Tiffany and Jaan’s Scandinavian Inspired Flat

published Apr 20, 2010
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Name: Tiffany and Jaan Orvet
Location: San Francisco, CA
Size: 800 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years

Tiffany met her Swedish husband Jaan while working abroad in the UK. While they now call San Francisco home, they’ve brought a bit of Jaan’s home country into their flat (Tiffany also runs From Sthlm so that you can as well). Their styles mesh well together as Tiffany adores almost anything Scandinavian and mid century modern and Jaan, a “reformed minimalist,” helps her edit.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

The first thing you’ll notice about Tiffany and Jaan’s home is the amazing amount of windows that frame almost one half of their space. Then perhaps you’ll see the beautiful architectural details like the archways and french doors (if you are like me, you’ll notice the Cherner chair above all else). And then slowly, you’ll see the patterns and pops of color that abound. It might take a minute because it all seems so effortless that nothing is shouting “look at me!”

Even though Tiffany and Jaan weren’t able to paint their walls to create that all white backdrop so typical of Scandinavian homes, the influence is definitely apparent. Being the woman behind From Sthlm has its advantages, as you can see pieces from the designers featured on the online storefront throughout the home, especially in the kitchen and living room. This could quickly lead to an overly cluttered or busy space, but Jaan’s minimalist tendencies help keep all of that at bay. Jaan’s influence clearly shines through in their calm and quiet bedroom (the one room they were able to paint all white) where the decor consists of a few hand selected pieces.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our style: Scandinavian and mid century modern with a good dose of bohemian chaos thrown in.

Inspiration: Nature is a big inspiration. Both the shapes, but also the perfect randomness of it. I like things to feel free flowing and a bit unexpected. I’m also lucky to work with a lot of very creative people so I’m inspired all the time by them. For pop culture, it has to be London.

Favorite Element: Right now I’m loving my new painting by Annie Galvin at 3 Fish Studios in the kitchen. I also love the Bantie textiles from Sweden and have used them everywhere. I’m always drawn to patterns, and it’s hard to find prints that have such a perfect mix of personality and simplicity.

Biggest Challenge: The biggest challenge is editing. I tend to fall in love with something and decide to find a place for it. Luckily my husband Jaan has great taste and is also very good at editing (he’s a reformed minimalist of the strictest sort), so between us I think we reach a nice mix. The biggest challenge that we can’t do anything about is the painted walls – we’d rather start with a clean slate and go all white, but ah well. We’re just the renters.

What Friends Say: Love all the windows! Alright then, where does the airbed go?

Biggest Embarrassment: Curtains. Always curtains… because I’m convinced I can hem just fine, I have a sewing machine after all. But I can’t. Also wires. We have so many wires in our lives and I just can’t be bothered to run around and try to hide them all.

Proudest DIY: I built the black bedside table frame out of practically nothing one night and I love it! I’m going to build another one. I also painted Jaan a picture for Christmas one year that I think turned out quite cool. Oh, and I made a little curtain out of place mats to hide all the ugly bits on the TV console (thereby avoiding the dreaded hemming altogether – weee!)

Biggest Indulgence: Our Cherner armchair in the bedroom is our biggest indulgence and probably one of my most prized possessions. Before that it was the Arne Jacobsen Series 7 chairs. Outside of decorating though, it has to be travel, but I consider that a necessary indulgence.

Best advice: Whatever you decide to do with your space, make it personal. It’s for you, after all. It’s not a showroom (unless it is of course, in which case that’s just sad and boring).

Dream source: I must be the last person in the Bay Area to have “discovered” the Alameda Flea Market, but I did not too long ago, and it’s great. It’s where I got the Red Wing stoneware plate on the wall in the kitchen. Also Stockholm… we spend a lot of time there and bring a lot back with us. That’s why I started From Sthlm actually, to bring more of that experience here to the US. And online of course. Once I see something I like I can pretty much track it down.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Kitchen: Red cutting board and apple tray are by Barbro Tryberg Boberg at Formverket in Stockholm, colorful tray by the mixer is the “coffee-in-bed” tray by Maria Holmer Dahlgren, who also designed the Stockholm dishcloth sponge. The iron trivets on the table are from HAPPYsthlm (my featured designers at From Sthlm in May), the ceramic bird pots are by Camilla Engdahl. The “Think Spring” block print is by Eric Rewitzer and the colorful “Mushrooming” painting and collage on wood is by Annie Galvin, both of 3 Fish Studios in San Francisco. I bought the sheep photograph from Elizabeth Soule at the SF Renegade Fair. The alphabet ceramic plate on the wall is by May Luk of Take Me Homeware, and I have another one of her “Mimi” ceramic plates in the bathroom. The London architecture plates are from People Will Always Need Plates from an early series- maybe their first?

Lounge: The textile prints are all from Bantie in Stockholm. The handmade blue vase by the TV is by Diana Fayt. The mustard colored armchair was found in Palm Springs, and the convertible Danish dining table was found at Past Perfect in San Francisco (it folds in half). The vases on the table are from HAPPYsthlm, and the posters are from Fondation Maeght in France and from the Moderna Museet in Stockholm. The mini wooden London on the bookshelf is from Muji. The cowboy painting is by me! There’s also a vase there from Jonathan Adler and a “Do Nothing Bird” print from Matte Stephens.

Hallway: In the hallway we have a limited edition screenprint from Jamie Hewlett, Gorillaz illustrator… though for me he’ll always be the “Tank Girl” guy. We also have a couple of band girl illustrations from Emily Martin (The Black Apple). There was a bag on the ground too. In case it made it into any photos and you’re interested, that illustration was by Johan Miderberg.

Bedroom: We have a big screenprint over the bed of a bull charging down Barcelona’s La Rambla. I think the artist (from distant memory) is Ryan Guy. It’s only signed “Ryan”, so if anyone knows different, let me know. The print “Flamingo Salad” is by Hillary Williams. The “Swedish poetry” font tray that I’ve made into a bedside table is by Maria Holmer Dahlgren. The handpainted clogs are by Åsa Westlund, my featured designer at From Sthlm for April. The Cherner chair is from Zinc Details, the black lamp from West Elm, and the old Chinese travel poster from Past Perfect. The blue “fashion monster” on the bed is by Christian Lacroix for Habitat, and the pillows, again, from Bantie. The ceramic plates are by Lisa Bengtsson.

Anything I haven’t listed is probably from Ikea or maybe Urban Outfitters. 🙂

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

(Thanks, Tiffany and Jaan!)

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