Wednesday, 30 November 2011

A Galen Getaway

The minute I saw this picture of the Galen's (loblaws) getaway in florida I was drawn to it.  I love the symetry of the stairway.  This looks like the perfect southern home.  Then I realized my mother's house had a very similar feel with curved stairs mirroring each other at the front of the house.  The only difference was my mother's home was in Ontario.  How can such distinctive architecture fit into two such different climates and still work?  I don't know the answer to that question.....

See more at Architectural Digest

Monday, 28 November 2011

Raw Nature and Modern Innovation in Perfect Harmony!

Amazing Lefevre Beach House Designed by Longhi Architects 1 Amazing Lefevre Beach House Designed by Longhi Architects

Now this is amazing!  I can't imagine a more spectacular place to live or retreat to.  I am not so keen on getting my bathing suit on anymore so the lack of beach access is just perfect!

Friday, 25 November 2011

Wow Factor!

Cool Cut Out Design Small Beach House 1 Cool Cut Out Design Small Beach House

My jaw dropped when I saw this picture.  I love the architecture, the cut outs and off setting have a lot of impact.  Of course it took me a few seconds to try and figure out how you stay dry if it rains.  Not the brightes bulb sometimes, but I finally realized this is the outdoor space...  Did you notice the pool tucked into the left. 

Also loved this copper tub...
Enlarge a classic portrait | Design ideas: blush and beyond | decorating with nudes | decorating with colour | PHOTO GALLERY | Homes & Gardens | Housetohome

Thursday, 24 November 2011

A Family Room to Live In

I love the warmth of this room designed by Tracy Ray.  The window coverings have a beautiful brown border.  Imagine the room with just hardwood floors, the rug takes the room to another level.

The stunning kitchen is from Top Notch Cabinets with white shaker style cabinets.  The stainless steel range hood and pendant lights add a different texture to the kitchen which gives it an upscale look.

To see more visit:

Courtesy of Our Homes Magazine

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

A Contemporary, Fun Fishbowl

I love it!!!  The cat may finally be discouraged from "fishing". This aquarium is the creation of Psalt Design

Monday, 21 November 2011

Mesmerizing Mediterrean Home

private house 7 Mesmerizing Private House by Oded & Elizabeth Tal Architects

I love this photo.  What an amazing space!  The chandelier, the retractable sun shade.  Have a look at the rest of the pictures, the architecture is unique and not necessarily what you would expect.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Funky Fireplaces

Fireplaces Freshome 6 20 Soul Warming Fireplaces Ideas For Comfortable Winter Nights

I wish this picture showed the fireplace lit in its full glory.  I bet it is amazing.

Fireplaces Freshome 15 20 Soul Warming Fireplaces Ideas For Comfortable Winter Nights

I have a friend who has a similar, although not quite so elegant, fireplace in his weekend farm house.  The heat it generates is amazing.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Styling Ideas Girls Bedroom

01 luxury girls bedroom designs by pm4 25 Room Design Ideas for Teenage Girls

I love the way this room was styled for the photo. I am always looking for ideas to make our photos even better ! The soccer ball at the end of the bed.  The book and drawing supplies on the floor.  These are the little things that make you take a second and third look at the photo.  The room takes on a warmer feel despite the potential starkness of black and white. Here are more great teen rooms:

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

A Contemporary Himilayan Mountain Getaway

mountain home 2 Picturesque Mountain Hotel In The Himalayas: Shakhti 360

The architecture is simple and stunning. Floor to ceiling glass windows overlooking the Himilayan Mountains.  What an amazing place to get away to.
I am more of an ocean person but this could definitely change my mind.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Light up Your Life!

Striped Bocce Table Lamp * As Featured By Atlanta Homes & Lifestyle MagazineStriped Bocce Table Lamp  Forged Miro Table Lamp * Burnt Silver  Forged Miro Lamp

There are so many great table lamps to choose from.  I always used to buy matched sets, definitely matched lampshades until I started this magazine.  Now I have been in so many beautiful homes designed by some very savvy designers and I have changed my ways.  Now I look for height, visual interest, contrast, the lines.  Here are some that have been featured in magazines as well as other great options. Heres a link to a living room designed by Elizabeth Interiors, look closely at the lamps.  I love how it was set up with the mirror to reflect back the lamp and the white jar.  

Moss LampMoss Lamp          

Monday, 14 November 2011

A Concrete Answer? Renewing your Patio

Making Stone or Concrete Patio Cozy-1

Most of us when we see a cracked concrete patio, think that will have to one of the first things to go. When I moved into a townhouse, it had awful concrete patio stones.  When I moved into an old house in Toronto it had a cracked concrete path and patio. There was a fair bit of expense associated with removing it and building something new.  These pictures make me rethink that. It is all about the colours and the comfy furnishings that you put with it, and all of a sudden that cold, dirty space is transformed into someting warm and comfy.  If there is just a concrete patio you could bring in some large rocks to accent around the sides instead of the wall in the picture above. There are now indoor outdoor rugs to help pull the space together. The beiges and burgandys in the pictures are beautiful complements to the cement.  Now I am wishing I had a dirty old cracked concrete patio......

Making Stone or Concrete Patio Cozy-2

Sunday, 13 November 2011

The Barcelona Chair is Everywhere

Barcelona Chair * Naturel Hide * Over 100 Custom Leathers & Hides Available                      Barcelona Chair * Dark Brown Leather

It seems like everywhere I go I see the black barcelona chair.  Sometimes it is tucked into a corner of a bedroom with a glass end table and a foot stool.  Other times it is part of the living room set for visual interest.  Another piece I love is a footstool covered in hide.  So when I saw this barcelona chair with a hide covering, I was blown away.  I know it would look great in photo shoots.  :)

Friday, 11 November 2011

Living in the Pool House

This is only the pool house!!  Why would you ever go to the main house?
See more at Architectural Digest:

Thursday, 10 November 2011

If You Build it They will Come,,,,,

If you build it they will come.  Absolutely, with a couple of caveats.  1.  You have to have a great product. (although the snuggie still defies that logic..)  2. They have to know about the product and where to get it.  3. You have to keep reminding people you exist -over and over again or they will get distracted by another product.

I have been in sales and marketing my entire life, but most of the time I have not been able to choose the products I sell.  Some have been great, others mediocre, but I am at my best when I am selling a prodcut that is really great. That the customers derive results from.  My background is pharmaceutical sales, when I started over 20 years ago I sold products that people really needed. There was competition but there were some real differences between products  As the years progressed, it became more about which products can generate the most revenue for a company.  It didn't matter if there were already 5 similar products out on the market, if there was a chance to grab a little piece of a big $ market then that was the direction.  Instead of feeling like I was part of something that really made a difference in people's lives, it started to feel like I was just part of a money grab.  Who could we snuggle up to earn their favor for our product.

When the opportunity for a life change and career change presented itself to me I knew I couldn't leave sales but i could pick a great product. A product that could make a difference.  I decided to launch a community based home decor and building magazine.  A vehicle that local businesses can use to get the message out to consumers about the great products they have.  A symbiotic relationship between my customers and my product. 

So this brings me back to the thought "If you build it they will come.."   Absolutely true, with lots of marketing effort.  Our second issue comes out in 5 days and it looks even better than the first issue and the best part is my customers have had a great response- symbiotic...

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

The Art of Architecture in the Bluffs

House on the Bluffs 4 Sun Filled Home on Lake Ontarios Shoreline: House on the Bluffs

Ernest Dimnet, – “Architecture, of all the arts, is the one, which acts the most slowly, but the most securely, on the soul”.  

For me this quote is so true.  I have always been drawn more to the muskoka architecture, big, wide, wrap around porches.  A homey feel.  But more and more I am drawn to the beauty of contemporary architecture. While I may never live in a contemporary home,  I can really appreciate its beauty as a work of art.  I can imagine the sun streaming in through the windows, accenting the clean lines of the interior. 

Here is a lovely contemporary home by Taylor Smyth Architects located in none other than our Bluffs in Scarborough.

House on the Bluffs 7 Sun Filled Home on Lake Ontarios Shoreline: House on the Bluffs

House on the Bluffs 10 Sun Filled Home on Lake Ontarios Shoreline: House on the Bluffs

See more at:

Monday, 7 November 2011

From Undies to Wine Glasses!

I can visualize how beautiful these glasses would look as part of a table setting.   Or sitting on a kitchen island during a photo shoot.  Not sure they would fit in my dishwasher very well though.  These are from Karl Lagerfield his first shot at designing glassware.  Kudos to Karl!   see full story at Architectural Digest

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Love Affair with Stone

I love stone, it gives such a warm feeling to a room and speaks of years and years of history. I never would have thought of making an alcove out of stone, just think of the possibilities for old homes in Toronto.  It has the potential to really open up the space in some of the small living rooms
Stone salvaged from the old foundations on the property reused to make a great outdoor shower
I really wanted to put a fireplace in our sunroom when we built it, but budget prevailed.  Maybe some day....
View all pictures of the home at Architectural Digest:

Friday, 4 November 2011

Beautiful Muskoka Cottage

Flipping through a magazine I came across a story that brought back many memories- a do it your self cottage.  Years ago we bought a vacant property with the intention of putting a cottage on the property.  We did all of the work ourselves except for building the foundation. I will never forget the truckload of walls and roof trusses.  It was like a jigsaw puzzle matching wall A with wall B and then C.. and so on.  Then there was the challenge of trying to figure out how we were going to get the second floor walls up.  My husband jerry-rigged a pulley system with ropes and man power- it worked, but I am fairly certain it was an accident waiting to happen.  We have so many stories from that project, which in itself made it worth while. We rushed to get it finished for thanksgiving weekend and as we opened the door that weekend we walked in to a massive flood.  One of the plumbing fixtures failed and blew off the fitting, causing water to course through the cottage while we were in Toronto working.  Just when we thought we were finished we had to start all over. 
Here is a link to a happier cottage build story.  Imagine the joy for any man of buying his own excavator...

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Ever Wonder which Grey Goes Best With Stainless Steel Appliances

Grey is a sophisticated colour which gives a clean, graphic look. Off-White No.3 is a versatile grey which takes on the properties of the colours around it. Shaded White No.201 is a more true grey and Elephant’s Breath No.229 has the most contemporary feel, with a purple undertone.
  • Off-White Off-White
  • Shaded White Shaded White
  • Elephant’s Breath Elephant’s Breath
Try Pavilion Gray No.242 and Lamp Room Gray No.88 for a Swedish, Gustavian look.
  • Pavilion Gray Pavilion Gray
  • Lamp Room Gray Lamp Room Gray
Cool greys such as Cornforth White No.228 and Blackened No.2011 are particularly good with stainless steel and can be used to great effect in kitchens.
  • Cornforth White Cornforth White
  • Blackened Blackened
This is right from the Farrow and Ball website: 

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

The Rug of my Dreams

Moscow Design Week 2011<br />

I love black and white.  I fell in love with the black and white dining room chairs in a home that is coming up in our Nov issue .  I immediately saw them and wanted them on the front cover but there was a beautiful cover shot with a piano and fireplace.  How many times a year can you focus on fireplaces?  Not often, so sadly the black and white dining room chairs were relegated to the interior of the magazine.   When I saw this rug, I fell in love again.  It is so striking, it could be that one piece that makes a room.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

One Room Apt- Amazing Use of Space

Cosy Apartment Freshome Cozy One Room Apartment With Paned Windows and Parquet Floors

We are so used to big spaces in NA, we consider a 2500 sq ft house to be small.  The idea of living in one room apt is not even fathomable.  In fact I have watched some NY real estate shows and the one room apt seem claustraphobic.  When I saw this layout of a Stockholm apt, I was impressed.  I could live in this.....eventually...
Lots of light, storage space, room to move- very nice.