Tag Archives: Tips

Beautiful ánd sustainable – Mosaic Decocos tiles made from coconut shells!


Just as I was looking for a special way to treat two walls in a design for an office, I came across Decocos’ tiles. Little mosaic tiles made from residual waste from the coconut processing industry. The unused shell of the actual nut is sawn into tiny ’tiles’. Both inside and outside can be used and create a spectacular wall feature certain to deliver a wow factor.

 

Decocos Edge tiles / Foto: Castillo Foto voor Vega Projects

Decocos Edge tiles / Foto: Castillo Foto voor Vega Projects

100% ecological and sustainable
Because the shell is normally disposed off as waste, Decocos tiles are truly sustainable. Not only did they find a purpose for the shells, but the production of the tiles creates jobs and income for the local community in Vietnam. Because the source of the tiles, the nut, is so natural, the tiles have the same characteristics as wood. This means none of them are the exact same size of texture, and they often show little imperfections or even the fibres tat are so typical for the shell of the coconut. This actually enhances the natural sensation of the wall and gives it a chique and rich look.

 

Inside Out Decocos tile / foto: Castillo Foto voor Vega Projects

Inside Out Decocos tile / foto: Castillo Foto voor Vega Projects

End Strip Decocos tile

End Strip Decocos tile

Inside Out Decocos tile in Coral wassing

Inside Out Decocos tile in Coral wassing

Caré light Decocos tile

Caré light Decocos tile

The tiles come in a variety of finishes, textures and can be finished further with various laques or oils. They can even be dyed in several colours from coral to rich purple ti fit every home or interior. Check out decocos.com for more information.

Edge Decocos tile

Edge Decocos tile

Breton stripes. Nothing adds more timeless elegance to a home


So simple, yet so chic and effective. In both fashion and home-deco, nothing oozes timeless elegance more than a Breton stripe. For as long as I remember I have owned at least one Breton jumper. Perfect for when a wool v-neck has gotten too warm, and short sleeves are too chilly. In the home it works year round. It adds to the warm and cosy feel in autumn and winter when combined with checks, warm fires, (faux) furs and candles. And in spring and summer it matches with the green of plants in full bloom, wooden patio furniture, cool drinks in elegant glass ware and flowers. Try using it not just in patterns on throws and cushions, but also on walls (horizontal!) and even ceilings or floors.

Floor, ceiling and walls. Both horizontal and vertical. Jean Paul Gaultier meets Versace meets Chanel……

Kate Collins cushion – Breton Stripes

Again used horizontally on walls – Breton Stripes

A wide, horizontal stripe adds drama – Breton Stripes

Amazing use of outside space – Breton Stripes

There’s a reason some of the greatest creative minds love them 😉

Andy Warhol loved them – Breton Stripes

Picasso (by Robert Doisneau) in Breton Stripes

Coco Chanel, Audrey Hepburn and James Dean – all in Breton Stripes

Jean Paul Gaultier turned them into ART!

For me Breton stripes bring back memories to holidays in France with my parents and brother and sister. Throw in a pair of espadrilles and a baguette with Nutella and it’s all coming back!

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Merry Christmas from Homevoyeurs!


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Merry Christmas from Homevoyeurs!


Schermafbeelding 2013-12-24 om 2.34.14 PM

Christmas decorations


To get you in the spirit 😉

Is your tree up yet?

Wonderful low budget office redesign


War Child is a wonderful organisation that helps children in war zones. They recently moved offices, and were in need of a low-budget yet representative new home. After offices along the historic canals of Amsterdam and an old church, the new office, a concrete box on top of a small strip mall, was a bit too much of a cold turkey, so they called in help. They really want to spend as much of the money they have on their projects.  So Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein architects, who were commissioned to design the new offices, needed to keep it lean, but mean. And mean it is. I absolutely love the result. Vintage finds from goodwill, all painted in one colour. So simple, so effective.

New War Child offices in Amsterdam. Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

New War Child offices in Amsterdam.
Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

New War Child offices in Amsterdam Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

New War Child offices in Amsterdam. Photo: Evelyn Sanders for Eckhardt en Leeuwenstein

 

 

 

The smallest apartments in Amsterdam


A top three of teeny-tiny apartments in the Amsterdam real estate market.

1. 16m2 / 172 ft2, right on the canal

This very compact refurbished studio apartment on Amsterdam’s posh Prinsengracht offers all you need. A new kitchen with basic appliances, a small freshly retiled bathroom with shower, toilet and vanity. The roof is sloped,further limiting the available floor space. But it has its charm, and I can imagine the view, once one sticks their head out of the window, is quite nice. The studio is in the front of the building, so canal side. It was on the market for €120.000 / $162.000. That’s €7500 per m2 / $942 per ft 2, which is quite steep even for Amsterdam standards. But it sold within 4 months.

A tiny studio right on an Amsterdam canal

A tiny studio right on an Amsterdam canal

Refurbished and move-in ready

Refurbished and move-in ready

2. 22 m2 / 237 ft 2, again on the same canal

Funny enough the second smallest apartment is not far from the previous one. Again, this tiny studio is in a very characteristic and typical Amsterdam building on the canal. However, this apartment is not as refurbished as the other one, and the kitchen leaves a lot more to desire. But it does have double doors opening to a French balcony and I guess it’s bigger. The apartment faces the garden in the back, so no canal view. A big bonus is a storage room on the ground floor and access to a communal garden. This one was on the market for €129.000 / $174.400 and sold in a bit over 4 months. The price per m2 / ft 2 of €5864 / $736 didn’t scare potential buyers.

Another studio on one of Amsterdam's famous canals

Another studio on one of Amsterdam’s famous canals

French doors leading to a French balcony facing the communal gardens

French doors leading to a French balcony facing the communal gardens

View to the gardens in the back. The owner of this studio has shared use of the garden

View to the gardens in the back. The owner of this studio has shared use of the garden

3. A 23 m2 / 248 ft 2 studio with balcony overlooking a canal in up and coming Amsterdam West

This building is a bit of a landmark. It’s right along a canal by a working drawbridge, so many of Amsterdam’s inhabitants have seen it while waiting for passing boats. It’s in a part of town that was not really desirable up until a few years back. Since then, many people have ventured that way for its cheap real estate, and its proximity to the more popular parts of the city. This brought in new shops, bars and restaurants and in turn caused a fast rise in prices and a shift in the area’s popularity. That makes the price of €89.000 / $120.000 surprising.  Only since the crunch have prices dropped slightly below €100.000 for the smallest of places in lesser areas. The owner must have been going for a quick sale. Like the other, this one sold in a little over 4 months. Surprising because flats in this building tend to sell faster. Especially considering this is one of the few with a balcony. Only the first and top floor units have these. The apartment consists of a small living/bedroom, a separate kitchen, nice when you only have one room, and a small bathroom. There are a few built-in closets. The view is quite spectacular. And there’s a shared garden, laundry facilities, private storage and a communal bike storage. The building itself is an architectural gem so all in all a very good deal for €3870 per m2 / $484 ft 2.

The 'Geuzenflat' overlooks a working drawbridge in one of Amsterdam's newer canals.

The nicknamed ‘Geuzenflat’ overlooks a working drawbridge in one of Amsterdam’s newer canals.

The building's official name is Oranjehof, and is listed as a monument

The building’s official name is Oranjehof, and is listed as a monument

The door leads to a balcony overlooking the canal

The door leads to a balcony overlooking the canal