Hidden treasure. And where? In Moelv?

I have taken the train from Oslo to Lillehammer thousands of times since 1997, but not once during these almost 20 years have I been to Moelv – a small town before Lillehammer and I have always thought it´s one of those ghost towns with now people and no life. I don’t know where I got it from, but this is what I have thought about Moelv for 19 years.

Two months ago we moved to Ringsaker and instead of driving to Lillehammer, we now turned to a road via Moelv. Can you imagine how surprised I was when I saw main street in lovely evening lights and people walking on the street? It turned out Moelv is a charming little town. I felt ashamed. And then I saw this house. Cafe Johnsen ( http://artdeco-retro.no/om-oss/)


Cafe in an old house, together with a retro/art deco second hand shop. I am a sucker for places like this. I dream of having a small café+shop  just like that. It has always been my dream. And there it was – like a dream. In Moelv. Town I had thought has no life. I had no idea that a small treasure like this could be hidden there.

During Easter Holiday we decided to pay this shop/café a visit ((we live 15 km from Moelv) . My friend said they have the best homemade cakes there. I love cakes. More than life. So of course we sat in car and drove there.

You know, I actually have no words to describe this place. It was beyond belief. It was like a secret world hidden in children’s fantasies, a world that opens when you knock on that mysterious door in the cupboard. It was like a Villa Villekulla full of most amazing old things. A Poul Henningsen lamp was one of the first things I saw. Have I told you that I have another dream? No? It includes an Artichoke, a Swan and Danish Design. Yes, I mean an Arne Jacobsen chair and Poul Henningsen lamp.


This shop is without one of the coolest shops I have visited. Unfortunately the prices for me (at the moment!) are unreachable, but seriously if you like old things this is the place to visit. The owners have an extraordinary good taste. I am sorry my photos are not with the best quality, but just to give you a hint, here are some examples of things they have in their selection.




It was hard not to notice this painting. For a second I felt like a teenager. Or a desperate houswife. Wait a second? But I AM a desperate housewife. No wonder this painting caught my eye;)


We have an expression in Estonian “like an Elephant in a China Shop”, I looked at my 2,5years old and kind of felt she is the elefant from that expression. A cute one, but still an elephant. I was afraid she will break something extreamly valuable, so we headed back to the café part.


Oh, wait – before we go to café, take a look upstairs. The chairs, the coach…Do I need to say more? I don’t know if they live there, but it sure is full of warmth and love and of course good taste.


And then the café. When I said one of the first things I noticed was the Poul Henningsen lamp I actually lied. The first I noticed was one of the owners who greeted us with the biggest smile (he recognized my friend) and asked if we would like to have coffee and home made “rullekake”. Ida received an ice cream. As said, the café looks like Pippi Longstocking is living there and as a huge fan of Pippi, I of course liked the café as well.

“But I have to go and tell Gerhardt that you are here”, Bjørn says and runs up to the second floor. A minute later his (life)partner comes down. He’s barefoot and casually dressed, but looks oh so elegant. He smiles like a diva, greets us with hugs and compliments my scarf. I am in love! Too bad I am married. Okay I am kidding, but these two gentelmen…They are so charming. (Note to self: perhaps I should visit the shop tomorrow?)



We eat the cake (which is delicious!), chat and as little fashionista is in a bad mood we thank for us and leave the magical world of Art Deco . The two owners continue with their everyday work…

Make sure you visit them when you are in Moelv. Or in Lillehammer, take the extra trip to Moelv. Don’t be like my who judged the town for 19 years without even being there.

Artdeco Retro
Åsmarkvegen 10 (Klikk her for kart)
2390 Moelv

Telefon: 91 56 50 17
Epost: 91565017@online.no

(Note to self: maybe I should move my shop to Moelv. It seems to be a cooler/more hipster town than Lillehammer?)

Three of the photos used in this post I borrowed from their homepage. I hope they don’t mind.


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