Best Countertop for Stained Wood Cabinets


{via Carriage Lane Designs} When I received this Ask Maria question asked slightly different two times recently, I thought it deserved a stand-alone post even though my regular readers will have read my opinion here: We are doing a complete gut job on our kitchen and starting over with high end shaker cherry cabinets.  I want to balance the dark… Continue reading


Best Colours for a Basement Kitchen (1 Kitchen, 3 Ways)


I recently received this question from a reader who sent me a photo of her kitchen: Hi Maria, I SO want to make my little basement apartment a haven that I love to call home. I want it to be as light and bright as possible since there is so little natural light… and I LOVE lots of light. Everything is… Continue reading


Ask Maria: Are Stainless Appliances Going out of Fashion?


via pinterest Today's question from a reader is: "Maria, I am renovating my kitchen from scratch, I love white and would love all white appliances and white cabinets and white walls would this be to much? I hear that stainless is going out of fashion. " What do you think? Recently, I opened my October edition of House Beautiful (my… Continue reading


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


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


My Sister's New Kitchen: Surprise! It's NOT White or Subway Tile!


When my sister Lea and her partner were getting ready to move into the Eco Village in our town, I helped Lea choose finishes, colours, and lighting.

Greg wanted wood-stained cabinets (not white) and Lea really didn't mind either way, so I specified a light maple, along with medium brown engineered wood flooring.

She did NOT want subway tile because she thinks it's boring (clearly not brainwashed enough by reading my blog, sigh), but agreed that we would stay away from accent tile and keep it off-white to coordinate with the quartz. We settled on this moroccan pattern. Continue reading


How to Choose Granite For Your Kitchen Island


Granite is an expensive element of your kitchen renovation budget. It also has the potential to be a really expensive mistake. What should you know before choosing granite for your kitchen island? How can you make sure to do it right? 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


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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