Having been involved in interior design in Oakville, ON and the surrounding GTA for the past 26 years, we enjoy a wide variety of home styles and sizes. We've observed that many older homes are a lot smaller than some of the newer homes built in many areas of the Greater Toronto Area. Some of these smaller homes almost have a cottage feel when compared to larger ones. In addition, we have been making use of older industrial buildings and converting them to wonderful residential living space. There are often similarities in the room designs of these living space. The casual nature of the lifestyles of the residents is the link. Whether or not you own a cottage, you may enjoy the ambiance of the cottage lifestyle, lake or no lake. The finished décor of these homes, whether large or small, can be quite dramatic, as well, in some cases Continue reading
Interior design is not just for clients who own large homes. In our interior design projects, we often meet clients who live in very small spaces, and medium sized homes as well, and the trend is growing. This is not necessarily a bad thing if we analyse the true needs of the client and discover the lifestyle that genuinely suits them. The clients also needs to realize and face the limitations of their space. There is no need to pine for a larger home when it is quite possible to make a small home a palace. Often, a smaller home can be made so pleasant to live in that there is no real need to move up to a larger one. For instance, many people are quite happy with a cozy dining area. This can be accommodated into a small area. A bedroom that is really to small to be a pleasant bedroom can be made into a wonderful dressing room. Continue reading
Recently we had a client in Oakville, ON, who has three young children and a black Labrador dog. Everything, so far with this story is just fine. The trouble is that this client loves the look of all white rooms. Many people love the look of white in interior design. It has such a crisp look and often makes formal contemporary interiors really pop, especially when used with crystal lighting in contemporary styles. Many of our clients are busy young families with young children or older clients who want their homes to look good but also want easy care. Often, they have seen beautiful white rooms in home décor magazines and enjoy the look. Really, white doesn't stand much of a chance against real life with kids and pets. No matter how regularly you vacuum and scrub, the fact remains that furnishings used in homes with small children and lots of guests need to be carefully chosen. Technology in fabric design has made amazing strides, but not always enough to combat the debris of daily living with children and pets and still come up looking good. Continue reading
The whole point of interior design is to produce interiors that inspire and wow, and that are comfortable and sensible to live in. Interior design has many aspects and can take many forms. Part of the fun is to push the envelope. Black can be a very useful tool in interiors that wow. It has been said that using black and white in interior design is one of the most classic combinations. As you can see in the photo of this foyer below where very little colour is used the finished effect is fabulous. The use of black in an interior lends elegance and a grounding effect. Who can deny the impact and beauty of zebra wallpaper? Combined with black and white artwork and accessories, the effect is surprisingly easy to live with on a day to day basis. Continue reading
Chocolate, mocha, latte, and coffee. What's not to like? These days, some say that the colour brown is passe in interior design. Colour specialist, Marguerite Roberts, of Mulberry Interiors in Oakville, Ontario says that it is not so. Brown was definitely overused in basement rec rooms of the distant past. Part of the resistance to brown in decor is due to the fact that these old rec rooms remained un-renovated for far too long. Maybe people purchased nice cars instead. We really don't know why so many people's basements looked like this one. We never wanted to see brown again. Brown has been around the block a lot as well, but it has a certain staying power, especially when it is reinvented in creative ways. It is rich, warm and earthy rather than boring or outdated. It can even be exciting when it is used in very deep shades. Continue reading
There are several myths about hiring a designer or decorator. One of these is that “It’s too expensive”. Another is “A designer will try to force a style on me that I won’t like”. In fact, the opposite is true. Continue reading
Classic room designs are often done in neutral colour palettes. This is because, chosen well, neutrals are formal, relaxing to live with, tend to work on some level with most accent colours, and, generally being light in hue, comply with the myth that light colours make a room look larger. It is when the undertones in a neutral shade are not quite right for the overall look that we begin to feel less comfortable that that neutral room design. Pink or green undertones can be very off-putting. When you first move into a new home, often you are faced with a sea of beige to start with. A point of inspiration is required to achieve the home of your dreams. It is much more interesting to deviate from the idea of neutrals always being a safe choice, and to venture forth into the world of colour choice that is available to us.
Classic interior design often includes linen. If you were searching for the perfect fabric for your interior design project update, much of what you’d look for is present in linen. Legendary comfort as well as strength and beauty are what attract us. Linen has been preferred for centuries as a canvas for fine oil paintings due to its strength and durability. We would not have the works of the Grand Masters today had it not been for the unique qualities of linen. Linen is one of the world’s oldest textiles, being used in Eqypt about 5000 B.C. It is much stronger and glossier than cotton. Continue reading
Often we have residential interior design clients who prefer a neutral colour palette. A neutral palette in a room design can be beautiful, but many times it is simply too bland. Since technically, neutrals go with everything, a neutral palette must be a safe one. perhaps not. Since our goal in interior design is to create room designs which are full of life, as well as being beautiful, safe may not get us to where we want to go. Continue reading
Interior design using all white in the room designs is a look that many clients are drawn to. Perhaps there is a sense of serenity and an escape from the hectic portions of our lives. The reality couldn't be further from that idea. We’ve all see rooms that are painted white but have missed the mark because they are too stark and boring. They may even seem quite harsh and uncomfortable. Room designs done all in white are not necessarily an easy style to achieve. High end interior design is shown in various interior design magazines. The images of white rooms in these magazines are more often than not successful versions of this all white style of room design. Sometimes they are not successful. Success in room design is a subjective thing, because we all have different tastes and expectations for home décor.