Design

  • Rotem Lamsee of Ace of Space Interiors in Toronto shares her inspiration, personal style and favourite design project.

  • (Photo Credit: Callum Mundine, L.E.D World)

    Basements can be dark, drab and all-around just not nice places to spend time in. But they don’t have to be that way. With a few renovations, basements can be transformed into bright, pleasant, liveable rooms. Need some tips on how to brighten up your basement? Try a few of these ideas and see what a difference it can make.

  • Your bathroom can be a cluttered mess or a welcome respite from your busy day. These six stunning bathroom renovations were the winners of DDA Canada's 2018 Decorating and Design Competition. 

  • We often get asked for suggestions on mixing art walls, and best determining the size of piece to place. Coco Chanel (the queen of styling principles) is famous for her witty quotes on fashion that very much apply to art.

  • If you have a small house or a condo, you’re likely always looking for ways to make the space look bigger. This is particularly the case for people living in large cities such as Toronto or Vancouver, where condos are hot, but are being built smaller in size.

    But just because you live in a small space doesn’t mean your home has to look tiny. Mary Stanton, of award-winning Stanton Interiors, specializes in condo and small space décor and says that there are several quick and easy decorating tips to make your home look bigger and brighter.

  • In the summer, there’s nothing better than sitting outside on a warm evening, sharing food and drinks with friends. And creating the perfect outdoor space for entertaining is easy. Casual reigns when the months heat up, so don’t panic if you feel your yard is too rough around the edges. With a few quick touches, such as the ones listed below, you can turn your backyard into a delightful garden party.

  • It’s a comfortably warm Saturday afternoon. You are outside on the back deck, cold beverage in hand, the BBQ is fired up and you are officially enjoying summer. The yard looks incredible, filled with friends and family … now if only your neighbor hadn’t just fired up his hedge trimmer for the 14th time today … and the in house behind you they are having yet another animated and audible conversation while their son speeds away on his motorcycle, muffler be damned! Ah yes, the sights and sounds of summer!
  • Contrary to popular belief, stylish and functional renovations or refreshers needn't cost you the roof over your head. These three projects got serious mileage from their small budgets—and won Design & Decorating Competition awards for the feat.

  • As decorating professionals, we have a lot of advice to share with our clients. Its our responsibility to apply principles of style in order to achieve interior looks that are balanced and beautiful. We integrate fabric, finishes, and furnishings, and harmonize colour, scale and pattern. We address architectural challenges. We fight uphill battles against stubborn spouses, sticky kids, and shedding pets. Only when we have done all of this, as well as incorporate current trends and maximize the function of the space, can we say we have successfully produced a unified design.

  • In the recent Hot Spots research study by Napoleon, when consumers were asked where they would like to have a fireplace in their next home, 35% indicated the backyard.
  • When it comes to decorating, I often tell my clients they can either want the home that everyone else has, or have the home that everyone else wants. 

    Having the home that everyone else wants begins with making unique design choices and setting new trends. This is achieved in part by introducing distinctive finishes and surfaces, such as alternative and sustainable countertops.

  • How does the energy flow through your home? Is it something you think about? If you’re someone who practices feng shui, it’s not just something you think about, but something that you purposely set out to address in your home décor.

    Feng shui is an ancient Chinese practice that dates back to 4,000 BCE.

  • Although powder rooms are typically small spaces and often built more with utility in mind than style, they are a frequently visited space in any home by both owners and guests. Each year, entrants in the Decorating and Design Competition get to show off their fresh ideas for improving living spaces at every budget. These three powder rooms were named the best powder rooms designed in 2017 by DDA Canada members. Take a look!

  • There may be no easier and faster way to transform your space than by changing your colour scheme. That could mean something as dramatic as repainting an entire room, or something as simple as updating a few accessories to add a new splash of colour. But where to begin and what colour to choose?

    First off, figure out the mood you want to create with your colour scheme.

  • This year DDA members toured High Point Market in style. Over the four-and-a-half days, we navigated the massive design show by way of a curated VIP tour. Ottawa chapter president and long-time member Deborah Casey captured these tour highlights:

  • When it comes to home decorating, you need to consider more than just colours and accessories; you also need to consider your furniture layout, which can have a huge impact on the overall mood.

    Janet Stone, of J.L.S. Design in Port Perry, Ontario, describes the perfect layout as appealing to both function and harmony. “Traffic flow is essential,” she says. “A good practical furniture layout will dictate how people move about each room and into other spaces in the home. If this is not harmonious, then the whole home will feel disjointed.”

  • The Interior Design Show is the biggest design show in Canada. Each year IDS takes place over 3.5 days at the end of January. The biggest, boldest designs and products get showcased during the show, and we were there to tell you all about it!

    The past and future collided at the 2014 IDS Show. Futuristic metals and sleek designs were set against handcrafted wooden interiors. Traditional methods of production were used to create novel home accessories in bright almost neon colours.
    Sustainability continues to be a consideration in the production of new furnishings. Many of the furniture sho


  • Out of sight out of mind. That’s the reason powder rooms are often one of the most lackluster rooms in a home. Homeowners may rarely use the powder room, but that’s not the case for their guests.

    Is it time to update your powder room? Here are three incredible powder rooms updates to whet your appetite. These gorgeous recent renos are the bronze, silver and gold winning designs from the Canadian Decorators’ Association’s 2017 Decorating & Design Competition.

     

  • The biggest and easiest trend for us to get on board with for 2017 is ‘kitchens that don’t look like kitchens’. New home design and renovations err on the side of opening up the living space and this trend fits right in, to allow a cohesive flow of aesthetic form paired with intentional function.

    Ways to achieve this, while weaving in additional trends:

  • Say you have some really great antique pieces that you want to hold onto – but you want to merge them with your new, slick home décor. How do you do it? Is it even possible to merge the old with the new without looking too eclectic?

    Marla Makowski, of Panache Home Decorating Inc. in Oakville, Ontario, admits that it’s a hard look to pull off if you don’t know what you’re doing. “Merging the old and new is a talent,” she says. “If you’re not careful, the décor can, very easily, become kitschy – like you collected all the items from a garage sale or hand-me-down.”