Saturday, March 31, 2012

Take Your Pick ~ Style at Home Colour Collections With Beauti-Tone

Beauti-Tone paints has teamed up with Style at Home magazine & Home Hardware to create a colour collection that will make your mouth water. I'm extremely impressed by the colour selections and even more impressed by the style guides they give you. If you're an interior design novice, Beauti-Tone gives you paint suggestions to match up the look that you're trying to achieve so there's little room for error. And when starting a big paint project, that's music to anyone's ears. Although I love every collection, two stand-outs for me are the cottage and farmhouse series. I'm drooling over the paint colour lighthouse and agree that it would make for the perfect look-at-me door colour. And you all know I adore green, so I cannot help but gravitate toward viburnum (and I'm loving how it looks combined with the black and grey tones). So take your pick: which series is your favourite? Are you gaga over the relaxed yet cheerful cottage colour palette? Or does the soft whites, spring green, and contemporary country farmhouse style scream you?

Friday, March 30, 2012

Inspirational Words for a Fabulous Friday

Howdy, folks! Today is a bright and sunny day (although a bit on the chilly side!) To make this post short-and-sweet, I leave you with some inspirational words. Words are very powerful things. Incorporating them into your space can make a very bold statement. I loved the last photo which shows the family's mantra. And because it's the second official week of Spring, I thought the first image was very fitting. What are some inspirational words that you live by?

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Colour Magic ~ Red, White & Blue

Why does the colour palette blue, red and white blend so beautifully together? Maybe it's because red and blue are such strong and complementary primary colours, that when balanced with a neutral and non-threatening white, they create magic. Have you noticed that across the globe, many of the country's colours are red white and blue? (Several countries immediately come to mind, such as USA, UK, Australia, France...) I wonder why that is. The blend of these three colours not only creates a feeling of being proud of one's country but also sparks a nautical feel which, frankly, who can resist? These rooms would be cozy in January yet classic in July. These images were photographed by Stacey Van Berkel-Haines and styled by Margot Austin. I love how the rooms also incorporate pale yellow hues, which aren't too overpowering and reminiscent of soft sunshine or blooming dandelions. Also, the key to this colour palette working so wonderfully in this space is using it in just the right doses. Splashes of blue and hints of red do the trick! What's your favourite thing about this colour palette and where have you used it before?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Inspirational Spaces ~ Modern Day Chateau de Frontenay

 Photographs by Tim Beddow

Who hasn't had the fantasy of living in a castle? And if you're anything like me, you've wondered what a modern day castle may look like. When I came across these recent images of the 16th-Century Chateau de Frontenay in the Architectural Digest archives, I got my answers. Who can resist the tree-lined driveway, the modern outdoor pool or the simple breakfast setting on the gravel-covered veranda? What I like about this space is that it kept its historical roots without loosing its modern-day appeal. My favourite room? The kitchen! I'm drooling over the navy-and-gold appliances. They have a regal flare to them, something that's definitely fit for a King. I'm also a big fan of the kitchen's neo-Gothic millwork a well as the romantic and serene energy that exudes from the entire space, especially the outdoors! What do you like about this castle and which room is your favourite?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Lamps That "Rock" ~ Incorporating Crystals Into Your Design Scheme

 1 ~ 2 ~ 3 ~ 4

I guess I'm what you call a modern-day hippie. So imagine my excitement when I came across these natural and beautiful rock crystal table lamps. Usually I wear crystals around my neck (on a chain) for protection but I've discussed using rocks - such as amethyst and malachite - for design purposes. I truly believe in the addition of these magical gems into your design scheme. Not only are they absolutely beautiful to the eye but they are also healing for the spirit. For example, calcite increases and amplifies energy. Amethyst is used for relieving stress, balancing mood swings and dispelling anger, fear or anxiety. Quartz - known as the "universal stone" - is the most recognized type of stone and comes in many forms. One of my favourites is rose quartz, which is the love stone. It's easy to create a modern flare to your rock crystal lamp by adding in a funky lampshade or an eye-catching base. My favourite is the clear Lucite base on the honeycomb coloured calcite lamp. Which lamp is your favourite?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Inspiring Spaces: A Modern Day Pad Fit For "The Golden Girls"

 Design by Meg Braff ~ Photographs by Thibault Jeanson

When I first saw Meg Braff's design for a Palm Beach home, I immediately thought of one of my favourite shows: The Golden Girls. This space looks like a modern day reinvention of Dorothy, Blanche, Rose and Sophia's Miami pad. Who didn't want to live in their exotic bungalow? It even had a lanai! (Even the word lanai seems so glamorous.) The design is pretty and ladylike while still  keeping true to the southern motif by incorporating elements like the trellis wallpaper and the palm trees. The space has a wonderful airy feeling and uses soothing colour palettes, like blue and green, throughout the entire house. I couldn't decide whether the one bedroom would belong to Dorothy or Rose; however, the suite with the mirrored side tables and four-poster bed screamed Blanche. The ladies would probably enjoy this house because of it's retro 1960s elements. What do you think of this space? Which room is your favourite?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sunday {Colour} Inspiration + My Week in Review

Moody colour palettes have their own unique beauty. And did you know that black & white are two of the most emotive visuals in nature? There's something about how these two polar opposites come together. White, often a symbol of purity, brightness and natural innocence combats the dark and authoritative black. I just love how expressive the colours can be without being too audacious. The image on the left is from Elle Decor's March 2012 issue whereas the image on the right was shot by Mikkel Vang for Vogue Living Australia. Which one is your favourite?

This is what I was up to this week:

The perfect Spring DIY that will cost under $50 and take you only 5 minutes! 
I'm currently head-over-heals for Lana Del Ray.
I was under rug swept by Christian Lacroix's tempest rug.
The fine linens from La cerise sur le gateau were just too cute for words (but I managed to say something anyway).
I visited Toronto's Allan Gardens and got some flower power inspiration.
I was inspired by the colour and detail of Tom Antil's Vancouver impressions collection.

~ Happy Sunday!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Beautiful Artwork for an Inspiring & Colourful Weekend

Initially, I had something else planned for my Saturday post. But I literally stumbled across Tom Antil's artwork and felt compelled to share it. Antil's series of Vancouver Impressions is "a unique collection of limited edition prints that captures the true charm of local Vancouver landscapes and architecture." I was blown away by his use of radiant and vivid colour as well as the attention to detail. What I love about Antil's pieces are the blend of inspiration from different genres. Impressionist (form), pointillists (in terms of style), fauvists (for the choice of colours) and folk art (for the mural-like qualities and street scenes). My hope is that the colours inspire you and make you feel happy. Which painting is your favourite and what do you love about this artwork? Hope you're all having a fantastic weekend!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Flower Power ~ Natural Colour Inspiration From Toronto's Allan Gardens

Photos by Robert Joseph
To celebrate the beginning of Spring, I took a leisurely stroll through Allan Gardens, Toronto's conservatory located in the downtown core. Talk about flower power! Allan Gardens, first established in 1858, has a beautiful display of flowering and tropical plants - including a few palm trees. It's a public botanical garden and features six greenhouses with permanent plant collections (sub-tropical garden, Palm House and cacti) and seasonal plants. My goal was to capture the different colour palettes that can be derived from nature. What made these photos almost magical was how the sun, peaking through the light grey clouds, cascaded through the greenhouse windows and danced on the plants and flowers. These photos are unedited to show the natural beauty of the space. I hope looking at these images makes you feel inspired. Happy Friday!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Store Spotlight ~ La cerise sur le gateau

What's not to love about this collection of fine linens by French textile designer Anne Hubert. As the creator of La Cerise sur le Gateau -- which means "the icing on the cake" -- Ann mixes her collections with girly, romantic and nostalgic elements. The results? Designs that are good enough to eat! And I want to take a moment to talk about the killer advertisements. How cute and cheeky are they? I love Anne's thirst for discovery as well as how she incorporates old children's tales into her designs. Whether you're looking for something for the kitchen, laundry room, living room or bedroom - La Cerise sur le Gateau has got your linen needs covered. Anne's inspiration comes from the small, pretty things in life: travel souvenirs, Polaroid photos and scribbles made in a notebook while on the telephone. Are you as crazy about these designs as I am? Which one is your favourite?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Things That I Love ~ Christian Lacroix Tempest Rug

Why I love this piece: Fashion designer Christian Lacroix brings the energy of his unmatched colour style to home furnishings with this beautiful tempest rug. Even though the pattern and idea is really simple, this rug is a stand-out item for me because of it's other-worldly quality. When I look at it, I can see landscapes and nature; the soft curves of a hilltop and the bright, glowing hues of a sunset. It's almost like a piece of art under your feet. And who would want to be "under rug swept" in beauty?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lana Del Rey Inspired ~ Images, Colours & Spaces

 Image Source 

I cannot get enough of Ms. Lana Del Rey. Ever since her "Born to Die" album hit the store shelves in late January, it's all I have been listening to on my iPod. (Recently I managed to play a few different songs just for good measure.) Does that ever happen to you -- when you can't stop playing an album because you love it so much? In turn, it almost becomes the "soundtrack to your life" at the present moment. That last sentence basically sums up how I'm currently feeling. Lana's official video for her song titled "Blue Jeans" premiered today, so in celebration I got the urge to conjure up some Lana inspiration. I thought to myself, "What would Lana's bedroom look like? What would her living room look like?" I came across a blend of bohemian and retro styles that reflect Lana's carefree attitude and her love of vintage clothing. I especially adore the picture which shows a peak into two girly bedrooms, both of which reflect a different side of Lana's personality. The bedroom on the left, where she writes her music and gets inspired, and the room on the right, where she sleeps and puts on her makeup and infamous "red dress" that she sings about in many of her songs. What do you think of these Lana Del Ray inspired spaces, images and colours. Which artists - past or present - inspire you?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Spring DIY ... in 5 Minutes!

Today I was inspired by the perfect Spring DIY project that will only take you 5 minutes and will make your space ready for a new season. Now we all know that artwork can be expensive, but here's an idea that won't break the bank (and will encourage you to "think outside the frame" -- pardon the pun). All you really need are 2 items: a frame + your favourite piece of fabric. My suggestion is a simple frame from IKEA. They have a wide selection ranging from under $20 to over $100. I just stuck with something that was mid price-point at $34.99. Next, slip in your favourite fabric. I loved the coral tones for Spring and I was also dazzled by the purple and pumpkin combination. For this project, you don't need a lot of fabric (and you can even use fabric left over from a previous DIY project). This is a smart design idea because you can swap out the fabric for a new one when you want a change. I personally love the idea of alternating the fabrics to go with each season. What do you think?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sunday {Spring Fabric} Inspiration + My Week in Review

On this bright and beautiful Sunday, I leave you with some bold, fresh, playful -- and a splash of retro -- fabrics by Thibault. Their collection of printed and woven fabrics and wallpaper are the perfect compliments to a stunning "almost-Spring" day. (I keep forgetting that it's not quite Spring yet. We still have a few more days until the official beginning.) Whether you mix-and-match these fabrics and prints, or use them solo, these stylized florals and geometric motifs are the perfect pick-me-up. What do you think of the warm and delicious orange and pink colour palette?

What was I up to this week? Well...

On Monday I went mellow yellow.
Tuesday I highlighted Swarovski Elements decadent wallpaper collection.
On Wednesday I was inspired by Pantone's colour blast with food by Griottes & I was dazzled by these words.
I created a city chic colour palette on Thursday.
Friday I highlighted the designs of Kyle Schunerman.
On Saturday I showed off one of my favourite inspirational spaces - alfresco style

Have a beautiful Sunday! I'm off to enjoy the day outside and run some errands.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Inspirational Spaces for a Beautiful Weekend ~ Alfresco Style

Design: Deirdre Heekin & Caleb Barber    ~       Photography: Ditte Isager
Every once in awhile I come across a space that literally ignites my inspirational juices. For many, their dream home consists of a grand and glorious mansion. Although a mansion would be nice, for me personally, there would be too much space wasted. This cottage in Vermont (which was once a summer camp) is very close to my idea of home perfection. It's quaint, cozy and full of character. It's surrounded by nature, rustic yet modern at the same time, and exudes a bohemian-chic flare. I love the luminous shade of blue on the wall which pops against the grey wall in front of it. I also adore the office space and how messy and cluttered it looks -- but in an organized way. And the inspiration/vision boards are a beautiful touch. They make me inspired just looking at them! This space definitely has an urban-country look to it combined with a mix-and-match of styles from different areas (like the King Louis XIV-inspired Hanna chair, slip covered settee and the Barcelona chair in the living room). And books, books -- so many books (and alcohol!) I can take a few guesses as to what the owners like to do in their spare time! An essemblage of old and new, this space certainly expresses layers of time, love, living and memories. Do you love this home as much as I do? What is your favourite thing about this space?

I hope you have a relaxing and rejuvenating Saturday!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Design Through The Eyes of Kyle Schunerman

Before I discuss the topic at hand, I must take a moment to talk about the weather. Although the calendar says that it's still winter, outside in Toronto - where I live - the weather is screaming summer. I don't know how the weather has been like where you are, but Toronto has experienced a relatively non-existent winter. Now, in mid-March, we're bathing in temperatures of 19 degrees Celsius (that's 66 degrees Fahrenheit!) Plus this beautiful weather is supposed to continue (or so says the five-day forecast). No complaints here, I'm just mesmerized by the weather we've been experiencing thus far in 2012. One local meteorologist even said, "records are melting [all across Canada] more than a marble cheesecake in the fridge!" 

Now onto the creative stuff. Have you heard of designer Kyle Schunerman? He's a fellow creative gent. If the name sounds familiar, maybe it's because Kyle was featured as one of the Next Wave of Top 20 Designers by House Beautiful. And who doesn't love some fresh new blood? What I like about Kyle's spaces is they all have a different personality. He favors clean designs with sleek curves and playful colours. He's also very marketable. What I mean by that is his design tastes reach a broad audience. He isn't too flamboyant or extravagant -- even though there's no problem with being so -- and his designs are cost-effective which means many people can take advantage of them. Plus he has a new book out on how to design for small spaces, and since I live in an apartment myself, I'm dying to get my hands on it. Some stand-out design pieces for me include: the-vintage-tennis-rackets-turned-mirrors, the brown-and-white cow patterned coffee table and the purple flower vase. What inspiration to you get from Kyle's designs?

Happy Friday!