Warming the House (with Dumplings)

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Yesterday we visited our friends for a housewarming party and so we were faced with choosing a gift. This is normally a fairly standard procedure for this kind of event but T&D are both architects of very defined and refined tastes and we (rightly) expected that their apartment would be their big project. So we didn’t want to bring them either anything furniture-related, which they would probably never use, or anything tepid like a plant but instead we designed a poster for the occasion. Even if they wouldn’t want to put it up (which we don’t really expect them to) at least they would get something personal and unique.

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In our design we were inspired by a tradition of small tapestries with embroidered home-related sayings and pieces of wisdom to hang on the wall, which exist in folk tradition (and look something like this). You can still find them in some houses as a kind of jokey wall decoration. As we’re don’t really know too many folk sayings and we wanted something a little weird we found a slogan online. We’d never heard it before and can’t vouch for its authenticity but we liked its surreal quality. It says in rough translation “A house is rich not in its cornerstones but in dumplings”, which I could try to interpret (it makes a tiny little bit more sense in Polish, possibly) but we just kept it very literal. We used illustrations that referred to both building a house and cooking dumplings and arranged the slogan in modernist letters that our friends happen to love.

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Even though we’ll fully understand if the poster doesn’t make it to a wall because they’d probably had every decorative element planned before the they set foot in the apartment, at least our friends were touched and surprised to get this bit of our work.

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