MADE.COM TALENT LAB
In with the old: vintage meets modern in this illustrator’s colourful home

In with the old: vintage meets modern in this illustrator’s colourful home

How handy is it to have your carpenter live with you? Illustrator and Goldsmith Jessica Herber of Stadtelster Design creates delicate, minimalistic and emotive illustrations for clients from Berlin to Weimar, where she shares a flat with her partner Julius – trained craftsmen and architect to be. Their home is a playful, charming reflection of their warm personalities,  where design classics meet modern pieces. We visited Jessica in her cosy apartment on a hot summer’s day to find out what inspires her – and to taste her delicious homemade iced latte.

Jessica Herber's blue living room in the German city of Weimar, featuring the MADE.COM Knox chair alongside Midcentury furniture

Love at second sight

“To be honest, I needed time to warm up to this flat. Our previous place was this picture perfect apartment – but we had to move out as it was next to a main road and the noise from the traffic just became unbearable. We first viewed the flat late in the evening and the rooms were so dim, I could barely make out the existing furniture, which really wasn’t our taste. We decided to take a second look in the morning – and the quiet neighbourhood and light flooded living room promptly changed our mind.”

A blue living room with yellow MADE.COM Hayden rug, Aula brass table and dark blue walls with framed illustrations

Evergreen

“I’m very reasonable when it comes to selecting new items and don’t feel compelled to constantly buy stuff. We took years to organically grow our collection of vintage pieces and hand-me-downs. Whenever we allow anything new in the flat, we have to be certain it will stay with us for years to come. Our luckiest find? A classic modernist design: the Knoll sofa with matching armchairs.”

A vintage Knoll sofa with MADE.COM's Holt cushion and the black Vetro standing lamp in front of a blue wall

Shine bright

Jessica’s energy and passion for beautifully made things radiates from her entire personality and fills every corner of her colourful world: “One of the best pieces of advice I got when moving in here was to really go all out on paint. It can really change a room,” says Jessica. I love how the Vetro lamp contrasts with the inky blue in the living room. To me this piece strikes the perfect balance between classic and modern design – it looks almost sculptural.”

A detail shot of the MADE.COM Aula table, magazines, hot pink flowers and the yellow Hayden rug

Playing favourites

“My favourite room in the house is definitely the living room. It’s always gets the sun and when you open the door to the balcony, it feels like the flat becomes even larger. The original midcentury shelves were an absolute bargain, that I discovered on eBay. The previous owner put up these really bad images of them – but I immediately knew they’d be perfect for this place.”

A dining area in a German Jugendstil villa with blue walls, midcentury furniture, a lot of greenery and a balcony
A typical German style breakfast table with berries, jam and the MADE.COM Verona candlestick in the background

Homemade design

"My style is a mix of modern pieces, vintage finds and furniture that Julius designed and built. He’s a trained carpenter and the oak table with matching benches was his final year project. We love putting the Luna dinnerware on it as the black ceramic surface really brings out the colour of everything around it."

A wooden dinig table with the black Luna dinnerware by MADE.COM, next to fresh berries, butter and a loaf of sourdough bread

Let’s get cosy

"I love inviting friends to our home and Julius and I both really enjoy hosting dinner parties. The large wooden table is perfect for that. Though things rarely get too wild around here. We love just opening a good bottle of wine, listen to music and talk – really relaxed."

Jessica Herba's baby blue kitchen with MADE.COM's brass Plumen ceiling light and the Noah bowl and platter

A detail shot of MADE.COM's Noah bowls in front of a minimalsitic print on a baby blue wall

A bright kitchen next to a small bedroom, decorated with the Jett table lamp, in pink terrazzo, hanging planters and yellow Agadir throw by MADE.COM

Kitchen stories

“I think what makes our home unique is that we mix old and new. You can buy things on a budget and then make them your own with just a little bit of work. The kitchen we got for this place was nothing special at first, but Julius added these really sleek wooden bars and now I think it looks really great.“

A detail in a bedroom with the Jett table lamp in pink terrazzo, plants and a lavender coloured wall

The Agadir pillow and throw in yellow on a simple white metall bed with a . window in the background

Form follows function

“Before you start the design process, it’s important to have a really clear idea on the function of each room. What do you want to do in this space: sleep, focus or relax? That’s my starting point and then I build a colour scheme and layout ideas around that. One thing I’ve learned from decorating this flat though is to definitely always paint the walls BEFORE you put in any furniture.”

Jessica Herber's pink homeoffice with a classic Eiermann drawing desk, the Knox chair by MADE.COM an illustrations in the background

Paint it pretty

“I have two workspaces: my jewellery I create in a small studio and shop in the bustling heart of Weimar, the illustrations I work on here at my Eiermann desk – another classic piece, that I love! Making jewellery can be loud and creates a lot of dust and dirt. Painting on the other hand is an intimate process, that I need calmness and serenity for. So I basically have two creative personalities and I need the physical division between them.”

A detail shot showing brightly coloured paint work, water colours and the yellow Cadyn bowl by MADE.COM

Creative mind

“I live for my work. But a few months ago I bit off more than I could chew – my design work, the jewellery shop, running influencer workshops... It got to a point where I had to hit pause on new illustration commissions. What I learned from that is that it’s important to safeguard your own creativity. So that’s what I did. I started saying no to projects, clearing out my schedule. And it worked. I have so much more energy and am now in a place where I enjoy illustrating again.”

A lush balkony with cakes and iced coffee next to the yellow arkin doormat MADE.COM

Go green

“I love all my plants. It used to be that most of them died on me – but that completely changed when we moved to this apartment. Maybe it’s all the sunlight and the large windows but sometimes I can’t even keep up with pruning the greenery.”

A close up of artisan cakes on a black and white marble platter by MADE.COM

In the neighbourhood

“We used to come for walks around here and every time we passed this town house, I’d think: I want to live in this building one day. When the flat became available we couldn’t believe our luck. It’s a really calm and beautiful area with grand Jugendstil villas. And the Bauhaus University is just a stone throw from here, so a lot of students and young families live here. On a Sunday you’ll most likely find us at the local confectioner’s shop – the cakes are a dream.”

Article written by: Lisa Wenske
Imagery by: Barbara Cilliers

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