Tag Archives: Design shops

DesignTorget – A Stop for Design Fans and Beyond

A DesignTorget Store

By Lakshmi:

Who?  Are you into the clean look of Scandinavian design?  Do you want to get gifts that are unique? Do you admire design with a superb marriage of form and function?

What? One of DesignTorget’s 17 stores across Sweden and Oslo including ones at the train station in Gothenburg and Stockholm.

How? Just go to the url at the end of this post and find a store in Scandinavia convenient to you.

Why?  I discovered this shop by accident when I had time to mull around the train station in Gothenburg.  Created in 1993 as a platform for unemployed designers and inventors, the store has an amazing range of products that span interiors, toys, books, kitchen utensils, jewelry and beyond.  A selection committee meets regularly to decide what products will make it to the store.  Among the more interesting finds during my excursions across their Valgatan and train station locations in Gothenburg and the train station location in Stockholm were:

– A comic cover book which was essentially embedded with herb seeds or flower seeds – a perfect ready to plant gift for a child

– A spaghetti server whose handle has a built in cheese grater

– Portable plastic flower vases that lay flat and yet stand up when filled with water

– An expensive bike helmet which looks like very fashionable head gear rather than a bulky traditional one

To learn more about DesignTorget and look at their products, please visit their website at


Amsterdam – Let Me Count All the Ways I Love Thee!


By Lakshmi:

I would go back to Amsterdam in a heart beat….any day, any time.  The city, always special to my husband and me, now occupies prime real estate in the hearts of our kids as well.  So, what is it that makes the city special?  While that is a tall order to answer in a single post, here are the 12 top reasons why I love this city so much.

  1. The city houses the shrine of my all time favorite painter Vincent Van Gogh.  On my very first trip there, I was moved to tears thinking about Van Gogh’s state as he painted The Potato Eaters early in his career and Wheatfield with Crows before his death.
  2. The Anne Frank House and how no reading of the diary or rendition on-screen  penetrates you like an actual walk through the house does.
  3. Ambling through the Jewish quarter, visiting a synagogue and thinking about the history that unfolded here.
  4. Eating falafels at the many many small eateries, the sauces and toppings still lingering on my taste buds.
  5. Walking and biking the city and discovering something anew each time.
  6. The many faces of Dam Square – Feeding the pigeons amongst the crowds, having a blast at the best amusement rides, just sitting there for hours people watching, hearing tram drivers say “The Dam” in their firm deep voices.
  7. Spending a leisurely day at Vondelpark and discovering a gem in the Eye Film Institute.
  8. Donning heavy clothing to sit and dance at the ice bar (yeah, so it is a gimmick, and we were happy to partake in the experience).
  9. The many design shops that I want to jam into my suitcase each time.
  10. Walking through an actual red-light district and have people stare/approach you.
  11. Watching people emerging in and out of cafes looking very happy in the land of legal marijuana.
  12. Realizing a dream by visiting the Keukenhof gardens with the acres and acres of tulips in bloom.

Of course, there are many more reasons why this city is so special.  And I will be posting in detail on these and other experiences in future posts.

If you have a favorite aspect of Amsterdam, we would so love to hear from you.