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Swede
Finding, Creating and Celebrating Beauty
Interests: Euro style in American interiors -- Swedish French Belgian and Danish. Furniture Design and Manufacturing.
Recent Activity
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The Fourth of July is my five-year blog-iversary of my blog Swede here on Typepad. How time flies. After reading blogs for a few years I decided to share photos of things I found to be beautiful but wasn't sure I had anything to talk about that anyone would want to hear. As they say, to be successful at anything you just have to start and the path will open. So I did on July 4th, 2010 and have posted over 500 posts and have followers all over the USA and the world - England, Australia, France, etc. And, they... Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2015 at Swede
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As you know about me, I try to find something beautiful in life every day. It is easy to find daily beauty now that Spring is here. Today I am showcasing the Apricot Quince bush. I have about 8 or so, both single and double bloomers and both varieties are shown below. So elegant and disease free. I have also backed the camera up so you can see the shrubs in the garden. Definitely pure beauty. Love all those layers of ruffles. Ball gowns should definitely be made in this color. This single girl is plainly beautiful. Cluster of prettiness.... Continue reading
Posted Apr 6, 2015 at Swede
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While the Daffodils are still blooming, I wanted to show you these vases I just got. I put Daffodils in them, but they look best with Hyacinths. They are made in a clump of three, so there are three vases here for nine openings. You have to fill them with water using a turkey baster or a funnel with a long tip. They are made by Burton+Burton. You can order them from floral supply wholesalers or find them at a retail florist. I purchased mine from a florist in Alabama after seeing them in a blog post of Victoria magazine... Continue reading
Posted Apr 5, 2015 at Swede
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I decided to do pastel colors for Easter when I found some capiz Easter eggs at Pottery Barn in pale pink, peach, aqua and blue. They also had some speckled ones which I added to the mix. I put all the eggs inside a glass dome I had from Restoration Hardware placed on top of a vintage silver mirror-topped dresser plateau by Reed & Barton. Shown left is an aqua hemstitched napkin from Martha Stewart at Macy's with aqua stoned napkin ring from Kim Seybert. Antique sterling is St.James by Tiffany [only made between 1898-1914]. Antique pedestal cake plate with... Continue reading
Posted Mar 30, 2015 at Swede
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Tulips have been in the floral section of the grocery stores for many weeks now. I love seeing them for sale immediately after New Year's Day. I want to go from Winter directly to Spring. I put together this very simple table this week using eight packages of violet colored Tulips. I placed four packages each in two heavy Bosphorous glass vases from Pottery Barn. The Tulips look purple in the store but when you bring them home and they start opening up they turn red/violet. I am using my orchid colored paisley linen tablecloth I made out of eight... Continue reading
Posted Mar 3, 2015 at Swede
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The first bloom of my Quince bush arrived. It hasn't finished unfurling but getting close. Love the buds. It is the Texas Scarlet variety. Very late blooming this year from a cold winter. Usually blooms the end of December. First sign of a great promise of Spring coming. Colleen [Summer] Photo: Swede Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2015 at Swede
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This Bleeding Heart - Dicentra plant is in my front flowerbed. So incredible how Mother Nature made the little hearts. Wishing all my followers love today. Colleen [Summer] Photo: Swede Continue reading
Posted Feb 14, 2015 at Swede
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I try to capture something beautiful each day. Today it is Flowering Kale. So beautiful to see in the midst of a cold winter the purples and pinks. Ornamental Cabbage is pretty too - just a different leaf - not so many ruffles. These plants are in big container pots and are about 16" across the plant. Big, beautiful and lovely. It doesn't get below zero here but gets into the teens and these do fine. They will start to get a little raggy on the edges in a deep freeze. So refreshing and uplifting to see these colors when... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2015 at Swede
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This week's table is grey to match the weather. Post Christmas and gloomy. I had the white quilted Boutis tablecloths on the table from last week so decided to pull out of the cupboards my old silver pieces and grey French Niderviller chargers and pair them with antique Wedgwood black and white scenic plates. This is Wedgwood's Corinthia pattern. It came in other colors and I have purple as well. I haven't put my oyster shell cone trees away so added them to the centerpiece with the white orchid. Toile pattern napkins are Williams Sonoma. Trying to keep it pretty... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2014 at Swede
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My tablescape this week uses coral instead of red to bring out the color of the Nandina berries I am using in the floral arrangements. I am a fan of using what you have in other colors than red and green to create a holiday look. My preference in a dream world is an all white table at the holidays, or maybe silver and white or gold and white. Since I just did those combinations a few weeks ago, I got out the Alberto Pinto for Raynaud pattern Cristobal in coral. They also make it in turquoise and chocolate which... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2014 at Swede
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My favorite fall gourds are the blue/green aqua ones. When they are in the store, I have to surrender that summer is really gone. Here is a vignette in my family room with my all-time favorite one the bumpy one in a hand-carved dough bowl from Sweden. I brought back four bowls in May circa 1860. The canvas I threw some Annie Sloan Chalk Paint on in Chateau Grey [actually green] and a metallic gold stencil. I did this over top of an old coral canvas I was tired of. Of course, the paint didn't stick very well, but it... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2014 at Swede
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I watched the video of heavy metal band Five Finger Death Punch and was moved. I suggest every American watch this. It is powerful, expertly done and drives the message that something has to be done to help our veterans. This just shows that everyone can do something to help, even a heavy metal band. Here is the link to The Wrong Side of Heaven. Paste it in your browser if it doesn't open up. https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCAQyCkwAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Do_l4Ab5FRwM&ei=9RXxU5u4Eo-ryATK4IDwBg&usg=AFQjCNEv3E55KEt4swYJM5Frcvqb3RoXyA&sig2=hNlKSjAg-0hMJNkbSVMV0w&bvm=bv.73231344,d.aWw www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_l4Ab5FRwM Five Finger Death Punch - Wrong Side Of Heaven 300,000 homeless veterans is a disgrace. So are the suicides of returning veterans. Everyone... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2014 at Swede
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The building known as Hotel de Ville in Paris is the local administration building, or City Hall where the office of the Mayor is located. It has been the location of the municipality of Paris since 1357. It is on a large square called Place de l'Hôtel de ville in the 4th. It is in French Renaissance architecture and Renaissance Revival architecture. Architects were Theodore Ballu, Victor Laloux and Edouard Deperthes. If you are in the Marais district you really can't miss it as it takes up a full block. Two wings were added in 1835. Portions of the front... Continue reading
Posted Aug 12, 2014 at Swede
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This church in Paris was started in 1494 and finished in 1621. It is in the 4th at 13 Rue des Barres in the Marais District on the right bank. I was very surprised at the style of the stained glass windows. They seemed so modern in design for the year they were installed. They are not the standard traditional scenes done in most older churches. They look so abstract. These marble statues in the side chapel are wonderful. I love the folds in the dresses on the angels, particularly the dress on the left. This is a close up... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2014 at Swede
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I don't talk about this topic on my blog, but today I am making an exception because of the patriotism of this exceptional man. Meet Matt Littrell of Colorado. A friend told me about this video and when I watched it, I was truly moved and wanted to help. To see the news video, go here: News Interview with Matt. My name is Matt Littrell. I was an infantryman with Golf Company 2nd Battalion 5th Marines. I served in the Marine Corps from December 2001-December 2005. I served 2 tours to Iraq during my enlistment. In April 2014 I am... Continue reading
Posted Aug 7, 2014 at Swede
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For those who wrote and asked to see more photos of what I purchased in Sweden in May, here is a column cabinet with wood marbelized base. It is 54" tall on a 24" square base. It is fluted all the way around. To make it round, it is made of narrow boards glued together that bend. I am considering having my guys build this for my furniture line. I have seen several square column cabinets, but this cabinet is round instead of square. The round ones are more difficult to find and run about nine grand when you can... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2014 at Swede
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Walking through the Montparnasse area, I passed this florist each day. They are selling three colors of Peonies. Love these coral colored ones. Do you like the red ones? Or pink? Love Sweet William that spells like Cloves. Floral vendors are throughout the city but not as many as I had imagined. Summer Photos: Swede Continue reading
Posted Jul 29, 2014 at Swede
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In Sweden I purchased an identical pair of these secretaries. Made in the same cabinet shop between 1780-90 so about 234 years old. One is for sale at La Maison Antiques in Memphis and I kept one which is in this photo. And here is a cabinet I purchased. For Swedish antique lovers out there, this is a 1710-20 Baroque cabinet in pale green paint. Love the hardware. This small chest made in 1790 was formerly owned by Lars Sjoberg who restored many landmark buildings in Sweden and authored several books, among which are The Swedish Room and Classic Swedish... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2014 at Swede
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Yesterday we unloaded the container of Swedish antiques I selected on my trip in May. Always fun to see what you picked out a couple months later. All came through fine except one broken table leg. I thought you might like to see a piece that I am keeping for me - at least for a while. I like the size of this cabinet and the reeded doors. It is a good place to keep my large coral pieces and design books. Made in 1850-60 by a cabinetmaker in the middle section of Sweden. If you are close to Memphis,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 22, 2014 at Swede
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Many of you said you liked my prior posts on manly machines used in the manufacture of furniture, so I thought you might like to see more photos of the handmade side as well. There are so many steps and processes that all have to come together perfectly to make this quality of furniture. In this post I will talk about making carved chairs. Chairs are probably the most difficult product to design and manufacture so certainly take the most detailed time and attention in the process. I have an intense passion for making furniture and especially Swedish formal pieces.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2014 at Swede
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Today's daily Paris photo is this colorful restaurant, La Petite Rotonde, at 64 Rue Montparnasse in the 14th that I pass by on my walk to Luxembourg Gardens. Love the window boxes of Geraniums and the white twinkle lights for nighttime dining. Parisians love red Geraniums. They are everywhere. Almost think it must be France's national flower or something. Guess I could look that up. Summer Photo: Swede Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2014 at Swede