How to Avoid the 5 Most Common Kitchen Mistakes

I’m travelling and leading my first, SOLD OUT Specify Colour with Confidence workshop in Chicago this week. The second one in Chicago is next weekend, we are ALMOST sold out but have 2 spaces left if you have time to jump in. Register here. Tricia Firmaniuk, my fabulous Virtual Design Assistant, wrote this great post about kitchens. Let me know what you think! ______________________________________________________________ Here’s a kitchen I found listed ... Continue Reading

Tablescapes for Dummies; The Beginners Guide

BHG Hasn’t everyone bought one of those “fill-in-the-blank for Dummies” books when you really don’t know something and you’re thinking “Talk to me like I’m 5 years old?”. I certainly have. Years ago I dated a guy who was into philosophy and I just felt stupid every time he started talking about it, so I bought Philosophy for Dummies.  I’m not convinced I’m any smarter about that topic, but I did buy the book. ... Continue Reading

Trendy or Classic? Ask Yourself These 3 Questions

Photo by Maria Killam at Maison & Objet When I wrote my trend report from Maison & Objet last week, truthfully, I was kind of depressed that all evidence points towards black as the next trendy neutral after grey. In this case, I hope I’m wrong. It seems that in my 20 year colour career I’ve now seen trend colours go full circle around the wheel.   Understanding Undertones – The Colour ... Continue Reading

Is Black the New Grey? Trends for 2018 from Maison & Objet

It was an interesting first day at Maison & Objet. Everyone had different opinions about the trends because I think everyone looks for whatever interests them. For example, I’ll be at High Point market and someone will say “I saw RED everywhere” and I’ll think “Really? I didn’t see much red” but that’s because red is not my colour. I think you’d have to read a few trend reports to ... Continue Reading

There are 9 Neutral Undertones in the World (see them here)

I’ve been thinking about my bathrooms lately and how un-renovated and dated they are. It’s a project I was going to tackle this year but honestly, they just don’t bother me enough so I let it slide. Except for this: I have always loved taking baths but the tub in our master is too big and takes more than one hot water tank to fill and the one in my ... 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

Gold Hardware & Lighting Should Replace Silver: Yay or Nay?

{via Domino} Gold finishes in hardware, lighting and furniture has taken its sweet time in becoming mainstream. Back in October 2011, when I wrote this post about choosing hardware for your kitchen, I declared that gold was too warm for a white kitchen. I see now that I was reacting to the lighting in that kitchen which I didn’t particularly like. Is it trendy? Sure it is, but just like any trend, if you ... Continue Reading

Jaipur Rugs, Pillows and Poufs at High Point Market

I’m a sponsored blogger again this Fall market and I was so happy to have the opportunity to blog about Jaipur Rugs, since a colourful area rug with some pillows are such a quick and easy way to breathe new colour and life into any room. Photo by Maria Killam This is how they had their showroom entry decorated. Of course I snapped a photo because I loved the yellows! They sell ... Continue Reading

Does a Sexy, Reasonable but Comfortable Office Chair Exist?

This is the question I have been wondering about for quite a while now. My office {photo by Tracy Ayton Photography} These are the chairs we have now (above). I bought them from Coscto about 4 years ago. I seem to remember that they were somewhere in the realm of $250. But now, if you get close to them, they look like they have been infested with worms, ewwwww! When ... Continue Reading

“I’ve Got This” and Other Unrealistic Thoughts about Renovating

So, just in case you were wondering and losing sleep over this topic like I have, I’ve figured it out. The third week in my Renovate with Confidence™ Focus on Finishes for Renovations and New Builds is coming up and it’s my best work yet! Now that I’ve organized all the advice I’m constantly giving my clients into a step-by-step format, the good news is, I’m adding stuff I thought I’d forgotten over 15 ... Continue Reading

How Long will You Wait to Get The Sofa You Want?

I once helped a client decorate her guest room. She wanted everything NOW. The painting had to happen IMMEDIATELY! The furniture, delivered YESTERDAY. In my experience, there are two types of clients who want furniture that fast. When you move into a new house and you don't have any furniture to sit on, that has people get pretty impatient for new stuff, RIGHT NOW. Second, the client who cannot decide. They don't want to make a mistake so they wait. And wait. And wait. And wait. And put up with old, bad, and cheap for a very long time. ... Continue Reading

2014 Trends from Spring Market at High Point

The last time I attended High Point was 3 1/2 years ago in the Fall. I remember it being pretty much greys and charcoals. There was very little colour although, of course, I looked for it. Maria Killam, Alicia Connolly & Barbara Miller (Picture from Day 1 at Market) My friend Barbara Miller (above right) and I walked the Suites at Market Square today and came upon this fabulous lighting and ... Continue Reading

My Favourite Go-To Designer Fabrics

When I first started decorating and selecting fabrics for my clients, it took me a while to figure out the best upholstery fabrics to use. One day, I was in the Robert Allen showroom and one of the designers whispered that Orvis was her personal favourite. A great herringbone texture that comes in a multitude of colours. It’s also really durable at 45,000 double rubs since anything over 30,000 is ... Continue Reading

Colour Forecast for 2015 from Palm Springs

Click on image for sources The speaker on our first morning was Michael Shamassian, president and owner of Shmaze Industries. His presentation was very inspiring. He talked about how his passion for colour began at 19 when he started painting cars for a living while attending college at the same time. Fast forward, he is now in the business of coatings. Sunglasses, cell phones, laptops, even medical equipment. When Diane Von ... Continue Reading

The Case for Matchy Matchy Decorating

via Pinterest (click on image) Recently while consulting with clients around their fixed finishes like tiles and countertops or exterior stone I have have been hearing phrases like: ‘It’s matchy, matchy but I think it’s okay’. or ‘It’s matchy, matchy is that okay?’ or ‘I don’t want it to look matchy matchy’. This same conversation came up again recently when I was in Toronto teaching one of my Specify Colour with Confidence™ ... Continue Reading

Tablescapes at the IDS Show

This was the post I wanted to show you Friday but I couldn’t upload the images into WordPress. The media event at the IDS show this past weekend was filled with herbs mixed with boxwood and pansies. Here’s a glimpse of some Swiss Chard. This booth I stopped and admired was decorated by Harmony Sense Interiors. I had to buy one of these colourful and creative wool bowls for my ... Continue Reading