Shop Etsy

Postcard From Europe #2

Feb 26, 2010

by matt handmade and vintage goods

February 26, 2010
Berlin, Germany

Dear Friends,

Etsy Labs Berlin, Etsy’s first international office, is well on its way to becoming a dream in vintage and handmade. Our goal is to create an inspiring and efficient work environment showcasing only vintage and handmade products from around the world. No newly mass-produced goods will ever sully our hallowed halls. So, take that, Ikea!

Inside Sawadee Design, one of the artist’s workshops we visited in Berlin

Over the last couple of weeks we have accumulated lists of products from Etsy, met table-makers and painters, visited vintage stores and flea markets, and shared our concept with creative folks here in Berlin. We are currently working with Berlin-based artist, Luis Negron, to build out our raw, industrial space into a multifunctional exhibition, gallery, workshop and community center.

One of Luis’ earlier projects



While work proceeds, we have been making progress on furnishing the office.

A fine table from Katja of Buchholz Berlin



Some of our favorite pieces so far are from a local maker/vintage curator named Corinne. She has an incredible talent for finding and then restoring or altering vintage furniture and lighting fixtures. She also builds her own, all in a dark and treasure-laden storefront studio in Prenzlauerberg.

This atmospheric light fixture, built by her out of steel and plastic, uses parts from an old supermarket display.

The industrial chairs with the floating seats were restored treasures from the 1950s. On one of them, a pillow from cosedolci greets us each day.



Another favorite from Corrine is the large wooden table pictured below.  She built it originally to serve as her kitchen counter space, but we bought it from her, leaving an empty spot in her home, but filling a giant one in our hearts. Atop it sits a Kaiser-Leuchten desk lamp from the 1930s, and beside it, two vintage Eames chairs.

The giant map of Europe, a planning tool for our crusade, was found at the Flea Market in Mauerpark in Prenzlauerberg, a must-see when in Berlin.


We drink lots of water mit gas here in Germany, and we do so in handmade glasses from YAVAglass. Converted from old soda bottles, they are a recycled treasure.

A local potter made us mugs, containers for tea and coffee, and bowls for eating our nutty and twiggy musli.

We are just at the beginning of our journey, and we invite you to join us over the next couple of months as we document the making of an Etsy office. You are all invited to join us when we have our official opening on April 1, 2010, but until then we just hope that our vintage silverware arrives soon from Etsy. We’re dying to stop eating with our fingers.

All the best from Etsy Labs Berlin,

Benedikta and Matt

About Postcards from Europe:
Berlin-based Etsy Admin, Matt and Benedikta send postcards back to the Etsy offices in Brooklyn updating us all on Etsy’s European operations. We never know from where they will be sent, what they’ll say, or how they’ll say it (video, song, photos, interpretive dance).


  • adrienneaudrey

    adrienneaudrey said 10 years ago

    Very cool and inspiring!

  • daniellexo

    daniellexo said 10 years ago

    Gorgeous! Can't wait to visit one day.

  • MyissaG

    MyissaG said 10 years ago

    Looks really cool :)

  • Ayca

    Ayca said 10 years ago

    Thanks for share...Really cool !

  • julieincharge

    julieincharge said 10 years ago

    So exciting! I hope to visit sometime soon as well.

  • SmallEarthVintage

    SmallEarthVintage said 10 years ago

    Love it! Makes me wish my workspace was a big, old industrial space in Berlin--rather than my basement in rural Michigan.

  • girltuesdayjewelry

    girltuesdayjewelry said 10 years ago

    I love the choices you've made for furniture and accessories, especially those tables! So gorgeous!

  • KamiMono

    KamiMono said 10 years ago

    An Etsy office entirely furnished with handmade items? Must be expensive, but so great! It should turn out beautifully!

  • LHogan

    LHogan said 10 years ago

    love the furniture! Love Berlin!!!! Good luck!

  • sharonclancydesigns

    sharonclancydesigns said 10 years ago


  • glamasaurus

    glamasaurus said 10 years ago

    It looks great so far! Muesli is yummy!

  • Ebruk

    Ebruk said 10 years ago

    Very cool !

  • agoodvintage

    agoodvintage said 10 years ago

    Looks great! I'd love to see Berlin. Its only over there ------->

  • HoneysuckleLane

    HoneysuckleLane said 10 years ago

    So interesting! I'm sure your workspace will be wonderful!

  • mykonos

    mykonos said 10 years ago

    I love the wood table!!

  • martice

    martice said 10 years ago

    cooool :))) great postcard (I have a print from Lauraamiss and a origami ball from Paperfection, so this is perfect post for me!) ;)

  • evihan

    evihan said 10 years ago

    wowwwww...really cool officeeee

  • Radness

    Radness said 10 years ago

    The UK has got some great stuff! thank you for sharing!

  • rakshniyavintage

    rakshniyavintage said 10 years ago

    everything looks wonderful - I hope to be able to visit one day! Keep up the great work :)

  • ShebboDesign

    ShebboDesign said 10 years ago

    waw! coool.. !

  • sewlola

    sewlola said 10 years ago

    Fascinating! I can't wait to see pics of the office.

  • beautifulbridget

    beautifulbridget said 10 years ago

    Looks awesome!!

  • Emmamaha

    Emmamaha said 10 years ago

    lovely images. love the recycled glasses.

  • iragranteco

    iragranteco said 10 years ago

    Wow awesome place! I really want to go there to see you guys!:))) *she is checking easy jet if flying from Geneve to Berlin directly...*

  • ingermaaike

    ingermaaike said 10 years ago

    What a great looking office it will be! Good luck on your venture into the mysteries of Europe :-D

  • ingermaaike

    ingermaaike said 10 years ago

    What a great looking office it will be, good luck on your venture into Europe!

  • iragranteco

    iragranteco said 10 years ago

    Wow awesome place to work!!! I really want to go there to see you guys soon:) *...she is checking Easy Jet if it flying directly from Geneva...*

  • ingermaaike

    ingermaaike said 10 years ago


  • iragranteco

    iragranteco said 10 years ago

    LOL:))) it's a bit slow today eh?

  • fluxplay

    fluxplay said 10 years ago

    Berlin is one of those super-cool cities that's on my list of places to buy 'plane tickets to. They have a fantastic jewellery culture there, lots of inventive and original artists...and yummy food too, so I'm def' envious of your office there!

  • paperfection

    paperfection said 10 years ago

    Haha, Ira, I read Etsy Jet... Will join you on that flight to Berlin!

  • eetzee

    eetzee said 10 years ago

    I miss you guys.

  • worksofwhimsy

    worksofwhimsy said 10 years ago

    I want to go fleamarketing in Berlin!

  • muka

    muka said 10 years ago

    Fantastisch! Lieben Sie den Artikel und die Einzelteile im Büro

  • parasolproject

    parasolproject said 10 years ago

    wow! that is amazing! it's motivating just to see such wonderful things happening!

  • ElginAntiquities

    ElginAntiquities said 10 years ago

    Interesting touch. When I think of Berlin, I tend to think modern.

  • LeahSutton

    LeahSutton said 10 years ago

    How cool will it be??!!

  • Kreativlink

    Kreativlink said 10 years ago

    I was lucky to have a (virtual) peek into the Berlin office in the Labs recently! Great start and two nice people. I'm expecting good things to come from there soon! :)

  • tortillagirl

    tortillagirl said 10 years ago

    Oh my goooooooosh. Looks fabulous already. I'm marking my calendar for April 1!

  • f2images

    f2images said 10 years ago

    What treasures!!!! I'm jealous!

  • manvsgeorge

    manvsgeorge said 10 years ago

    I love Berlin -- can't wait to return! So wonderful to know there's a big Etsy presence there.

  • AmityUK Admin

    AmityUK said 10 years ago

    Looking sooooo good, you two! Can't wait to visit. :)

  • ooakie

    ooakie said 10 years ago

    I can't wait for the next postcard & to see what the finished office will look like.

  • maggiemaevintage

    maggiemaevintage said 10 years ago

    that is going to be sooo COOL!

  • lifeofcolors

    lifeofcolors said 10 years ago

    Love that studio picture. Have fun putting everything together in the new place!

  • lacravatteduchien

    lacravatteduchien said 10 years ago

    Good start guys!!!

  • sherrytruitt

    sherrytruitt said 10 years ago

    Benedikta and Matt, it looks stunning. My husband's firm is headquartered in Nuremberg, we will be there to visit one day. xoSherry

  • binkaminka

    binkaminka said 10 years ago

    Good Luck! It is great to have etsy in Europe!

  • muka

    muka said 10 years ago

    oh and great to see the sign up too!

  • annarubyking

    annarubyking said 10 years ago

    awesome space! can't wait to see it all fixed up!

  • adam Admin

    adam said 10 years ago

    Looks great! I'll visit when it's not winter.

  • ClementinesJewelry

    ClementinesJewelry said 10 years ago

    looks great!

  • slinkymalinkicat

    slinkymalinkicat said 10 years ago

    Looking good! :)

  • cocosailore

    cocosailore said 10 years ago

    ooo... If only every office would embrace uniqueness and creativity in its atmosphere.

  • searchandrescue

    searchandrescue said 10 years ago


  • TheDailyFoto

    TheDailyFoto said 10 years ago

    Great article! Thanks for showing one of my daily foto's too :)

  • recycledwares

    recycledwares said 10 years ago

    glad to hear that you furnish the office with great vintage and artistic finds, while working with local indie shops.

  • HandmadeHandsome

    HandmadeHandsome said 10 years ago

    Great city. Great article.

  • celentanowoodworks

    celentanowoodworks said 10 years ago

    Nice pics

  • eurolenscape

    eurolenscape said 10 years ago

    Love the simplicity of the Buchholz Berlin table. I will be in Berlin this summer, can't wait to visit Germany again.

  • PunkUpBettie

    PunkUpBettie said 10 years ago

    Need to make another trip to Berlin soon!

  • fleurfatale

    fleurfatale said 10 years ago

    oooh, I love that giant Europe map! and the table and the ceramics,...Cool place! hm, a little Trip to Berlin would be nice. 1st of april?

  • gr8jewellery

    gr8jewellery said 10 years ago

    This is fantastic! You're creating such a unique and inspiring workplace, can't wait to see more!

  • polkadotscloud

    polkadotscloud said 10 years ago

    wooow! I'm so excited to see your office when it will open! ^^ Hopefully I'll move to Berlin in september (I'm from Italy), :) I can't wait another day !!! :)

  • KOALACaddie

    KOALACaddie said 10 years ago

    Thanks for the postcard and all your efforts on our behalf! All is well.

  • loveandbulldogs

    loveandbulldogs said 10 years ago

    Wow, congrats on Etsy Labs going international! Can't wait to see what it looks like when its done.

  • odiliafu

    odiliafu said 10 years ago

    Very cool! Congrats on the new office!! Go Etsy!!

  • travellingcircus

    travellingcircus said 10 years ago

    Thanks for the lovely postcard! This is my absolute fav city!! Guess I will have to plan another trip here, even though I was just there in Dec:)

  • artofjane

    artofjane said 10 years ago

    The table is gorgeous and I love the recycled glasses.

  • 1AEON

    1AEON said 10 years ago

    Oh Europe, you old lady..this is makes ma want to go "home" to see my parents..Thank You!

  • monamivie

    monamivie said 10 years ago

    I won't be able to make it until the end of April, but I'm so excited to come and see what's goin' on in Berlin!!

  • betsy3

    betsy3 said 10 years ago

    Looks already GREAT!!!

  • nowonder

    nowonder said 10 years ago

    Great to see you taking over Europ!

  • Deezden

    Deezden said 10 years ago

    I am going to eagerly wait for the subsequent postcards from Berlin! Hopefully, Etsy will have an international office in Geneva soon (after all, which other place can possibly be more international in Switzerland than the home of the UN headquarters, Geneva?!!). Can't wait to see how Etsy labs look on April at the launch, all the best you guys! BTW, the bonjour cushion and the YAVA glasses are really nice, thanks for sharing!

  • KnitKnit

    KnitKnit said 10 years ago

    Fantastic! Love all the picks - hope you're enjoying life in Berlin!

  • LustreBeads

    LustreBeads said 10 years ago

    Wonderful! I'd love to visit Berlin. Maybe etsy labs will appear in the UK someday? :)

  • BlueGremlin

    BlueGremlin said 10 years ago

    oh my goodness can i come visit........

  • cottagefarm

    cottagefarm said 10 years ago

    I really love that local artists and crafters are being included in the development of this space - maybe ill be able to visit when im in berlin this summer! that would be so cool

  • RebeccaBarfoot

    RebeccaBarfoot said 10 years ago

    love the snapshot, keep em coming!

  • Schaufenster

    Schaufenster said 10 years ago

    Thanks for the update. Can't wait til the grand opening in good old Kreuzberg.

  • vaisto

    vaisto said 10 years ago

    Ooooh the office is going to be SO cool! Hope we can make it there for the Apr 1st :)

  • MiniCyn

    MiniCyn said 10 years ago

    Love the space and all the furniture:) Wish you were in Paris! Will note it down for a trip there indeed.

  • opendoorstudio

    opendoorstudio said 10 years ago

    I love that you are bringing this to us and I LOVE that table!

  • ArtisticIntentions

    ArtisticIntentions said 10 years ago

    Great stuff!

  • vintagemaison

    vintagemaison said 10 years ago

    great stuff - when are you coming to Limoges?

  • kariusdeparius

    kariusdeparius said 10 years ago

    BON VENT de FRANCE! Ich LIEBE Berlin !D

  • PennyFarrow

    PennyFarrow said 10 years ago

    How did you chose the destination/location?

  • lilycobweb

    lilycobweb said 10 years ago

    So delighted to know that Etsy is going to conquer Europe, starting with Berlin! Please, please look into Dublin or Belfast (a truly great city!) as your next port of call. I'm lucky enough to live in between those two lively cities, right on the ROI/UK border:)

  • GiftsFromBunBun

    GiftsFromBunBun said 10 years ago

    great stuffs~~

  • polkadotmagpie

    polkadotmagpie said 10 years ago

    love seeing "in the works" on the other side of the pond. Berlin is it!

  • birribe

    birribe said 10 years ago

    It´s so exciting to see your progress of the etsy office.

  • Nafsika

    Nafsika said 10 years ago

    i wish i had such a cool looking office!!!

  • Maari

    Maari said 10 years ago

    Love it! Just went to Germany a few weeks ago and that "water mit gas" cracked me up!

  • spacejam

    spacejam said 10 years ago

    oh wow!! Was in Berlin last week and wanted to com over, but unfortunately didn't have time (( Will go again soon though=)

  • AudreyGardenLady

    AudreyGardenLady said 10 years ago

    Very best wishes for much success. Thanks for supporting the handmade artists. Love that table from Kajita

  • Kolibriboo

    Kolibriboo said 10 years ago

    Finally!! You guys are coming to Germany. I'm so glad. Herzlich willkommen in Deutschland!!

  • 2TrickPony

    2TrickPony said 10 years ago

    hallo:) how wonderful to open this new space. the best of luck in the new venture. tschuss

  • empapers

    empapers said 10 years ago

    Sehr cool. I can't wait to check out the space in person for the opening. Have you guys heard of this woman?, she is in Kreuzberg and does a beautiful job of making new shelves with drawers out of old vintage pieces. She makes awesome stuff, if I lived in Berlin I would save my Euros to buy some of her goods.

  • Silverbuilt

    Silverbuilt said 10 years ago

    Berlin has creativity and energy down! thanks for the article....

  • stephanielevy

    stephanielevy said 10 years ago

    So cool! Great news and can't wait to keep getting your new postcards :)

  • lunaticart

    lunaticart said 10 years ago

    I love the idea of a vintage handmade Etsy Office! Keep sending love from Berlin!

  • nauli

    nauli said 10 years ago

    Have seen it virtually by webcam a couple of days ago.. looks fantastic.. can not wait to visit it anytime :-)

  • MHKceramics

    MHKceramics said 10 years ago

    Welcome to Germany! I hope you have a great time in Berlin... and good luck for your work.

  • JiaStyle

    JiaStyle said 10 years ago

    Bonne Chance & Bisouzzzzzz from Paris:)

  • emmasommerfeld

    emmasommerfeld said 10 years ago

    Hi - welcome here in Berlin - can't wait to meet you!

  • elegantjewelrybyyaya

    elegantjewelrybyyaya said 10 years ago

    I have been to Berlin several times and always found beautifully designed and beautifully made arts and crafts. On most trips, I have brought some home. You will fit in just perfectly. Good luck!

  • MissHildebrandt

    MissHildebrandt said 10 years ago

    Sehr gut!!!

  • Zeedubya

    Zeedubya said 10 years ago

    Congratulations! Ich heisse Zalina! Alles Glueck!

  • strawberrycouture

    strawberrycouture said 10 years ago

    Wow it's great to branch out to Europe! I've been very successful to the Germans.

  • iktomi

    iktomi said 10 years ago

    Very Cool! I have to brush up on my german!

  • Archivia

    Archivia said 10 years ago

    I'll fly over there and do some decorative painted design on your walls. :-)

  • originalsbyannemarie

    originalsbyannemarie said 10 years ago

    Lucky people, buzzing around in my hometown. Wished I could make another visit! Good luck Etsy Berlin!

  • andwhatelseisthere

    andwhatelseisthere said 10 years ago


  • discerningchichi

    discerningchichi said 10 years ago


  • RockisSupplies

    RockisSupplies said 10 years ago

    Awesomeness! I can only imagine how this will turn out! I lived in Germany for 4 years and would love to return for a visit!

  • NinisHandmades

    NinisHandmades said 10 years ago

    Wonderful!!!! Being a German girl myself I love the Idea. Miss those certain vintage German things. Congratulations Etsy on being in Berlin and conquering Germany. Guten Tag. :)

  • scrumdidlyump

    scrumdidlyump said 10 years ago


  • twoknit

    twoknit said 10 years ago

    Fantastic !!!! Congratulations and Good Luck !!!!!

  • thebeersoapcompany

    thebeersoapcompany said 10 years ago

    Congrats! Cant we get an Etsy Labs Miami one day?

  • thebeersoapcompany

    thebeersoapcompany said 10 years ago

    Wish I lived closer to YAVAglass, we go through hundreds of bottles a month here.

  • BHBKidstyle

    BHBKidstyle said 10 years ago

    Great postcard! I love the table. I hope you get confy in your new office and make it like a home. Btw. Nothing is wrong eating with your fingers. :D

  • FascinatingHobbies

    FascinatingHobbies said 10 years ago

    hi,welcome and wishing Etsy Berlin new office a lot of success, one more raison to visit Berlin and its nice fly markets, and hope soon we will have a Etsy section in France too. Good luck on all kind of vintage goods as well as handmade items, I am very interested in vintage but too how clever and smart ideas some members are doing with them, Bonne chance a tous

  • Spelfenmeisje

    Spelfenmeisje said 10 years ago

    That place is going to look great! Love all the furniture you guys picked so far :)

  • silkstory

    silkstory said 10 years ago

    Wonderfull Etsy lab! Hope will visit it one day!!! Good like to everyone there!!

  • greenphilosophie

    greenphilosophie said 10 years ago

    How very exciting...I just told my daughter how I wish to be in my twenties again and back in Berlin now, working on such an exciting project... Good luck, bonne chance und Alles Gute...:)

  • creationsbyingrid

    creationsbyingrid said 10 years ago

    Hi, water with gas is Sprudel. Viel Erfold in Deutschland!!!

  • thebeersoapcompany

    thebeersoapcompany said 10 years ago

    Speaking of Yavaglass, check this out:

  • fabulouslou

    fabulouslou said 10 years ago

    hey that is such great news. i will be coming from frankfurt april 1st. at what time is the opening?

  • LeChatCrochet

    LeChatCrochet said 10 years ago

    Too bad for me you didn't pick Amsterdam, but hey... my best friend lives in Berlin. Must come and say hello next time I visit her.

  • crazyhoundstore

    crazyhoundstore said 10 years ago

    Love the article, and like Le Chat Crochet, am sorry you didn't choose Amsterdam, but still glad to see Etsy striding out this side of the pond. Why don't you post the kind of things you are looking for in your office and maybe we can put forward a selection from Etsy Europe..

  • aproos

    aproos said 10 years ago

    woo! You're hiring by any chance? ;)

  • fuzzysushi

    fuzzysushi said 9 years ago

    Schade! I was just in Berlin and didn't know this was there. :( Next time!

  • katarinasline

    katarinasline said 9 years ago

    Kalo's greek and say good luck for the new start in Europa.........

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