Christmas: the time of year, when buying, consuming and eating reaches the frequency of breathing; all this accompanied by an often neglected essence of religion in the background. It is the time of year, when you look back at the last twelve months of your life thinking how many of last year’s resolutions you failed to achieve and set a new array of brand new unrealistic goals. On a more positive note, Christmas is the time of year, when you are surrounded by your loved ones exchanging gifts and appreciating having them in your life. If you are still contemplating what to get them this year, check out the following suggestions of presents, that are all made in Berlin and neatly curated by the awesome of berlin platform for stylish local design products that make excellent gifts and Berlin souvenirs.
I have the utmost respect for people who are skilled in traditional crafts. I think such a large part of our work is done by computers these days and in a way that’s great, but we also loose a lot of motor skills because of this. I remember times when I was so tired of only working on the computer that I started side projects that required my hands and my brain in different ways and it felt so good to finally create something physical with my own hands.
I think a lot of people share this desire to use their skills in different ways these days because I see that traditional and even new crafts are trending right now. The rise of maker spaces, DIY projects and workshops are proof of this.
With our guide for creatives, workshop list and review of up-cycling design we already shared a few opportunities in Berlin with you were you can get your hands dirty. Today we introduce you to another one: glass molding and blowing. We were invited by Berlin Glas e.V. to try out one of their glass blowing workshops to learn more about this highly sophisticated traditional craft and even create our own simple glass objects.
photo: Frau Tonis Parfum
Autumn has come lovely people. We cannot deny it any more. It is, therefore, high time we started coming up with nice activities for this grey time of year. Quite a few times we have you aware of the fabulous, tempting offers by Priceless® Berlin and on this note we will carry on today. This time we have picked out a few activities for you for the cold days that will get your creative juices flowing. DIY has become such a pretty big trend; but in order to develop the right skills for it, think about participating at some of the workshops, that are offered in great abundance all over Berlin. We picked out a few exciting suggestions for you.
On board is also Berlin-re-cycle, whose workshop we recently featured in detail; there, you can work on your own upcycling lamps. Besides that, you can make your own perfume with the help of Frau Tonis or get a professional make-up by the MUD experts.
It does not take a lot of imagination to think of Berlin as a giant playground. In times of Pokemon Go and other augmented reality games, the street-running movement and immersive theater experiences, everything – and everybody – seems ready to play.
But I don’t think that the origin of Berlin playfulness is based on technology, fitness or even cultural trends. I remember vividly how years ago I met on a subway ride a young dude that outed himself as a philosophy professor. (The combination of young dude and philosophy professor was a surprise at that time. Nowadays I am not as easily surprised ) He told me that he is part of a creative project called invisible playground. In this project, he told me they tried to research and examine how a daily portion of playfulness can affect your overall happiness.
But invisible playground is not the only creative project celebrating the idea of a playful city. The Berlin-based artist duo 44Flavours have already left their footmark in the local creative scene. Experimenting with all kind of art forms, from murals to posters, and painting to sculpture, the two friends Sebastian Bagge and Julio Rölle, have worked together since they were students. Their success formula is a vibrant combination of teamwork and creative chaos. For the #LiveThere exhibition by Airbnb they created an interactive playground where you can tell your personal Berlin story. There you can listen to murmuring teapots, talk to enchanted mirrors and have fun with all kinds of everyday objects transformed into a creative installation. The idea behind this project is to share different stories about Berlin and to emphasize how with a spark of creative inventiveness and playfulness every trip to Berlin can become a one of a kind experience.
Inspired by that idea, I thought of how we could be more active in experiencing our city as a playful place. I started thinking about the rules and I realized that the games you decide to play on your personal urban playground don’t have to follow any rules or even the norms of standard morality. Between lust and pain is the instinct to play. Therefore I dove deeply into my own imagination and created a set of Berlin-specific mind games. Follow my colorful, funny but sometimes also sensual and dark inspirations to transform your everyday life in Berlin into a crazy game-like experience.
photos: Alicia Kassebohm
Exploring new cities has always been a pleasure for us. We come back with a bag full of new inspiration, ideas and urban concepts that we might want to see also in our beloved hometown. Last week Alicia Kassebohm and I had the great pleasure to travel to Milan to visit the prominent Milan Design Week invited by the Belgium Design initiative: Belgium is Design. Like last year we visited The Salone del Mobile which is the biggest fair for contemporary design products and the Fuorisalone (outside Salone) the uncountable mass of side-events happening all around the city. In over 5 districts of Milan the complete neighborhood is transformed into a walkable showroom where young and upcoming designers and small manufactures present their products. This brings not only a lot of creativity to the neighborhoods but also involves the inhabitants in what is usually a very elitist topic: design. This kind of urban participation is something I really miss in all the fairs and big events happening in Berlin. So this would be something I could really imagine in a Berlin of the future. After the jump you find our favorite impressions sorted out by districts, a little art museum adventure we had and the best pieces from the exhibition of our partners from the Belgium Design Initiative.
One of the many facets of Berlin that people really love and cherish is the rough, urban and industrial style of the city. It’s something that Berlin has in common with places like Brooklyn or South East London. But combined with Berlin’s history, the devision, the Soviet influence of the East, it developed a quite particular style that sets it apart from the other cities. Raw brick walls and concrete, factory lamps and Edison light bulbs, this is pretty much an aesthetic you will see all over the world. But Berlin adds old GDR relics, remains of the Soviet military, and remnants of old industries that were specific to Germany. The outcome is a unique mix of history, design and patina that feels specific to Berlin.
In our newest guide we want to introduce you to 3 shops that have specialized in industrial vintage design, all of which combine common aesthetics with more particular ones. We love all three of these shops as they capture so much an essential part of the style of Berlin. Enjoy!
Making furniture has always been a dream job for me. My dad is quite handy when it comes to working with wood, he learned a lot from his father who was a carpenter, and so he also taught a couple of things to me. I think it was a pleasure for him to see that I picked up on it and it gives him great joy to give me tools and machines for Christmas. In fact, even without having studied design or going through a practical education, I have designed and built quite a few pieces of furniture and interior objects in my life. But I never turned it into my main profession. Shame, really.
It comes naturally that I have always admired people who make furniture. There is something fundamentally sexy about creating something beautiful with your hands from raw materials. Of course the character of Aidan from cult TV show Sex and the City, the heart-throbbing furniture designer that the main character Carrie has dated over the course of a couple of seasons, has added to the idolized prototype of a furniture maker.
When I discovered the furniture label Nutsandwoods from Berlin and read the story of its founder Philipp Roessler I felt a similar sense of admiration. Here is a man who had a plan: I want to make a table of raw, natural materials that will last longer than a life and that looks super cool and timeless. (Goes and makes such table. Bam!) He basically only wanted to make this table for himself, but with incoming requests from friends and acquaintances he started to produce more, went into serial production and added more furniture designs such as benches, couch tables, chairs, shelves, lamps and other smaller accessories to his portfolio. The label Nutsandwoods was founded and now, years later, he designs not only for people’s homes, but also for shops, showrooms and trade shows. As his latest addition to the collection he designed lounge chairs from steel and fine leather, a couch and a sideboard, all of which with his signature style and favorite material: local oak tree and steel.
You can find the designs from Nutsandwoods here in Berlin at Hallesches Haus.Go check it out!
Ok, here comes a fun one! Yasmin and I had a funny afternoon yesterday wrapping presents “Berlin-style”. We already gave you a guide of cool Berlin Christmas presents and we thought now is the time to wrap them accordingly. We picked a couple of iconic and very Berlin-specific wrapping styles that will be easy for you to recreate and it will definitely make your presents under the tree the coolest ones! So brace yourself, here comes our guide how to wrap your presents Berlin-style.
The Hallesches Haus, located inside a former post office at Hallesches Tor, is one of the most exciting new concepts stores in Berlin that opened this year. There has not been that much going on in terms of individualistic interior design in Berlin, but the guys behind Hallesches Haus were determined to change it. With their beautiful store they do not only offer a well curated selection of design products ranging from industrial chic, nostalgic retro classics, “cabin porn” to cute hipster items, they also have a lovely canteen and cafe attached to the store that offers contemporary breakfast and excellent coffee.
Let’s be honest: it’s not easy to get out of bed on cold Winter mornings. But luckily December 1st is around the corner! Advent calendar presents will make us jump out of the sheets in excitement for our daily presents in the run up to christmas.
You don’t have a calendar yet? Well be quick and get yourself one of those twenty four day surprises! We chose some unique advent calendars for you, three from Berlin and an extra one from Hamburg. Enjoy our selection after the jump.