The Stunning and Classic Home of the Giannetti’s at Patina Farm

Roses from Brooke’s garden to greet us in the guest house Many of us in blogland followed Brooke and Steve Giannetti when they built their dream home in Ojai, California and moved from their previous house in Santa Monica. They have lived there now for three years since it was finished, but in the Spring of 2014, Brooke posted photos of her gardens here, only one year after it was installed. ... Continue Reading

Add Some Fall to Your Living Room Using Brown (I did)

For some time now, there’s been talk about browns and warmer neutrals coming back to replace gray. Last week, when someone asked if I would write a post about taupe because Sherwin Williams recently claimed one as their colour of the year I responded: “When my readers or clients start asking me for Taupe, that’s when I’ll know it’s real. And not just someone in the marketing department declaring ‘Well we can’t keep talking about gray ... Continue Reading

14 Inexpensive Ways to Get the Look of Real Art

  I’m currently in Austin, Texas at a Mastermind group (working on something I’m creating for all my True Colour Experts this year) at the Omni Hotel downtown! Then I leave for Dallas to lead my Specify Colour with Confidence™ event next week. What should we do on Sunday in Austin? I would love your comments, we haven’t made a formal plan yet! The cool view from our hotel room ... Continue Reading

The Secret to Feeling at Home

  Image via Design Sponge I have a treat for you today! Our virtual Director of Customer Service & Delight/Event Coordinator Lisa Borton, based out of Naperville, Illinois, has written a guest post for us. We asked everyone who applied for this position to write a blog post and I loved hers so much, I’m sharing it with you! Those of you who attended my Vancouver Specify Colour with Confidence™ event ... Continue Reading

Ask Maria: Is My Living Room Too Beachy?

Jeffrey Bilhuber  When I saw this Ask Maria question, I immediately thought of Jeffrey Bilhuber’s recent spread in House Beautiful Magazine. The answer to your question today lovely reader, is inspired by my favourite decorator. Here’s the question: I recently moved with my husband into our first house!  I have been so excited to make it our own, but I have gotten our living room stuck in a rut!  I ... Continue Reading

Look, You Need To Know How to Have this Conversation

Vanessa Francis Here it is. Your husband, your wife, or your client will often react in a negative way when something isn’t complete. My clients spare bathroom had looked like this for three years (above). She wanted it to look nice, but she didn’t want to spend a fortune and had tried to convince her Fiancé to let her decorate it. Last week, I arrived with a shower curtain, towels, art, and accessories (photo ... Continue Reading

Why Colour is NOT Always a Personal Choice

When it is right, and when is it a mistake, to choose colours for your home based on personal choice? ... Continue Reading

What Do Symmetry and Nudity Have in Common?

Most of the beautiful architecture in Italy is perfectly symmetrical. That's amazing enough in itself, and it sure makes for beautiful photos, but I learned there's a much deeper, more important reason for all that symmetry. ... Continue Reading

7 Ways to Make the Most of What You Already Have | Before & After

Crystal called me to help her pull together her new house. This was her request: "I used to have a colourful condo. Oranges and yellows have always been a favourite of mine, and in the last 5 years, I’ve loved pinks. I hired a designer about 6 years ago, and I guess she was successful at convincing me that colour was kids' stuff and neutrals were sophisticated. So out with all my stuff and in with the new. Cream, chocolate browns, and greens. I found it bland and lifeless, although yes, very nice and sophisticated. So I started adding pink with Designers Guild bedding, decorative pillows, etc. I also bought some whimsical paintings with colour punches (I’ve attached photos of them)." I was very impressed by your colourful portfolio and would love your help." See the before and afters here. . . ... Continue Reading

Are You Still Using an Instant Camera to Photograph Your Work?

I used to think I could get away with using my little instant camera when taking photos of my work. A year of lessons has shown me what's really possible when we take professional photography seriously, even in so-called uninspiring spaces like boardrooms and offices. Come on in for a peek at some photos I took of my own photography instructor's new space. ... Continue Reading

24 Ways to Make Your Showroom More Beautiful, Current, and Profitable

Wesley Hall I go to High Point Furniture Market every spring and fall to source furniture and artwork for my clients, get educated, and (of course) get inspired! If you are a retailer with a showroom, High Point is THE place to go. You’ll discover unique ways to incorporate current colour trends into your showroom, create gorgeous vignettes, and design a space that your customers and clients want to spend time in and shop in. ... Continue Reading

7 Best Ways to Decorate Around the TV

I'm not the first person to write this post but there might be a few tips here you haven't read somewhere else. Is it time to get your TV off the console or get some artwork around it? Read on for my advice. . . ... Continue Reading

Colour in Commercial Hallways: 3 Ways to Get it Right

The corridors of apartments and hotels set an important tone for the building as a whole. Here's how to choose colours that coordinate with each other, address the challenges of these common spaces, and make a designer statement. ... Continue Reading

Before & After: The Pinterest School of Styling

Interior design & styling by Maria Killam As I lay by the pool on my recent vacation in Kauai, I had already read both of the beach novels that I brought, so I went through my client’s library  and pulled out The Alchemist. My sister Elizabeth posing for my photo Three years ago, when my client was building this house in Kauai, I helped her choose hard finishes and select furniture (Something ... Continue Reading

Happy 4th! Summer House vs. Beach House

I have a client who lives up on Promontory Hill in Chilliwack. They have one of the best uninterrupted views I’ve ever seen. Looking out their living room windows, you feel like you’ve driven for five hours to a cabin in the woods, to get that kind of stunning view. So it made sense that when property came up for sale right beside their house, they bought it and built a pool with an adjoining ... Continue Reading

10 Styling Necessities to Transform your Home ASAP

In a few weeks, there will be magic happening at Aimee’s house in Port Alberni thanks to all of you! Irene will arrive with a team of 10 volunteers to assemble IKEA furniture and then the following weekend I’ll be there with my car full of accessories and lamps to hang artwork and create some tablescapes. I’ve been compiling a list of basic necessities we’ll need for styling and here’s what I recommend for ... Continue Reading