related products that will add further areas of application.

From now on several of our shops will offer product demonstrations and events where you can find out all you want to know about these products. /Vivian


Monday, August 4, 2014

August charm

Right now while summer is still here, most people feel at one with nature. My favorite thing around this time of year is waking up in our summerhouse where nature is all around me. As soon as we open the door or whenever we sleep with the windows open, we can breathe in the clear forest air. Even though we live in the country at home as well, the smells are just completely different here in the woods. And then there are the sounds! The bird life is magnificent and the tall trees amplify the birds' singing. It sounds amazing. In the morning I always sit on the porch simply enjoying life the way it is right now – all by myself, a cup of coffee in hand. If I'm lucky, a deer or a squirrel might come by. The very first warm rays of sun touch down right there. Other days it might be raining and both the sounds and smells are completely different. The sound of the rain on the roof and the smell of the damp forest floor have a charm of their very own, too. Wonderful seating areas around the garden happens to be the topic of one of the articles in this issue – places to sit and enjoy the last warm days of summer before late summer and fall really set in.

Happy reading!/Vivian






Monday, June 30, 2014

Finally High Summer

You can almost smell the pine cones, the forest floor mixed with the smell of sea salt and seaweed – feel the heat and the prickly lyme grass between your toes – when you look at the photos of the Swedish beach huts in this issue of the magazine. That's high summer at its best around these latitudes. In this issue, we'll take you on a small tour of smaller homes: We'll show the loveliest beach huts in Sweden as well as two amazing and very personal small homes. You'll find plenty of inspiration for how to decorate a small space. If you're heading to southern Europe this summer on the other hand, the scent of the large lavender fields will be predominant. We paid a visit to a real lavender producer in France and bring you a small theme about lavender – one of the most wonderful plants in our opinion.

If you're on vacation, you might be planning to visit some flea markets as well to find old zinc along with other treasures. We'll provide you with a bit of history on zinc as well as inspiration for possible uses. Of course high summer also means fresh strawberries and an abundance of summer flowers. But everything doesn't have to be so traditional. Why not use unripe berries and fruit to make summer bouquets and decorations? We hope that you'll find plenty of good inspiration for a truly lovely summer.


Friday, June 20, 2014

On a cloudy day, I want to…

People like us can’t pass an entire summer without working on some indoor projects, of course. Although we enjoy the nice weather, the garden and the sea, the thought of doing something inside does have a certain appeal as well.

Over the past few weekends, Lonnie has been painting her living rooms using our new Vintage paint – and so she’s had a chance to confirm that it works excellently on walls…

I really want to line some of my glass cabinets with this new, transparent fabric. We’ve made the pattern with inspiration from old-fashioned cabinets that had similar patterns etched into the glass. To me, it’s pure nostalgia and there are so many possible applications.

The fabric also looks very nice as a table runner – or as screening in the bathroom.

Use double-sided tape to attach it – it takes almost no time at all./Vivian




Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Summer issue

I think it must be something that happens as we get older – reminiscing; becoming a bit – or a lot – nostalgic and at times melancholy. That’s how I felt as I was looking through the photos for this issue of the magazine. All of a sudden, all of these memories of my childhood appeared in my mind.
Images from days gone by when the sky was always blue and summers were definitely much warmer. One of the plants that I associate with the Danish summer – and with my childhood – is field scabious.
I’ve picked many bouquets of this wildflower on our walks along the sea in western Jutland, where I come from. My grandmother and my mother taught me the joy of picking wildflowers from an early age. We never went for a walk in the woods, by a lake or by the sea without picking something or other. Rushes could be dried and wildflowers tied into the most wonderful bouquets. And it wasn’t an infrequent occurrence that we practically put our lives on the line climbing and reaching for the most impassable spots. We often used field scabious to make wreaths for our hair or just small bouquets for grandma’s pretty glass vases. All of us who love flea markets and wonderful old treasures also collect old glassware to some extent, including our new writer and editorial colleague Rikke Vinter. She’s been working with old items and running stores selling these for many years. If anyone is a collector, it’s definitely her and there’s hardly a thing that she doesn’t happen to have in her car or at home. When she was assigned to do the research for the article on old glass, it turned into a far-reaching as well as surprising project. Check out the article to see what she discovered while enjoying the amazingly beautiful photos, which will hopefully inspire you to bring your own glassware to light.

Enjoy your summer! /Vivian




Tuesday, May 20, 2014

When, did you say?

Seasons and holidays tend to get a bit confusing when you work with staggered deadlines like we do.
Right now Dorte is working on designing and shooting the Christmas photos for our website – because the pre-sale for our Christmas collection begins on June 1st.

Lonnie and I have gone to the woods these past few days to photograph the new clothing collection for this fall. We managed to find a place in the woods that looks a bit fall-like even though the calendar says May.

Our team of graphic designers are working on finalizing the layout for the July issue, which will be sent to the printer soon – and our stylists are working on articles for the May 2015 issue…

We occasionally have to ask each other: Now, when did you say that these photos that we’re working on today are supposed to be published? /Vivian


Monday, May 5, 2014

The Wonderful Changing Seasons…

The weather is showing itself in the most favorable light here in Denmark these days: The sun is shining from practically clear skies, there’s not much wind, and the temperature is slowly and steadily rising. You can just feel how everyone’s spirit is rising as well and the expectation of summer right around the corner – it’s simply wonderful!! We take our lunch and coffee breaks outside in the courtyard. And when you even have the privilege of working outside once in a while, that only makes it better yet.

Today Lonnie and I were shooting some of the new summer collection that just arrived. And in the next few days we’ll be photographing textile news in the garden pavilion as well as a couple of flower features for the magazine… /Vivian