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5 Questions for an Emerging Design Star


5 Questions for an Emerging Design Star

August 31, 2012

If you've spent any time on Pinterest, surfing DIY projects, you've probably seen (and admired) the work of Annaleena Karlsson of Annaleena's Hem in Sweden.

We've been following her blog for a while now (she's a member of the SAY 100) and coveting her genius clothes hangers (see Coat Rails as Sculpture); learn more about her design process on the SAY Daily:

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Above: Annaleena Karlsson at home.

What are your 5 favorite things right now? I have more than five! But if I had to choose, my first favorite thing is my Clothing Hanger Rectangle, which is my own design. The hanger hangs from the ceiling in our bedroom and it is so practical. My other favorite thing is the little white tea light holder in porcelain—a simple and practical design that lightens up my rainy day. My third favorite has to be my camera. I don't go anywhere without it. Fourth is my old rocking chair that reminds me of my childhood. I can still remember grandpa sitting and rocking in it. My fifth favorite is Marimekko coffee cups that I have begun to gather. I buy a new one every time I'm in Finland.

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Above: Annaleena's Clothing Hangers, made of hand-forged iron and available via her online shop.

What are some favorite interior design projects you've worked on recently? I started designing my own products, encouraged by talented interior stylist Lotta Agaton. It feels incredible to see a product go from a sketch to ready supply to a customer.

What design sites do you visit for inspiration? I mostly get inspiration from people's homes I visit on my assignments. I also collect lots of inspiration from fashion magazines and blogs. My favorite sites right now are the fashion sites Love Aesthetics, Osklivost, and Convoy. They have a nice mix of styles.

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Above: Annaleena's kitchen.

How do you decide to feature a product in your shop? Most often the ideas just come while I'm working with other things or from a need, which I then quickly sketch on paper. I try to be responsive to trends and do things that are not only practical but look great. I think I have found my niche there.

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Above: Annaleena's DIY Calendar.

What are your most popular DIY projects? One was a Christmas Calendar that I did last year. I didn't have much time then to sew bags and stuff like that, so I taped our calendar on the wall using common small white paper bags and glued on black numbers as dates. The pictures spread all around the world. The second is probably the Coat Hanger that I made from three pieces of wooden poles. But the DIY I like most is the Charcoal Mobile.

What's next? I'm working on new products for my web shop. This is the first time I've revealed what it will be—and the products are lamps. I'm also working on a secret project that I believe will be a success when it becomes public this autumn.

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