Home Tour: Scandinavian meets Country and I couldn’t be happier they met

Scandinavian Country

While in the rabbit whole of this thing called the world wide web, I stumbled upon the dining room image above. It seriously drew me in, love everything about this room, especially how the mirrors reflect the kitchen, making those mirrors feel like art. I needed to see more. And when I clicked to see the entire feature in Style at Home, it did not disappoint. This home perfectly illustrates why blending styles is a definite “do”. I also really love how in the living room the view in the window provides the perfect pop of colour for the space, it’s such a thoughtful design.

Scandinavian Country Scandinavian Country Scandinavian Country Scandinavian Country Scandinavian Country Scandinavian Country

Source: Style at Home

How to select multiple fixtures for one space

title2

Last week I did a Mini Makeover with a client who had lots of ceiling fixtures in her main open concept living space. One above her dining table, once about her couch, one in a nook and one in her formal living room!

It can be overwhelming to find multiple fixtures that work with together and don’t all try to steal the show from each other.

Here’s a few tips on how you can incorporate more than one light in a room.

1. Decide on a statement fixture.

Pick one fixture to be the star of the room. It’s likely the first one you see walking into the room, but whatever you decide be sure that it’s the one that is the focal point and your eye goes to this one first. Once you decide on which fixture is the star, start searching for the perfect light fixture.

Tip: If a fixture is hanging in an area where people will walk below it, ensure there is at least a 7′ clearance. If the fixture is above a dining table or coffee table, you can vary the height.

2. Find an element, shape or style for the additional fixtures that ties them all together.

Finding the statement fixture is easy part. But finding fixtures that will accompany this statement piece is where things get a bit dicey. You want them to feel cohesive, look great but also not steal the show.

Use can consider the elements of the fixtures to tie them together. So maybe they all have gold, maybe they all have wood which makes them feel cohesive, or they each have a similar colour.

You can also consider the shape as a way to tie them together. It doesn’t have to be in an obvious way, for example, one fixture might have multiple round bulbs, and the other two fixtures are globes. The fact that they all have the circular shape tying them together can work.

Another way to tie lights together is by style. For example, you might fixtures that tie in a beach feel or maybe all your fixtures are sophisticated or luxurious.

3. Consider contrasting shapes and/or elements.

Just when you started understanding how to find similar elements to tie the fixtures together, now I’m going to tell you to also ensure there are contrasting elements. Adding contrasting elements creates interest and helps make the statement fixture stand out as well. A simple way to make something a focal point is by having contrasting elements around it.

This is easily accomplished by contracting shapes, colours, and even size.

4. Create a Pinterest board or mood board to see how the fixtures look together.

If you have read previous blogs, or are in my Facebook group, than you know I’m all about planning. It’s key to creating a beautiful, functional space. With that in mind, I strongly suggest creating a Pinterest board or a mood board where you can see all the light fixtures you are considering together to ensure they all work together perfectly.

Once you do this ask yourself…

  • Does the fixture you intended to be the statement stand out?
  • Are there elements that tie the lights together?
  • Are there contrasting elements?

fixtures

1. Serena & Lily | Lumens | Serena & Lily
2. CB2 | boutique MBD | CB2
3. Restoration Hardware | Modern Furniture Knockoff | Modern Furniture Knockoff
4. boutique MBD | CB2 | boutique MBD
5. boutique MBD | boutique MBD | boutique MBD
6. Rejuvenation |  Crate & Barrel  | West Elm

HOME DECOR: JULY FAVOURITES

Home Decor

It’s been a while since I did a round-up of my monthly favourites, I figure it’s high-time I bring these back!

July was a busy month of juggling various client projects, and pinning a few of my favourite home decor items while sourcing. Check these bad boys out…

1. Urban Outfitters – Apartment

I knew Urban Outfitters had a home decor line, but I only recently really checked it all out. I almost seemed like I needed to change this post to ‘Why I love Urban Outfitters Apartment Line’, when I realized a huge portion of my favourites were from here! They do ship most items to Canada, but sadly, they don’t ship their furniture to Canada (sad face). Why oh why must these retailers hurt my heart the way they do? Check out some of my favourites from Urban Outfitters…

Urban Outfitters Apartment
:: Quibe One Line Nude Art Print Starting from $19 USD ::

Urban Outfitters Apartment
:: Gumball Floor Lamp $159 now $129 ::

Urban Outfitters Apartment
:: Grand Sienna Headboard $598 USD ::

Urban Outfitters Apartment
:: Lali Printed Rug Starting from $59 USD ::

2. New Trend – Olive Trees and Branches

I posted this new trend on my Facebook page and it was a huge hit! It’s absolutely beautiful, and a welcome change to the typical fig leaf tree trend we’re seeing in magazines. But don’t get it twisted, I’ll still have lots of love for the fig leaf tree.

olive-tree

3. Amber Interiors

Ok, fine this is not a new favourite, but I am constantly inspired by everything she designs, I pinned this beautifully, simplistic entryway table from her portfolio. If you want to know more about Amber Interiors and her awesomeness click here.

Amber Interiors

4. Affordable knockoffs

If you’re like me, than you can’t afford the legit price that accompanies designer products like this lamp! I squealed when I found this knockoff for a fraction of the cost!

Affordable KnockoffsHigh: Design Within Reach  Low: Modern Furniture Knockoff

5. Leather chairs 

Looks like I’m really loving leather chairs at the moment, because I pinned four of them in July! These are all insanely gorgeous and I just can’t get enough of them.

Beautiful white walls + any one of these chairs = sheer gorgeousness.

Urban Outfitters Apartment1. Horne  |  2. CB2  |  3. Anthropologie  |  4. Urban Outfitters

What do you think? Any of these suit your fancy? Are you loving anything in particular at the moment?

interior designer

My top 5 favourite products from Ikea’s 2017 catalog, you NEED to check these out!

ikea's 2017 catalog

Oh Ikea, how I love thee. Your furniture. Your pillows. Your ads. And now your Ikea 2017 catalog.

Remember this gem of a commercial?

So good, right?

I love that that Ikea products help me create budget-friendly spaces for my clients. No, I’m not going to furnish your entire space with Ikea, but if you’re on a budget, we can select some key investment pieces and infuse some gorgeous, stylish Ikea pieces to help finish the space, it’s the perfect solution to keep your budget in check.

And now, they have more options to help me do that! I was pumped when they launched their 2017 catalog, it does NOT disappoint, homies.

Here’s my favourite five new items from the 2017 Ikea catalog (available for purchase now!)

GRÖNADAL Rocking Chair GRÖNADAL Rocking Chair

The GRÖNADAL Rocking Chair $149 CAD

Holy crap. This is my absolute favourite of all the new products. Adding textural elements in a space is important to creating a space that feels polished. Couple this chair with a sheepskin throw or the perfect pillow and this bad boy is a designers dream.

This rocking chair is going to be used in a space soon, I promise you that! (Hey universe, bring me a space this can be used in!)

Here’s what Lisa Hilland, the designer has to say about this piece, “I designed GRÖNADAL with the idea of making a rocking-chair that unites unexpected meetings between materials and expressions. Rattan and ash are lively natural materials that age with grace, creating an interesting contrast to the powder-coated steel. The back and seat are handwoven using traditional techniques, while the airy shape connects to modern Scandinavian design.”

Nailed it Lisa!

GLADOM Tray Table
GLADOM Tray Table

The GLADOM Tray Table $29 CAD

This gem is available in two colours (green and yellow) and is the perfect modern table that is small enough to be used anywhere! Plus, the GLADOM tray table comes with a removable tray that looks nice by itself placed on an ottoman or wherever it’s used for serving. Whaaaat?!

 ELVARLI STORAGE SYSTEM

The ELVARLI STORAGE SYSTEM Starting from $184 CAD

I’ve already got ideas and plans for the ELVARLI storage system! I have a commercial project in the works that I think this might be the perfect solution for! This system can be used in a walk-in closet, or look absolutely stunning as an open concept closet or as a room divider.

So good Ikea, SO GOOD!

 SKOGSKLÖVER BLIND

The SKOGSKLÖVER BLIND Starting from $19.99

The SKOGSKLÖVER Blind is affordable, whether you want to just use the blind for a more modern and minimalist look or pair this up with curtains and you’ve got the perfect polished look (and it comes in three colours!).

Affordable and stylish window treatments are always a hit in my book!

BLÅVINDA Duvet Cover
BLÅVINDA Duvet Cover

The BLÅVINDA DUVET COVER $59.99 CAD

I love the casual and sophisticated look and feel of the BLÅVINDA Duvet Cover. It’s got a classic pinstripe that feels neutral, light and airy. Pair it with some killer throw pillows and your bedroom will transform into an oasis.

So what do you think? Want to see more, click here to check out the entire 2017 Ikea catalog!
Photos by IKEA

interior designer

Furniture Placement Tips to Create the Perfect Space

Furniture Placement Tips

Ever buy a piece of furniture only to realize after you bought it, and put it together, that it’s just too freaken’ big for the space?

Or maybe you’ve arranged your furniture and something just feels off, but you can’t put your finger on it.

In this weeks episode of Dream Homies TV I answer a member of my Facebook groups question about furniture placement. I give you three furniture placement tips, and because I’m feeling super generous I’ve added an extra five tips in this post!

1. Measure your space.

They say size matters. I say they’re damn right it does. If you buy furniture that’s just a bit too big, it won’t fit; if you buy something too small, it’ll look silly. You don’t want your space to look silly do you? I didn’t think so. So, do yourself a favour and measure your space and be really diligent when you do. Measure everything; I mean everything – the length and height of your walls, the placement and size of the door and windows, and architectural elements.

2. Determine how you want to use your space.

If you’ve just moved into your home, make sure you give yourself at least two months to get to know your space. I get it, you wanna jump in and do it all now, I’ve soooo been there.

When we bought our house, I had visions of having friends over in the basement for games night, we’d pull out our Norden table and rock out a game of Catan (great board game btw).

Guess how many times that happened.

If you guessed none. Than you’d be right.

Guess how many times I’ve wished we bought a cabinet for additional storage instead of that useless table.

If you guessed 793 times. Than you’d be wrong, because it was obviously 796 times.

Seriously, get to know your space. Understand who will be using the space and what functions will take place. Once you can confidently answer the questions below, you can start thinking about how and where to arrange your furniture.

  • What are the traffic patterns like?
  • How do I use this room?
  • How do I want to use this room?
  • Which rooms do I use most?
  • What tasks am I doing in my rooms?
  • What tasks do I want to be doing in my rooms?

3. Create a floor plan.

This is one of those things most homeowners just don’t do. But it’s so crucial; it sets the stage for how you’ll use the space! So take the 30 to 60 minutes it takes to draw the floor plan to-scale, include all windows and doors and any architectural elements.

You can use graph paper where one box equals one foot. So if your room is 9 feet long, than nine boxes represents that wall.

But who wants to use graph paper? I recommend using an online program like Room Sketcher. It’s pretty easy to use, and your first few projects are free!

Once you’ve created your floor plan, you can drag furniture from their catalogue and play with different configurations for your room. This allows you to get a feel for the size of furniture the space will allow. Don’t forget to include lamps, plants and area rugs and be sure to consider the traffic patterns.

This is the most important step to minimize the risk of buying something that is too large or too small. When you drag the furniture into the room, you can click on its “properties” and change the height, depth and width to be the exact size you need in the space. Then you know exactly what size furniture to look for!

4. Establish a focal point.

Every room needs a focal point, once you establish what your rooms focal point is you’ll want to arrange furniture around it so that it’s easily enjoyed by those in the room (aka the friends and family you’ll invite over when you’re ready to show off your house).

A focal point can be something architectural in the room like a fireplace or window, or you can create one with art or furniture (such as a bookcase). Seating is best set up facing a focal point as opposed to being the focal point.

5. Be sure to include furniture of various heights.

When you’re selecting furniture, you want to consider the height of each piece you select. Adding various heights will ensure you create visual interest in the room. In other words, you’ll ensure you’re not designing a room that feels boring! I normally aim to include at least one or two pieces of furniture that add height to the space.

Furniture Placement Tips - Add Height

6. Consider scale and proportion.

Proportion and scale are dependent on size and the relationships between objects. When selecting furniture, consider the height, depth and width of each piece you select. If your room feels off, it could be that the furniture you’ve selected it’s the right scale for your room or for the furniture it’s placed with.

7. Strike the right balance.

Balance is achieved when careful consideration is given to the placement of objects within a space. To achieve balance, evenly distribute furniture throughout the room. Always try to balance a wall with the wall across from it. For example, if there is a large fireplace on one wall, you might consider a large shelf on the opposite wall to create a balance.

Once you’ve created a floor plan that feels right, examine if for balance. The Balance Test is a method to help when checking for balance in the room. Start by breaking the room into four equal quadrants, then examine for furniture balance by ensuring that each quadrant has a similar ratio of furniture to empty space. If it feels off, add or remove furniture until the balance works.

8. Give your your furniture some breathing room.

It’s important to acknowledge that just because something fits, doesn’t mean it’s the right size. If you can, move your couch a few inches away from the wall to create some breathing room and make a space seem larger. If you can’t pull it away from the wall because of space restrictions, move chairs or side tables a few inches out to open up the room. If you’re working with a big room, feel free to put the couch in the centre facing a set of windows or a fireplace to break the room into two separate spaces.

So there you have it, eight tips to help when arranging furniture! I’d love to know where you’ve struggled most when it comes to arranging your furniture. My biggest struggle in my own home has always been giving myself time to get to know my space. I’m an eager beaver like that, I want it all done NOW! It just goes to show, even decorators can struggle when it comes to their own space.

interior designer

Photography by Heidi Lau

4 Ideas for Storing Workout Gear in a Small Space

Hide Workout Gear

I had a fellow Facebook group Dream Homie* ask me about where to store her workout gear in her small space. It got me thinking about the days when I was disciplined and worked out at home like a champ.

That is until I broke my leg playing roller derby.

I didn’t just break my leg, I broke my tibia and fibula, which meant I needed to have surgery so they could stick a big metal rod up in there, in order to stabilize it. So ya, I’m pretty much bionic (if you wanna see some awesome pictures click here).

Let’s just say, my discipline slowly deteriorated after that, much like my left calf muscle.

Wow, ok, get to the point, Michelle.

The point is, that if you want to guarantee yourself a workout at home, it needs to be convenient. But, not just that, it can’t compromise how your home looks! Check out this week’s video with four ideas for hiding your workout gear in a small space.

1. In a nearby closet.

If you have the luxury of a nearby closet, get rid of all the stuff you don’t need and replace it with your workout gear. Get a Rubbermaid container or a basket and now you can easily pull your workout gear out and keep your space looking like your dream home!

2. In a cabinet with closed doors.

When working out at home was a priority in my life, this is where I hid my gear so I could easily access it whenever I was ready to bang out a workout. You’ll want to ensure that the cabinet is the right height and width, and that’s it’s deep enough to fit all of your workout gear. Hide Workout Gear in a Cabinet 1. Ikea  |  2. Ikea  | 3. Structube  |  4. Structube  |  5. West Elm

3. In an ottoman with storage.

This one is great because you don’t need to add any new furniture into your space; it’s perfect for small spaces. Hide Workout Gear in an Ottoman 1. Urban Barn  |  2. Wayfair  |  3. Crate&Barrel  |  4. CB2

4. In a nice, sturdy basket.

Ok, I get it; maybe you don’t feel like spending a bunch of much money on a storage solution. Totally fair. Instead find a nice, sturdy basket big enough to house all of the gear you need to store. Find an empty corner in your room and you’re good to go. Hide Workout Gear in a Basket

1. Ikea  |  2. Urban Barn  |  3. Indigo  |  4. CB2

*Join the Dream Homies FREE Facebook group, a community where you can share ideas, ask for advice on your decorating dilemmas and collaborate with people who are hell-bent on creating their dream home, just like you!

interior designer

3 Ideas for a Long Living Room Wall

Long Living Room Wall

Often times our home comes with annoying architectural elements that we loath, like an awkwardly long living room wall. Like everything in life you have a choice to make.

Fight it?

Or embrace it.

I always try to embrace anything that gets thrown my way, even when it’s something I wouldn’t choose if given the choice. It’s just an easier (not to mention happier) way to live life.

Am I right?

When I read this weeks ‘Ask Michelle Monday’ question, excitement overwhelmed me, I actually wish I had a long wall to incorporate some of these ideas in my home!

Be sure to watch the video for more details and guidelines on what to do to incorporate my three ideas for what to do with an awkward long wall.

1) Long Living Room Wall Idea 1 – Expose the Brick

Ideas for a Long Living Room Wall - Expose the Brick Long-Living-Room-Wall-exposed-brick1

2) Long Living Room Wall Idea 2 – Wallpaper the Wall

Long Living Room Wall Add Wallpaper Long Living Room Wall Add Wallpaper

3) Long Living Room Wall Idea 3 – Create a Gallery Wall

If you watched my video, than you know this is the option I love most! Gallery walls are perfect for really showing your personality, whether it’s family photos, or finding fun, crazy art.

Be sure that you hang your art at the right height! Don’t know how high to hang your art?

I got your back, I’ve put together some tips and guidelines for hanging art. Plus, you can check out an example of some fun, crazy art my partner and I hung in our house (prepare yourself for cute overload!)

Long Living Room Create a Gallery Wall Long Living Room Create a Gallery Wall Naples beach condo living room

So here’s the deal. Even when you home has some annoying elements, there is always a way to turn it into something beautiful.

Do you have anything in your home that you didn’t like, but eventually embraced? Let me know in the comments.


Photo sources: Title Image: Made by Lemon | Exposed Brick 1 & 2: Architecture Art Designs | Wallpaper 1: Casa de Valentina | Wallpaper 2:Jones Design Company | Gallery Wall 1: Design Mom | Gallery Wall 2: Studio McGee | Gallery Wall 3: K2 Design 

3 Simple Tips for Selecting Paint Colours

Selecting Paint

The most common question I get when I tell people I’m an interior decorator is about selecting paint! The struggle is real, I get it. Who can navigate through the sea of paint chips?

Ain’t nobody got time fo’ dat!

With a little bit of planning though, you can make the process of selecting paint just a wee bit easier, find out how in today’s episode of Dream Homies TV.

(This just in, I finally launched my YouTube channel *does a happy dance*)

Once you’ve watched, in the comments below, tell me…what has your biggest struggle with selecting paint been?

When it comes to selecting paint, its easy to feel paralyzed by decisions, but remember to have fun with it and that you can always change it later. Follow my three tips and be sure to test your colour before painting the entire room. You can even go beyond your comfort zone here and give yourself a few days to see how you feel! By testing beforehand, you’ll feel much more confident about your colour choice before slapping that colour to the walls!

Get your paint colour right and you won’t have to paint your room again! And if you watched my video you know how I feel about painting.

Home Decor: April Favourites

Home Decor - April Favourites

I hate that I haven’t blogged for a couple of weeks. April has been a seriously hectic month, but also, super exciting.

Why, you ask? (ok, fine, you probably didn’t ask but I’m gonna tell you anyway.)

I finally got my home photographed, and I couldn’t be more excited to share it with you! Stay tuned for the reveal later this month, plus, I’ll share behind the scene details on how it came together and some plans I have for the future. In the meantime, check out this months faves!

april-favourites-1b
I love, love, LOVE everything about this space. From how the light on the stairs gives it the illusion of a gradient to the stark contrast of browns and whites, and the textures are just perfect. #nailedit

april-favourites-2b This light. Sometimes, it’s just gotta be all about the light fixture. This light is all “Hey girl, check me out, not only do I light up this gorgeous space, but I look damn good doing it.” You sure do light, you sure do. [Design by Amie Corley]

april-favourites-3b Pretty. That’s it, just real freaken’ pretty. [Photo by Nina Choi, Design by Caroline Biggs]

favourites Title: Anthropologie | 1. Little Big Adventure  |  2. H&M Home  |  3. CB2 | 4. Ikea | 5. Dot & Bo | 6. West Elm | 7. West Elm | 8. Joss and Main | 9. Dot and Bo | 10. Urban Barn

Interior Design - Work with Me