Blog Archives

Office Space: Which would you choose?

I’ve just finished a complete re-organization of my office. It started with buying a new printer and then I realized that everything needed to be overhauled. Let me tell you this project wasn’t about the pretty – it was all about the practical and functional. Now everything has a place and I actually know what I have too!

So … with that in mind I’m turning my thoughts to office spaces …. here are a few that have caught my eye recently:

I love this eclectic, whimsical home office space in Paris. It’s a perfect mix of light and dark combined with bright colour.

via Carlos as seen on Desire to Inspire

Or … Ana Atunes bright elegant office space.

via Home Styling

Or what about this space? Not as glamourous or eclectic as the previous spaces but pretty and functional.


via here and Simply Seleta

Which would you choose?



David Mikhail Architects: Additions that Wow

I was recently introduced to the work of London based David Mikhail Architects through Desire to Inspire.

The examples below show how they have created a modern space by adding on to an older home. I really like the floor to ceiling windows that bring in a ton of light and create an open, contemporary living space. The windows are framed in a variety of materials ranging from wood to aluminum and in wide ranging colours as the design dictates.

Check it out …

Image 8

Image 2

Image 1 crop

Image 5

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Even though this isn’t an addition to a home check out this Suffolk poolhouse.

I love how unique each addition is. It doesn’t necessarily blend in with the existing structure but is more like an art installation – except art you live in!

So, what do you think?

all images via David Mikhail Architects

Potty Talk: Wall Hung Toilets

Yes, I’m talking toilets today. Not exactly the prettiest thing in a bathroom to be sure but it is certainly the most functional and, well … you get the point!

I am working on a project right now where the architect specified a wall hung toilet for the powder room. It is the first time I have come across a wall hung toilet in a residential application so I thought I would share with you a little about wall hung toilets.


Wall hung toilets are a practical choice when space is an issue. They can save you anywhere from 7″ – 9″ inside the room as the tank is housed in the wall instead of sitting on the floor. The particular space I am working with is a powder room that has been created out of an otherwise dead space under the stairs.



In addition to the space saving advantages wall hung toilets can create a modern look to a bathroom.



Duravit carries wall hung toilets and Toto has a wall hung toilet as well.

Duravit Happy D

Toto Aquia

While wall hung toilets have a very practical application they do come with a higher price tag and are more labour intensive to install. There can also be challenges when plumbing repairs might be required as the tank is built into the wall and not always easily accessed.

Despite the disadvantages, wall hung toilets can make an otherwise ordinary bath fixture come to life.








What do you think? Do you have a wall hung toilet in your house?

A Kitchen: From Dated to Ahhhhhh

I have been working with a client on their kitchen renovation and I am pleased to say it is now complete!

Previously, the kitchen had an awkward layout with sizable counter returns making it difficult for two people to cook together. It also had some lovely wallpaper that had to go. Here’s a peek of what we started with:

We opened the space up to create two long counter runs and stretched the cabinetry from end to end of the kitchen. This created tons of storage and eliminated awkward corner cupboards. At one end of the kitchen will be a small desk space. The other end will be a small sitting space but could also be turned into a breakfast area in the future.

As with anything the devil is in the details. My client has an impeccable sense of style and knows what she likes. I loved it!

The cabinet profile, the cabinet hardware, sink and backsplash all had very clean lines. This was contrasted by the waterfall-like movement of the glass in the cabinet doors, the curve of the faucet and the pattern in the wallpaper.

We went with a 4×12 white backsplash, stacked the tile and used a darker grout. Classic with a twist.

The wallpaper turned out beautifully (it had just been hung when I took this picture so is still a bit wet).

Delta Faucets very kindly provided the faucet for this project. It’s the Delta Pilar in arctic stainless finish. The curve of the faucet contrasts the more linear elements in the kitchen. It had the Touch 2.0 technology which takes some getting used to if you haven’t had it before but is a handy feature.

We replaced the old ceiling fan with a contemporary, quieter and more powerful fan.

The kitchen floor had new hardwood installed and stained on site to match the existing floor in the living and dining room areas. The front hall tile was also replaced with a hexagon shaped tile – simple yet elegant.

The TV was mounted on the wall and can be viewed from either the kitchen or the sitting area – planning ahead on where your cabling will run and how your components are housed is a must.

My clients are very pleased with the result – as am I! Here is another shot for your viewing pleasure …

If you would like help creating the kitchen of your dreams give me a call!

Catalogue Love: Dwell Studio

Ever want to live in a catalogue? I used to feel that way about the J Crew catalogue – I could picture myself in the clothes, staring off into the distance with a gorgeous man on my arm … I (clearly!) digress.

This week, I received the summer catalogue for Dwell Studio and loved the spaces shown. Dwell Studio is based in New York and run by Christaine Lemieux, a Canadian ex-pat. I might be a little obsessed with the fabrics and love their furniture line!

Here are some of the rooms I’d like to live in if I lived in the Dwell Studio catalogue:

Could you live here?

all images via the Dwell Studio Summer Catalogue

A Home Filled With LEGO

Check out this cool apartment in New York City that I came across earlier this month on Design Milk.

The homeowners, with the help of I-Beam Design and licensed LEGO artist Sean Kenney, have incorporated 20,000 LEGO bricks into the railings in their child’s room.

The entire loft space is a white palette with pops of primary colours throughout the space. I love the bright, playful feel of the space.

How cool would it be to have LEGO bricks built into your home?


images 1 – 7 via Design Milk, image 8 via I-Beam Design

Summertime: Cottaging on a Beach

Summertime is super short here in Canada and where I live in Southern Ontario cottaging is a big thing to do. (You might know what I call a cottage as a “summer home” or a “camp”). I grew up cottaging on a smallish lake where you have a dock, you don’t necessarily see your neighbours and you are serenaded to sleep at night by loons. It’s a fantastic place to retreat and for my extended family to hang out together.

Recently I visited a cottage on Thunder Beach which is on the shores of Georgian Bay. What a contrast to the type of cottaging I’m used to! It’s like going to the beach beside an ocean except it’s all fresh water. The kids dug in the sand, they swam, we walked on the beach, walked to the corner store and even played at a little park.

The “cottages” are quite something. The Thunder Beach community has been around for five or six generations and gradually all the original beach cottages are being torn down and replaced with massive beach homes. Kinda like these ones ….

It’s really a matter of personal preference but I like that you don’t have all the creature comforts of home when at a cottage. Don’t get me wrong – cottages have gotta be clean and (for me) mouse-free but seriously … you don’t all need your own washrooms when cottaging – it isn’t a hotel!

This size of beach cottage is more my style …

I gotta say I could get used to the beach cottage. I love the proximity to the water, the beach walking and the community atmosphere. It’s so different than anything I have ever known.

What about you? Where do you spend your summer?

Sarah 101: Season Two

The second season of Sarah 101 finished last week and I really enjoyed this season. Loved the spaces, loved the variety and found the design process that Sarah & Tommy went through insightful and entertaining.

There were two spaces in particular that resonated with me.

The first was a project was kitchen makeover in a gorgeous country home. The homeowner wanted a new kitchen but not a “country” kitchen. Sarah & Tommy incorporated rustic and vintage elements that respected the age and setting of the home by using reclaimed barnboards in the island and antique lanterns in the dining area. Yet, they gave the homeowners a functional kitchen with new cabinetry and gorgeous marble and quartz counters.

I really like the herringbone pattern that is in the layout of the barnboards and repeated in the white subway tile backsplash. To me this kitchen is welcoming, functional and packed with visual appeal.

via HGTV

The second space that I really liked was a living room and dining room space in a mid-century home that Sarah & Tommy created one cohesive look rather than the hodge podge of furniture that was there previously. The first thing they did was create dedicated areas within the open space. This included two lounge areas and a dining space. I love the colour scheme with the neutral backdrop and colourful ottoman.

via HGTV

There were fourteen episodes in all this season and I quite liked all the spaces. Today I shared two of them with you. You can check them out online at HGTV Canada.

Now, what am I going to watch on TV tonight between 8 and 9 pm?

Did you catch any of Sarah 101 Season 2? What did you think?

Elle Macpherson’s Cotswolds Home

Elle Macpherson’s Cotswolds home in the English countryside is set in the 650 acre development called “The Lakes by yoo”. Properties start at £900,000 and homeowners can design their home from a variety of finishes and styles to create a unique space that marries contemporary design with a country setting.

I like the natural elements, clean lines and expansive windows in her home.

There are a variety of activities in the development including sailing, fishing, canoeing and a spa.

What do you think? Could this be your second home?

images 1 – 8 via here, images 9, 10 via here

Outdoor Living

Soaring ceilings, retractable glass doors and light, minimalist finishes come together to create a stunning Los Angeles home.

Could you live here?

all images via Architectural Digest