Tour My House: Learn the 6 Best Ways to Transition Colour

Take a walk with me through my house for a real-time example of how to create perfect colour flow in your home. ... Continue Reading

How to Work with Simply White Walls

Today's guest post is from Jil Sonia McDonald! Jil recently decorated a home that's perfectly modern organic, full of whites, grays, and lots of natural texture. Want to see? (Fair warning: You might want to move right in!) ... Continue Reading

How to Successfully Design Around Awkward Structural Elements

Today's guest post is from Claire Jefford, a True Colour Expert and certified interior decorator from Burlington, Ontario. Claire's got an interesting designer solution for those of you dealing with awkward structural elements in your home, like bulkheads in the basement. Want to know what it is? ... Continue Reading

When White Walls are the ONLY Solution

{via pinterest} In the very beginning of my design career I was fortunate enough to have some great mentors. One was a very talented designer who probably couldn’t tell you about undertones but she had amazing spidey senses when it came to choosing colour. As designers working in a paint store, our job was to book in-home appointments with customers who came into the store looking for help with colour. After the consultation, we would clip colour ... 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

Ask Maria: Help! The Previous Homeowner Installed Granite to Sell

This homeowner reached out to me with photos of two bathrooms in her own house. Who can see what’s wrong here? It’s the old “granite to sell” trick and some would say it worked but the new granite makes the floor and cabinets look especially dated. How can you tell that the granite is the new addition? That 4″ kick along the back might mislead you into thinking the counters are older ... Continue Reading

Ask Maria: Which Countertop Should I Choose (What Were They Thinking??)

“Here is my kitchen that was built in 2006. I wish I stumbled across your blog years ago because the thing I dislike about the kitchen the most is the busy tile! And is this tile the dreaded pinky-beige? And my knotty alder cabinets have yellowed considerably over the years. So I’m pretty sure we have a major undertone problem here (and throughout my entire house most likely) We have ... Continue Reading

What Women Want vs. Men (In a House)

Overheard at a birthday party with some of my designer friends last weekend: “When I work with builders I always tell them that WOMEN buy houses, not men.” Men want a large TV room {via pinterest} A Garage {via pinterest} Isn’t this amazing! Now this is an organized person! {source} And, No Nagging! {via pinterest} Women want above all else a really nice kitchen, with good finishes, {via Domainehome.com} This kitchen is sooooo ... Continue Reading

Quick Announcement and a Favour regarding White

We are really close to finishing my long-awaited eBook on white: White is Complicated, A Decorators Guide to Choosing the Right White  (above). We plan to release it in the Fall. It’s funny, at first I was sure this book would be shorter than How to Choose Paint Colours: It’s all in the Undertones, but it’s just as big and maybe with your help, even a little bigger? I didn’t know how much ... Continue Reading

A New Way to Design Accent tile: Ceramic Architecture

I first learned the term ‘ceramic architecture’ when the VP of Waterworks gave a presentation and I wrote this post afterwards about perfect vs. perfectly nice bathrooms. When I searched ‘ceramic architecture’ on google, I was fascinated that absolutely nothing comes up with regard to tile layouts. As many of you know, accent tile has a bad rap on this blog and for good reason. I have been in thousands upon thousands ... Continue Reading

Renovate with Confidence – Focus on Finishes On Demand Training with Maria Killam

When I was a brand new designer, it scared me to choose tiles. There were so many of them. Thousands of clients and years later, I realized that 80% of tiles, shouldn’t even be in the store. Most of them are bad and ugly, it’s the pretty tile that I want to teach you to see. It’s such a permanent decision! It’s an even bigger decision to suddenly rip out your tiles if you’ve ... Continue Reading

The Best Cream Bathrooms

My white eBook is coming out soon, it always takes longer than I think it will to get it done and done and edited. It’s going to take the world of whites and make it so much easier to understand. I’ve divided whites into white, off-white and cream. Because that’s all you really need to know to choose a white. I’ve never chosen a pink-based white as a trim colour for an ... Continue Reading

Can Your House be Trendy & Classic at the Same Time?

Hex Tile On vacation these last few days when I posted a restaurant rest room and an ice cream parlour, both happened to have hex tile floors. Someone asked if they were trendy and I said yes. White Kitchen Then another reader posted that they are classic and date back to the early 20’s or maybe even before, just like subway tile. So here’s the thing. You’re both right. White ... Continue Reading

Smile Sweetly and Ask Nicely While You’re on Vacation

It’s a good thing my brother-in-law Dr. Bill Jacobs is a good holiday planner because he’s directly responsible for the fact that Terreeia and I are here in Scottsdale, Arizona with my sister Elizabeth and my sweet nephews for 5 nights. William & Markus We’re staying at the Kimpton Firesky Resort & Spa. When we arrived in our looong stretch limo (men are all about classy transportation–Bill again) we had adjoining rooms but not facing ... Continue Reading

Time for a Powder Room Update (The Toilet’s Gotta Go)

We need a new toilet in our powder room. It doesn’t flush properly and it’s a problem when you have to have the plunger permanently installed like an accessory. Our powder room is off the laundry room which is the first room you enter when you walk in through the back door (below). If we get a new toilet, a new sink and vanity is not far behind. Especially because the ... Continue Reading

Best Fix for Ugly Tile in Bathrooms

Some of you will know that I am a huge fan of Jeffrey Bilhuber. So I decided to buy his first book the other day (I already have the other two), Jeffrey Bilhuber’s Design Basics. It’s full of great tips but the best one that has never occurred to me is what he said about bad tile in bathrooms. Probably everyone has inherited horrible tile at some stage of home ... Continue Reading