LOCAL – Sustainable Lives (the Leaf Heap)


Hello again! Been a while, haven´t written much whilst on holiday in Bergen, Karmøy, Flekkefjord and Kristiansand. Arrived back home last night. Went to bed with my 3-yearold, so I´m pretty fresh this morning.
He started his day with his favourite activity; a dvd on the sofa. “Frozen”. He knows all the songs by heart. 🙂

I want to tell you about a project that my friends Kristin and Eivind in Bergen, are instigators of.


“Local. Sustainable Lives the Leaf Heap”. Løvstakken, meaning a heap of leaves, is one of the seven mountains surrounding downtown Bergen. It is the area of town where my friends live.
(There are also Sustainable Life groups in Sandviken and Landås, other areas of Bergen).

It started out with my friends an a couple of neighbours finding out they would really like to have a community room, for exchange of ideas on a sustainable, environmentally friendly lifestyle. So they found an old house where there used to be a fish shop, contacted the owner and were allowed to rent the space cheaply. (Later on, they now have Bergen Council on board with their ideas, and their expenses for rent and electricity are now funded by the council).

Here´s a picture of the old fish shop from the outside:


There´s one more window in the shop, this picture is taken from the inside looking out:


The poster in the window says: “Get started with a kitchen garden”.

The local group actually have a community garden as well. Where they grow vegetables. In the LOCAL space, they have courses in organic gardening etc.

Here is what meets the eye as you walk into Local Sustainable Life Løvstakken:



Most of the furniture, they have made themselves, using palls that they got for free. The bookshelves, the sofa… made by hand from recycled goods, without other cost than creativity and labour. 🙂



This is a wourkshop room, as it´s often not easy to use a saw in private homes… here people leave their tools for all in the neighbourhood to come and borrow.


This is a sewing room:


They have this kitchen, where they recently held a rubarb chutney making workshop! I got to taste the result, and ensured myself a recipe!


These two ladies, by the way, are two of my best friends in the entire world. On the right stands Kristin, who is one of the instigators of Local. We visit eachother often, living in eachother´s homes Summer after Summer. The one on the left is Katarina, whome I have lived together with and shared many happy and sad times with, both in Bergen and other places.
I know I have these two amazing friends forever, and that makes me a very lucky and rich person.

There is also this room, where a local artist resides. She makes BEAUTIFUL notebooks, using traditional book binding techniques. I had to buy the talles one on the shelf there. (Plus a smaller one that was in the front room). The books are almost so beautiful I feel I can´t write worthy stuff in them, haha…


They even have this in-between space, that they don´t know what they will do with, yet…:


It is a truely amazing place, isn´t it? And the colours, their decorating it… makes it so welcoming and cosy… there is coffee and tea bags in the front room, and they use it as an office space, so that it is open for the neighbours to drop by and check out the facilities, those who don´t have a key…

One can sit down in the old sofa, and pick up one of the donated books about gardening, herbs, diy…


This is a map of the local area…:


This poster says Welcome to Sewing Club:


This is a lamp made by one of the members, with knitting pins stuck into it… 🙂




Yeah… I wish I could be a part of this place. I have told Kristin that if I win the lottery (I must remember to gamble, I always forget)!… then I want to rent a room somewhere in their neighbourhood so that I can spend some months there from time to time. It makes my soul so happy to learn about this new trend in Bergen. Sustainable Lives. Local.

Maybe we could try to create something similar here on Fanø?

Or where you live!

It is a movement that takes care, of the planet and of the people in the community.
A win win thing, all the way.
(Apart from for the profit makers in this world, but they can take care of themselves. And if they can´t, then all the better for all of us, really)!




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