have you heard of the white-wall-phenomenon? you know, where you move house and decide this time you’ll decorate every room and actually hang things on the wall, but then five years later most of your walls are still pristine and white and 90s-era-minimalist? when we moved into our apartment five years ago, i swore it wouldn’t happen to me, but of course it did. i kept pinning interesting wall decoration ideas to endless pinboards. i kept seeing really cool gallery walls in other people’s homes, but never got around to it in my own. until eloise moved out of our bedroom into the former guest room, and i realized i needed to add some warm, cozy vibes. it still took me a year to figure out what kind of vibes they needed to be – but when i stumbled upon DESENIO’S STUDIO SERENITY collection, i knew i’d found it.

i had seen desenio posters on multiple instagram posts and pinterest pins, so i knew they had amazing photography of botanics, interesting building facades and cool places around the world. they regularly commission photographers to create specific collections of images exclusively for them, just like they did for the serenity collection. the photos i selected from this series were taken in the south-west of the united states. it’s an area really close to my heart, as it’s where i was asked to marry my husband and where we honeymooned, too. the DESERT LANDSCAPE i picked out reminds me of joshua tree park, which we discovered the day after he proposed. we haven’t been to the HORSESHOE BEND, or any of the canyons actually, but it is definitely in the top three of my travel wish list.

the photos on the smaller posters (SHAPE OF LIGHT and IN STILLNESS) i’m pretty sure were taken at the amangiri resort in canyon point. it’s one of those ultimate travel destinations if you’re sensitive to man-made architectural design blending into nature’s own greatest design. the roughness of the canyons against the sleek concrete structures of the building, the way the water of the pool reflects the sunlight and the surrounding structures – i imagine it would be impossible for me to visit this place and not take photos all day long. though i doubt they’d be better than these ones, so putting them up on the wall is the next best thing to traveling there, i guess? (jk, i still totally need to go there at one point in my life!)

i like that these posters together help create a sense of stillness and calm in eloise’s room, that they simultaneously refer to one of the places that has been so important in her parents’ relationship and they hopefully instill (the beginning of) a love for amazing design – natural or otherwise. if you’re feeling inspired to create your own story, head over to DESENIO and enjoy a 25% discount on their posters with the code STEPHANIEDUVAL (not valid on personalized or handpicked posters) until september 26. and please please please definitely send me a photo of the result – there are plenty more white walls in our home that i need the inspiration for!

Lake House Collective

February 21, 2017 • KidsLife

after living in geneva for a couple of years, i became convinced that despite its international allure, it really was a tiny, boring town where nothing cool ever really happened, and i’d never find a community of likeminded and creative people there like i have back at home. then i moved twenty minutes away, higher up in the hills and closer to the lake, but for a city girl like me, i could just as well have moved deep into the country side and i basically said goodbye to any kind of social life in switzerland.

then the most wonderful thing happened thanks to this crazy little app called instagram, and i met the wonderful NIENKE MULLER and MARTA VILLACAMPA. i realize how rare it is to meet people that you have an instant connection with, but it sure happened to the three of us. so much did we have in common that halfway our first coffee date we had already made plans to found a little collective for creative projects. each of us felt like we were on an island doing our own thing – marta starting her photography business and blog, nienke launching her interior design career in switzerland and me blogging away whenever i had a spare moment.

the thing is, between having juliet and starting a business, there seemed to be fewer and fewer moments to spend on blogging, and i often lacked the motivation to get behind the camera, shoot and edit photos and then share the stories behind the scenes of my life and the things i love. what i needed was friends who would encourage me to get creative again, and who i could meet up with to create together – enter nienke and marta, and so the story of the lake house collective began.

i already shared A TINY BIT of the first session we had before the holidays, and i’m so happy to finally share the rest of the photos marta took of juliet and i that day. i can’t really put into words how much fun it is to be able to play and laugh with juliet while someone is making sure you’ll have beautiful memories of that time. my husband is the sweetest, and he’s a decent photographer, but i am always directing him, worrying about whether he’ll capture a certain moment in the exact right way. i guess it’s the burden of being married to a blogger-perfectionist (if you’re reading this, i’m sorry matti!) but with marta i was able to let go of that, enjoy juliet showing off her entertaining skills and favorite toys, and just be in the moment.

needless to say, i love how these photos turned out. this is who we really are, messy bum balm accident on the carpet included. but besides lovely memories of a few mother-daughter moments, these photos are also a really nice reminder that it’s possible to find your tribe anywhere in the world, if only you look close enough.

my black shirt by LIVTHELABEL • juliet’s first outfit is CKS + veja sneakers • juliet’s second outfit is a dress from ARSENE ET LES PIPELETTES, cardigan from AYMARA and socks from TOCOTO • my green sweater and grey shirt underneath are from CKS • juliet’s final outfit is from MARMAR my glasses used as props by juliet are from DE WOLF OPTICIENS • all photos by MARTA VILLACAMPA


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my name is stephanie duval, and i am a storyteller. this blog is where i share my favorite stories about design, travel, fashion and the nice things in life.


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