Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Made by Hand, especially for little hands

 Combining eco-practices with great design, Soopsori creates extraordinary toys

Soopsori’s all natural wood toys are Eco-Friendly, child-friendly and child-safe. All of their toys are made by hand from sustainably harvested wood. The toys are finished with a type of natural linseed oil that is free from biocides and preservatives.

Using 20 types of carefully selected natural woods, each Soopsori toy is as unique as the child that plays with it.  The Toys are finished with linseed oil, making them perfectly safe for even the smallest of hands or mouths.   

The wheels roll true for the fastest police chase

 Using natural woods without dyes or paints, allows each product to have its own color, pattern, texture, and even smell. According to Soopsori, the pleasing and distinctive smell is absorbed into the wood from the distinctive weather conditions and soil where it was planted.

Okay, but will the kids play with them? You bet. The cars and trucks have moving wheels and the fishing set has built in magnets to allow your child to make the perfect “catch.”  And the Robots? We dare you to try and not play with the moveable Robots. The taught rope that connect the body parts allows for posing in dozens of ways.

Fishing Set has hidden magnets - nothing to fall out or swallow

Because Soopsori toys contain no sharp edges, bolts, or paint, they are 100% recyclable – not that you will tire soon from these amazingly adorable toys.

Posing the Robot is one of our guilty pleasures

Even the packaging is 100% recyclable. The company is so dedicated to being “green” and responsible, that they recycle the sawdust and other remnants of the manufacturing process as well. All Soopsori toys are tested and pass new CPSA requirements.

Feel good about the gifts you give. These toys are sure to make the child and child-like in your life smile, and as always, proceeds help fund The American Swedish Institute's Education and Outreach Programs.

Friday, September 9, 2011

A highly entertaining snapshot into the most colorful era tennis - and perhaps any sport - has ever seen.

As the U.S. Open winds down in New York, it's a great time to look back at the "Golden Age" of tennis when legends such as Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe, Jimmy Connors and Vitas Gerulaitis ruled the court.  In his book High Strung, available now at ShopSwedish.com, Stephen Tignor vividly tells of the tumultuous time when tennis was unquestionably and forever changed from a "gentleman's game" to a media-driven spectacle filled with a colorful cast of characters unrivaled before or since.

Although several players from the era are profiled, Tignor focuses mainly on Borg - the Swedish heartthrob who burst onto the tennis scene by advancing to the Wimbledon Quarterfinals in 1973 despite being just 17 years old - and McEnroe, the Long Island-bred "super brat" whose amazing tennis skills were often overshadowed by his on court histrionics.  Borg, whose nickname morphed from "Teen Angel" to "The Silent Assassin", was easily the most dominant force in tennis is the late 1970's, amassing 11 Grand Slam titles, including five straight at Wimbledon from 1976-1980.  McEnroe would be the one to end the Swede's Wimbledon dominance, beating him in the 1981 final for one of his seven career Grand Slam titles. The book culminates with the exciting 1981 U.S. Open, where McEnroe again topped Borg and after which Borg, still unquestionably one of the greatest players in the world, shocked the tennis world by announcing his retirement.  Although he would play in a few more tournaments, Borg never again played in a Grand Slam tennis match.

Tignor goes to great care to differentiate the styles and public perceptions of the two players, yet is careful not to fall into the easy trap of vilifying McEnroe.  Instead, he focuses on the deep respect the two vastly different individuals held for another, a respect that grew to an eventual friendship which continues to this day.  The author's admiration for these legends of tennis is obvious, but High Strung doesn't come across as an oversimplified fan letter. Instead, it is a highly entertaining snapshot into the most colorful era tennis - and perhaps any sport - has ever seen.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Bengt & Lotta

We love Bengt & Lotta and you will too!

Bengt Lindberg & Lotta Glave met at National College of Arts, Craft & Design

Bengt & Lotta AB in Sweden is co-owned by Bengt Lindberg and Lotta Glave.  Both are designers and illustrators who share the stories of their lives through the everyday products they create.  

In the illustration below, Lotta shows us a glimpse of the life she shares with Bengt and their children in Sweden.
Drawing by Lotta Glave "Breakfast"
 We have just unpacked some beautiful items from them that will brighten your day!

Swedish Horse Blanket designed by Bengt

"Finding new ways to present traditional designs is important to me. My designs are rooted in Swedish folk art and reflect a desire to play with creativity," is Bengt's creative approach. 
'Flower Power' Snack tray designed by Lotta

As for Lotta's inspiration, "I want my objects to express humor and happiness. I want them to feel unique and different."

You can find more products from Bengt & Lotta to love at ShopSwedish.com

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Seriously Cool Ways to Play with Herbs

It’s not always easy to have a garden when you live in the city. I think that’s why so many of us stick with growing herbs in little pots when summer rolls around.
Lucky for us, and you, there is no short supply of cool gadgets and stylish ways to
make your herb growing fun.

The designers at Normann Copenhagen have come up with the perfect space saving Herb Stand. Herb Stand organizes your herbs and keeps them tidy, without being boring.  Scissors and herbs are gathered together in one place, making it easy to season your food.

Have more than a few chives to chop? Check out the Five-Blade action of these Stainless steel Herb Scissors. These dishwasher safe scissors will make quick work of pile of parsley or bunch of basil.

Want to chop you herbs more efficiently? You will need the Chop Knife by Normann Copenhagen. This razor sharp knife allows easy one-hand chopping. And yes, you will look cool too. Seriously great gift.

Now that we’ve got you thinking of herbs and gardening, perhaps a little inspiration will get you moving. We highly recommend GardenAnywhere an extremely informative book by Alys Fowler that can help you turn any little spot of land into a perfect mini-garden.

Combine the book and scissors, or perhaps the Knife and some fresh herbs and you have one fantastic gift idea….or present for yourself. Happy Gardening.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Serve with Sagaform SOS

Sagaform SOS will help you to bring summer to your table. 

Sagaform 'SOS' Serving Bowl, $16
Sagaform 'SOS' Decanter, $30
Sagaform 'SOS' Herring Forks, Set of 2, $15
Sagaform 'SOS' Jar with Lid $21

Sagaform 'SOS' Butter Knife, set of 2, $15

The SOS series is designed by duo Björk-Forth for Sagaform

Pia O. Björklund and Magnus Forthmeiier were trained at the School of Textiles at the University College of Borås and have worked with fashion for a range of Swedish businesses for many years. Since 1997, they have jointly run the Björk-Forth design studio, where they carry out freelance assignments in textile and product design for companies in Sweden and elsewhere. In addition to freelancing, they also create new products in their own collection for the Swedish design company Rotor, primarily from stoneware and textile.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Sweden Competes in the Semi Finals of the Women's World Cup

Sweden Competes in the Semi Finals of the Women's World Cup
Sweden v Japan 2:45 pm EST
Today, July 13, 2011
Watch LIVE online or check your local cable listings

Support Team Sverige: Sweden Soccer Tees on Sale now at ShopSwedish.com 
Sweden Soccer Tees originally $19.95
Women's World Cup Price $11.97
Sizes S,M,L,XL, XXL
Available in Blue or Yellow 
Imported from Sweden, 100% combed cotton

Order Blue Soccer Tee at World Cup price.
Order Yellow Soccer Tee at World Cup price.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

July in Sweden: Eat. Drink. Be Merry.

ShopSwedish.com is excited to offer Falksalt, Sweden’s oldest and most popular selling salt.

Once there was only one kind of salt on the spice-rack, but that was long ago. Today, Sweden’s Falksalt offers a wide assortment of salts sure to enhance your culinary repertoire.
Falksalt comes in a variety of infused flavors, from citron to rosemary, garlic to chili; the delicious and unique flake salts impart robust but delicate flavor to your finest cooking.

Have you ever tasted tomatoes, right off the vine?
Try sun warmed tomatoes, sliced with a pinch of Sweden's Natural Falksalt Crystal Flakes on top. 

Enjoy happy hour with Falksalt Citron

Makes 1 glass
1 shot Vodka
1 shot Sour Apple Liquor
1 cup of crushed ice

Mix all ingredients except Champagne in a blender and pour into a cocktail glass. Top off with the Champagne a pinch of Falksalt Crystal Flakes, Citron.

Clock off, tune in, chill out
"Short sleeves, bare midriffs, ice cream, fishing in a country lake. To counterbalance a life of functioning infrastructure and technological modernity, people are nostalgic for the primitive, rural life." The Year in Sweden by Kim Loughran

Filled with breathtaking photos and insightful narrative, The Year in Sweden offers readers a month-by-month glimpse of Swedish life, whether it be the bustle of beautiful Stockholm or the serene wildness of Sarek National Park.

Find out more about how Swedes celebrate summer and the rest of the year in the book The Year in Sweden on sale now in the online bookstore at ShopSwedish.com

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


We get very happy and excited around here when we come across a new Swedish designer yet to make a splash in the U.S. We get even more excited and happy when that designer has wonderful and funky products for us to offer.

Case in Point - Swedish illustrator Ingela P Arrhenius, whose aggressively happy designs are brightening up our store room.

Her book, 100 Wood Block Figures, showcases an exhibition of her hand painted wood block figures. Since all of the figures in the book were sold and dispersed, she calls it her “family album.” We dare you not to smile as you scroll through the images below.

Ingela’s designs are also available on greeting cards. The cards are on their way and will be available in our store this week. Just try to pick a favorite.

Of course there are Tea Towels and Dishcloths too. The Tea Towel comes in one great retro(y) design available in three different color combinations. The Dishcloths feature your choice of a Cat, a Rooster, or an Owl. Good luck choosing, you should probably get one of each.

Rounding off our Ingela Funfest is her inexplicably addicting and original book 142 Actors, which is, of course, a book showcasing Ms. Arrhenius’ interpretations of a German talent catalogue circa 1933 that she found on her bookshelf. Go ahead, re-read that last sentence, it still won’t make any sense, but the little book is fascinating and inspiring and would look stellar on your coffee table.

 (Almost all images courtesy of Ingela)

You can learn more about and follow Ingela on her blog at www.ingelaparrhenius.com, and of course order all of her happy happy products @ shopswedish.com

Our Haiku winner and her winnings

Sarah Erickson Lume stopped by ASI to pick up her Summer in the City gift package.

Seriously, is there anything cooler than a carafe wearing a jacket?

Thinking up a new contest soon, perhaps something to do with inanimate objects wearing jackets.... 

Congrats again to Sarah for her winning Haiku!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

We Have a Winner

A big heartfelt thanks to all of you who participated in our Haiku contest.
So much fun to read the posts each day.

We are happy to announce that Sarah Erickson Lume is our grand prize winner with her Haiku:

                                              new road construction
                                   I turn the radio on
                                   I take my watch off

Sarah will receive the following Summer in the City prizes:
1. Klippan MOA Blanket: Perfect for a summer picnic
2. Eva Solo Fridge Carafe with Neoprene Cover:Lime - What is cooler than a carafe with a jacket?

3. Bengt and Lotta “Flower Power” Cutting Board:  newest pattern from Sweden's hippest design team! 

4. Camilla Läckberg's The Ice Princess: After having lunch with her at ASI, we had to include her book!                

 Congratulations Sarah!

Thanks to everyone for playing.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

More Haiku Love

Sarah Erickson Lume
Bird songs ricochet
off of night’s heavy slate roof
landing lightly here.
Lin Nelson-Mayson
Black truck, steamy hot
Open windows - more hot air!
Drive fast! Cool me now!
Kirk Duffy
A Swedish summer?
Only the year you don’t go;
The grass is greener.