Before and After

Refresh your Dining Room with Upholstered Chairs: Before & After


When I decorated my client Barbara's dining room, she had too many chairs already and didn't need anything more than new chair covers, an area rug and custom drapery.

But when I found this upholstered chair from Pier 1 (below) that would make her dining room feel much more collected and less 'matchy-matchy', she bought them right away. Continue reading


Mixing Metals: How to Update a Brown Kitchen by adding Brass


Barbara built this house with her husband 5 years ago ago. He wanted a wood stained kitchen and although she'd love to have a white kitchen now, she wasn't prepared to paint it in this phase of the decorating project.

Her biggest complaint was with the pendant lights, they created a lot of visual glare and she wanted them replaced.

Also, she needed drapery to block out the sun in the wintertime when it slanted through the windows. Continue reading


Three Questions to Ask Yourself When Choosing Exterior Colours


Today's guest post is from Patsy Overton from Atlanta, Georgia. She's seen far too many homeowners choose the wrong exterior colours, so she has a three-step process that'll save you from making the same mistake.
Continue reading


My Sister's Robin Egg Blue Front Door: Before & After


My sister Lea lives in the Eco Village just down the street from my house. She noticed her neighbours started painting their front doors so she called me and said "I want to paint my front door robin's egg blue, can you help me pick the right one?". I said "Great idea! But what about your dull red cushions (below),… 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


Sneak Peek: Transformation from Brown to Blue | Before & After


My client Barbara and her husband had built seven homes together. Every time they would start a new build, she would say, "Can we please save enough money to decorate at the end?"

That day never seemed to arrive.

Last year, her husband passed away, and Barbara decided it was now or never. She'd been following my blog for years, so she felt she could trust me to give her the look and feel she wanted. In January, we started the decorating project: the living, dining, kitchen, and master bedroom. Continue reading


Where to Start When You Have a Blank Slate


Jacqueline called me and said:

"Help! My laundry room is finished, it's white, I followed all the advice on your blog right down to copying the shelves in your laundry room, but now that I have a white Maria Killam laundry room and I can do anything I want, I have no idea where to start!

What colour should I paint it? I painted it BM Grey Owl because I had some leftover paint but it's doing nothing for me!"

I said, "First, Grey Owl is almost like a neutral, muted blue/green grey that would look great in a bathroom with lots of blue grey marble that coordinated with it, but for your laundry room to look fabulous, it needs a colour! Continue reading


How to Make a Man Love Pink (Carriage House Tour)


My mom, Hellen If you've been reading my blog for a while, you might know that my love of colour comes from my mother. One of the big reasons I moved out to the country (from Vancouver) is to live closer to her. She is one of my best friends, and I will do pretty much anything for her. Once in a… 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… Continue reading


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