House Tour : Strong colours, Vintage patterns and well-filled walls!

By Lee Franklin

This week’s House Tour is a double location belonging to Anna-Karin in Sweden, and both properties are a fantastic mix of exuberant vintage prints, patterns, colours and textures.

Retro House Tour Anna-Karin's colourful lounge | The Inkabilly Blog

Retro House Tour Anna-Karin's colourful lounge details | The Inkabilly Blog

Please tell us a bit about you and your homes…

 My name is Anna-Karin and I am 38 years old. I live in a rental apartment with my husband since 10 years back and our 2 kids, Emmet and Love, ages 7 and 5.

 Our apartment is 97 square meters big and holds four rooms and a kitchen. The building is a red brick house built in the 60s. We live in the north of Sweden in the 13th biggest city, Umeå, also known as "the city of birches" Look it up for more history about the city! ;)

House Tour  : Anna-Karin's retro dining room and shelfie with vintage storage tins| The Inkabilly Blog

House Tour - Anna-Karin's fabulous 70s bedroom | The Inkabilly Blog

On weekends, summer/winter holidays we spend a lot of time in our cabin. It’s actually a big house; 160 square meters, but we call it the cottage! :) 

House Tour Anna-Karin's cottage | The Inkabilly Blog

We bought that house four years ago, and have spent so much time there! Love it there! Its 80 km from Umeå, in a small, small village called Strycksele. My husband grew up there and his parents live there so it’s a great joy for the them as well for us to spend great time together. 

 Our cabin was built in 1947 as the villages teachers house. It was rented to whom ever worked as a teacher at the time. When the school closed 40 years ago the house was sold to the couple that owned the house until we bought it! :)

 The house has a lot of original details remaining such as wallpaper, floors and my favourite; built -in- closets!!

House Tour - Anna-Karin's retro Living Room | The Inkabilly Blog

House Tour - Anna-Karin's bold & funky TV Room | The Inkabilly Blog

How would you describe your own vintage style?

 My home is a mix of items, mostly second hand. Strong colours, a big mix of patterns and well-filled walls! A home to feel welcome in and to thrive in. It’s very cosy! My main retro-thing to look for at a flea market is fabrics, clothes, crockery and lamps.

House Tour - Anna-Karin's Dining Room / Shelfie with vintage china | The Inkabilly Blog

Anna-Karin's Dining Table with vintage tablecloth | House Tour on The Inkabilly Blog

Do you have any criteria based on style/era/colour for your home? Or is it simply a gut reaction?

I buy things that I love, for a good price! I am not a collector in that meaning that I am prepared to pay anything to get what I want. No, I wait for the thing to come to me! :) Since I do not pay overprice my collection grows in a slow pace.

House Tour - Anna-Karin's retro bedroom | The Inkabilly Blog

Retro House Tour - Anna-Karin's hallway and bathroom with original vintage wallpaper | The Inkabilly Blog

Where does your love of vintage come from?

I have as long as I can remember been drawn to big and bold colours and striking patterns. In clothes and interiors. I have not been afraid to stand out from a crowd, still don’t. When I still lived with my parents as an early teen we sometimes went to auctions. In those days the 70s wasn't "in style" and you could really make good finds for no money! Harder these days!

Retro House Tour - Anna-Karin's vibrant retro home full on vintage patterns | The Inkabilly Blog

My collection of vintage clothes is quite big, and I try to use them as often as I can. I also sew. For my kids when they were smaller and now mostly dresses for myself. 

Anna-Karin's collection of vintage dresses | The Inkabilly Blog

Anna-Karin's "Year in Dresses" Vintage Style | The Inkabilly Blog

Anna-Karin's hand-made items using vintage fabric | The Inkabilly Blog

What is your favourite era / maker?

I am most drawn to items from the 60-70 era. I value my collection of vintage fabrics; curtains, clothes, drapes. I have a great deal of them and change curtains often. A few of my favourite designers are: Saini Salonen, Viola Gråsten, Barbro Grytnäs, Ann-Marie Netterdag, Maija Isola, Marjatta Metsovaara, Götha Trägårdh, Marimekko. Mostley Swedish and Finnish. 

House Tour - Anna-Karin's Vintage Crockery | The Inkabilly Blog

Where do you source your items / furniture from?

Before kids I definitely spent more time at flea markets, ha ha! Now family comes first and the summers are my main period of item-hunting! 

House Tour - Anna-Karin's thrifting finds : vintage crockery | The Inkabilly Blog

You’ve obviously got a good collection of vintage crockery; how long have you been collecting and which is your favourite piece?

 I do love Swedish crockery. Coffey /the mugs and plates of all sizes are my main focus.  Designers as Stig Lindberg and Eugen Trost.

 I am extremely happy about a gift I received from an old relative; 12 teacups with the decor Zebra. Is a rarity! It’s the crockery I do value the most in my home! 

House Tour _ Anna-Karin's Eugen Trost Zebra Crockery | The Inkabilly Blog

House Tour - Anna-Karin's vintage crockery Stig Lindberg | The Inkabilly Blog

Another love at first sight is my floor-vase Pepita by Ingrid Atterberg that I found for a bargain. Valued up to 10.000 SEK. 

House Tour : Anna-Karin and her Pepita floor-vase | The Inkabilly Blog

Photo credits: All photos kindly provided by Anna-Karin. Find more fabulous photos on her Instagram : @finfinafynd

Feeling inspired? ... Browse our retro homewares in The Inkabilly Emporium

Vintage inspired Homewares, accessories and gifts at The Inkabilly Emporium