Wednesday, February 15, 2012

q + a / ashley

many times talented (& lovely neighbor) ashley rose helvey..

Q. Favorite colors / prints?

Surprisingly, I have been drawn to faded/washed out floral colors/prints lately. Something about this curtain in my friend Jen's closet is so cozy and feminine. I also love these sheets and am inspired to somehow work florals into our new place.

Q. Visually inspired by..

A visit to J.B. Blunk's house in Inverness, California. Aside from it being in one of the most dreamy locations and the home of one of my favorite sculptors, practically everything in the house (including the house itself) was made by him. The simplest everyday items like ceramic cups and bowls, wooden plates and stools, cutting boards, you name it– were all made by him. I found it so inspiring I was shaking with excitement. It was kind of like a "DUH!" moment..

Q. Favorite designer(s), artists?

Probably the best combination of the two are my friends Kristin Dickson and Shin Okuda, or Krishin as they say:) Kristin designs a line of clothing called Rowena Sartin and Shin has a handmade furniture collection called Waka Waka. Together, they run Iko Iko, my favorite store in Los Angeles. To me, their work is always somewhere between fine art-meets-function-meets-beauty. I'm kind of obsessed with these new bookends Shin made.

Q. Favorite book / magazine / art piece?

Favorite book of all time (due to cover and content) is Sheila Hicks' Weaving as Metaphor/ Magazines.. always Apartamento and The Gentlewoman because of their photography/styling/content, and most recently Rika/ My favorite art piece is this newly acquired Waka Waka zig zag from Iko Iko. I'm pretty picky about hanging "artwork" in my home, especially paintings and framed things (although I wouldn't mind one of these). I think I am more fond of functional items or objects as art, like this amazing tissue dispenser, these plant hangers, or this towel. I feel like you don't need art when your household items are beautiful, plus you get the benefit of interacting with them every day.

Q. Recent home inspiration / creative idea?

I have forever wanted to take a ceramics class and after visiting the J.B. Blunk house I am determined to make all my own stoneware. I collect so many thrifted ceramics I know exactly what I like– it's so simple, yet for some reason, so hard to find! Ideally I'd make lots of small plates (10" is my ideal size plate), small bowl/cups (that could be used for food or drink), a drip coffee maker, a large crock with lid that fits inside for fermenting things (like sauerkraut and kimchi), and storage containers for leftovers. Instead of paying an arm and a leg for beautiful stoneware, I figure why not make it myself? I found the containers above at a Goodwill, it's shocking retailers don't think to make something similar.

Q. Currently most excited about..

Moving! I am so excited to move from of our current location into a quieter, more central part of our neighborhood. We don't have a car, so it's important to us to be close to a good grocery store due to the cold and rain here in Seattle. I also love moving because it forces you to part with what you don't need and realize what you do. Some things on my dream list are a Miele vacuum, a natural bed, and a cozy couch. I am also really looking forward to turning 30 this year.. I'm making a real effort to be healthier and have discovered so many new recipes and drinks that are both wholesome and delicious, like this date shake (above). ♦


  1. Ashley has an amazing aesthetic sensibility and I love that she loves almond milk! Great interview!

  2. I am really enjoying these q+a's. So inspiring! I read Ashley's blogs daily and love seeing glimpses into her home and her sources of inspirations.

  3. good interview!
    love iko iko: everything there is so unique yet functional.
    totally agree about considering everyday objects as art. there is something so special about making all your choices -- even the small ones -- deliberate.

  4. Leigh, agreed! deliberate & thoughtful

  5. A beautiful way of seeing the world. Is J.B. Blunk's house open to the public?