Thursday, June 05, 2014

Domestic Divines: Ester Montoya

Its that about time that I introduced you to another inspirationally creative person. This person’s name is Ester Montoya, and she’s originally from Barcelona, the place celebrated for Gaudi and awe-inspiring architecture, including the mind-blowing Sagrada Familia Cathedral.

Perhaps that’s why Ms. Ester is such a crafter, and when I say crafter I really mean artist. She makes toys, book covers, anything and everything, and the only thing she won’t make is clothing. She’s a creative ideas machine, pumping out gifts, and beautiful things for her home and friends.

She is inspiration all by herself, so I am very lucky that she consented to give me an interview.

Mrs Egeland’s Note: This was written by Ms. Ester, however I translated it.

IMG-20140604-WA0020[1]Hola, my name is Ester. I was born and raised in Barcelona, Spain, in a beautiful neighbourhood very close to the tallest mountain of the city. Right now I live in Norway with my family. It has been a great change that has helped me value the dearest people that I have left behind, and to get lots of new friendships, some of them have become family so far away from my home.

  • How would you describe your style?

IMG-20140604-WA0018[1]I’ve always loved Vintage style, because I’m drawn to objects and clothes from other eras, and as has been seen through time, fashions always return. Also I find Rustic style quite attractive, even to the furniture of the houses of that period. On the other hand, I’m passionate about country style, and I think its my favourite, perhaps because it brings me lots of happy memories of my childhood. IMG-20140604-WA0017[1]But since I arrived in to live in Norway, the Nordic style has grown in me in an impressive way and its reflected in the way I decorate my home and all the things I design for it. Therefore, I consider that my own style is a combination of the various aspects of what I have mentioned. 


I Love Vintage Style

  • How would you describe your interior design style?

Well as I have said, I love the Nordic style. In fact, the colour white predominates in my home because it gives me the sensation of space and light. I try to not overwhelm it too much, because I dream of one day having a minimalist home, but I still haven’t quite managed it….. Hehehe. IMG-20140604-WA0022[1]I love to decorate my home with little things that I have made as well. I’m always making some fabric decoration, my favourites. I change them out and give them as presents, but I always have a new ideas, things that could be hung from curtains, or ornaments for any room.


I’m Immensely Grateful!

  • If someone were to give you a housewarming present what would you hope it would be?

I love presents, and so long as someone has thought about me, it really doesn’t matter to me what it is.. As they say, its the thought that counts. But if I was given the chance to choose, something to do with the world of crafting..  I love everything.. be it fabric, buttons, thread, scrapbooking paper, etc…. Just recently I received, together with other presents a Big Shot machine, to punch patterns into paper for scrapbooking. I love it, and the people that gave it to me know that I’m immensely grateful. And since you asking, today, I would ask for a sewing machine.. Mine is quite small and I would love to take my crafting to the next level.IMG-20140604-WA0021[1]


  • In what aspect of your life do you think you were most creative?

This is an easy question to answer. When I had my son.. I always have carried inside a lot of creativity, I remember that since I was little I loved to invent my own stories and poetry.. In fact I have written two story books during my childhood and some poetry in my youth, I still have them and I’ve kept them with a lot of love. But when my son was born, my life changed a lot, everything changed, I think my creativity grew. I love making things for him, and as he’s gotten older, we make things together.. until today. I think he’s inherited my creativity and his father’s, that you could say is the double of mine. That’s why, lots of winter afternoon, we enjoy spending around the table, creating and sharing unique moments together. 


An Antique Singer

  • Is their a favourite piece of furniture/art/decoration/clothing in your life, and what is it?

IMG-20140604-WA0024[1]Yes, it’s my husband’s grandmother’s sewing machine. It’s an antique Singer with a treadle case.  It’s inn my parents house, since it still works and my mother gets a lot of use out of it. For me, its not only a beautifully useful machine, but also an ornamental piece for the home, that gives a sense of stateliness and luxury.



  • If the worst happened and you had to rush out of your home and never return, what is the one thing you wouldn’t be able to leave behind?

There are lots of things in my home that I love, but I believe me when I say that I could leave it all without a problem. If tomorrow I had to abandon my things, I wouldn’t have a problem. Perhaps its because I have had to move  and been obliged to get rid of things that were really important to me, and life has gone on and I haven’t missed anything. IMG-20140604-WA0019[1]However there is something that, saying that I would try to save somehow, if there was a fire for example. Its my wedding album, and all the photo albums that my sister has made me over the years. I have them all in a box, they are my treasures. 


  • Would you consider yourself a modern woman or do you love an era of the past, and if so, what era?

Well, although I love retro and Vintage styles, I consider myself quite a modern woman, in as much as I really like the look that we have today and those styles. Besides which, I like combining styles from the past with those of today, I think its a good way of never being bored with a style.

Mrs Egeland’s Note: Ms Ester has just described Modern Vintage, although perhaps she is more modern than vintage. IMG-20140604-WA0023[1]

Love… Always Results in Success

  • What is your latest project?

Right now, I have a few on hand. At the moment I’m working hard on some orders for some brochure folders and some fabric cake carriers. At the same time, I’m making myself a photo album of the photos from my anniversary. I’m doing it little by little, and if for example, when I’m shopping, I see something that I think will go well with the album, well I buy it. So that still I don’t know what the final result will look like, but I’m putting all my love into it and that always results in success. 


  • What is your passion?

IMG-20140308-WA0007[1]Well, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, sewing and working with paper are two of my passions, that I love to spend most of my time on. But my life is dedicated to something more important, that’s my God and my family. Everything has its place, and although I’m passionate about these two hobbies, I always put the more important things first, as much for me as for my loved ones.  


  • If there was one thing about your life that you could change, what would it be?

When I was younger, I always thought about the things that I should change in my life, but now, looking back, I think that I couldn’t change anything because every one of the experiences that I’ve had, good or bad, have made me into the happy person I am today. That’s why, I can only give thanks for all that I have, including you my friend. 

Thank you for asking me to do this interview Davita. I’ve enjoyed answering your questions, its the first time I’ve ever done something like this. So I hope your readers enjoy it. I’m super happy to be a part of your project and I hope with all my heart that you are successful.  

Mrs Egeland’s Reply: Thank you Ester for doing this interview. We wait eagerly for your tutorial.

If you would like to order anything from Ms Ester’s collection, or you are interested in seeing more of what she makes. Please comment below and I will make sure that your requests are passed on, please remember that there maybe shipping costs outside of Norway.

Subscribe! Don’t miss Ms Ester’s tutorial which we will be bringing you soon!

Until next time


Monday, June 02, 2014

Designing Decor: Project Balcony Part 1.

Its summer! Its the 2nd of June and so far we’ve had glorious sunshine, most of May. On Saturday, I was unwell, very unwell and I ended up wasting away on my sofa looking out of the glass door, too exhausted to actually sit out there in the sunshine. After looking out at the balcony for two days, Sunday didn’t bring me much comfort either, I was inspired. IMG_0090

This is my view, admittedly at sunset, but you see what I mean, we’re really close to the water. Yet our balcony doesn’t really reflect that. It’s a bit scruffy! We have some nice pieces, a lovely black wooden lounge chair for example, but it really isn’t a cohesively styled area.

Retro-Style Me!

As you know, if you’ve been paying attention, I love retro. I love to dress in clothes in the style of the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s. I like to think I have an hour glass figure. I love my home to have the luxury of the colonial and art deco periods, so its really ridiculous that I haven’t taken the balcony on before.

As you might have guessed I want to go for a nautical theme. Now when I personally think of the nautical theme I immediately think of the twenties, of cruise ships and Agatha Christie. I know its a bit of a leap, but bear with me.

First Class Travel

The glamour and luxury of the twenties went hand in hand with international travel. Thomas Cook had introduced the package holiday in 1841, but it wasn’t until the 1920’s that the masses could afford to travel. Transportation was becoming more readily available, and the rail companies of Britain sent out a massive campaign to keep people using the railway instead of busses. Slogans like “See Britain by Rail” and “It’s Quicker by Rail” advertised the multiple avenues of holiday travel by train. The ocean liners were considered symbols of modern technology, and a tan was a status symbol. Winter cruises to warmer climes became really popular.

Art Deco Travellers

All of this was happening in the Art Deco period which had really been introduced to the world via the Parisian 1925 Exposition Internationale des Arts D√©coratifs et Industriels Modernes (International Exposition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts). Today we associate the 1920’s with Art Deco and vice versa, just look at the aesthetic portrayed in the film “The Great Gatsby”, even the poster is heavily Art Deco in style.

So influential was it the Art Deco that it was even used by the French Line to advertise its most famous ocean liner, the Normandie which was launched in 1932, seven years after the World Fair in Paris. The poster has become iconic, and readily recognisable.

I have a copy of this as a postcard. I will frame it and hang it outside. If you want to see some of the ideas I’ve started to collect for this project, click on the link to my Pinterest page and check it out.

This all has to be done on a budget, so I will be posting some tutorials as I try and re-create some of the things I liked on Pinterest.

I hope you will subscribe, so that you don’t miss out on the journey of this project. Comments are welcome below.

Until next time.