10 Things That Make the Founder of Hem Happy
He lives for Japanese sandals and exfoliating soap.
Published May 23, 2019 7:00 AM
We all have that one friend we go to for great recommendations. From the best-smelling candle to the next big furniture maker or the new natural skin-care brand, they always know best. In 10 Things, we ask our favorite creatives to share the discoveries that make them happy so you can track down fantastic daily essentials, too.
For Petrus Palmér, happiness revolves around the home. This is also the essence of his brand, Hem (“home” in Swedish), a Stockholm-based independent design brand and purveyor of minimalist but thoughtfully designed furniture, lighting, and accessories created by some of today’s best designers. For Palmér and his family, home is a remodeled blacksmith’s workshop in Stockholm, which he has somehow managed to make feel like a countryside retreat in the heart of the city.
Over the years, he’s filled his home with things he loves: impeccably designed speakers for unwinding with music at night, furniture from iconic 20th-century designers, and little luxuries in the form of indulgent exfoliating hand soaps. As the CEO of a rapidly growing furniture brand, Palmér also spends a lot of time on the road, so he always tries to take the comforts of home with him: a well-crafted suitcase, a signature scent, and staple sunglasses. In the summer, he finds happiness on the water: His love of sailing runs deep.
Amid the chaotic and fast-paced business world, Palmér has found quiet and contentment both at home and away. These are the 10 things that make him happy no matter where he is.
The Design Bible
“Brutalism has produced some of the most incredible buildings on the planet despite being mocked and misunderstood in so many ways. This oversize book captures a number of stunning examples of Brutalist architecture—it deserves a place on every design and architecture nerd’s coffee table.”
The Downtime Must-Have
“Unwinding at home with music is the ultimate luxury, and the OD-11 is one of the best home sound systems on the market. It’s a reengineered version of the original OD-11 Ortho directional loudspeaker, made in 1974 by Swedish sound genius Stig Carlsson.”
The Trusted Luggage
“I love how straightforward and extremely well crafted the Rimowa classic suitcases are. As someone who travels quite a bit, it’s comforting to own something that will last a lifetime.”
The Modern Throne
“Another favorite in the way of furniture design is Bellini’s Le Bambole chair. It’s hard not to covet these, if for no other reason than Bellini is king and these chairs look like understated thrones!”
The Little Luxury
“I am addicted to Aesop’s scrub hand soaps. The milled pumice leaves your hands feeling smooth and purified, and the scents, particularly Reverence, are amazingly aromatic and unique.”
The Summer Sailing Staple
“As we gear up for summer in Sweden, I have my eye on sandals from the Japanese brand Suicoke. I love how exaggerated the nylon straps are, but the shoe is also quite functional. We do a lot of sailing, so these are a great option for being out on the water.”
The Statement Piece
“This table might be one of the most beautiful items I’ve ever seen, both in terms of form (it’s just a single slab atop a conical base) but also materiality. Kooij takes sustainable design to the next level by compressing discarded chairs, vases, cabinets, and more into an indestructible table.”
The Signature Scent
“Byredo’s scents are so layered yet not overpowering. I love Gypsy Water, in particular. The woody notes of pine needle and fresh citrus create such a light and evocative smell.”
The Functional Sculpture
“These light sculptures from Sabine Marcelis are so great. I love that they have a certain futuristic quality but are still warm and inviting.”
The Creative Shades
“I’m a big fan of Gentle Monster. The designs are great and it has done some amazing collaborations over the years. These frames in particular are my favorite: classic in many ways, but still a standout pair.”
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