Before and After… a $500 kitchen remodel

Everyone deserves to live in a home that makes them feel good. No matter how hard you try, it’s hard to feel good when you’re surrounded by heavy orange oak cabinets. These cabinets, and believe me we’ve seen plenty of them, seem to suck all the life out of a room. If money grew on trees, then everyone could afford to do a full kitchen reno. When your budget is just $500, then you have to be a little more  creative, but the result can be spectacular. The kitchen we’re featuring this week belongs to Debbie’s niece. She wanted to lighten up her kitchen and was willing to do the work herself. Debbie, being the nice Auntie that she is, did the consult long distance via emails and texts. Since these cabinets are solid wood and in great shape, a coat of paint makes them look new and fresh. Painting is a decorators best friend. Nothing…

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Before & After – Fireplace Edition

There’s something about having a fireplace in a home – everyone loves it. Most of our clients have a fireplace and those that don’t, want to get one. There’s all kinds of research that says why we’re attracted to fire and why gathering and gazing into a fire makes us feel so good. It’s an evolutionary thing, dating back to prehistoric times. There’s even research out from the University of Alabama that details how watching a fire will lower blood pressure. For those sensitive decorating types, like myself, gazing into fire won’t have a calming, blood pressure lowering effect, if the fireplace is unattractive. Seriously – for us decor sensitive types, our whole body reacts to colour and texture and form. If there’s something off in a room or if the room isn’t in harmony, a pressure starts building in my chest and my body can physically feel the unbalance. Those that have this same reaction know exactly what I’m talking…

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Our 10 step process for kitchen selections

Lately we’ve been doing a lot of kitchen renovations. We usually spend a fair amount of time with our client figuring out their needs, how they use the space, and what they want out of their kitchen. All these things are important and these details matter a lot. It’s really satisfying to design a kitchen that works for each homeowner. Yet my very favourite part is coming up with the look of the kitchen and selecting the finishes.       So many people freeze up when they are faced with choices of cabinets, counter, backsplash tile and paint colour. Then of course there are all the little details like door profile, hardware, faucet and lighting.       It might sound daunting, but there is a method to this madness. I’ve come up with 10 steps to help make the process easier.     1. Collect pictures of kitchens that you love. Take advantage of…

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9 Things We Are Loving Right Now

This week we’re sharing with you pics from our recent jobs and showing you what we’re loving now. We’ve picked 9 of our favourite things and had Taegan photograph how we’ve used them in our client’s homes. There’s definitely a softness emerging in residential  design. Traditional elements are becoming very popular and many of our clients are wanting their spaces to be soft and pretty. Read on to see 9 of our favourites.   1. Brass Hardware This kitchen looks spectacular with brass hardware. After the highly polished brass of the 1980’s, we’ve stayed away from this metal, preferring polished or brushed chrome/nickel. Brass is back, but it’s softer and worn – more 1880’s style.   2. Shaped Ceramic Tiles Square and rectangular tiles are everywhere so we thought why not use a softer shaped ceramic tile. It lends just enough pretty to these fireplaces and balances their strong defined lines. Just in case you think this is for girls only, there’s been a lot…

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Before and After…take a look at this lovely condo!

We love before and afters and this after is stunning!! The client had been living in Ontario and renting out her condo. When it was time to move back, she decided to do a reno and her love of baking made the kitchen a priority. We lightened the colours, incorporated a long run of counter, made a baking centre with fold back doors, and prettied up the fireplace with a small Moroccan tile. The hardwood was changed and new carpet was installed on the stairs and upper level. The railing was changed to glass so sunlight could filter throughout both levels. Don’t you think the banquette cozies up the eating area and makes a great place to sit and do paperwork? Take a peek at the before and after’s.         She loves her new space now. It’s full of light and looks spacious and airy. Best of all,  it works for her…

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