When we first walked into this home last summer, we were immediately smitten. The bright, airy feel of the home, the quirky collectables and the passion for design our client had were all so inspiring. The task was to bring this home to life with our clients personality shining through and give it a completed look with new furniture, their existing art collection and added accessories. Embracing colour, pattern and texture this home is fresh, modern and around each corner there's a story to tell about where an item came from and the thrill of the find.
We captured a video of our installation and styling day to share the behind the scenes of how Nyla Free Designs works and what this process looks like. Seeing a project all the way through to accessory and styling stage is essential in achieving a completed, polished space and seeing our vision through to the end.
Thank you to our wonderful client for allowing us to document this process and to Module Creative Agency for capturing a fabulous day!
I find an often underestimated and overlooked accessory item is the runner. Area carpets are a great way to add colour, texture, warmth as well as define a space within a room full of furniture, however a runner is a stand alone gem ideal for hallways, galley kitchens, bathrooms, entrances and closets. It's the perfect way to give your space a little pick me up. Here are a few of our recent faves!
We were asked to offer our insights into interior design trends for 2017 from Style at Home. Here are three we're not only seeing, but doing!
Give way to lighter woods. We’re seeing a move towards a blonder, natural looking wood from floor to ceiling. Wider plank hardwood with an oiled/ matte finish is a great choice in creating visual interest and providing a neutral backdrop for furniture and other interior elements. Natural, rift cut oak is a great option for cabinetry, pairing well with walnut and darker woods and even painted finishes. Light wood is extremely versatile and a great way to add warmth and texture throughout a home without it feeling overpowering or heavy.
While white kitchens will never go out of style, we’re seeing a move towards warmer materials and a less utilitarian or expected approach. Consider the new kitchen an extension of the living and dining spaces, especially those in an open concept arrangement. The thought process is a “not so kitchen, kitchen”. Working with a cohesive colour palette and materials to achieve a sense of unity with adjacent spaces provides a connection with interior elements such as furniture, lighting and decorative details, leaving the kitchen with all the importance of function yet all the style to go along with the rest of your home.
Move over subways and make room for shapes and geometrics. Whether the shape or pattern is part of the tile or simply created by installing in a geometric pattern, we’re seeing diamonds, hexagons, fish scale, chevron, herringbone, ovals, penny rounds and more. Regardless of the tile, basic white, bold colour or natural stone, creating pattern through shape is sure to elevate your bathroom in a classic, yet current way.
For more 2017 trends check out the full Style At Home article.
Reflection is a powerful tool if you allow yourself to take a moment to do so. And it's considerably more impactful when you look back over an entire year. Wasn't it January of 2016 just the other day? Days, weeks, months, years, each one seem to be picking up pace and moving faster and faster. There's hardly time for reflection when one day leads to the next and weeks become blurry. Months go by in a blink of an eye and well, here we are, 2017.
As I sit back and ponder over 2016 I feel so good about what I've learned. As a human being, a mom, a business owner and creative. I'm not leaving any of these in 2016, rather bringing them into the new year with me and standing firm in my new learnings and realizations. Some of them are ah-ha moments, others are things I should have come to realize a long time ago.
I encountered some crazy situations both personally and in my business this year that left me questioning people, their ethics, levels of respect and pure common sense. There were days I could barely breathe. Feeling broken is one of the best ways I can describe it. As the fog started to clear I decided I couldn't let their behaviour affect mine in such a negative way. I lost trust. I lost respect. However what I did gain was an better understanding of what I'm willing to give, to who and when.
There is no doubt it takes a village to raise a family, however I find this true in business as well. The network of people who rally behind a small business owner is paramount in it's success. From my direct family, to extended family to friends, colleagues, other business owners, mentors and the like, I am blessed beyond measure for the people I have in my life. I hold each of you near and dear and am forever grateful for your endless support.
When tough situations arise in life it's always the way people involved handle themselves that is the true testament to who they really are. True colours come through and it was those moments this year I decided to move on from certain relationships or at least distance myself. Honesty and integrity are part of my core values in life and I do expect the same from those I invest in, personally and professionally.
We have found our niche, we know who our clients are and are able to be discerning in who we work with. When clients interview designers it's important to note how differently one works from the next, and that's a good thing. It truly is about finding the best fit and sometimes a client just isn't for us. And that's ok. When we connect with our ideal client, we know we have started a relationship that will last for years to come.
I am a working mother of two girls who are heavily involved in extra curricular activities. There is no shortage of items on my to-do list from groceries and laundry or racing to buy swim goggles at the last critical minute to whipping up a ballet bun. Add running a business into the day and yes, my days are busy. However, this common topic of busy started feeling like a rat race in a negative way. "I'm so BUSY!" felt like I actually wasn't accomplishing anything. I've changed my vocabulary to "my days are FULL". They are full of expectation, full of paperwork, full of experiences, full of creative work, full of great people, full of challenges, full of conversations, full of love...
In 2016 we completed a process and procedure binder outlining the Nyla Free Designs way of doing anything and everything within the business. Compiling all the information for this document took years, literally, so when we finally finished it you can imagine the happy dance that broke out. It is built on our brand and philosophies as a business and encompasses all the ins and outs of our world. Its a great tool for reference and reminders as well as a means of establishing new employees with ease.
There are learnings in every day, let alone each year. I'm excited to see what 2017 will teach me!
From all of us to all of you, Happy New Year!
May 2017 be filled with love, inspiring spaces and the simplest of pleasures.
I'm a huge fan of "year in review" highlights and video montages. I love the reminiscing, remembering the achievements, learnings and celebrating the successes and accomplishments. It's also a time of reflection as we move into a new year. While 2016 had it's challenges, we also had an incredibly successful year and for that we are so, so grateful. Here are some of our Instagram highlights from the year. It's fun to look back and remember what a great year we've had!
We sourced beautiful product and furniture. We started and completed projects. We installed furniture and styled rooms pretty. We travelled to far away places and took time for ourselves. We worked as a team and grew closer together. We researched and learned new things. We created. We designed. We inspired each other. And last but not least, we connected, with each other and with you. Thank you 2016!
We've lost count as to the number of years we've been decorating this long time client's home for Christmas but we figure it's around eight now! It's been an evolution of ornaments however the colour scheme and style has remained the same. The tree is a grand size at roughly 15' tall, and the smell...so good.
This year we decided to capture the decorating experience and share it with you by way of video. We've posted a lot of images from this house over the years, however the personality of the interior, as well as our team, comes a little more alive. Of course, I couldn't resist sharing a few photos as well. Enjoy!
Video production and photographs: Module Creative Agency
We have been busy like elves in the office, creating and packaging gifts for clients. I love this time of year! Inspired by a House & Home moss wreath we saw in the December 2015 issue, we embarked on our own version.
We made the miniature glitter houses and provided those as well as the wire brush trees (purchased from Michaels) to the Canadian Tire pop-up garden centre who made the moss wreaths and attached the house and trees for us. Once complete we adorned with our signature yellow ribbon and voila!
We have one left and we'd love to give it away! What better way to celebrate our Instagram followers than to have a giveaway.
Any one of the following is equal to one entry.
1. Follow us on Instagram! If you're already a follower, thank you!
2. We'd love to see your favourite Christmas and holiday decor! Tag us in an Instagram photo along with the hashtag #nfdiholidaygiveaway to be entered.
3. Share the giveaway with your Instagram followers along with the hashtag #nfdiholidaygiveaway to be entered.
Each share and post on Instagram receives an entry so do so as often as you wish. Don't forget the hashtag and to tag @nylafreedesigns !
Please make sure we can reach you via Instagram. The contest closes at noon on Monday, December 12th and the winner will be announced at 4pm. The wreath will be shipped on December 13th. You will need to provide us with a valid street address (our shipper is unable to ship to a PO Box or RR address).
IMPORTANT NOTE: Due to the sensitive nature of the live wreaths, we are able to ship within CANADA ONLY.
We look forward to connecting with you on Instagram and seeing your beautiful holiday decor!
I love a good craft project, and this one looks a lot harder than it is, which is always the best kind, right?! Trust me! We documented our DIY process in the making of these adorable mini glitter houses. We're also exited to show you what we're doing with the finished product so stay tuned.
Step 1: Gather all necessary supplies. House templates (we found a modern flat roof style as well as a traditional house), 1/8" thick balsa wood, e6000 adhesive, x-acto knife, pencil, metal ruler and a cutting mat. Here is the link for the house templates. You can modify the scale by increasing the percentage to the size you'd like depending on your project.
Note: we planned to hold the houses in place with push pins while the glue dried but the e6000 adhesive was so strong the pins were not necessary.
Step 2-3: Trace the house shapes on to the balsa wood. Use a heavy duty x-acto knife and a metal ruler to cut out the parts of the house.
Step 4: We found it easiest to cut all of the parts first, organize into piles and then begin assembly.
Step 5 - 8: Apply the e6000 adhesive along the sides and connect to the face. Repeat for the back of the house. Apply adhesive to the top edges of the pitches and apply the roof, one side at a time. Attach house to base.
Step 9: Congratulations! You have now completed your house and it's ready for paint.
Step 10: Paint the houses using white craft paint. I applied two coats of paint for full coverage.
Step 11: Add windows and doors to your houses using charcoal craft paint and a very fine paint brush. I outlined the windows and doors in pencil first. Let dry completely before applying glitter.
Step 12: Assemble all supplies to apply glitter to the houses. Snow (the Department 56 brand is one the one we used), clear glue, a flat paint brush, silver glitter, cream/ off-white glitter and spray glue.
Step 13 - 14: Apply the clear glue to the areas you would like glitter. Smooth over with a paint brush so all areas are covered. Using a small spoon, scoop up a small amount of glitter and scatter the glitter over the glue. Gently tap the house to remove any lose glitter.
Step 15: Finish the houses off by adorning the fascia with fresh snow. Apply the clear glue to the edges (fascia). I put a small amount of the snow in the palm of my hand and dabbed the edges of the houses into the snow.
Add a layer of spray glue to hold everything in place.
All done! Now you may be wondering what we're up to with these little gems. You'll have to wait until the next post to see the final product. Until then...here's a teaser :)
Pop up shops are the latest trend in the world of shopping. Businesses large and small are enjoying the opportunity to have a "boutique" setting to show off their wares. The big box retailer Canadian Tire is no exception. With each store independently owned and franchised, there is only one with the creative genius of thinking outside the "big" box and taking a pop up style shop approach to their garden centre offerings of holiday greens and live goods. The Canadian Tire store on Macleod Trail S in Calgary (Southland Drive intersection), not only provides all the fixings for you to create your own outdoor winter scape, but also the opportunity to bring your own container to their in house designer and walk away with a beautiful planter full of winter greens and sure to bring life to your outdoor space.