Monday, November 23, 2015

Black and White

Black and White is a classic!  It is always "in" and works with so many different styles of decor.  Here are a few of our favourite rooms in black and white.

This condo living room is gorgeous! We love a consistent colour palette in smaller spaces but what's so effective here is all of the white-on-white and accents of black and silver.  The white walls and furniture blend together making the space feel so much bigger.  The glass and silver add so much glamour to the space.

Upper East Fashion I want my bedroom with white comforter black and white pillows like this one and pink.:

Another stunning living room, we love that this black and white has some ethnic elements with the choices of print and pattern but also materials.  We love to mix patterns but also materials.  The small touches of gold add some shine to the room

The best thing about this photograph is those brass shelves. I garbage-picked them two weeks ago. Rug, pillows and stool are all Nate Berkus from Target.:

This dining area is relaxed but still modern.  The clean, black table paired with Eiffel chairs keeps it cool but the mix makes it relaxed.   The over sized lighting also makes a big statement in the room adjoining rooms.

59 beautiful Scandinavian interiors @ Tvoy Designer Blog  #scandinavian #interior #design:

We love an accent wall and in black and white so chic! This stripe wall in this work space adds instant drama.

I probably say this every week, but this may be my very favourite collection of SMP posts yet! You guys! Your taste is just out of this world. We've got home tours (+ office tours) aplenty! Recipes, cocktails, and the cutest baby toes that ever lived. Ever. So without further ado, sit back, relax, and…

Black and White is the bedroom is so chic.  We love the over sized mirrors with mini chandeliers in this bedroom paired with the modern bed frame make this space very unique but still very stylish.

Black and White All Over  Love mirrors flanking bed!:

We love the simple glamour of this bedroom.  the full and fluffy white bedding with lots of layers against the black wall is so chic.  And the added detail on that black wall just takes it to the next level. The sphere chandelier is modern but with a classic twist.

To get this look, use Colorhouse NOURISH .06:

We love black and white photography, gallery walls, pillows, prints, area rugs and so much more.  when it comes to decorating your space in this classic contrast don't be afraid to mix up prints and textures.  In fact you really should so that you get a chic designer look .

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - Hosting for the Holidays

OK, Please help!  I just found out I'm hosting the office Christmas party.  It's in 3 weeks and I have never hosted this type of party ever.  I need to provide food and drinks (luckily I have some friends who are going to help with that) but I'd like to decorate as well without spending a fortune and easy but stylish holiday decorating ideas??

The holiday season is so much fun but it can be stressful.  Throwing a Christmas cocktail party in 3 weeks might feel impossible but it isn't!  Good for you for enlisting some support in the food and beverage department.  It's OK to ask for help.

If you do not own any holiday decor items, it might be a good idea to ask friends and family if they have any decorations around the house that they aren't using.  This could save you a lot of time and money.

If you want to do it all on your own but on a budget there are lots of fun and festive ways to decorate on a budget.

1.  Use items you have around the house already like vases.  We love filling vases with season items like pine cones, ribbons and bows, candy canes and even ornaments - for a clean and simple look but it still celebrates the season.

20 Super Easy Inexpensive Decor Ideas for Christmas - apothecary jars, candy, bows.:

2. Add a few natural elements for an instant Christmas feel.  We love this simple wood tray with candles, pine cones, simple metallic ornaments and some cedar branches on this coffee table.  It is perfect and simple.  Try a scented candle for an extra special touch.

Fill a Tray with Candles, Deer, Evergreen, Pine Cones and Christmas Ornaments - 15 Best DIY Ideas to Winterize Your Home for Christmas | GleamItUp:

3. Edible arrangements are easy and fun.  We love this simple and clean centerpiece with votive candles, cranberries and some cedar branches.

For a simple yet stunning centerpiece, place five votive candles (in a variety of Christmas colors) in a line down a red rectangular serving dish. Fill the rest of the dish with cranberries, garnish with a few pine twigs and dust with artificial snow.:

4. Wrap some old boxes and use them in corners or by the fireplace.  so simple and still very festive.  Not great at wrapping? You can purchase pretty boxes from more Dollar stores, add a bow and you are done.  We love these 3 boxes on candle sticks - perfect on a console entry to welcome guests!

Dollar store boxes, ribbon and, pretty centrepiece.:

5. Recycle your bottles and make them beautiful with some winter berries or other faux foliage.  We love these green glass bottles with winter berries.  A bit of a rustic feel for the holiday season.  Perfect on a console, mantle or as a centerpiece.

Berry Branches in Bottles | 28 Insanely Easy Christmas Decorations To Make In A Pinch:

 6. Candy!  Christmas candy is so pretty so why not show it off? We love this simple Christmas candy tower and you know what? It's a great DIY gift for a host, neighbour or teacher.  The vase can be re-used and the candy, who doesn't love candy??

Treat Tower (AFTER) #centerpiece #christmasdiy:

7.  Welcome guests with a wreath! Wreaths are a great accessory for the front door.  But you can definitely bring them inside.  They look great on walls (this year I'm adding one to my gallery wall), windows, mantles and interior doors - why not? Look for wreaths that are your style - shiny, big, bold, natural, there are so many to choose from.  Crafty? Try making your own.

This simple Nordic inspired Christmas wreath is just sooo beautiful and not too tricky to replicate ... perfect if you love Scandinavian style Christmas decorations ...

A few other things to consider....

- colour palette: who says you have to stick to the traditional green, red and white? Mix it up a bit! Try bold and bright tones like hot pink, purple, aqua and lime green.  Go glam with white and mixed metallics.  Keep it simple with one hue like just red.  choose a colour palette that works for you!

- no room for a tree? no problem! look for a mini tree instead, artificial is a great option too - you can re-use it year after year.  Try a rosemary 'tree'.  Most local supermarkets have rosemary plants in the shape of a mini Christmas tree, it's perfect by the front door, coffee table or as a centerpiece. We also love DIY projects like these Christmas tree cones - a great option for small spaces and you can decorate them however you like!

silver & gold I need these! ~could make these out of scrapbooking paper~:

- light! Candles make any event look and feel special so bring out your pillars and votives and dim the lights.  The candle light will make your place look beautiful.

- budget.  Be sure to check out your dollar stores for decor and party supplies.  You might be very surprised at what you find on such a tight budget.

- have a theme.  Yes, OK it's Christmas but what is your style or theme? Stick with one colour palette and inject your sense of style.  Do you want a country Christmas or a contemporary Christmas?  there's no wrong answer but stick to that decor theme throughout the entire home to keep it looking chic and sophisticated.  The best party planners plan their decor scheme, so we suggest you do the same.

- have fun! it's a party and yes the host has extra duties and responsibilities but have fun! If the party isn't perfect, it doesn't matter just go with it and have a good time, and everyone else will too !

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - stylish TV stands

I have a typical, TV media stand right now and I find it such an eye sore in my home. What are some unique ideas to use as a media stand in my living room?

We agree! While the typical, glass media stand is a cheap and easy option but it certainly doesn’t enhance the style of a space. There are tons of great options that are not necessarily the ‘typical’ option but will look fabulous! Here are 7 suggestions for ‘unique’ media stands.

1. A dresser: depending on how much space you have in your living room this is a fantastic option for a few reasons. It is GREAT for storage, it will hide cords and it is a unique option to have. You don’t have to choose a typical bedroom dresser, maybe a decorative option with some detail work, or some curves to the wood, perhaps in a bright colour. The flexibility with a dresser is awesome. Just make sure that the height works for your space. If you are using a lower, more modern dresser, it helps to check the height of your sofa to ensure its not too low to comfortably watch. 

 Style Me Pretty | Gallery & Inspiration | Picture - 1214627:

2. A chest: Depending again on the height, having a chest with or without detail is a unique look. This is also a great way to hide any cords etc since a chest is typically bulky.  There are so many different colours, styles, sizes and finishes to choose from! A great way to personalize your space.

 Tips and Tricks on how to Decorate your Surfaces!:

3. A console table: a clean lined, simple console table with a bit of storage is a great space saving option. You can hide any wires by adding baskets underneath, or a small bench or ottomans. This is very versatile and comes in many options, depending on your d├ęcor and the size of your home. Make sure that you have enough depth to hold the items you need to.

 Would really like this in the apartment!!! We need something else besides the one that was given to us... It has overstayed its welcome! LOL:

4. A fireplace: before committing to this though, make sure you have checked that your TV can withstand the heat that a fireplace will generate. For some people, having their TV over mounted or resting on the fireplace is a fabulous space saver as well as a great look!

 Small Living Room Decorating Ideas | ... Living Room Design by Studio M › Living Room Design › iSpace:

5.  A bench: be sure your bench is sturdy enough to handle the weight of a TV but this could be a great small space solution because a bench won't add a ton of bulk but pay attention to the height.

Love you can get a table like that anywhere or build then do a smaller underneath for electronics. Accessorize and use baskets.  Get really creative and use glass shelves on the side.:

6. TV Easel: we love this option but understand it isn't necessarily budget friendly.  This is a great option for spaces where your wall space is limited (hello condo dwellers) plus these come of wheels so they can be moved around if you need room in your main living space if you are hosting a larger TV free party!

absolute COOLEST tv stand - media center - entertainment unit - EVER!!!!!  merry birthday & mothers day to me. . .   @Robyn Schweizerhof & @Lori K. - awesome stuff, eh????:

7. Bookcase: Having a lower bookcase is another fantastic idea for a small space. This will incorporate a ton of storage and hold your TV – so practical!! You can never have enough storage. Plus, this is a great idea for showcasing accessories as well as being functional – doesn’t get much better than that!!

The Bali Media Console is inspired by India’s brightly colored culture and antiques. Benchmade by Indian artisans out of solid Mango wood, this piece should be celebrated for its uniqueness and beauty.:  
 Reclaimed Elm & Iron Leaner Shelving

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - Girl on a Budget

" I'm a girl on a budget.  I've moved into a new place and I need some ideas to make my new place look expensive."

We are all on a budget but there are some home updates that you can do with minimal money that will result in maximum impact.

1 - Lighting.  Swap out that old dining or entry way light fixture for something with visual impact

Make Your Home Look Expensive:

2 - Neutrals.  Ever notice that those classically chic spaces we all drool over in the magazines are always in neutral tones? So opt for neutral paint on your walls, the depth is up to you but greys, taupes, creams and beige always looks chic.

 Chandelier, creamy taupe walls and creamy neutral tones for a fabulous living room:

3 - Tile.  Is your kitchen missing something? A back splash is like jewelry on an outfit - it pulls it altogether and makes a statement! So same with tile.  Update your kitchen with some back splash tiles and maybe give your powder room a boost too.  Looking for something timeless? We love a subway tile, it comes in many colours and it's always in style.

 creamy white shaker style kitchen cabinets, subway tile back splash, crystal knobs, nickel pulls, quartz counters:

4 - Built-ins.  Yes, they are expensive but fake them! find some pre-fab or packed shelving and create that custom built-in look with floor to ceiling bookcases.  Aim for shelving that is the colour of your trim to get the built-in look. Be sure to style your bookcase with decor pieces and books to make it look elevated!

 Home library. White, built-in bookcases to the ceiling. Lots of books, but this looks so light, so airy. from Traditional Home.:

5 - Dimension.  Add some depth and elegance with panels and molding. Use this to draw attention to special features of the home like a fireplace.

 Glam up your bedroom with faux crown molding.:

6 - Hardware.  Make sure your hardware finishes match.  Replace any hardware that doesn't match or that is broken. Coordinating your hardware pieces will make the whole room shine.

 NIce granite for bathroom in jack and jill. Like how all the hardware matches the doorknobs and the window in the shower. Needs indented builtin space for shampoo bottles and soap:

7 - Walk way.  Even the exterior of your home can look expensive.  Update that walkway it will give the whole exterior an instant boost and make your landscaping look even better.

 A new walkway is a small investment that will work wonders for your landscape and carry your home's friendly facade to the street. See how you can upgrade your walkway to complement your exterior./:

8 - Exterior entryway.  A full exterior make over can get pricey but try a few easy improvements like paint your front door - a fresh coat of paint always looks great!  Update your mailbox and address plate. Try adding some flanking planters to your front exterior, for symmetry and balance they frame the entry and look welcoming.

Front Porch Planter Urns | ... porch, check out The Nester’s beautiful, blue urns with ferns . Urns:

Sunday, November 1, 2015

7 Easy Ways to add a little Colour to your world

It's officially November and we can all see it, not just on the calendar but outside, too!  The days are shorter, the leaves have fallen off of the trees and those beautiful fall colours have turned to grey....everything is just a little dreary.  So maybe it's time for a change, a dash of colour and some fun at home.

The easiest way to make a change to your space to liven it up is with colour.  Here are some of favourite (and easy) ideas to add some pop to your decor.

1 - Florals.  This is perfect for anyone non-committal, fresh flowers don't last for after about 10 days - they will need replacing. Or try some silk flowers, these keep, they are low maintenance and you can bring them out when ever our home needs an extra boost! They look great in bedrooms, bathrooms, on coffee tables and more....

Calling all color lovers: here are 8 color inspiring centerpiece ideas perfect for your home! #HomeGoodsHappy

2 - Art.  such an easy way to add as much or as little colour as you like.  Any style of art piece can have colour from abstract to landscapes - go with what you love.  You can use the colours in that piece as an inspiration for adding even more colour in that room, so not, it's up to you!

Modern art and mid-century furniture...yummy.:

3 - Area rugs.  Think of them as art on the floor.  This is a great way to make a statement in any room.  Mixing colour and pattern can really transform a room.  The options are endless!

Neutral gray is a great base for adding colorful accessories! More ways to decorate using gray:

4 - Drapery.  A fun way to add colour, pattern and texture to your space.  This can really wake up a neutral space.  Like area rugs - the choices are plentiful...

Color, Please:: The large-scale pattern on the draperies in the living room inspired the palette of Kelly green and neutrals that was carried throughout the home. Playful colors and punchy patterns were used strategically throughout the home to create a pleasing feminine/masculine balance and to reflect the family's fun personality.:

 5 - Small furniture pieces.  Keep your main furniture pieces neutral but try adding an accent chair, side table or stool in a colour.  This is unique and it's a great way to show off your personality.  We love this kitchen with orange stools - it really adds some fun to a mostly white on white space.

Poppy is a great accent color for an all white kitchen, but we particularly love the additions of red and teal in this particular kitchen design. We love the unexpected combination and think displaying these bold colors on open shelves is a great idea. It’s an easy way to add an unintentional artistic touch to your kitchen design.:

6 - Decor pillows.  This is probably the easiest way to give your room a colourful update.  We love to mix bold colours, patterns and complimentary colours against a neutral sofa or bed.

Style At Home: Devon Dyer |

7 - Accent wall.  If you feel you need a bigger change, consider a painting accent wall in a fun colour or splashy wallpaper.

  Tangerine: The perfect orange paint color Benjamin Moore Carrot Stick 2016-30. If you aren't bold enough to try it on your walls, try one of these paint projects:

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Scandinavian Style

Scandinavia has a long heritage of beautiful home furnishings. Scandinavians are renowned for incorporating clean lines, using the color white like total pros, and emphasizing both function and form.

You might think that Scandinavian style is that famous yellow and blue store with 'assemble yourself furniture' that comes in boxes.  but Scandinavian style is more than that!

If you love a clean and minimal look that embraces natural elements, Scandinavian might be your style!

Scandinavian style includes...

1 - Light toned wood.

 On the other side of the room, we couldn't help but fall for this breakfast nook. With wooden bentwood chairs, statement lighting, a fun print, and a cozy bench, you couldn't ask for a better place to start your morning.

2 - A rug with one pop of colour

 Mid-century style with an IKEA STOCKHOLM rug | IDA Interior LifeStyle:

3 - Lots of white, and white on white

 I'm obsessed with the fire wood being stored in the wall, and that chair !:

4 - When it comes to hardware in the kitchen and bathrooms, simplicity is key.  Clean lines and minimal to no detail.

 Kitchen Design Photo by Natalie Cruz Album - sourced, kitchen nook:

5 - Invest in classics. Scandinavian style is very minimal so you will only have a few decor items, so it's worth investing in them. For example, a glass vase by designer Alvar Aalto


6 - Signature 'Scandinavian' pieces that embrace the Scandinavian style like the Tulip Table

 kitchens, kitchens, and more kitchens | BURKE DECOR:

7 - Gallery walls with a monochrome colour palette.

 Beautiful home decor! What better feeling than coming back to a beautiful and cozy home. Get inspired and try this in your home!:

8 - Pendant lighting is essential and an important decor feature in the room.  It is functional but also decorative. Plan the room around it

Nordic design / eams chair / minimalist design / simple interior / white & wood / black lamp.:

9 -  Plants.  Streamlined and clean in a simple planter or vase.  But every Scandinavian styled room has a plant.

 I love that white walls and floors! I'd use more colorful accent pieces via art, though:

10 - Wood flooring.  Think wider, lighter planks with visible knots and minimal to no gloss.

 Scandinavian. | The best scandinavian home design ideas! See more inspiring images on our boards at:

11 - Make a point of having and highlighting the fireplace.  In Scandinavian styled homes, we often see corner fireplaces and furniture plans are often designed around them.

 Scandinavian interior. Simple, natural shades. Come at peace!:

12 - Open Shelving.  For functional items like dishes in the kitchen.  It's about easy access and operating effectively.

 A Room by Room Guide to Scandinavian Style Love the tile!:

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - Selling and Seasonal Decor

"We will be selling our home during the holidays.  We love the holidays and especially the decorating.  Is it OK to decorate our home for the holidays while it is up for sale? "

We love the holidays too and the decorating is our favourite part but when it comes to selling your home you need to be careful.  Holiday decorating can be a negative when it comes to selling your home.

Setting for Four: Decorating for Autumn: Inspiration from Home Magazines:
 We love how simple and subtle this entry way decor is.  It is perfect for the fall and Thanksgiving season.  It is clean and tasteful.

halloween, halloween decor, halloween mantels:
Although we love this because it is both fun and festive for Halloween, it is too much if you are selling your home.  The mantle is too cluttered and crowded, and taking away from the fireplace - a great feature for any home

Here's why:

1.  Certain holiday decor may be religious and that can turn (some) buyers off.  You need to keep the home neutral and depersonalized.

2.  Holiday decor (in most cases) adds clutter.  You might think adding a large Christmas tree in your family room shows off the size of the room but it actually doesn't.  It cramps the space, adds bulk to the space and although beautiful it may even cut off the flow of the room.

If I did a Halloween party, this is how I would decorate.:
This is a lot of fun and totally chic for a Halloween party but it's very cluttered and is very distracting.
3.  Holiday decor can be distracting.  Lights, trees, baubles and bling really take the focus away from features like flooring, new paint, large windows and just about anything else that is included with the home

4.  Holiday decor dates your photos. We love holiday decor but if you are decked out for the holidays during your photos, those photos will get old and quickly.  No one wants to see a fireplace mantle with garlands and wreaths in late January or February (and depending on your market and price point that could be a realistic time frame).

 holiday decor. christmas decor. joy. Joy decorative Christmas bottles Beautiful by SEVENTHandJ on Etsy, $25.00:
This is clean and simple plus it isn't religious.  This would be cute on a mantel or as a centerpiece during the season.
Now if you just can't come to terms with not decorating for the holidays while your home is for sale, here are some ideas.

1.  Tone it down and keep it tasteful.  So keep to less than 50% of what you would normally do.

Christmas Farmhouse5540
This is a great addition on the front porch or by the fireplace.  It's clean and simple and it can be up over the months of December and January as it is pretty generic.  But remember to maintain any natural plants - you don't want a fire hazard or pine needles everywhere!

2.  Keep your decor up for a shorter period of time.  So don't put up your items too early and keep them up too long.

3.  Don't have your decor 'up' for your photos.  That way you will be giving buyers (who are looking online) a true snapshot of what the home looks like and you will be able to use the photos longer as they won't be dated after the holidays.

4.  Hosting the holidays? Be sure to let your agent know and coordinate with him/her any showing restrictions in advance - you don't want to turn away showings if you can avoid it. It can set a bad impression.

small front porch ideas pinterest | 42 Wonderful Christmas Decorating Ideas for Porch 2013-2014
 Don't forget the exterior - keep your decor simple, clean and tasteful.  White lights are very flattering and work beyond the Christmas holidays.  Also with the days getting shorter, these lights help buyers and agents see the house better!

The North Pole  It's Christmas at the North Pole all year long, so Santa Claus' home must be decorated to the nines with vibrant lighting, garland, red bows, wreaths and candles in the windows. This festive, snow-covered home looks like it could be occupied by Saint Nick himself.:
  This is really fun and very festive and probably a neighbourhood attraction but it is distracting and a look to avoid when selling your home.

Remember once you are in your new home you can make up for not being able to decorate during the sale of your last home! Happy Holidays and happy Selling!!