my bedroom reveal

A while back I blogged about embarking on the design of our bedroom. It was high time we had a grown up space to call our own. No more books and lamps on the floor, no more bedding that will ‘do for now’, and for Pete’s sake my windows were desperate for some attention.

So where did I begin? Well first I gave myself a deadline. This deadline was a little more serious than others as I decided to include it in one of my Reality Check columns for Dabble Mag. Better get a move on!

I originally started with images that I thought closely resembled what I wanted the room to look and feel like. This is a very important process that I encourage clients to do. If you’d like to see the images I chose you can pop over to my ‘new bedroom‘ post.

The wallpaper was the jumping off point. I have to admit I did start this process full steam ahead a few years ago and then stalled out completely. Shuffling beds around the house meant we needed a new one and we decided on king size. A king bed resulted in the need for all new bedding, and this is where I came to a full stop.

After giving myself a deadline it seemed as though the decisions came easy after that, although my husband may beg to differ. I would say that my creative juices started flowing after the purchase of my vintage spaghetti, spun fiberglass swag lamps from Wonders on Wonderland antique shop in Nashville TN. They are the jewels of the room.

Drapery and bedside tables were high on the priority list. I wanted to fill the wall so I opted for tables that were larger than most. With hanging lamps this afforded me the full surface of the tables for functional display. Our wall of windows is over 12′ long so drapery is a key element in the room. To create impact with subtlety I chose a muted mauve textured fabric in a floor to ceiling ripple fold treatment.

Lastly, yet arguably most important was the bedding. With the floral wallpaper as my focal point I chose simple bedding in a dark, charcoal cotton sateen. Patterned sheets were a must for me and I accented with a rich plum velvet in the euro shams and patterned accent cushion.

We have a large bedroom and ample room was left at the foot of the bed begging for more furniture. I originally thought of a sofa, however after spotting these corner chairs I knew they were perfect. I adore the stitched paisley fabric and how well they mix with the other patterns and textures.

If you’ve read the current issue of Dabble Mag this may be familiar to you already…..

What’s a photo shoot without a little drama? Electricians were installing the light fixtures about a 1/2 hour before the photo shoot began. I’m sure you didn’t stop by to see images of men at work and an installation in progress now did you?

So here you go…the reveal of my bedroom. Finally, a grown up space!

Our bedroom is very different than what I originally set out to achieve, but I’m so pleased with the end result. Who knew I would ever own swag lamps?? With a sophisticated, relaxed elegance, this is just the right mix of colour, pattern and texture for our bedroom. We’ve since added a piece of art on the right hand wall and we are still on the lookout for a dresser/storage unit.

To learn more about choosing bedding, please head on over to the May/June issue of Dabble Mag and flip to page 65. You can also watch the bedding video on the Dabble website.


Wallpaper: Designers Guild, Bed: Crate and Barrel, Bedside Tables: Elte, Bedding: Cushy Life, Chairs: Domaine, Drapery: through Nyla Free Designs, Area Carpet: through Nyla Free Designs, Throw: Pottery Barn, Her shoes: Cole Haan, His shoes: Nike, Man Bag: Vintage :)

Photography by the talented Lori Andrews.


free design notes: 5.9.11

I thought I’d take it outside for today’s design notes because after all, aren’t we all craving a little afternoon siesta in the sun? I really love how they’ve taken a simple cabana structure (available almost everywhere) and turned it into a fabulous space to chill out, soak up some sun, read a book, gather with friends…need I go on?

In our previous home we had a cabana very similar to this with a dining table underneath. I do however prefer this seating area much more… if I could do it over again :) What do you think? Do you have the space or ability to pull something like this off in your backyard? Or perhaps you prefer a more traditional seating environment. Would love to know what you think.

Happy Monday!

Image Source: Google

free design notes: 5.2.11

I think you’ll agree that when anyone in the design industry mentions Metropolitan Home, we all sigh a little bit. This is one of my favorite images from the magazine and in fact my husbands too. I will admit that I’ve been finding inspiration from my husbands Pinterest boards. Although somewhat edgy, he’s a pretty stylish guy, and also has a love of interiors. We don’t always agree on design but this image makes my heart go pitter patter and he’s listed it as ‘one of his favorites’ in his ‘Mason‘ style board.

If we were to build another house I would include this floor to ceiling window/sliding door concept somewhere in the home. I love how it invites the outside in and creates this light filled atmosphere. The negative space allows the furniture and fixtures to act as functional art and architectural details to be the focus.

It seems as though there’s currently a traditional movement going on in design so I’m curious to hear what you think of this space.

Always love to hear from you!

Image source: My Modern Met


dabble issue 2 is live!

It’s here! and it’s FAB! Issue #2 of Dabble Mag is hot off the virtual presses with bright, bold and beautiful images, full of stories and inspirations. I’ve highlighted a few of my favorite parts and a sneak peak but there’s plenty more inside so pop on over. It won’t disappoint!

Also, be sure to check out the Dabble website. There is design • travel • food content updated daily.

Who could resist this cover image on the beach of Santa Monica? If this was in print and on newsstands it would sell like hotcakes and fly off the shelves. Hint Hint Dabble!

I love this flea market chic living space with mismatched chairs and vintage finds. Casual, comfortable furniture in a modern environment. See more of this home on page 36.

So happy to see my friend Lori Andrews on the pages of Dabble with her bright and sunny bathroom. Check it out on pages 56.

I love the colour and architecture of these buildings in Porto Rico. Learn more about this spectacular Caribbean island on page 116.

And lastly, be sure to get some insider tips on choosing bedding. My latest Reality Check column begins on page 64.

I hope you can find time for yourself this weekend to sit back and relax with a cup of coffee, tea or even a glass of wine and take in all the goodness of Dabble Mag issue 2. Enjoy!

inspirations: flowers

I consider myself to be a fairly patient person but I’ve got to be honest, I’m about ready to lose my mind. We’ve had the longest winter EVER and I’m sooooooo ready for some life. One would think I’d be happy that our snow is gone, and don’t get me wrong, I most certainly am. But I want flowers and green grass like, yesterday! Our sunny blue skies aren’t enough for me anymore and unfortunately I have about another month before any floral lovelies begin to wake up from their winter nap and the ground surely is not thawed enough to plant anything new. So in the meantime, because I’m desperate, I may fill my house and self with flowers. I often find therapy in blogging so in an effort to make myself feel better I’m finding inspiration in these lovely floral images. I hope they inspire you too, wherever you are.

I have always loved the Mademoiselle chair from Kartell and with this floral fabric I’m thinking I could have flowers all year long in my kitchen nook. Great idea, don’t you think?

For more floral goodness, pick up a copy of the latest issue of Martha Stewart Living. It’s chock full of colour and life. There….I’m starting to feel better already.

Images: pillow, glass canisters, market flowers (personal photo from the San Fransisco market), ring, necklace, flowers on window sill, floral desktop, hair accessory.


a day in the life: jab/chivasso spring 2011 collection

If you love fabrics as much as I do then you’re sure to enjoy the eye candy below. As a designer we get the inside scoop on new introductions and products. One of my favorite things to do is attend ‘fabric shows’. They are like fashion shows without the runway. Large, beautiful pieces of fabric draped in front of us to touch, feel and gawk at the feast of colour and texture before us.

Last week I attended a showing of the JAB/Chivasso Spring 2011 Collection so naturally I wanted to share. JAB is a leader in the fabric industry and one of the largest fabric houses in the world. Their repertoire consists of everything from traditional to modern, while covering a wide range of price points to meet every budget. Here’s a peak at what I saw……

Grandezza Collection Vol. V is a stunning mix of silks and sheers with hand stitched intricate details.

The white passion collection, one of my favorites of the show is a stunning mix of textures, patterns, sheers and 3-dimensional details.

Fabulous heavy duty linens fit for upholstery and drapery in a rainbow of beautiful colours.

Matlasse Collection is reversible and washable. Perfect for bedding and interesting drapery applications.

Blueprint Collection was by far my favorite, in particular the metallic printed frames on a natural linen background. Stunning!

Well there you have it. An array of fabric fabulousness in the JAB/Chivasso Spring 2011 Collection.

A benefit of working with a designer is the access to fabrics such as the above that are only available to the trade, so if there is anything here that piques your interest, let me know!

free design notes: 4.25.11

When designing, part of my thought process is seeing a room for what it’s not. I know this sounds odd, however I think you can create interesting spaces in areas that are unexpected. Much like the image below of an upper floor hallway. More than a way to get from point A to point B, there’s another element of living here that can happen along the way.

Thinking outside the box and using a space in a different way than you may have first thought can add just the right amount of interest to your home. Do you have a typical space in your home that you could use in an unexpected way?

Would love for you to share!

Image via Google Images: Original Source unknown

design: sneak peek at jane’s bedroom

Here’s a little colour story and idea board I’ve got on the go for a fabulous young girl and her new bedroom that we’re working on. Just like her, it’s bright and cheery, so I thought I’d leave you with this as I head out for a long weekend. Happy Easter everyone! I hope you have a lovely, relaxing weekend filled with lots of love and chocolate :) See you back here on Monday.

Flower pom poms, bedding, floral fabric, area rug via Layers and Layers

artist: kate schutz

I was recently introduced to Kate Schutz‘ art when I purchased a piece for a Calgary client’s bathroom after their renovation was complete. I had the pleasure of meeting her in person at an event at Domaine and was thrilled to learn more about her artwork. Naturally I wanted to introduce you as well! I love Kate’s passionate description of her art and where she finds her inspiration so please take a moment to say hello.

“My work is about memory. I am fascinated by the bittersweet aspect of nostalgia that is neither entirely happy nor sad, but is a universal experience that humanizes us. The past is a deeply personal and resonant place for people and I am always looking at ways to capture these feelings on canvas; immortalize them and make them big. My paintings are usually larger than life size which makes the subject hard to pull away from. There is both a sense of comfort and awkwardness in my work. I find it easier to represent the universality of these nostalgic subjects if I remain detached a little bit, so I often work from memories that are not my own. My source images come from snapshots from other people’s photo albums and most recently from strangers via requests on the Internet. I am especially drawn to photos that are blurry, disintegrating or over-exposed because visually they look so much like our foggy, fading memories. Recent series have included Birthday Parties, Cities at Night and now a call for submissions for Summer Vacation images. And sometimes, when I need a break from other people’s memories, I go into the woods and paint trees, just to remind myself about the joy of this everyday life!”

Do you have a childhood summertime memory captured in a photo? One that perhaps epitomizes a time where you were free as a bird and thought time could stand still? Kate has a call out for Summer Vacation photos with a contest to boot. Take a moment to dig through the archives or your old summer memories and send it off to Kate. The winner will receive a collection of all the images in postcard form. How lovely to have one of those arrive in your mailbox?

Here is the one I’m going to submit. It’s a photo of my husband and his sister at the beach, circa 1978. Aren’t they cute? One definitely looks happier than the other LOL!

So what are you waiting for? If you don’t submit, I of course have a better chance of winning but I think it would be great to support Kate and help spread the word, don’t you?

Pop on over to Kate’s blog to see what the submission guidelines are and good luck!

You can find more of Kate’s work at Domaine Fine Furnishings in Calgary and also at her Etsy shop.


handbag to room: red & white stripes

They say accessories can make all the difference to an outfit and the same can be true in interiors. LOVE this red and white striped handbag. It can take an outfit to a whole new level in no time flat.

Now if you were to apply this same enthusiasm to your decor (and no I’m not just talking about adding a pillow), look at the impact red and white striped wallpaper has in this room. It takes a traditional space and completely transforms it into a playful room with bold stripes and a colourful contrast.

Don’t get me wrong, without the wallpaper this space would still be nice, but try imagining it without and I think you’ll agree that the red and white stripes really make this room sing.

Images: kate spade kennywood small sidney handbag, elledecor