Posts in Objects
Why Dried Flowers Aren't Just For Grandma

When I mention dried flowers, what do you picture? Be honest now, are those memories of dried roses that gathered dust on your grandmother’s bookshelf creeping to mind? Or, perhaps you’ve seen a bit of a revival happening on Instagram with that sweet whimsical look? Whatever idea you have about dried flora, I am certain that you’re going to be wowed by the work of , who is pushing the boundaries of dried floral art! Plus, had you been at this weekend with Holly and her panel of professional bloggers, you'd have heard them all unanimously agree in their trend talk show that past season (also known as dead/dried) flowers are a micro trend at the moment.

Makers | Mark Antonia Dried Flora-9.jpg

What has touched me the most the past few years in the industry, would have to be the momentum that the maker movement has had. I’d say that the surge in this area no doubt goes hand-in-hand with the slow-living phenomenon. I admit I do yoga, and I’m really working on being more in the moment rather than thinking about next week (anyone with me here?), but most of all, I’m beginning to be aware of the small pleasures in my day-to-day life.

Makers | Mark Antonia Dried Flora-10.jpg

One standout for me is enjoying my morning cup of tea in an earthy mug that was made by a favorite ceramicist of mine. When I look around my apartment, I can find other examples of that simple joy that a handmade, or small-scale object brings me. With that in mind, makers from Sweden, and when the opportunity arises, from abroad, will be my focus here on cattledogs for all of 2018 and I hope you will enjoy discovering them here with me.

Mark Antonia Dried Flora

So, back to dried flowers. When I stepped into the Mark Antonia studio, in Auckland, New Zealand, I was naturally expecting to see a lot of dried flowers; but I never imagined the sheer volume that was actually there. The raw plywood was the perfect backdrop to display the array of drying branches and flowers that will soon see Antonia’s magic hand.

Mark Antonia Dried Flora

Antonia De Vere works beside, Mark Seeney, (hence the namesake) whom she met at art school. The couple combines their talents with floristry and hand-poured candles by Antonia, along with custom industrial furniture, homeware, and retail fit-outs by Mark.

Mark Antonia Dried Flora
Mark Antonia Dried Flora

I had been a fan of her custom arrangements for some time after admiring them in some of the coolest stores and commercial spaces in Auckland. I even owned a small one myself. There was just one small detail that I failed to notice in her minimalist creations; that all this time, she has actually been recreating Mother Nature. I'll explain what I mean.

Mark Antonia Dried Flora
Mark Antonia Dried Flora

The idea struck Antonia when she saw the waste left behind from her fresh floral commissions. She experimented with the scrap flora she dried, until she found her signature minimalist style, treating each consignment as a sculpture. Watching her at work is simply mesmerizing.

Mark Antonia Dried Flora

Each leaf, berry or bud is painstakingly clipped and glued onto a twig and done to such meticulous perfection, that you might be mistaken, like I was, and assume that the variety already existed in nature. That's what I meant when I said earlier that she is, "recreating Mother Nature".

Mark Antonia Dried Flora
Mark Antonia Dried Flora

Antonia has taken dried floral art to a whole new level, suggesting an almost Japanese Ikebana feel. Not only do these arrangements look stunning on display, the bonus is that it stays looking like that for a long time to come.

Have a great day everyone!

(Article + Photography: except for bottom grid by Mark Antonia)

Northern Lighting From Oslo Will Expand Into Furniture and Accessories

Have you heard of the Norwegian lighting brand ? They are soon to become known as NORTHERN since lighting will not be their sole concentration anymore, and they will debut their new collection to include furniture and accessories very soon at Stockholm Design Week. I love their lighting and can't wait to see what else is up their sleeve. Some of my favorites in the collection are shown below - stunning, right?

Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs

One of my favorites from their collection is the . Have you seen it before? I just adore the shape and how simple it is while still catching the eye. You can see it below in white.

Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs
Northern Lighting From Oslo Will Expand
Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs
Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs
Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs
 Images created for Northern Lighting. Styling by Per Olav Sølvberg. Photography by Chris Tonnesen
Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs
Northern Lighting From Oslo on cattledogs

If their lighting is THIS good, I can't wait to see what else they will design... We shall see soon enough I'm sure.

(Images: Northern Lighting)


10 Interiors + Lifestyle Favorites For January

Happy New Years from me, Allan Torp, to you all. I'm back for 2018 here on cattledogs with my once-monthly column highlighting 10 things I love that I hope are interesting to you too. Anyway... Good to be back.

I like NYE for its many great traditions, or at least our Danish traditions. For one, almost everyone meets early to watch the Queen’s live speech on TV at 6pm, one of the most cherished traditions among the Danes. Another one I really enjoy is that we all jump into the new year, meaning we all stand on a chair or the couch at the time of midnight and when the big city clock (broadcasted live on TV) chimes we all jump to land on the floor and then we sing the national song.

New Year also calls for reflections, not only the year that was, but also what we want to get out of 2018. Have you made yours already? I always make sure that I have a few points that I know will come true and also have a few dream scenarios that I would like to see come true, something that with a bit of hard and clever work will come true.

I will leave you with my 10 favorites – jump to no. 5, hit play and then go through the rest of the list as the song plays. It’s so addictive.

Photo styled by Sundling/Kickén and photographed by Emily Laye

Photo styled by Sundling/Kickén and photographed by Emily Laye

1 // Furniture:

Quality handcrafted furniture is going to be even bigger this coming year. We are finally leaving the buy and get rid off era for good – also when it comes to interiors. Surrounding yourself with long-lasting pieces will only make you happier. One of my biggest crushes right now is Swedish furniture and accessories studio , who craft pristine, handmade pieces to die for. They manufacture all pieces themselves with materials such as leather from the world's only environmentally-certified tanner, , in combination with beautiful lacquered ash. Their trolley (shown above) is one of my favorites. What do you think of it?

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2 // Art

I have been enjoying the works of Danish-based for quite a while and I am also lucky enough to have a few of his pieces in my own home. His geometric mid-century masculine vibe really speaks to me and my aesthetics. He recently collaborated with Danish , whom I also have shown you guys in my November column, which really showcases both brands perfectly.

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3 // Decorate:

The spirit that was created by Peter Bang and Svend Olufsen during the first twenty-five years of Bang & Olufsen’s life has survived until now. The issue with Bang & Olufsen products are, for most, that they do not come cheap. Their obstinate stance to keep producing super overpriced design products where the technology really didn’t keep up with their competitors, almost meant the death of B&O.

Luckily, they came to their senses and have finally begun to produce Bang & Olufsen products where design and technology are on point – like their .

Just released is the limited edition green version (shown above in my home), not environmentally green, but just green as in the color --  a color that really takes the speaker system to new heights, inspired by nature that makes perfect harmony with the décor of 2018.

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4 // Sleep:

Just after Christmas I visited friends in London, and had booked a night at the. I have been following their Instagram account for a while and really wanted to experience it myself. The location is perfect, just a 5 minute walk from Covent Garden and on the tube line going directly to Heathrow. The vibe is phenomenal and I am not sure I’ve ever experienced a livelier lobby before. It seems like locals just drop by to hang out, drink coffee and work on their laptops throughout the day, which I really enjoyed. Nothing worse than a generic and dead hotel. My room was not the biggest, but they had really made the most of it and a huge round mirror made it seem bigger. The oldest trick in the décor handbook. Book on your next trip to London.

5 // Listen:

I have a tendency to replay a good song over and over again, luckily this one, , only gets better the more you play it.

‘Float is about feeling responsible for damaging a fragile person. The video is a disorienting but beautiful piece that shows someone left alone in a cold, harsh environment, while I’m kinda dwelling within my conscience. My mind grows increasingly clouded the more i think about her. I think it really captures the distance and confusion of a first heartbreak.’
— Thomston
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6 // Groom:

I have been washing my face with face wash, ten to seven, for the past month. A product that is all free from bad ingredients and just perfect for the guy who wants well-kept skin without spending a fortune. Extra bonus: it comes in perfect travel size container with smart lock closing, so you don’t end up with a toiletry bag full of face wash and lotion.

I’ve also been enjoying the newest , Another 13, which until recently was exclusively sold in Colette, but with them closing their doors for good, is now available worldwide. It’s composed of ambroxan, a synthetic animal musk, making Another 13 an addictive dirty potion blended with twelve other ingredients such as jasmine, moss and ambrette seeds absolute - which gives it spike and shine.

Finally, I am showing you guys the shower essentials at Hoxton hotel in Holborn, London, (photo above) which is nicely illustrated by London-based – and can currently only be purchased at the reception shop at the hotel.


7 // Read:

Written by the authors of Oak the Nordic Journal, is a compendium of more than 200 objects of Nordic design. Every classic you can think of from Marimekko, Iittala, and Fritz Hansen, and objects such as the blue and white Royal Copenhagen porcelain and the most recognizable pair of scissors, the orange Fiskars, are all born out of the Nordic countries and can be found in this book.


8 // Eat:  

I recommend this restaurant solely because I love their name, , which means love in Danish. It is based in Chicago and named one of the best new restaurants opened in the US in 2017, so it must be good right. I certainly would “elske” to jump into the 8-course menu at $85. Anyone want to join me?


9 // Shop:

A favorite among many Scandinavian interior bloggers and stylists, Gothenburg-based shop and their sister shop next door, Artilleriet Kitchen, is full of one-of-a-kind finds and many other great décor products. Holly just went there back in September with the West Sweden tourism board so she'll tell you all about it soon on cattledogs. Remember to check out their sample sale section online where you can with a bit of luck make some very good bargains.

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10 // One last thing:

announced the color of the year. Ultra Violet. I am not sure what to think, I am pretty sure I won't be filling my home with a violet color palate anytime soon. What do you think? Hmmmmm......

See you next month, everyone! -

(Text: )

[Editor's Note: Le Labo, Myego and Bang & Olufsen are gifted as part of reviewing for this column in partnership between and the brands. This review is provided by Allan Torp for cattledogs, any collaborations are his own. All words and opinions are his own.]

Cupcake Cases DIY: Wall Decoration For Christmas

I love trying fun new ways to decorate for every season, and in winter there are so many options for the holidays and also because you are indoors more during the cooler months. I don't know about you, but being inside more puts my focus on how my home is looking. I start to notice the curtains that no longer look so good or the boring tabletop arrangement, or that I really should water my plants more regularly! Today, I want to show you a really fun and clever little craft idea for your holiday decor that will take you maybe 10 minutes or less!

My friend  Pamuk  shown above.

My friend shown above.

This idea can be found in the Scandinavian-inspired decorating story in, , and it can be made with cupcake cases or small candy cases in any color or pattern. To keep it very simple, we went with white. You can use white ones and paint the rims in metallic gold if you like, or inside of each case, place a colored dot, or a circular photo of a family member (like your kids). I like - they'd be perfect for this project if you want a more traditional, festive look in red and white. 

Here are a few simple instructions on how to make this easy little tree for your wall.


Tools: You will need approximately 34 cupcake cases, double-sided tape, 1 long dark string, washi tape for the star.

STEP ONE: Start with the top case and stick to the wall using double-sided tape. Drop a dark string below it using a piece of tape to use as a guide to keep your rows straight as you work. Cupcake cases should go on each side of the string, for instance.


STEP TWO: Beneath the single top case, you should begin to create rows using double-sided tape, cases and space them evenly from one to the next. I started by using the string in the center and put cupcake cases to the left and then to the right, of the string, to keep them neat and even.

To create rows like mine, here is the recipe: Top case, row 1: 2 cases, row 2: 4 cases, row 3: 6 cases, row 4: 8 cases, row 5: 10 cases.

STEP THREE: Once all of your cases are in place, remove the string you'd used as a guide. Now add your tree base using 3 cases.



STEP FOUR: Finish with a washi tape star. Cut 4 strips of equal length and hang from the side of the table. Directly above the top case, place the first strip of tape. You will be making a cross shape. Next, place another piece of tape over the first one to create a cross. Next, tape your 3rd piece of tape and place it on a diagonal to create an "X" on top of the cross shape along with the final piece of tape. Now you have your star.

Decorate For a Party , Available in English, German, French and Italian and available where all fine books are sold.

, Available in English, German, French and Italian and available where all fine books are sold.

Decorate For a Party is available in , and and of course in and also . It also available in Australia via and .



(Photos and Text: Holly Becker)

DIY Minimalist Paper Christmas Tree For Small Spaces or Tabletops

If you have a small space or simply want to decorate a tabletop in a new way, then this non-traditional Christmas tree just may be your new favorite DIY project. Not only is it super cute, but I have the DIY "recipe" for you below along with very good news -- it's super cheap to make and looks lovely!


This tree is just so sweet and I like it because my dear friend Leslie Shewring made it for the Scandinavian-inspired decorating story in our book, , and it can be made with paper in any color,  or even a monochromatic theme with the same color or use many colors and turn it into a rainbow tree! You can decorate it as you wish too, perhaps with white twinkle lights, colored lights, ornaments or anything else that catches your eye. You can even make several smaller versions in green and craft a woodland-theme party for a child's birthday - trees are not only for Christmas. Make it your own!

Here are a few simple instructions on how to make this paper fringe tree. This DIY can be found directly in our book in the holiday craft party section, complete with our playlist of songs to put you in a mood that is merry and bright!


Tools: You will need a hot glue gun, glue sticks, cardboard, black paper, lightweight white paper, black tape, scissors, craft knife.

ROW ONE (left to right)

STEP ONE: Cut the cardboard to your desired triangular tree shape.

STEP TWO: Start about 5cm (2 inches) from the bottom of the tree and cut approximately a 5cm (2 inches) wide strip of white paper to a length just wider than the width of the tree.

STEP THREE: Glue the top edge of the strip of white paper to the cardboard and then trim the width to the angle of the cardboard.

ROW TWO (left to right)

STEP FOUR: Create a fringe along the bottom edge of the white strip of paper you just glued down. Make the cuts about a 1cm (1/2 inch) apart.

STEP FIVE: Repeat with more white strips, making sure to overlap each one over the previous one.

STEP SIX: Finish by adding a black strip of paper to cover the exposed 5cm/2 inches of cardboard along the bottom of the triangle. Use black tape to wrap around the sides of this base, or just wrap the black paper around.

Decorate For a Party , Available in English, German, French and Italian and available where all fine books are sold.

, Available in English, German, French and Italian and available where all fine books are sold.

I love Holly and Leslie’s new book. Page by page with new and chic party ideas, all using inexpensive materials. Happy party everyone!
— Paul Lowe, Founder, SWEET PAUL magazine

Decorate For a Party is available in , and and of course in and also . It also available in Australia via and .

See you again tomorrow everyone with a little decorating project from my home to share.



9 Simple Swedish Things For The Home That I Love

Hi everyone, I hope that you are doing good. We've had a lot of snow the past few days and this weekend was filled with rela moments with friends and family and lots of good food. I love this time of the year when everything starts to slow down, don't you? Have you finished all of your holiday shopping yet? If not, I will tell you about a great spot to shop in Europe if you are still on the prowl for nice gifts. I went to in Hamburg earlier this year and now, I've shopped them again for some things to cozy up my home.

Photo for Granit by  Seraina Silja Hürliman n

Photo for Granit by n

In fact, I picked up linen cushions, a wooden bank, a zinc plant holder, string lights, a tee-pee for Aidan's bedroom, and a lovely fur throw. Tomorrow here on cattledogs, I'll share how everything looks all set up in his room - I need to take some photos for you because it's very sweet! The tee-pee is his new reading nook and a spot where he can dream and play during these cold, winter months. I can't wait to show you!

But first, here are 9 things from that I love - I consider them all useful and also decorative, and I believe that they will stand the test of time despite how trends come and go. And if you are living in Germany, I have good news for you... This Swedish design staple now has 4 stores here (the closest to me is located in Hamburg, there are two in Berlin (I shopped there over the summer at Granit in Mitte) and also you can go to Granit in Cologne. I hope they'll open in Hannover because it's really the perfect spot for them - fingers crossed!

Granit has an too though so it's easy to buy online and for the rest of Europe, .

1. n / Letterboard, Small (shown above). These are fun to put inspirational quotes on, and to change them up as you need to.


2. / String of LED Lights - Totally versatile and I like the black mixed with the large bulbs, looks industrial and they're great for indoors or out.

3. / Ivory Teepee - This was so easy for me to set up and it's very sturdy too!

4. / Large Rubber Container - I like these rubber containers for plants or to use as paper bins for the office.


5. / Cement Flower Pot with base - Gorgeous for bulbs this time of the year.

6. D / Twinkle LED light string - I like these in white and the fact that their are 80 of them, wow!


7. / Wooden bench with black metal base (you can paint the wood any color you wish!)

8. / Black plant holder - I love seeing these with glass pots for plants, looks so unique!

9. / White linen cushion (other colors are available). I like these because the quality of the linen is so, so good and the fillers are great too - they are big and cozy to cuddle with.

And to "wrap" up this post, I need to show you some very simple Scandinavian ways to wrap your holiday presents, and everything you see can be purchased in the office supply section of Granit in-store or online . I love how they've used sprigs of fresh greenery too. It's so easy and uncomplicated to wrap beautiful gifts this way!


I'll be back tomorrow to show you how I've created a cozy corner for my son's bedroom using things I found at Granit in Hamburg. See you soon!

(This post is sponsored by Granit. All words are my own.)



ObjectsHolly BeckerComment