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

 

 

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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

What’s in a Name?

“What’s in a name?”

That iconic question asked by many.

But none so famous as that asked by Shakespeare’s Juliet when it came to her lover Romeo,

 “O Romeo, Romeo!  Wherefore art thou Romeo?  Deny thy father and refuse thy name;”

A conundrum for sure as the name meant (spoiler alert!) death for the star-crossed lovers.

Names are important.

Just as Juliet asked, “that which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet?” would a name of an item influence your choice or sway your decision?

The reason I ask is that while flipping through a recent Sears® catalogue I found it interesting the names now used for colour choices of décor items such as furniture, linens and drapery.

(Boring) beige is now named Moon Rock, Bamboo Beige and Shiitake Mushroom conjuring up something more contemporary.   Shitake Mushrooms

 

(Mundane) grey has been pumped up to Volcanic Grey, Molten Lead and Fossil Grey.  Feel the excitement!?      Fossil Grey

 

(Blah) brown is now Earth and Dark Fudge.  Sound yummier?             Dark Fudge

 

(Stale) green has become Shale Green and Smokey Sage.  Sexier?Shale GreenEven the automotive icon, Porsche® known for its truly distinctive design and breathtaking dynamics has given emotional impact to yellow with the 2014 colour option Racing Yellow.  Porsche Racing YellowCan’t you just feel the race-inspired colour philosophy!?

Got me swooning!

All images designed my Modmissy

Sold In A Day

Recently I staged a home for Real Estate sale that sold in a day.

And it sold for well over asking!

I’m going to credit that very quick and prosperous sale in huge part due to my staging services.

(Hey, when the horn can be tooted, toot it!)

Yes, the home had great bones but was buried in the ‘stuff’ of hectic daily living!

Often when I arrive on the scene the home is in a state of disarray whereby I must then ‘turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse’.

Or…take an ogre and turn it into a princess!

bad hair day

Fortunately I love what I do so when I first walked into this home I was not daunted but rather excited.  Actually excitement is what I put into the home.  I try to create a space that has energy; positive energy.  And a vibe that says, “I want to live here”.

Livingroom before Livingroom before

Living Room afterLivingroom after

Dining Room beforeDining Room before

Dining Room afterDining Room after

Kitchen before  Kitchen before

 

Kitchen after  Kitchen after

Bedroom before bdrm before staging

Before after bdrm after staging  All images via Modmissy

 

 

Sewing a Silver Lining!

In my Junior High years (grade 7 and 8) my school principal decided to try out a new method of teaching/learning and used my class for the experiment.  We were his lab rats!

Needless to say I did not learn much in those 2 very crucial years.  (The principal was fired soon after!)

But for all negatives there is a positive and the silver lining here was that my school thought it would be useful for us teens to learn some life skills.

So we were bused one afternoon a week to another school that had facilities to teach us in ‘home ec’ and woodworking.

Home ec (as in home economics) taught us how to cook and sew.

And the woodworking class taught us how to use tools and build things.

I eventually learned what an adjective was and how to do fractions, finished high school and went on to higher learning but those life skills I was taught in grade 7 and 8 have been invaluable.

And well used.

Cooking is something I do on a daily basis with rave reviews from the family.

And I always have a sewing project on the go.

My sewing projects are usually quite basic but I do turn out some good results.  I have sewn a million cushion covers over the years and if you’ve ever been to a fabric store you may understand how fabulous fabrics have a way of following you out the store and inspiring sewing projects.  I recently fell in love with this colourful ‘mod’ fabric,   Retro Wavy Fabric

and thought the fabric would be the perfect accompaniment to my retro bedside lamps.

Wavy Pillows

Apparently everyone at university is ‘Irish’ and celebrates St Patrick’s Day in a big way so this past March my son requested a pair of ‘celebratory’ pants to be sewn by his obliging Mother.

Three yards of this,                   3 leaf clover fabric

Produced these,                      St Patricks Day Pants

A big hit with all the St Patty’s Day revellers.

I even got orders for next year!  NOT!

My woodworking skills have been used much less.  Although I did produce my initials in woodworking class and have kept them all these years as a reminder that I can indeed build things,                Modmissy Woodworking

Instead I married a man whose building skills far outweigh mine and we decided early in the relationship that I was a better cook/sewer and he was a better builder.

That’s fine by me.

Cheers!

All images via Modmissy

Sofas of My Past

Are we products of our youth or formed by our surroundings?

Do past memories influence decisions in our lives today?

My case in point – the sofa.

I can still vividly recall the sofas of my youth and the impact their design had on me.

For real!

My first childhood friend was a child of parents newly emigrated from Italy.  They barely spoke English but their hard work and commitment to success in this new country was strong.  They took pride in ownership of their home and its contents.  I remember their sofa.  We would sit on it while we watched cartoons, drinking Brio cola and eating Nutella® sandwiches.  It was soft beige in colour but I could not tell you what the fabric content was as I actually never felt it – the sofa was covered in plastic.  The entire sofa was actually upholstered with clear plastic shielding the decorative fabric.  So no matter if we spilled our Brio colas or dropped our Nutella sandwiches the plastic protected that sofa! Plastic upholstered sofa

My next childhood friend had a green sofa that we sat on hour after hour while listening to records on the family Hi-Fi record player (my friend loved music).  But for the life of me I could not figure out how to sit on that sofa without falling off.  Truly!  The fabric on this sofa was polyester – 1st generation polyester and slippery as hell.  If you sat on the sofa the seat cushions would slip forward and soon you would find yourself sitting on the floor.  Or at least I would, my friend’s family had somehow figured out the secret behind keeping the cushions from sliding.                     1970 sofa

My teenage friend was a child of parents newly emigrated from Germany.  Now they had a very different sofa.  Or at least different from what I had at home.  Their living room was all decorated in teak.  Teak sofa, teak chairs.  My friend’s living room was the essence of Danish design; very ‘Mid-Century Modern’ as it is called today.  I admired it then and I just had the opportunity to once again admire it after a recent visit to my friend’s parents’ home and it still looks wonderful.               Danishteakclassics

So in retrospect, I have never had a sofa covered in plastic although I do occasionally in summer throw a sheet over my leather sofa to prevent sticking.  I avoid synthetic fabrics on my sofas and prefer natural fabrics – linens, cottons, leather and wool.  And I am smitten with all things Mid-Century!

Images: 1. www.multiplemayhemmamma.com 2. www.ancientpoint.com
3. ww.danishteakclassics.com