Sugared & Spiced

pâtissière in paris, now shanghai

[Shanghai] Norman+Karen

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Add: No. 36 Lane 248 Taikang Lu, near Sinan Lu / 泰康路248弄36号, 近思南路
Tel: 6467 7223
Hours: 11am~7pm
Visited: Feb 2012-02-04

If you weren’t specifically looking for Norman+Karen, you will probably miss it. Its slender storefront, tucked away in one of the small lanes in Tianzifang, is not screaming for attention. But venture inside, and you will discover an enchanting little world of stylish designs and alluring fragrances.

Norman and Karen met in San Francisco while studying architecture, and together they started Norman+Karen in Shanghai 6 years ago as an interior architecture studio. Because of their personal interest in home fragrance, they converted this little shop in Tianzifang to a retail space for a select few imported home fragrance brands, including Baobab Collection, Ladurée, MIZENSIR, LINARI, DayNa Decker, Anthousa.

Let’s start with Baobab Collection, a fragrance brand inspired by the enchanting landscapes of Tanzania. Handcrafted in Belgium since 2004, the collection captures the intense colors and bewitching fragrances of Africa. Illuminate the candle and take a plunge into the cradle of humanity. Click here for more information.

Mizensir, created by Master Perfumer Alberto Morillas, is one of the most respected and recognized candle manufacturers in the world. Its candles are produced by hand at an atelier in Geneva, Switzerland, and in this this candle house everything is a symbol of craftsmanship and knowhow devoted to luxury. Click here for more.

This triple-flame large candle (not for sale) has a minimal burning time of 300 hours, and will make your house smell absolutely lovely.

DayNa Decker is naturally chic. Its green vessels – designed to mirror nature and hand blown to shape – are filled with signature botanical oils that exude a melange of complex notes through light wood reed sticks. I quite liked the graphic images of flowers on the packaging as well. Click here for more.

Inspired by its name, meaning “The Perfect Bloom”, Anthousa has a collection of home fragrances that have been inspired by a range of scents and colors from around the world. Created using the finest elements for a blend of sophistication and freshness, each fragrance is designed to transport you back to a particular moment in time or a far away traveled place. Click here for more.

The LINARI Eau de Parfums are dedicated to the people who enjoy individualisation and consider aesthetics as necessity. Do take note of its unique packaging, from the opulent gold to the furry grey. Click here for more.

But of course, I really came to admire the Ladurée collection. This luxury patisserie brand recently launched lines of candles and cosmetics reflect their sugary expertise. Its candles are housed within cute China pots and engraved in the various Ladurée emblematic colours – the Ladurée green, the sugared-almond pink, the charcoal grey, the lilac violet, the daffodil yellow, the pale blue, the black of the night…Click here for more.

It’s not surprising that I was especially drawn to flavors like Brioche and Bitter Orange Chocolate. I don’t know if I’d want to light these at home though…I might just be craving sweet things all the time.

Norman + Karen also has on display a Mini T by EcoSmart Fire, which is just about the coolest thing I saw all week. What it is: A Bioethanol-fuelled (i.e. environmentally friendly and vent free) open fireplace that produces a dancing whirlwind of warm flames. Constructed from brushed stainless steel, stainless steel burner, and toughened glass surround, this nifty fireplace is beautiful and very safe to use.

By the way, all the furnitures and display shelves at Norman+Karen are designed by themselves.

Here’s a little something I took back from Norman + Karen – coffee-flavored pot pourri by Côté Bastide.

All comes with a Norman+Karen bag. Wouldn’t this be a nice present for a special someone? Come explore this stylish little studio, but call ahead to make sure Norman and Karen are around since they sometimes are out inspecting interior design projects. Follow their weibo here for a selection of everything chic.

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Written by sugarednspiced

February 12th, 2012 at 7:19 am