Ninainvorm
a blog about art, craft, design and beautiful everyday life
Where to buy

Maybe you can also find my stuff in your neighbourhood! Click here to see an up-to-date list of where you can buy my products.

Wholesale

Interested in selling Ninainvorm postcards, posters, art prints or ceramics in your own shop? You can send me an email at ik_ben_nina@hotmail.com to hear about the possibilities!

Right now I think it's best if I just keep knitting easy stripe scarves, but that doesn't mean there aren't any other ways to provide Julie with lovely knit clothes. I've already found some very good knitters online, but let's not forget about my mom, who recently made Julie the perfect red wool dungarees!

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Hobbies, you'd better start not too many of them... I always hear myself complain about lack of time, yet I keep starting on new things. When I saw this super simple tutorial on printing on children's clothes at Anki's blog I knew I had to try it some time. And since I've always been a friend of buying way too many craft supplies and a huge pile of clothes at once, then getting started immediately without reading the manual properly, and that way destroying the whole bunch and throwing everything in a corner after the first attempt (remember this one?), I thought this would be something for me ;). Not to blame the tutorial for that by the way, which is good and easy, it's just me who does this kind of thing!

And guess what: it's fairly simple and lots of fun, the paint seems to last through laundry even though like always I hadn't read the manual properly (the manual is about thirteen words, saying something like 'use ink on already washed fabric and iron after the ink has dried', but somehow I had managed to miss the 'use on already washed fabric' part and had started printing on brand new stuff ;)) and therefore I haven't already thrown all the supplies in a corner, but in fact I've bought some more and now have a whole pile of clothes waiting to be printed...

And now I quickly must go back to all my neglected knitting projects, I still have a bunch of those to finish too!

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I haven't quite chosen any kind of official career path, and when people ask me what I do I never know what to call myself. Periods of satisfaction and happiness about what I do are regularly alternated with periods of doubt, in which I feel that all of this isn't really leading anywhere. Then all the good things that happened so far seem a stroke of luck that I don't know how to continue with.

I often experience such a period of doubt after I've been 'absent' for a while. I felt this way when I started working again after my maternity leave from Rosa, and now after this long period of Julie's maternity leave and the months in which we were busy moving house I feel it again. There's this mix of lots of ideas on the one hand yet on the other hand not knowing if they're good ones and how to get started with them. The feeling that I should improve and renew, invest or take big steps, but not exactly knowing how.

And then in the middle of such a period the most beautiful book arrives on my doorstep: Print & pattern kids, this huge and gorgeous children's print, pattern and illustration bible by Print & Pattern's Bowie Style. With some pages showing my designs inbetween pages featuring the work of illustration, print and design icons such as Alain Gree, Marimekko, Orla Kiely and Cath Kidston, and many other great designers and illustrators. Yikes! Must have done something right somehow ;).

The book is crazily inspiring, so many different styles of print and illustration, you just want to immediately grab your pencils and start drawing. I suppose that's a warning ;).

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This saturday it's time again for one of the nicest handmade, craft & design blog events of the year: the Yvestown fair. Please come and visit us in Lommel, Belgium if you have the chance! Here you can find all the information about this year's fair and look back at the lovely one last year. I already look forward to get inspired again by all the beautiful handmade items and designs. For me this last year has been very much about having another baby and particularly about all the fuss that comes with moving house, and I have missed making things and being surrounded and inspired by the things that other people make. So I can't wait to be part of the Yvestown fair again, hope to meet you there!

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Each time I move to a new house I catch myself saying it: this time I'll go for lots of crisp white walls. No more crazy colors, no more carnival, I've grown up now and I will choose a more quiet, natural and sophisticated style... And to a certain extent I tried very well this time: particularly downstairs we have lots of white walls, a white kitchen and a rustic wooden floor. But the call of the fabulous wallpapers is so hard to resist! So I started collecting my favorites on a small pinterest board , and somehow within almost no time I ended up with at least one beautiful and bold wallpaper for each room of the house. But you must believe that there are white walls next to each of these! ;)

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Oh, I know: pictures of babies eating their first solids, their faces hidden behind a mask of mashed carrot and banana, should stay within the very close family circle. I'm not that fond of looking at other people's babies all covered with broccoli either... In fact I didn't even take pictures of the first few times that Julie ate some banana and apple. But what I did love to document was how much Julie loves to be 'at the table' with us, particularly with her big sister. After cleaning up the table after diner I caught the two of them in the middle of some animated conversation. What they were talking about? The taste of broccoli, the situation in the world? I could not tell. But these two seem to have a language and jokes that only they understand, and it's the sweetest thing to see!

(oh and guess what, they can also already look like one of those 'we-have-nothing-to-say-to-each-other-anymore' couples that you sometimes see in restaurants! ;))

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When speaking to people from Japan, they often tell me how much they love European art & design, and that they want to buy and have 'everything European'. I always find that remarkable to hear, because I feel exactly the same way for Japanese art and design. I always feel so inspired when I see the work of Japanese illustrators, and when I found the work of the super talented Mizuki Goto my heart really jumped. You know, in such a 'I-want-to-have-this-all, please-tell-me-there's-a-webshop!' way. Unfortunately I haven't found one though...

The good news is that Mizuki Goto's amazing work can be viewed extensively on her website's gallery, it's quite a treat! And hopefully I can soon find a way to order at least a print or so...

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Usually when you go somewhere, to an event or so, you already go there with certain expectations. You think: this is going to be so much fun, or: this is not my cup of tea at all (but I must go there anyway for some reason).
 
Before I was invited to the Woonbeurs interior decoration fair more or less 'profesionally' this year, I'd never really considered going there: I'm not particularly fond of big commercial events with lots of people (though I sometimes make an exception for the big flea markets that I both love and hate ;)), and these fairs always seem a bit artificial to me: they build some booths and stands that should look cozy in a normally totally uncozy big hall, they invite a lot of people and they put lots of brochures and free 'goodies' -that in fact are just promo materials- on the tables, and then the visitors should just walk around a bit and take lots of brochures home in those big free bags filled with more advertisements that they were gifted at the entrance.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
So would I have gone to the Woonbeurs myself if I wasn't invited? Probably not. But now that I've been there, would I go again next year? Well, actually I probably would! Because a bit to my own surprise, I liked the event much more than I would have thought. Yes, it's commercial and it's a bit artificial, and I'm not particularly interested in the stands that offer exclusive kitchen equipment or bathroom floors. I'll go to a big furniture mall if that's what I'm interested in. But what I really liked about the fair was the variety of designs, products, colors and interior decoration inspiration that were offered. When you walk around and look at everything like the way you'd walk around and look at things in a museum, there's really so much to see!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
So I'd say forget about all the brochures and the free goodies and the kitchen tiles and all that: just focus on what visually attracts you and you'll come home very much inspired! (and tired and totally overwhelmed too ;))
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Now that we're decorating a new kids room for Rosa and the baby I finally have a good reason again for some nice 'decorative shopping'. I really couldn't justify it to myself anymore to keep buying posters, prints and other decorative objects when every wall and corner of our home was already overfilled, but now we have that black wall that's begging for a good large print/poster or two, and maybe some other nice decorative things as well. How lucky that I just found this beautiful shop Howkapow, that's filled with lots of fresh and original design. Besides home & kitchen stuff there's also great jewelry, but right now I'm particularly trying to make a choice in their prints & posters section. I think the Fabulous! or Bonjour print would look so good against a black wall, but I can't seem to get over this Marcus Walters Cake print either... Oh, isn't this what they call existential choices? ;)
 
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Can you imagine having a front garden this big and beautiful that you can actually host a complete craft fair in there? Well, Yvonne has one, and it turned out to be the perfect place for the wonderful first edition of the Yvestown fair!
 
 
As you can imagine when you know Yvonne's style a bit, her garden was like Fermob heaven! I was able to quickly take these pictures of the empty chairs before the fair started, because later during day the chairs were occupied constantly by people drinking fresh lemonade (it was quite hot all day!).
 

The images above are taken at the table of my fair neighbour Anki of Zilverblauw. At her colorful table she sold handmade bibs, plastic peaces and lots of her posters.
 

Oh, it was so tempting to immediately spend my whole revenue at the tables of the other fair participants again! The beautiful crochet cardigan by Wood & Wool stool on the first picture above had been on my wish list for a long time, and when I saw it in real life I liked it even more. But I worried that it would already be a bit too small for Rosa (and I told myself that it would be wiser to save some of the money I made for my maternity leave instead of spending it immediately ;)) so in the end I didn't buy it, but I'm so keeping it in mind for baby #2! ;) 
 
 
A few images from my own table. I had brought lots of small tiles, postcards and writing paper sets and that turned out to be a good choice. I was really happy with all the nice reactions and chats, and of course with the great sales. I think it's quite exciting to see how people react to your stuff 'in real life' when you normally sell online. Somehow after all these years of online selling, I can still sometimes worry that people will only like my products online, and not in real life... Though I'm used to selling my stuff online, I can still feel quite shy when actual people standing in front of me want to buy the things I made, or tell me they like them. So with so many people visiting our table I was feeling quite shy about all day, I was lucky I had my sister Olga with me who did all the hard work while I was jus standing there feeling shy! ;)
   
 
Unfortunately I didn't have that much time to take pictures of all the participants tables (and the light overdose due to so much sun also spoiled a lot of my photos), but I did manage to take a few of the lovely stuff sold by Muswerk, whose style I really admire.
 
 
Inbetween all her work organizing the fair (what an excellent job she and her team of helpers did!), Yvonne had somehow still found the time to decorate and run a beautiful table selling her yarn and crochet products.
 
 
With all these great creative women together there were many nice 'shop girls', but I don't think I insult anyone when saying that MaandagDaandag girls Elvis & Maantje Piet were among the cutest... (and they worked hard too!) ;)
 
 
After the fair everyone sat down for food and aftertalk. I guess after an event like this you're always supposed to say that it was a big success, because that's just what people do, but I think this time we all felt it was really true! ;)
 
(Only 'not-such-a-success' was that I came home with a headache, which had nothing to do with the fair, but everything with the strong sun & heat during the day. I always get headaches easily when the sun is shining strongly, but somehow during this pregnancy it seems to have gotten worse, which is quite annoying, especially for someone like me who always used to love the sun & hot weather... Now I guess winter works better for me! ;))
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About Ninainvorm

My name is Nina, I'm a ceramics and paperwares designer and mom of Rosa and Julie. This blog is about making, living, liking, loving and so much more!

Want to get in touch? You can always send me an email through ik_ben_nina@hotmail.com.

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