So Stockholm continues to be the most beautiful city ever. (see above)
I love it here, particularly since the weather got incredible and everyone is all cheery and in magical summer-Swede mode.
We’ve had a great last few days here, including on Friday when we got up at the asscrack of dawn to take a special bus arranged by the fabulous Swedish government out to Dalarna, a county northeast of Stockholm. It’s an incredibly picturesque region where Swedes have adorable weekend and summer cottages, where they frolic through birch forests like beautiful blonde nymphs, eating lingonberries from the bush (vine? shrub? tree?), making head wreathes from sapling branches, talking to woodland creatures, etc. etc. They’re like that here.
We started with a tour of Stora Hyttnäs, a 19th-century upper-middleclass home that’s now a museum. Our guide was the kind elderly lady in the first picture who rode up on her bike, earning her the prize of most-unintentionally-adorable-Swede in my book. I mean, look at her go. ”There are 40,000 objects here,” she informed us with an exhausted sigh.
The real impetus for the trip was to see the home of famed Swedish painter, illustrator, and national hero Carl Larsson—a place that basically inspired all of Swedish residential design since the turn of the century. It was kind of a big deal.
There weren’t any pictures allowed inside, so apparently I took this one of the outside and decided that was good enough?
It looks like this, basically. Larsson paintings are reproduced all over Sweden. Everywhere you look, BOOM. Larsson. Pretty amazing to see in person.
AND THEN THE WEEKEND CAME.
Two days in Sweden, two boys who like to thrift, nothing on the agenda. I’m pitching the reality show now.
Heart racing. Hands shaking. I was BORN to thrift in Sweden. This was to be my moment. This is pretty much how it went:
Saturday morning: “Oh, let’s get haircuts” says Max. “It’ll be nice, we’ll feel all refreshed, and we can always go to the flea markets after.”
“But you have to get there early!” I wail. “And they’ll be over later, and OMG YOU’RE RUINING MY WHOLE LIFE.” *tears*
I might have overreacted. I was hellbent on thrifts and Max was determined to refresh his Hitler-youth hairstyle and—absent my spoilt-child greedy emotions—I had no defense.
I’m not bitter anymore. It’s fine. Our hairs look better. I’m totally so over it don’t even worry I didn’t even want that fabulous ________ I would have found had we started earlier as planned.
Don’t get in the way of me and my thrifts.
We found some rad stuff though, at a combination of thrifts and fleas, like this weird PH-style light fixture that was marked at all of about $7. I don’t even really know where we’ll put it, and it’s really not worth much (from what I can figure out, I think it’s basically a knock-off of some other “inspired by” design) but SEVEN DOLLARS? That’s less than a Chipotle burrito. Plus, brassy details. I mean come now. No choice.
More stuff? Of course. Clockwise:
1. Old Konica film camera—super bare bones, super cheap, should be fun to shoot a couple rolls on.
2. Three brassy candlesticks! Brassy brassy brassy!
3. Found about a trillion of these wood cabinet door/drawer pulls at Myrorna (basically the Swedish Goodwill) for about 25 cents each, so I bought 24 of them just to give myself the option of using them in my kitchen. I know you’re thinking that it’s a bad idea, but combined with the other stuff I have planned, I think they might look amazing. Might. I’ll sleep on it before I drill any holes.
4. Geode tea light holder. If I have two sets of geode bookends, two geode coasters, and now this, does that make me a rocks and minerals enthusiast? Collector? Weirdo?
5. On Sunday we went against all the advice and visited a HUGE flea market (marketed as the biggest in Scandinavia) in Varberg, which was basically a sprawling dark disaster in the basement of a mall filled with old cell phone chargers and Ricky Martin CDs. As various online sources claimed it would be, it was too junky and generally un-fun, but we did come away with a few good things including this Stig Lindberg teapot pitcher thing from the Bersa Collection (it has no top, so what’s it really for?). The price was really low because there’s a teeny tiny chip up by the spout, but Max really wanted it so we coughed up a little cash to take it home.
6. I’ve been slowly accumulating pieces from the Ultima Thule set, designed by Tapio Wirkkala for iittala in 1968. The tumblers and highballs have long been at the very top of my list of dream glassware, but seeing as they are crazy fancy I don’t dream of actually owning them anytime soon. I have been able to dig up 3 smaller dessert bowls, one larger bowl, and a small sugar bowl and creamer from various places though, which I’m so excited about. The pictures really don’t do them justice but they’re gorgeous.
One of the best finds of the weekend was definitely this sexy Edixa Reflex camera. I did some digging and it looks like it’s from Germany and was made in 1955, a very very early 35 mm SLR. It’s beautifully designed and built and in incredible condition and was only about $30. We’ll see how the film turns out, but honestly—just look at it. It already delivered as a fancy hipster prop when I got photographed by somebody I think was a Swedish street-style photographer? If you see a haggard-looking boy with a good-looking camera floating around the internet, it might be me. So basically now I’m a supermodel. Be impressed.
(the photo of me above was take by Max with Instagram. He’s killing it with photos of our trip, by the way.)