One bad decision pays for the designer

Why You've Never Had a Good Contractor

Why You've Never Had a Good Contractor

Obviously this statement doesn't apply to everyone, but I've heard it a few times lately from clients. And I've been thinking about why. And since that's what I do best – figure out the answer to the question why – I've come up with a theory. Here it is: Since I'm a decorator and not a renovator, I'm not consistently… Continue reading

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5 Best Ways to Choose your Roof Colour

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About a year before I started writing this blog (it's almost 5 years old), I was partners with another interior designer and we were specifying finishes for spec homes. One day we were sitting in a meeting with the builders who had hired us, discussing exterior colour and I calmly announced that "All [asphalt] roofs should be black". ¬†All four… Continue reading

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Learn to be Bossy Yet Charming

Bossy But Charming Design

This is a post written by Irene Hill, my Design Associate: It's been two years since I've started working with Maria and it's been about the same amount of time since I had a paying client, but occasionally I get an emergency call from a friend. Just recently my phone rang with a plea for marriage counselling. Over a design… Continue reading

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My Design Studio: Before, During & After

My Design Studio: Before, During & After

The transformation of my design studio is so amazing that it needs few words: The day we took possession. After we renovated it last Spring six weeks later. After the flagstone was installed this Spring. After   Here's another angle while shooting pictures so that my talented Landscape Architect MaryAnne White could start the design all the way from New… Continue reading

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Danger: Your Designer has Left the Building

Danger: Your Designer has Left the Building

Have you ever had this happen to you? You hire a designer, consult with them on all the decisions you need to make. All is well. They leave, and then the contractor, painter, tiler. . . in other words the trades who will be executing your project, arrive on the scene. You tell them what you want and they say… Continue reading

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First Rule of Design: Boring Now Equals Timeless Later

Boring Now Equals Classic Later

Last week I was at the Nursery and I called Mary Anne White (my Landscape Designer) because I was shopping for Hostas and this was how our conversation went: "Mary Anne, I'm here and there are so many beautiful Hostas, I can't decide! There's yellow ones, I love those, then there's these green and white ones, green and creamy ones,… Continue reading

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Danger: Free Advice will Sabotage Your Expensive Renovation

Danger: Free Advice will Sabotage your Expensive Renovation

I was recently consulting with a client from Upstate New York. We were finalizing the colours and finishes for her kitchen renovation. As one last piece of advice, I told her to make sure she did not install the 4" slab of granite on the backsplash so commonly found in kitchens. source She said "I am so glad you mentioned… Continue reading

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Vancouver Colour Expert: How Long does Beautiful Take?

White kitchen with kelly green subway tile

The other day my mom reminded me of an old Finnish proverb that goes like this: When a job is done right, no one asks how long it took, everyone simply says "It's beautiful". A client recently called me in a panic, her subway tile backsplash was being installed and the advice she had received on the layout was clearly… Continue reading

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Bad Colour is totally Unacceptable

william

So the final coats of paint are going up in my house as we speak. And since this is my business, I am confident that the colours I chose are right. And as each room gets completed I am filled with happiness. So it got me to thinking. How on earth could anyone watch paint colours going up in their… Continue reading

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Knowing your Options Helps you Move Forward

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The biggest problem with renovations is deciding exactly what to do in any given situation. There are so many questions to resolve. Here are a few my lovely client in Dallas had when analyzing her kitchen.

1. Should I paint these cabinets or is the current colour okay?

A. The existing colour is definitely pink beige. I would paint them to update them but it depends on how you feel about them.
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