The People Behind the Products – # 7

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Hello friends!  I hope the start of fall is treating you well, with it’s up and downs in temperature, and the fantastic landscape of color that nature is providing.  We are wrapping up our stories of the local and Scandinavian companies that we partner with here, and for our final installment, we’d love to tell you about the newest additions to our family, Trace Burger from Muskego, WI, Ferm Living and Manostiles from Denmark.

Trace Burger is an incredibly talented southeast Wisconsin based interior designer and artist who designs and creates from her property in Muskego, about 40 minutes southeast of Milwaukee.  She has combined her Hickory Tree Art with interior design to create her own company Trace Elements. She draws upon the constantly evolving nature on her property, and if I lived on such beautiful land, I’d never leave!

outside 3

The beauty outside of Trace’s studio

Seriously, it may be that I’ve been living in the city a long time, but I can’t get over these views!

outside 2

More views of nature

Trace has practiced interior design at both large commercial architecture and high-end residential firms, making her award-winning design experience well rounded and steeped with the know-how to create fantastic interior spaces for her clients.  She also offers them personally crafted art to fit their projects.  Trace Elements is the culmination of that design with her nature based art.

Trace studio

Trace, collecting materials for her art pieces

In her own words her art is “Producing and selling limited edition assemblages, ‘stitched’ together to include reclaimed objects with the botanic wonders found on her property, she preserves and creates to extend the life of the simple leaf or branch, acorn cap or tree bark, so that others may be inspired!”

And customers so far have definitely been inspired by the painted wooden trays that we have on display.  The trays are a combination of abstract art with natural materials that customers are very drawn to and want to explore.


Close up of wooden tray assemblage

Stop in to see her great work, or even better, visit the store on October 29th from 4-8 for our Artist Appreciation night, to have the chance to talk with Trace and the other artists in person who on display in store!

Next, we’d like to highlight “Danish Design with Love” that is created by Ferm Living.  Ferm Living was started as a graphic design company by Trine Anderson in 2005, and shortly thereafter they expanded into home interiors products, with their first wallpapers being released in early 2006.


One of their lovely hand printed feather pillows

In the words of the founder: “The name ”ferm” was actually inspired by my grandmother. When she said that someone was “ferm på fingrene” – i.e. skilled with their hands, literally “good with their fingers” – it was high praise indeed. I like to think that she would approve of the ferm LIVING range; it is modern, but also has a reassuring homelike quality – and we try to make sure that every piece is made well.” and “I have never created anything on the basis of strategy or cool calculation; it has to come from the heart for me. I am very happy and grateful – and still somewhat surprised! – to see that these designs have appealed to so many people worldwide. And I still stick to the same design philosophy that began it all – doing what feels right. Then it has a much better chance of feeling right for someone else too.”


The Neu stoneware collection

Beautiful design from the heart – I can get behind that!

And finally, we want to mention a smaller company Manostiles Danish Design, who create textiles, storage accessories and other unique home decor. Their philosophy is “about creating
beauty, good atmosphere and order in our home, so that it becomes a place you
love being in. The design and colors of the Manostiles Danish Design collection
is the product of a time where our homes and the things we surround ourselves
with are a central part of our identity.”

Yellow tea towel Milj

Manostiles “Danish Dots” pattern organic cotton tea towels

I love that their pieces blend so seamlessly with so many design styles and can fit nice and cozy in just about any home.  I can think of hundreds of uses for the storage tins that come is such fun and fab graphic patterns!

MANOBOX Frontpage

The PureNordic tin storage canisters


Ferm Living and Manostiles!

Hexagon Bottle Opener, Solid Brass

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Spear Cushion, 60 x 40 cm

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Manostiles Mint PureNordic Dark Tin Storage Can

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