Award-winning Design Tales’ Laura and Nora: “We love materials that have a soul”

Awarded the title of Most Engaging Influencer in the FDS Influencer Awards, Laura Muthesius and Nora Eisermann run two beloved Instagram accounts and a widely popular blog. We spoke with the Design Tales duo about their shared passion for design, renovation projects and food.

Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
In April 2021, Laura Muthesius and Nora Eisermann received FDS Influencer Awards' Most Engaging Influencer prize for their Instagram account, Design Tales (@_designtales_).

Congratulations on your recent win, Laura and Nora! Can you tell us a bit about your personal backgrounds? What has led you to this point?
“Thank you for the lovely words, we are so honoured! We are Laura and Nora, a photographer and stylist couple from Berlin. Whereas Nora studied fashion design and worked in the industry for a while, Laura focused on photography in her studies. When we met, Laura had a lot of food allergies, which is why we started cooking together – this is how our blog, titled Our Food Stories, took off. As we really enjoyed styling and capturing food, we slowly began working for clients in the field.

A few years later, as we were renovating our first flat, we created another Instagram account to share not only our renovation project, but also our overall passion for design and interiors. To this day, we love working with food and design as it’s a wonderful combination, full of variety.”

Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
A gathering of contemporary classics – the sofa and lounge chair from &Tradition's Fly series have made friends with Gubi's Epic coffee table in travertine. The Hanging Lamp and Plinth table work wonders in the living space.
Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
The couple's German countryside home features intuitively chosen items, such as Frama's brass pendant, which work together to create a harmonious whole. Fredericia's J39 dining chairs are genuine Danish design icons.

Your home is a mix of vintage items, classic designs, and more contemporary pieces. How do you choose decor elements, and where does your distinct sense of style originate?
“It's very simple: we just buy what we really like. We tend not to think about whether things match or not. Objects always seem to fit together quite naturally when you invest in pieces that you absolutely adore.

We really like to spend time outdoors in nature and that’s where our love for soft tones and natural materials comes from. We love linen, wood and stone – all of these materials feel so alive and have a soul.”

Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
The kitchen in Laura and Nora's schoolhouse-turned-home residence is a thing of beauty, full of enchanting details and fresh produce.
Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
The striking marble sink is a definite highlight in a space where experimental culinary magic happens, illuminated by plenty of natural light.

You’ve shared your journey renovating an old schoolhouse, located in the German countryside, into your home. What have been the high and low points of the project?
“The house has been in Laura’s family for 20 years, and last year the most recent tenant moved out unexpectedly. We were already renting a little flat in a friend's house in the same area, which made the whole renovation process a lot easier. We gave up our Berlin studio to finance the project and now work from the countryside, which was one of our biggest dreams come true.

As with many old buildings, you can run into unpleasant surprises during the renovation, which stretch both your schedule and budget. On our part, these unforeseen issues included having to replace a chimney – from cellar to roof – and almost completely rebuild the annex leading to the garden, as it proved too unstable.

When it comes to the most memorable high point, it has to be the feeling when we saw everything coming together, especially as we browsed through before photos.”

“Objects always seem to fit together quite naturally when you invest in pieces that you absolutely adore.”

You also have an apartment in Berlin and a summer home in Sweden. How do you divide your time between various locations?
“We mostly live and work in Germany, but aim to visit Sweden 3–4 times a year. Due to the current situation, we haven’t been to our vacation home since last autumn, but hopefully it will be possible this summer. Whereas Berlin is our hometown and meeting point for clients, our studio is located in the countryside, where we do indoor and outdoor productions.”

Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
Fresh flowers add a dash of luxury to the bedroom, along with Matri's Slim headboard, the Socket Occasional lamp by Menu and Frama's Adam stools, used as slender nightstands.
Laura Muthesius Nora Eisermann Design Tales
The beautifully patinated vintage table is ideal for displaying cosy arrangements. The wall panelling and linen curtains in nature-inspired hues provide a delightful backdrop.

It’s clear that food plays a big part in your lives – your culinary Instagram account with over a million followers is proof enough! How do you keep discovering fresh concepts?
“For us, it's quite easy to come up with new ideas, as we simply love food. We would actually love to dedicate more time to our blog in the future. Rather than keeping up with culinary trends, we tend to get inspired by the changing seasons.”

If you picture a scenario years from now, where do you see yourselves?
“We never think much about the future, as you cannot really plan ahead. In the end, things always turn out differently to what you expected. Above all, we are truly grateful to be able to work in the creative industry – and sustain the passion we have for our work.”

See also:

Design Tales on Instagram >
All of the winners of the FDS Influencer Awards >

Text: Eero Nurmi Images: Laura Muthesius and Nora Eisermann

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