My search for a co-working space in Stockholm was short and sweet. Believe it or not, there are way more options then googling in english will find you. Upon moving here, I came across a number of frilanskollectivs, The Hub, Coffice and Kolonien being a few, but none of them had everything I was looking for: a central location, the ability to have my own desk and a sense of community.
Recommendations from Swedish friends (Gustaf and Heidi), kept bringing me back to Himmelriket, or Heaven Below. It’s a subterranean cave-like den in the heart of Södermalm with a mix of photographers, musicians, graphic designers, and fashion people. While my old studio in Brooklyn had huge windows with a truly amazing view, here there are only a few skylights dotted around. At first, I wasn’t sure how I felt about this lack of light, but then I realized, if it’s going to be dark most of time I’m here, it’s probably better for my psyche to not know it. Himmelriket also came with my own desk, and more drawers and shelves than I could ever fill, especially because I came here with only two bags (one of which is dedicated to winter clothing).
The best part of this studio is LunchLaget, or Lunch Team. Every day, one member of the team makes lunch for the other 15 or so of us. Not only is it money-saving, it’s delicious — I leave every lunch thinking “Damn these Swedes can cook!”. And I mean seriously, many pick their own mushrooms and bake their own bread! As I’m just learning to cook, my first few turns were terrifying and somewhat disasterous: pots were ruined, large holes were burnt into rugs, meals were…weird. And yet somehow I’ve actually begun to look forward to my cooking day, thanks in part to my jazzy new recipe pinboard!