Saturday, January 10, 2015

Buzzing Like Neon

While in Miami I’ve had a chance to poke my nose into some of my favourite boutiques in the design district. One of my top finds was spotted at Threadcount, a fabulous linen shop I love browsing in that carries luxury lines like Pratesi as well as some gorgeous tabletop and bathroom accessories.

I fainted over one of their model beds  in the window dressed in the  neon Athena sheets by Yves Delorme. I’m so used to seeing hotel-style linens in black or navy but this bright neon yellow is so fresh and edgy.

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I know neon isn’t anything new, but seeing the trend interpreted in such an unexpected way definitely caught my eye! I’d pair this set with a black and white scheme for a bold bedroom that oozed punk-tinged luxury.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Pop. Fizz. Clink: Champagne Cocktails

2014 has treated me exceptionally well with two happy and healthy babies and a stylish send off into the next decade. I’m hoping for anther rosy year so what better way to usher it in than sipping a festive pink champagne cocktail?

Style At Home recently highlighted some delicious new years eve-worthy champagne cocktails, styled in tones of gold and pink by my talented colleague Ann Marie Favot. I’m partial to this  blackberry lime fizz, which features one of my favourite liqueurs, St Germain Elderflower.

Blackberry Lime Fizz

serves 2

  • 6 fresh blackberries
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tbsp simple syrup
  • 2 oz St-Germain elderflower liqueur
  • 8 oz chilled pink champagne or Prosecco


Directions

  1. Place 6 blackberries on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and freeze until solid (the frozen fruit will help keep your cocktail nicely chilled).
  2. Place the lime juice, simple syrup, elderflower liqueur and remaining blackberries in a cocktail shaker and muddle to release the flavours.
  3. Add some ice and shake well. Strain into two coupes and top with the champagne.
  4. Garnish with the frozen blackberries.

Bonus points if you mix your cocktail in these gorgeous gold-plated accessories from Cocktail Kingdom. I need that shaker, jigger and stirrer like yesterday!

(cocktail photo by Maya Visnyei , bottom photo: laura sant for saveur)

Monday, December 8, 2014

Gift Guide Picks

The holidays are upon us which means it’s time to shop for the ones you love and get them a little something something that will make them smile. This year I’m only highlighting things I’d truly buy myself, so don’t be surprised when you notice they’re mostly black, white and gold!

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Every household needs a solid pair of scissors, so add some sparkle to the mundane with this shiny gold pair of shears from Nate Berkus’ Target collection. Target, $16.99

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These glass water bottles by bkr are coated in a stylish silicone sleeve that protect from breakage while looking adorable all the way to your 8-glasses-a-day goal. Neiman Marcus, $30-35 each

 

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This Tory Burch kerrington applique wristlet is kind of bizarre but also kind of fabulous with its creamy violet leather and amusing symbolism. It would be a great spot to stash your personal essentials in a larger diaper bag or tote. Tory Burch, $175

For your stylish gourmand, these black and white striped marble accessories up the chic factor of any kitchen counter. I particularly adore the cheeseboard and citrus press. Anthropologie, $24-98

Noisetier

This earthy yet smoky scent from Diptyque is perfect for snuggly winter nights and a luxury item you’d be hard pressed to buy for yourself, but be totally psyched to see under the christmas tree (or hanukkah bush). Holt Renfrew, $72

For the hostess with the mostess, the large white pedestal cake plate and glass dome from Rosanna is a perfect spot to display sweets and homemade treats while keeping them fresh. Red Letter, $44.95-72.95 

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Who doesn’t love receiving chocolate as a gift? These handcrafted bars in exotic flavous like dark chocolate gold leaf take it to a whole other level with packaging designed by none other than Kelly Wearstler. I’d frame them they are so pretty! Kelly Wearstler, $13 each

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Fans of Scalamandre’s classic zebra print will love this small tray from Lenox, which looks stunning sitting pretty on a console or used as a catchall for keys or change. William Ashley, $61.

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For the art lover, this antique gold metal 3-D piece adds serious personality to your walls with an iconic mantra spelled out in all of its gilded splendour. ELTE Market, $95

 

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For your friend who could always use some help in the organization department, this cheeky sticky note set has sayings that were ripped right from my and my friends’ daily diction, including a personal fave, “literally can’t.” Plus there is a bowtie involved - as the note says, “so cute!” Indigo, $12.95

Friday, November 21, 2014

Exotic Cats with Pattern Play: Wardrobe or Wallpaper?

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I’m loving the likeness of Thibaut’s Cheetah wallpaper to this Joe Fresh silk blouse.  Both items have playful exotic cats layered on top of a pattern for a fresh yet fierce look.

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Thibaut’s celebrated paper could be skewed as over the top when looking at it up close, but once it’s applied to the walls, the cheetahs recede and form an abstract pattern, like in this beautiful bedroom by Michelle Smith as featured in Lonny. How tongue in “chic”!

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This silk blouse is a great way to add a playful element to your look and at only $59, it’s not something you’ll cry over if you only wear it a handful of times.

If you’re wondering which item I’d pick, then wonder no further. My answer would be an unequivocal yes to both as I am a proud supporter or all exotic cat prints whether on your clothes or on your walls! Meow!

(Room image by Genevieve Garruppo via Lonny)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

My Master Bath Before and After

The latest bookazine from Style At Home is all about makeovers and it's a goodie! Chock full of dramatic before and afters, there is page after page of inspirational images that will get your creative juices flowing and ready to tackle your next project.

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My master ensuite, which we worked on as part of our big reno last year, is featured and it shows how we transformed a tiny cramped bath into a sophisticated and relaxing retreat.

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Categorizing it as a makeover is an understatement because literally nothing remains from the original space. The bathroom was teensy and poorly laid out with a wee wall-mounted sink, toilet and narrow tub/shower. Thanks to walls that jutted out awkwardly to accommodate two separate closets on each end, it was a very weird shape and there was no way the bathroom could be used comfortably for more than one person at a time.

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We opened up and lengthened the space into a long rectangle by demolishing the two closets and borrowing some extra feet from a nearby bedroom. The plumbing was reconfigured to accommodate a double vanity, large shower and separate bath tub for a luxurious master ensuite retreat.

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I wanted the space to feel like a properly appointed salon and not a regular old bathroom, so I brought in details you’d see in a living room, including textured wallpaper, a chair rail, and herringbone floors for a richer atmosphere. I reinterpreted these elements in bathroom-friendly materials, such as Philip Jeffries’ vinyl glam grass for the wallpaper from Crown Wallpaper, marble for the chair rail, and porcelain tiles for the floor.

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I used a timeless palette of whites and cream stones from Marble Granite Depot, paired with the rich walnut tones of the faux-wood tiles from Stone Tile. All these colours are seen in the roman shade fabric, a small scale embroidered pattern from Crown Wallpaper & Fabrics that ties it all together beautifully.

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The plumbing fixtures are classic and refined with cross handle details. I mixed Brizo’s Tresa lavatory faucet for the vanities with the luxurious Raincan shower head and Charlotte slide bar with shower. Having the relaxing large rain shower head is a real treat, but having a removable shower head is just as key when it comes to ease of cleaning so I am loving the combo of the two!image

Brizo doesn’t make a deck mounted telephone style tub filler, but Rubinet has a wonderful selection of tub fillers, so I chose their Raven design which complements the other faucets nicely. The various fixtures are united in a warm polished nickel finish which plays off the rich tones of the floor tile and colours in the roman shade. I was even able to order the legs of the Cheviott clawfoot tub from Vintage Tub & Bath in polished nickel as well for a truly cohesive look.

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I love how the refined vintage vibe of the bathroom is an extension of the rest of my home’s d├ęcor. The dramatic clawfoot tub, framed antique prints and pleated shades on the beautiful Payson sconces from Circa Lighting reinforce a warm and glamorous mood that makes getting ready in the morning a pleasure.

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Seeing the bathroom come together on the page is very rewarding considering it was probably one of the most complicated spaces to deal with during the entire reno. So much can go wrong in any given project, but this bathroom took us to a whole other level of insanity!  There were extreme variations in the natural stone mosaic I selected for the shower which meant that part of the shower walls had to be ripped out and new tile sourced at the eleventh hour, the tub filler ended up being too deep for the tub and had to be shortened which took weeks, two separate parts of the tub were missing and caused delays until each one was received and could be hooked up, a wallpaper mix-up, the list goes on…you name it and it probably went wrong or delayed us! I’m justso happy it’s done and that I get to enjoy it every day!

(after photos by Donna Griffith)