Friday, May 27, 2011

renovating an old Swiss home

We have a strong desire to purchase an old house in Switzerland, preferably a farm house with an attached barn and over 100 years old.  Something we can sympathetically renovate and turn into a comfortable home where old and new merge harmoniously.  A place to enjoy certain modern comforts with the charm and character of the days gone.

After searching the internet for inspiration and to see what other people are doing with their old Swiss home conversions, I found this example by Formzone - Christian Speck.  

I really like what he has done with this home!  It still has all the beautiful and important detail of the original dwelling including the pine-lined rooms, exposed stone walling and curved cellar doors (now the office).  And, the home appears to accept the newest additions being the lighting, furniture, crisp white walls and a modern kitehn and bathroom.

What are your thoughts?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

schweiz scherenschnitte

I think this hand-cut paper art is truly beautiful and a real test of patience.  Sure, we have access to some beautiful laser cut designs but the time that has gone into some of these hand-cut designs certainly gives you a greater appreciation of this traditional art form.

I am very much looking forward to trying this myself (though more simple to begin with!)...

This image below would make a very beautiful scherenschnitte...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Nature almost always gets it right when it comes to colour schemes.

We visited the Jardin Botanique today and saw some very magnificent Mandarin Ducks.  This duck is absolutely stunning and is just covered in feathers of the most amazing colours.  The Mandarin Duck is the duck at the top of the image below.

Anyway, I think we can draw much more inspiration from nature... I have explored birds as just one option!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

the old guy with the cat

I have visited Geneva 3 summers now and i must say this place is really beginning to feel familiar.  The familarity is in part because my sister lives here so this really feels like her home an partly because I live here and am starting to understand where everything is.  The other reason I believe why we begin to feel comfortable in a place is because of the familiar charachters who 'paint the city'.  

Take the dude with the mad afro I see every morning on my way to college who is straight from the 80's with his fluro orange Adidas zip jacket and an afro comb sticking right out the back of his hair.  Then there is the girl I encounter at the same intersection every day who walks a beautiful big Newfoundland.  And the homeless man with the Salvatore Ferragamo shopping bag (only in Geneva).  These are all new faces this year.

Then, there is the old guy with the cat and a music machine that he plays every day, in the morning near the train station and during the day in the Rue du Marche.  I have seen this guy every year and I am somehow very comforted by the familiar sound of his music box.  I have never seen his cat move but I can tell you that is one happy feline.  This is one of my favourite characters...