So, last Friday I spent the afternoon getting a tour of my new web shop from the builders who have spent the last few months creating it for me. I hired ClickSite, a small company in 's Hertogenbosch, at the end of July, and they've done a fantastic job! They have been, as we Americans say - AWESOME!!

Here's a sneak peek at how it's going to look:

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I'm so excited to launch the shop - maybe at the end of this week? Definitely by the beginning of the following week! Those of you who are on my mailing list will get an e-mail as soon as I have news. If you'd like to be added to my mailing list, please e-mail me at elliecashman@gmail.com.

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We'll be adding the last finishing touch, the cherry on top, this week. It's a module which allows you, the user, to enter in your wall measurements and receive an instant quote on the price of the wallpaper! I haven't seen anything like this on wallpaper sites, and I think it's super user friendly. Basically, we are going to be custom printing wallpaper to fit your exact measurements. You don't have to buy pre-packaged boxes and have a lot of waste left over. Nope, you get only what you need.

Dark Floral

The shop initially includes 4 different designs (2 of them are available in several colors). So it's a modest start. That being said, I'm really happy with all the designs. They are my 'greatest hits' from the last year or so (when I decided I wanted to focus on wallpaper) and I've spent hundreds of hours on each of them.

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They all belong to a family and are at the same time very unique. I created them all using different techniques. Some started as graphite sketches and were then imported into Photoshop; some were painted entirely in Photoshop.

The styling and photography for the site was done by Ellen Mesu. I met Ellen about 2.5 years ago when she photographed Juliette for her first birthday. In that same session, she took the photo of me with Ruby and Juliette above and on the right. I love her aesthetic. It's so different than mine. So minimalistic. She has a great eye for detail, proportions, composition. Her bread and butter is portrait photography, but she studied graphic design and worked in fashion. So, when I started thinking about having someone do styling and photography for my designs, I consulted her immediately. I knew she had the style I was looking for, and I thought she might be able to recommend someone. But, she did something even better! She offered to do the styling and photography herself! Her enthusiasm and her willingness to collaborate with me was a huge turning point for me. I'm not exaggerating when I say that that was the last push I needed to really go for it!

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So, at the beginning of the summer, we met and talked about what kind of photographs we wanted to create. It was really helpful for me to talk about my work out loud with another creative person. What came out of that conversation is that my wallpaper is the result of my own personal journey, combining my childhood and young adult life in the US with the past (nearly) 7 years here in the Netherlands. I would describe the aesthetic that I was exposed to growing up in New England as a bit more classic/traditional, with wainscotting and Victorian details and warmth and coziness. Think Pottery Barn. When I first moved to the Netherlands and I saw how people were decorating their houses here I thought it was really depressing! So cold and stark and empty. Clean lines but NOT cozy at all. But in the last 7 years that aesthetic has begun to grow on me. No knobs, no handles, concrete floors ... Some beautiful examples of this style can be found on the blogs April and May and The Style Files.

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In the end, those are actually the kinds of spaces I see my wallpaper in! Those are the kinds of spaces where it works best. My wallpaper is so ... present, shall we say? ... that there can't be a lot of other distraction in the room. Combine my wallpaper with minimalist, modern architecture and decor and it's unexpected and even a bit edgy. It looks best behind Eames chairs and simple hanging bulb lamps, rescued industrial cabinets or exposed ventilation ducts ... It's wallpaper for the modern, eclectic decorator, who feels confident making his/her own choices and creating surprising combinations.

So that is what Ellen did when she got down to photographing in September. I'm so happy with the job she did. I feel it really sets the entire tone for the site, and the brand. And she gave me some brilliant suggestions too, like to try the tulips (which were originally on a white background) on a black background as well. So, many thanks to Ellen for a job well done!

And let's hope we're live by the end of the week!

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