February, 2016

Stockholm February 2016, part two

February 27th, 2016


Day three brought us to Gamla Stan for a morning meeting. I absolutely love the coloured buildings. It was an especially grey and dark week and the colours certainly bring some joy.




We enjoyed a lovely conversation about design at Cia Weden and Lovisa Wattman’s shared studio. You may remember Lovisa from our very first Mjölk book. I absolutely love how the Swedish offset the dimness of winter with candles.


Terrazzo flooring at Gamla Stan station.


Next up was lunch at Ett Hem. We originally wanted to stay there but they were fully booked, so a meal in their kitchen was the next best option. Served at the communal harvest table in the cozy kitchen, we dined on a two course meal. To our surprise, none other than Ilse Crawford ended up dining with us. What a pleasure it was to be able to discuss design with her.


Then we had a quick peek around…


Pallo Vase by Carina Seth Andersson.


I liked the green tile in the bathroom, which matched my blouse.


Our first visit to the Svenskt Tenn tea room.


Estrid Ericson‘s office.


Asplund featured a pairing of Pia Wallén capelets, bags and slippers on Asplund utility furniture by Broberg & Ridderstråle.


We were supposed to meet somewhere new to us for dinner with the Anderssen & Voll team however we ended up at our old favourite Pelikan, for SOS and meatballs.

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Stockholm February 2016, part one

February 25th, 2016



A few weeks ago we went to Stockholm for the Furniture & Light Fair, and to reconnect with friends, since we missed the previous year. I didn’t bring my camera but most of the following photos were not shared on Instagram.

For this trip we got a bit extravagant and stayed at the Grand Hotel. It had been our 5 year wedding anniversary recently and we thought we’d celebrate in style. Too bad I got a terrible cold on the lead up to the trip. On the upside, the hotel spa was a total benefit, one that I am afraid has spoiled me forever. Imagine after 12 hours of travel time, arriving at your hotel and being able to decompress in the steam room, sauna, pools and massage service.

Above is the view from our room.

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Since we usually stay in Södermalm, we weren’t sure where to grab a bite close to the hotel. We were looking for a konditori and it was suggested to go to Wiener Caféet, where we grabbed a late lunch and shared our first of many semla.


Afterwards we popped over to the Nobis Hotel to catch Claesson Koivisto Rune‘s Smaller Objects press party and launch.


Off to dinner at Matbaren, located conveniently in our hotel. Designed by StudioIlse, love these floor tiles.


The following day we spent at the Furniture Fair. We barely managed to see anything because our discussions with our suppliers took most of our time.

This year there were two designers representing Canada in the Greenhouse section of new design. Above is local Toronto/Junction design duo MSDS Studio. They also participated last year, whereby several of their lights were picked up and put into production by Danish brand Woud. This year’s collection was equally tight, the photo above not doing it justice. My favourite pieces were the porcelain lamps (prototypes made by Alissa Coe).


New to Greenhouse this year is our good friend Thom Fougere (you may recall us having that wonderful tyndall stone coffee table, pre-kids).


We’ve been working with Thom on developing his prototype for a fireplace tools set. We have yet to purchase one for our home, because it’s so challenging finding a nice modern set (we once tried to buy a vintage set but it was priced around $10,000!).

We hope that everyone had some success at the fair!

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Anderssen & Voll Gardening Collection Reception at Kollekted By

February 24th, 2016


Back in September (2015), we were invited to Oslo to do a launch party for Anderssen & Voll’s Gardening Collection. Our lovely hosts were Jannicke and Alessandro, stylists and shop owners of the fantastic Kollekted by:.

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The brass, wood, glass and terracotta products looked right at home in their space. This is the joy of natural materials.

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The space was previously a butcher shop, and they kept some of the details, such as the white tile, to great effect.



The amazing green terrazzo floor made us envious, and perfectly suits the furniture, products and space they have curated.


The bar set up for the party, featuring our herb pot on standby. Herbed cocktails were served by a bartender from Torggata Botaniske, an Oslo bar filled with lush plants and herbs.

Beautiful giant slabs of cheese garnished with edible flowers, and other appetizers were provided by Trattoria Popolare, a fantastic Italian restaurant that we frequented often for lunch with the Anderssen & Voll team (who also designed the interior).


Amazing turn out, outside and in!


After the party we were treated to dinner at Nedre Foss. Designed by Anderssen & Voll, this was an ambitious project, with full restaurant and brewery, and all the details were meticulously designed with the space in mind, right down to the hand painted wallpaper.

Sadly, just before New Year’s, there was a massive fire in this historic building. There are plans to rebuild, however, and Anderssen & Voll will be assisting again.

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Oji Masanori TODO Exhibition

February 1st, 2016


Last week was the opening to our newest exhibition for Japanese design Oji Masanori debuting several new collections including a teapot, teacups and mugs by Susumuya and also cypress trays, containers and boxes by time honoured lacquer-ware company Kirimoto.

Our main contribution to the exhibition was revealing our newest production collaboration with Oji Masanori, two beautiful pendant lights both made here in Toronto, along with a wooden serving board inspired by the earth and the moon.

The Hemisphere pendant went on the win the 2016 TODO Juror’s Choice Award.


Here is what Oji Masanori had to say about the collaboration:


I was first introduced to Mjölk five years ago and had the chance to get to know John and Juli. Mjölk, part shop, part gallery, has since become one of my favourite destinations.

John had contacted me about Mjölk Made; a collaboration between designers, the shop, and local Toronto manufacturing. I flew into Toronto so that I could immerse myself in the culture of the city. I was curious about lifestyle, interior layouts, room sizes, and the ways in which people lived.

This trip resulted in a lighting project that was to utilize the craftsmanship of a historic brass company located in the city. I was able to visit their shop, meet the makers and better understand their processes and limitations.
I have designed two pendant lamps; simple shapes that share subtle details of quality, form and materials. I devised them so that balance and harmony can be felt and seen.

The Hemisphere Pendant resembles a large mobile, playing with various materials, scales and sizes. The smaller brass hemisphere is pointing light down towards a table, while the big copper hemisphere lights up, towards a ceiling, shedding light indirectly over an entire room.

The Diamond Pendant has a brass balancer and an LED light bulb. The whole light can be carefully touched and moved in order to adjust height and position.

I designed these two lights for Toronto, they were created out of an image of a Torontonian, a Canadian, who lives peacefully and considers the people around them, respecting differences while living in a complex and diverse city. From my visits to this city, I think, people in Toronto are very skilled at combining, mixing and blending culture with simplicity.

Mjölk is the perfect mix and blend of international design and Japanese craft. I hope for these collaborations to continue to connect people and carefully crafted objects, to bring peaceful products all over the world.



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A nice Ikebana flower arrangement using the porcelain Comport dish by Oji Masanori for Jicon.


The walnut meat board, another Mjolk collaboration with Oji Masanori. The cutting board is used for resting a roast, steak or cooked vegetables. The deep grooves around the tray allow for the juices to collect. You can carve the roast or slice the steak directly on the board, and the little dish on the end can be used as a salt cellar for seasoning the meat or vegetables right on the table. The two circles represent the earth and the moon.



Beautiful Susumu tableware making their debut.





Jicon sake server and cups.


Since Oji Masanori also designs all of the packaging for his works, we thought it would be nice to exhibit them as well.



Every component of the Diamond pendant is custom made.


We received a Designlines Loves tag for the diamond pendant!




Wednesday, January 20th we hosted a reception for Oji-san. We are thankful to all who came out, the response was outstanding!


Takuya Matsuo and Masanori Oji


Catering by Imanishi Japanese Kitchen.


It was Elodie’s first exhibition – I really wanted her to wear her Fort Kids dress but she opted for Frozen upon Frozen. Can’t win them all! Howell checked the show out too. He was pretty annoyed that he had to go to bed.


Elodie kept busy drawing pictures and practicing her letters (what?), and then gave them out to unsuspecting guests.


Thank you to everyone who attended!

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