Monday, January 15, 2018

Kicking Off 2018 with IDS2018

Hello Monday and welcome to IDS Toronto 2018!  This once a year design event attracts superstar designers and creative geniuses to showcase their latest and most innovative ideas and products in the design world.  To celebrate the 20th anniversary of this 3-day design festival in the heart of Toronto, #IDS18 is packed with star powers and amazing brands from around the globe!

One of my most anticipated exhibits this year of course are the two custom gourmet kitchens designed by Sarah Richardson to showcase innovative ideas and fresh concepts in kitchen design.  In collaboration with luxury appliance brand, Monogram Canada, "Sarah Couture" is destined to inspire design and culinary enthusiasts alike.

I was floored when I saw this custom kitchen at Monogram's showroom in the fall.  I can't wait to see the new creations incorporating Canada's first indoor pizza oven at the show.

images courtesy of Monogram Canada and Stacey Brandford

Since its first debut at IDS Toronto four year's ago, Maker has become one of my first stops to check out at the show.  Focusing on excellent design and exceptional quality, Makers produce their own work in small batches with limited distribution.  I have met Dustin from KROFT a couple of years ago at Maker and I am loving his HNGR in white oak + leather!    
images courtesy of PELLE, Kastella, and KROFT

My Le and Rock of 1925 Workbench will also be at IDS this year.  Specializing in stylish barn door hardware, custom doors and furniture, I look forward to catching up with the couple and check out their latest creations.  Yours truly did a store visit a little while ago, stay toned for a full store tour soon!


Obsessed with lighting (chair is my second weakness), I can't wait to see the contemporary lighting installations by Lambert & Fils from Montreal and hollis + morris from Toronto. P.S. I am sourcing for lighting again for my next condo!

images courtesy of Lambert & Fils, hollis + morris

Studio North & Prototype offers emerging designers and independent studios a high-profile platform to showcase their limited-edition collections to the design community, an unique opportunity to have their work reviewed by a panel of international industry leaders and design experts, and to connect with potential clients.

I have met ANONY and Justin Bailey Design at IDS and let's check out their latest products this week!

images courtesy of ANONY and Justin Bailey Design

I also had the pleasure to collaborate with ANONY on my spring 2017 One Room Challenge, featuring their Horizon Wall Sconce in my dining room.  Thanks Christian and David!


Being a big fan of the hit TV Series, Million Dollar Decorators, I love Kathryn Ireland's charming personality and the relaxed elegance sensibility in her interiors and textile collections.  Kathryn will be on stage to take about design on Saturday from 4pm to 5pm!  

images courtesy of Kathryn Ireland and House Beautiful

With studios in Toronto and New York, and current projects in over 16 countries, Yabu Pushelberg stands out in the design industry worldwide with its meticulous attention to details, spirit of exploration, and commitment to excellence in its ventures including product collaborations, textiles, and lighting designs, just to name a few.

George Yabu and Glenn Pushelberg will be on stage on Saturday from 2pm to 3pm and their collaboration with Avenue Road will be exhibited at IDS including the iconic Perry Street Sofa, Park Place Stool, and the limited-edition 10th Anniversary Gin Lane Bar Cart.

images courtesy of Yabu Pushelberg

Last but not least, my super talented friends Matthew and Rick of Bettencourt Manor are ready to showcase their 2018 Spring / Summer textile collections at #IDS18.  Inspired by silver screen icon Elizabeth Taylor and her role in 1963's Cleopatra, this collection consists of 16 distinct prints with dynamite patterns and bold colors.  Be sure to come say hi! 

images courtesy of Bettencourt Manor

Are you ready to be inspired this week at IDS 2018? Tickets are available right here and I will see you all at The Party on Thursday! 

Friday, January 5, 2018

Happy Moments from 2017

Hello friends and welcome 2018!!  What an amazing time Chris and I had over the holidays with Christmas markets at every square in Germany.  I can't wait to plan my next #eurovacay this summer and maybe a visit in December again to celebrate a couple of big birthdays!

Back at the home front, the bomb cyclone has arrived and brought with it the deep freeze temperature.  #Toronto is now a city of white.  While I stay indoor to seek refuge from the extreme condition, I figure why not focusing on my happy moments from 2017 today?

One Room Challenge is truly an incredible experience.  Hosted by Calling It Home and House Beautiful, this twice a year event attracts over 200 guest participants, along side with 20 featured designers, to completely makeover their spaces in 6 weeks.  I transformed my dining room in Spring 2017 and re-imagined my client's guest bedroom and powder room in Fall 2017, and I am over the moon happy that House Beautiful has included my spaces in the top favourites!

Spring 2017 One Room Challenge:   



Obsessed with the relaxing, free-spirited lifestyle in Europe, I was thrilled to contribute an article on "The Secrets of French Design" in a Tridel magazine.  What a fantastic layout and the real question is: now can I just live in Paris?


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

2017 Gift Guide ~ Indigo

Hello Tuesday! Christmas is two weeks away and since I will be spending the holiday in Germany with friends and family, I started my shopping a touch earlier this year.  For those of you who are looking to one-stop-shop for everything from delicious treats, festive home decor, to cozy winter must-haves, and the perfect gifts for him and her, Indigo is where you need to go.


"Every Gift tells a Story", it's so so true don't you think?  We spend a lot of time to hand select the perfect presents with the specific friends and family members in mind, and I sure hope they all put a big smile on everyone's face.


Chris loves to bake and for this holiday seasons, I have found the most ideal gift box for my baker at home ... maybe a cook book or two as well.  P.S. LOVE this skiers pattern on gift wrapping and pillows.


Hosting a holiday party this year? Indigo has some glamorous bar cart essentials just for you.  Copper accents + classic tartan, you will surely score A+ in styling every time!


I love snow globes and this year, this adorable polar bear on a fishing trip melts my heart!


Hanging out at the cottage next to a roaring firep with a cup of hot coco? Indigo has got you covered to keep your toes toasty warm with some fabulous socks! A pair of classic checker reading socks will accompany me to Germany this Christmas.  


Other items to make your cottage feels just like home include an inspiring gallery wall, super chic and whimsical pillows (love the blue pom pom and black + white herringbone!), and a truly Canadiana puzzle pack, which you can have it framed up as art once completed! 


Now let's have a look at the guys' corner for everything from tech favorites, stylish fashion accessories (who doesn't love Ted Baker?), and must-read for aspiring entrepreneurs from Kinfolk.


As for the ladies who love all things glam and sparkle, this winter wonderland is dressed head to toe in delicate blush, reflective glass / barware, and did you spot the magic sequin pillows? Toast to all that glitters!  


These are my #indigofaves this holiday season.  How about yours? Happy shopping at Indigo!




Wednesday, December 6, 2017

2017 Gift Guide ~ Black Rooster Decor

Hello Wednesday! It's hard to believe I will be in Germany once again in 8 short days and that means I only have a week to do all my shopping before the holiday begins!  Christmas is truly the most wonderful and magical time of the year to celebrate the festive season and welcome the new year with family and best of friends.

If you are also looking for the perfect gifts, you need to visit Black Rooster Decor.


Nina, the fabulous and talented curator of Black Rooster Decor, has shopped around the globe to bring us the best of the best from her shopping trips and created loads of inspiring and breathtaking vignettes in her Toronto store.

From sensational furniture pieces to must-have home accessories for the holiday season, Black Rooster Decor has it all.  To make it super easy to shop, Nina has setup an Insta Shop so you can literally pick up these items as you go through her stunning images.


Whether you are shopping by budget ($50 / $75 / $100 / $200) or by themes (Fashionista, Entertainer,  Plantman, Young at Heart), there is something for everyone.  As for me, this is my holiday wish list for 2017: 

Speaking about obsession, I clearly couldn't wait anymore to unwrap my own Christmas and birthday gifts, so here are some of my Black Rooster Decor loves at home:


How is your holiday shopping coming along? I would love to hear what catches your eyes at Black Rooster Decor!


all images (except for lifestyle shots at my condo) are courtesy of Black Rooster Decor

Thursday, November 23, 2017

One Room Challenge Fall 2017 ~ Top Favourites

Hello Thursday! Thanks so much for all your kind words and love of my #ORCFall2017 guest bedroom and powder room makeover.  It was a lot of fun to put these spaces together and it is truly rewarding to be able to stand in these rooms now and say: this is exactly what I had in my mind ... only better.

One Room Challenge is an inspiring, motivating, and supportive network of talented and creative design bloggers with one common goal / dream in mind: helping each other to cross the finish line to completely transform a room in six weeks.  With 20 featured designers and over 200 guest participants joined in for #ORCFall2017, these 8 spaces have inspired me to incorporate some of their clever ideas in my future projects.

Coco & Jack:

This living room went from an uninviting space with a few mismatched furniture pieces and no architectural interests to a cozy family hangout with streamlined furnishings, a stately fireplace, and dressed head to toe in a smoothing neutral palette.  Who wouldn't want to snuggle on the sofa next to that roaring fire with a cup of hot coco this winter?

 My favourite elements are:
  • custom built-ins in natural wood with panel detail 
  • hits of black accents (curtain hardware, mirror, fireplace and art) to ground the space
photos courtesy of Coco & Jack / Cameron Street 


If you long for a tranquil and elegant private retreat, you have to check out this remarkable bedroom makeover.  A refreshing blue and white palette via a gorgeous wallpaper is brought to life with an eclectic mix of furnishings in natural wood and brass accents via lighting and artwork.  The layering of rugs to get the maximum impact is inspiring and the furniture layout is really smart.  

Instead of using the bay window as a seating area, the canopy bed is now tucked right in the nook.  This arrangement allows for a much better flow and use of space especially when laundry facility is located at the opposite wall.  


I LOVE playing with tiles (almost as much as I do with fabrics) and here is an amazing example on how to get an unbelievable result with simple, inexpensive tiles from your local tile shops.  It maybe a bit more expensive for labour to complete the pattern but check out the phenomenal floor and the band accent in the shower!



Have an awkward space in the attic you don't know what to do with? Turn it into a stylish and attractive home office! The mossy green and muted coral palette had me at hello and of course that brass pendant also caught my attention (I have the flush mount version at Chris' home).  

I love birds and wallpapers so this small nook with the sloped ceiling with its magnificent original stained glass window from the 19th century hits a home run for me. 


and the art collection ... #BRAVO!!!

photos courtesy of Making it Lovely 
Old Brand New:

Ready for an outdoor oasis filled with bright colors and graphic patterns? I am IN especially when winter is just around the corner in Toronto.  Two different colors on the fences pairing with two different patterned tiles, both choices are bang-on and they formed an ideal backdrop for a more-is-more charming patio.  The exotic plants, the vibrant colors on pillows, the mix of furniture pieces all attributed to one winning LA hangout and you know what, it's available at Air BnB.  I am so booking it next time when I visit LA!


photos courtesy of Old Brand New


From bright color fun to muted sophistication in the most exquisite way, I was floored the moment I saw this breathtaking bedroom.  Dressed in one singular shade of pale pink (what a beautiful color from Farrow & Ball) with the matching wallpaper on the ceiling and accentuated by the classic yet edgy moulding installation, the transformation is beyond my wildest dreams.  The pair of lacquered beds, the vintage glass chandelier, a cozy corner for story time, and a fabulous creative station for two, what is not to love in this bedroom?    

I actually have a vintage chandelier just like this one and now I can't wait to hang it up in my next bedroom! 

photos courtesy of The Makerista 

From featured designers to guest participants, these three spaces completely blew me away with their creativity, styling, and the incredible efforts to completely transform these rooms in seven weeks!


Palm & Prep:

As a wallpaper addict, it's not surprised I am drawn to this enchanting bedroom in a contemporary yet soothing charcoal grey and white palette.  The super modern take on a classic canopy bed is a perfect juxtaposition against the peacock motif on the wallpaper and the side tables that have a more traditional appeal.  The striped fabric is beautiful as roman blinds and the touch of greenery throughout, LOVE!!!

The artwork, the throw blanket, the crystal chandelier, and styling ... absolutely spot on.  I could live here in a heart beat!

photos courtesy of Palm & Prep / Home Dwelling 

Decor Happy:

Ever wonder what to do with an unfinished basement in your new home? How about turning it into a delightful and cozy family getaway to rejuvenate both your body and mind.  Vanessa did just that where she has ingeniously divided up her basement into zones and whether you are in the mood for a movie, a craft project, a coffee with friends, or a workout, this hard working basement does it all and in STYLE!

The fireplace wall with floating built-ins and the featured wallpaper are nothing short of spectacular.  I may just have to do the same in my next home.  


Another element I am crazy about is this custom divider between the living zone and the yoga studio  where a trio of doors were put together and hung on a custom track by 1925 Workbench.  Vanessa has specifically designed a "gap" on the ceiling between the two zones so the tracking hardware are not visible ... more like a hidden gem to be discovered. 

photos courtesy of Decor Happy / Stephani Buchman Photography


Oh Natasha, you took my breath away with the most sumptuous, radiant, and intoxicating library I have ever seen and I love EVERYTHING literally! From the classic chesterfield that doubles as a bed, the ribbon detail on the art, the super sexy lounger in lipstick red, the color-coded books on the bookcases, to the impeccable styling at every corner, where do I begin! 


Here are a few more beauty shots.  There are so much to learn and I am so inspired to decorate my next bedroom / library lavishly in style.

photos courtesy of Natasha Habermann Studio 

Thanks so much everyone for the inspirations and most importantly, Linda of Calling it Home and media partner, House Beautiful for hosting this twice a year design event where we all share our ups and downs + sensational transformations in six short weeks! See you all in spring 2018!