Earth Day 2015

Today is Earth Day.

A day when over a billion people in more than 192 countries give thanks to our tiny orb and demonstrate awareness in support for the environment.

This year my nod to Earth Day occurred on my way to the recycle box.

In an “OMG” moment I realized that something I had barely used I was throwing out. Truly a blatant waste of the earth’s resources!  Sinful right?

The item plaguing me with guilt was a fabric sample brochure from Keilhauer; a company whose corporate goal is to be ‘environmentally benign’. Far be it for me to mess with a company Mission Statement!

Surely I could think of some way to ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’.

Back in the house I went with brochure in hand.

And got my creative juices flowing.

Keilhauer Haven fabric

I started with this,

I really liked these,  felted wool

Tried this,     Keilhauer Haven

But then was inspired by this,     Colour inspiration

Came up with this,     Haven Keilhauer

Which finally ended up looking like this,   Haven art

Let’s all try to make the 3R’s part of our daily lives.

REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE!

All images via Modmissy

Bedside Reading

Years ago while being interviewed for a pharmaceutical sales job I was asked “what books was I currently reading”.

I paused, thought and then answered, “the dictionary and the thesaurus”.

I did not land that job.

(I wonder what book would have gotten me hired!?)

I was single at the time and the idea of sitting indoors by myself and reading a novel or a lengthy piece of non-fiction was just not on my (very social) agenda!

But the truth was I really was reading the dictionary.  A great big lexicon was always open, sitting on an antique hutch in the apartment I shared with a girlfriend. Actually it was part of our humble décor.     Dictionary Webster

Any interesting word we happened to stumble upon in that dictionary was written on a scrap of paper and taped to our brown fridge.  Roomie and I then tried to incorporate these words into our vocabulary. (true story)

Fast forward to today; I am an avid reader.

And once again I was recently asked what books I had on my bedside table.

To be honest I don’t place books on my bedside table.  Its clutter.  For me. Bedside Table Eileen Gray

And the few chosen books I do keep in my home often do dual duty.  They must be a good read and look beautiful.

So right now I am reading, THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO COCO CHANNEL from my stack of beautiful black coffee table books.   Coco Channel coffee table book

I also just finished a John Grisham novel that someone passed on to me.  It is a beautiful mint green and chocolate chip coloured hardcover book.  Definitely a keeper to be used as a prop for my home staging business.     Book John Grishman

Along with Coco Channel I am reading OF MICE AND MEN by John Steinbeck.  This is the first time I’m reading this 1937 classic novel; I realize there is no time limit on being current!  This book also makes it as a beautiful staging prop due to the lovely lavender colour on the cover.  Of Mice and Men

Of course I always have close at hand my cherished copy of MARILYN by Normal Mailer.  It is a beautiful linen coloured hardcover book full of wonderful photos of Marilyn Monroe; although far too special to be used as a home staging prop. Marilyn Monroe

So…..what are you reading?  Or decorating with?

All Images by MODMISSY

Gotta Run!

“Gotta run!”

The catch phrase of today.

Everybody is on the move.  Go, go, go!

Subsequently multi-tasking has taken on a whole new meaning.  Eating on the run, driving and texting, walking and talking on a cell phone and even applying makeup or shaving while driving.

Unfortunately in many people’s haste the once beautiful ceremony of drinking tea (or coffee),  Tea Set Whitehas been reduced to drinking from a paper cup while ‘on the run’.  And the worse part of reducing this historical ritual to a “gotta run” activity is the random placement of finished cups.            Tim Hortons coffee cupStarbucks Coffee Grande

Starbucks Coffee Cup

McCafe Coffee Cup

So today if you can take time to smell the roses tea/coffee. And please don’t litter!Tea Set SilverAll Images via MODMISSY

Welcome Spring

Today is the first day of Spring.

Or at least that’s what my calendar tells me because where I live the temperature keeps dancing around the freezing mark.

Mother Nature teases with blue skies and sunshine, Toronto CN TowerAnd due to the piles of snow in my back yard I certainly could not entertain the idea of setting up my patio furniture this weekend.

But one can anticipate.  And plan.

Actually a few weeks ago I attended a few Spring Previews showcasing what’s on trend for Spring 2015.

The Home Depot’s campaign of ‘Spring Starts Here’ certainly brightened a cold, snowy day in February.                                          Spring Starts Here Home DepotA fabulous lineup of outdoor furniture, colourful BBQ’s and zippy looking lawnmowers helped chase away the winter blahs. Home Depot Spring 2015  KitchenAid bbq                                       Ryobi lawnmower Then I sledded (still lots of snow) across town to Loblaws Outdoor Living 2015 Spring preview for a glimpse into what’s hot for this year.  These gorgeous colourful beach towels are Loblaws’ interpretation of “A Heat Wave”, “Soft With a Pop” and “Very Vivid” colour palettes introduced into their outdoor furniture and accessories. Loblaw Outdoor Living 2015As for this season BBQ’s, Loblaw’s knows that backyard cooks get personal with their BBQ’s so each one has been named based on their character; the Ami BBQ is trustworthy and petit while Troy is tough, powerful and big.   Choose as you may! Loblaw BBQAnyways I’m glad spring has finally arrived and with it the onset of COLOUR.

Bring it on!

All Images by MODMISSY

What is Art?

I love this foyer.  The simple but striking red and blue striped runner creates a strong presence amidst the white backdrop.  Bold but elemental in design; a real show-stopper.

Right?  Wouldn’t you agree? Voice of Fire Actually it’s not a foyer and it’s not a runner but rather the powerful vertical painting, Voice of Fire, acrylic on canvas, 1967, by Barnet Newman hanging in the National Gallery of Canada.  Voice of Fire (1)I visited the National Gallery this past weekend and had a chance to sit in Gallery C214, where this 8 ft. x 18 ft. painting hangs.  The walls in this gallery soar to almost 40 feet high toward a room-length skylight and when the National Gallery was built in 1988 it was decided that an “assertive anchor” was needed for this space.

Assertive indeed!  When the painting first appeared in the National Gallery it created huge controversy.  “How could 3 simple stripes cost $1.8 million?”

And many asked, “Is this really art?”

After viewing this painting I headed towards the area of International Art where the Old Masters paintings hang.  I came across this painting by Nicolas Poussin, The Martyrdom of Saint Erasmus, 1628–1629. The Martyrdom of St Eramus

This oil on canvas painting with its ‘forceful diagonals, rich colours and strong light effects’ definitely has history as it is almost 400 years old but I ask you, “does disembowelment make for art!!??”  (Yes I’m talking about the ripping out of a person’s intestines.  Yikes!)

Voice of Fire may be controversial but isn’t The Martyrdom of Saint Erasmus offensive?

So I ask you “what is the definition of art”…..????

It’s all about interpretation I suppose.

And oh by the way Voice of Fire is now valued at more than $40 million!

PS.  If you find yourself in Ottawa check out the National Gallery of Canada and see for yourself.National Gallery of Canada

 

All images by MODMISSY

Lost But Never Forgotten

Today is my cousin’s birthday.

Paul, the ‘cowboy’ as seen in this photo below, circa 1980’s, always had a big smile on his face.  Paul & ChrisUnfortunately we celebrate Paul’s birthday without him as sadly his life ended a few years ago. But our lost loved ones are always in our heart!

Paul was ‘my brother from a different mother’ as he was my mother’s identical twin sister’s son.  Rene and NornieAnd when you have 2 mothers that are so identical their offspring are bound to be close.  And Paul and I were.

Paul had a passion for antiques and the 2 of us were often attending antique auctions together.  In those days I had a penchant for antique furniture (yes it’s true!) and we would load up my car to the brim with all the great finds.

But none was as memorable as the time we purchased an antique cast iron wood stove that weighed over a ‘million’ pounds.  We loaded that behemoth beast into the back of my hatchback and drove it all the way back to the city.  Let’s just say that we were quite the sight driving down the highway with the front tires barely touching the road.  I sold that car soon after!

That wood stove still holds a big place in my heart as it is the focal point of my cottage.  It withstood the recent renovation,  Cottage renovationAnd now holds pride of place in the cottage.IMG_7007

Thanks for the memories.

Rest in peace Paul. xo

 

All Images via MODMISSY

 

 

Beautiful White

Recently my hubby and I met friends, Jane and John Doe, for a fabulous dinner out at a local bistro.

The bistro had a very relaxed rustic-chic décor and served French-inspired cuisine and locally inspired fare.

Of course as one always eats with one’s eyes first our appetizers did not disappoint – there was colour, height and texture.

Sounds amazing right?

When our mains were delivered Jane and Hubby had meals that did not disappoint.  They were ‘beautifully delicious’.

Unfortunately, John and I who ordered the same item were crestfallen.  Our meals were delivered and they were ‘void’.  There was no height, no texture and no colour.

On a white plate, we were served a white parchment wrapped package, and inside was a piece of white fish on a bed of white onions.

White was not what I expected.

Although there is nothing more beautiful than white,

White orchids,  White orchid

 

White linens,  White linens

 

White mirrors, White mirror

White woodwork, White woodwork

 

White accessories, White clock

 

And even white snow,  White snow

But on my plate, served in a French bistro is not where I thought I would see white.

I ordered chocolate cake for dessert. It did not disappoint!

All images by MODMISSY

IDS15 – Interior Design Show 2015

Last weekend was Toronto’s Interior Design Show.

Innovative design, inspirational exhibits and influential speakers make for an event not to be missed.

Each year exhibitors try to cook up some new eye candy with booth displays that are truly notable and statement worthy.

It’s always an exciting show.

I toured the show for 2 days and took lots of photos.

Here are just a few.

Paint colours were demonstrated in a variety of styles by Benjamin Moore, Farrow & Ball and Para Paints.     IDS15 Benjamin Moore

Colour was definitely the theme at the Smeg booth with these colourful 50’s-style retro refrigerators.  IDS15 Smeg

‘Retro’ was present in a big way as evidenced at the Hauser booth with colour, scalloped skirting and flower-power.  IDS15 Hauser

And at the Roche-Bobois booth the sofa originally designed in the 1970’s by Hans Hopfer has maintained a lasting sense of style and ‘inventiveness’ due to its infinite compositions and fabric. Loved the fabric created by well-known designer Jean Paul Gaultier.  IDS15 Roche Bobois

And you could feel the ‘groove’ at Missoni Home with the riot of colour, iconic fabrics and the renowned zigzag.  IDS15 Missoni Home

I loved the Montauk Sofa booth, it was so fun.  I mean literally you can only re-invent a room display so many times!  IDS15 Montauk Sofa

The new SEKTION kitchen line from IKEA was introduced at the show with Canadian home décor magazines, House and Home and Style at Home along with IKEA creating 3 different kitchen layouts.  Very similar, very different.  Very inspiring!IDS15 IKEA SektionIDS15 House and HomeIDS15 Style at Home

Bathroom fixtures abound but PierDeco Design takes ‘sitting on the throne’ one step further with their Aquamobilia line!  IDS15 PierDeco Design

And don’t forget to look up; there are many amazing light fixtures. IDS15 LightingAnd on a playful note, Canadian designer Philippe Malouin appealed to the child in all of us with this interactive swing set at the Caesarstone display.  Yup that’s right….a full scale swing with each seat made from a different sample of Caesarstone!IDS15 Caesarstone

I have barely introduced you to the many amazing exhibits that were present.

Absolutely a show not to miss!

All images by MODMISSY

A New Year, A New Beginning

Welcome 2015!

A brand new year is upon us.  Fresh and full of opportunities.

Anything and everything lies ahead.  It’s exciting!

So instead of writing about binding New Year resolutions I thought the year should be about encouragement and breaking free or as Ralph Waldo Emerson remarked,     Ralph Waldo.

Be unique.  Create your own.  Spider Web

Climb great heights,  

Reach for the top,  Toronto Skyline

Make your space sing with colour – choose a colour that’s outside your comfort zone, Space

After all, 2 of the industry leaders in the world of colour, Pantone and Benjamin Moore, announced their Colour of the Year 2015 – total opposites on the colour wheel.  So anything goes!  Colour of the Year

Find your balance,  Stonehenge

Take time to smell the roses,  Rose

Find your happy!   (a ’66 Chevy Impala)  66 Chevy Impala

 

But honestly, at the end of the day it’s all about finding your peace, Peace

Here’s hoping that 2015 is a stellar year.

Cheers!

All images via MODMISSY

 

Merry Christmas

Ho ho ho!  Here we go.

Tis Christmas time again!

As you know I love the season but I have a hard time with all the decorations (read clutter) in my home.

But alas I found a solution.

This year I am hosting Christmas dinner at my home.  I wanted all of us to celebrate together so we built one long table that would seat 20.  We had to rearrange the furniture in the living room so everyone could move around freely.  (Nothing worse than being stuck in a corner and 10 people having to get up and move when you decide that a 2nd helping of mashed potatoes and gravy would be nice!)  Christmas Table

This arrangement of furniture meant there was no space for a Christmas tree!

Oh darn.

Don’t worry I did not ‘Scrooge’-out, instead I placed my fully decorated Christmas tree in the front porch!  Everyone at the table can still see the tree.  Sans needles and mess.  Perfect!   Christmas Tree

And then creativity struck, I wrapped the gifts and tied them all up with a bow and wouldn’t you know – a Christmas tree appeared!   Christmas Tree of Gifts

And on that note a MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!!

See you in the New Year.

Santa Claus

XXXOOO

 

All images via MODMISSY