Monthly Archives: April 2012

Fine Dining with a Splash of Whimsy

I had the pleasure on Friday night of attending the Junior League of Toronto‘s DelecTABLE Designs event with my friend Lindsey, upholstress extraordinaire. The event featured inspirational, whimsical and eye-popping dining vignettes created by some of Toronto’s top designers.

Dining “Hickory Dickory Dock”-style by the event design team known as Cry If I Want To.

An ode to fine food while enjoying the French countryside from Worth Interior Design.

A stunning Spring flower arrangement from Jennifer Brouwer Design.

Blue and white with bursts of yellow using a mix of formal and rustic pieces by The Jacaranda Tree.

This picture does not do it justice but this chandelier from Taylor Hannah Architect was a showstopper.

I pictured this table setting at a garden wedding under a marquee (by Julia West Home).

The finishing touches are what stood out to me in this display by David MacPhee. I loved the grommets to anchor the table runner and the bark around the vases. The wine glasses had natural elements with the rocks embedded in the stem.

My favourite design was the whimsical camp-like setting put together by Anne and Rick Vernon of Rooms ‘n Blooms. They converted a cedar strip canoe into a table base and used camp stools as seating. They used fishing lures as decor in the tree, mini canoes for place cards and camp plates and cutlery. This would be a fantastic setting for a wedding at a summer camp.

So many fun and inspirational ideas for table decor. Thanks Lindsey for taking me!

Did anyone else go to the event? What was your favourite?

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A Desert House for Sale

I came across this interesting real estate listing and thought I’d share it with you. I have a particular affinity for Arizona having been there several times and this property in the desert is quite unique.

Designed by Rick Joy, The Desert Nomad House is very much at one with its desert surroundings. Joy’s architectural training can be traced through William Bruder and Paolo Solari who apprenticed under Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin West in Arizona.

The house is comprised of three steel cubes and are oriented in such a way that one can look out at the Sonoran desert yet also invites a view into the space from the outside.

The interior design of the home very much reflects the rectilinear elements of the exterior and the clean lines make the desert surroundings the focus. I love all the light in the home.

Not sure this would be for me as I am not too keen on vast expanses of windows at night time – you know ’cause I’m scared of the dark (sort of). But it is truly an architectural masterpiece.

What do you think?

All images via Crosby Doe Associates

Designer Feature: Meredith Heron

Today I’d like to share with you some of the fabulous work of Toronto based designer Meredith Heron. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Meredith several times through blogger events and chat with her periodically on Twitter. She is not only insanely talented but an absolute riot.

Her blog, Sashay, recently won the award for “Best New Blog“. It’s a regular read for me and is full of insights into the design process, peeks at projects she is working on and a forum for her rants and raves from everything design related to toilet training her charming and adorable toddler.

Her home was recently featured in April’s issue of Style at Home. I love how she has made a narrow Victorian house feel big and has mixed bold colour and pattern to create a lively yet relaxing space. Check it out:

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Here’s a peek at some of the space’s in Meredith’s portfolio.

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One of the really cool things about Meredith’s blog is that she shares peeks at projects that she is working on. As a current interior decorating student (coincidentally at the same alma matter as Meredith!) I love seeing some of her sketches that she uses to communicate her design ideas.

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Meredith’s office was recently featured in Chloe Magazine and it’s nothing short of fantabulous and inspirational. The wallpaper is a showstopper and everything else flows from there.

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And, finally, the lovely Meredith herself!

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Meredith doesn’t shy away from bold patterns and bright colours and she mixes everything together in a way that’s livable and not overpowering. Be sure to check out her portfolio and blog.

A definite Canadian designer gem!

Monday Morning Office Space

via Anne Coyle

There is something about this organzied, bright space that makes me excited to start the week.

What do you have planned for this week?

Fabric Choices for the Kiddos

I’ve been mulling over fabrics to add new Roman blinds in the kids rooms. You see I have this half baked idea that if their rooms are super dark then they will actually sleep in past 7am. Um, yeah. We’ll see how that rolls.

So I thought for Friday morning we could take a look at some fabrics that I stuck up in their rooms.

The kids have voted … Now it’s your turn.

Room A – The Big Kids (think lots of blue with red accents currently):

Option 1

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Option 2

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Option 3

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Room B – The Kid Who Thinks He’s A Big Kid (think yellow with red accents)

Option 1

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Option 2

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Option 3

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So there you have it. I’ve made my decision (well, mostly) and the kids have chosen (of course not the same).

Two rooms. Three choices for each. What do you think?

A Little Stool Re-Tool

Part of me wanted to title this post “The Saga of the Stool” but I’m very pleased with the results. When we purchased two black leather cube ottomans from Home Sav back in the Fall it wasn’t supposed to take five months before we could actually use them in our family room!

To keep a long story shot when you let a seven year old boy attempt to open a shipping box with an exacto knife there is a decent likelihood that part of the leather will get sliced. (Disclosure: my husband was helping him so I’m not entirely sure who actually cut the leather but there was adult supervision – we don’t let our kids wield exacto knives I assure you!)

Here’s the evidence. I’m sure the neighbours could hear my screaming – it wasn’t pretty.

I knew we had to do something to make the ottomans functional. I wanted a little va-voom, a little something that would make me smile but needed something insanely durable (see story above about enthusiastic seven year old and multiply by three).

I found this faux ostrich leather from Maxwell fabrics …

And had the tops of both stools reupholstered complete with a nailhead trim detail around the base.

Et voila!

I’m liking my new custom ottomans in our family room.

Do you have any ottomans that are in need of a little zing?

Some Weekend Reading: Lonny Mag & Dabble

I have a few favourite online magazines that I love to peruse for design inspiration. Thought I’d share a couple with you today (in case you were looking for a good read this weekend!).

In the March/April issue of Lonny Magazine I loved the feature of Amanda Nisbet‘s New York City office. She mixes a neutral backdrop with colour and incorporates lucite furniture, functional storage and huge project boards. Everything is bright and uncluttered.

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Tobi Tobin‘s Malibu cottage, also in the March/April issue of Lonny Magazine, has me dreaming of blue skies, warm breezes and the salty ocean air. Check out the view from her bedroom.

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Another favourite online magazine is Dabble. Dabble is a Canadian magazine founded just over a year ago by Kimberly Seldon. The April/May issue had two fantastic features. Take a minute to check out the feature on Budapest – a must see for me at some point!

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There is also a fantastic feature by designer Nyla Free with tips on buying original art. In this article she has tips on where to find art, she encourages you to buy what you love and how to hang art in your home.

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So there you have it. Two of my fav online mags.

If hockey playoffs aren’t doing it for you this weekend take a minute to check ’em out.

Which foyer would you choose?

Beachy rustic with a drop of blue?

via House & Home

Or, more formal foyer furnishings tempered with a grasscloth backdrop?

as seen on Verdigris Vie from Cullman & Kravis

Which foyer would you choose?

Colour Wow to a Neutral Space

Back in the winter I worked with a friend to do some space planning in her basement. She wanted a space that was cosy, organized and functional. They use their basement mainly for watching TV and gaming. It was time for a new look and to move away from the brown colour scheme.

We chose new carpet for the space (which is a deep grey) and used that as the starting point for paint colour which is going on the walls as I write this post!

I put together some ideas for cushions and fabric options for faux Roman blinds that are going to cover the two non-operational windows.

The starting point for the colour scheme was a delicious Mediterranean blue table lamp. I’ve incorporated blues with some yellows, and a pop of red. All anchored by a geometric grey patterns.

Check it out …

The neutral backdrop allows a ton of options to accessorize and finish the space.
What do you think?

All pillows via Tonic Living, lamp via, sectional via

A Piece of Art … Just for Me!

It seems I spend so much of my time thinking about art for other people’s walls. This time I’ve chosen a pretty little piece just for me!

Let me introduce you to Posterjack –  an online Canadian company that allows you to transform your digital pictures into pieces of art. When the kind people at Posterjack contacted me to take one of their products for a test run I had a zillion ideas pop into my head of what picture to use.

I have been all about bright colours lately and in thinking about my recent post about Spring I knew I just had to use this picture:

The pink gerbera daisy just makes me happy (insert grin here). My mother would probably roll her eyes to hear me say I like pink but I think I’m having a reaction to living in a male dominated house!

There were a bunch of options to transform my picture. I could frame it or mount it, do an acrylic print, mount the photo on Birch wood or metal. Zoiks! So much choice.

I decided to go with a gallery wrapped canvas – made it feel like an original piece of art to me. Uploading my photo and ordering was super easy.

Still trying to figure out a special spot for “wee pink” but for now it’s being closely watched by my beloved Easter bunnies.

Posterjack’s prices are very reasonable and I got my canvas super fast. Be sure to check ’em out if you get a minute.