Baby it’s Cold Outside!

Brrrrrrrrrrr!  It’s cold outside.

Mother Nature seems to be confused offering 12 degree temps (54 degree Fahrenheit) in June.

So I thought it would be OK to talk about fur – mostly fun faux fur.

I have had this photo in my inspiration folder for some time, a tear-out from Style at Home magazine.  The magazine made mention of statement pieces like the well-styled bookcases, the hide rug, table and vase – which are all very lovely.  But who could ignore that outstanding/amazing flokati-covered chair.  Not Me!!!!  flokati covered chair

Another chair that caught my attention is The Cutie Chair by Munna Design of Portugal whose mission is to ‘transform emotion into products’.  The Cutie Chair with its faux fur and gold leaf legs certainly fills me with emotions of happiness!  Cutie Armchair by Munna Design

The Ciprio designed by Fernando e Humberto Campana for Edra is a wonderfully playful iconic piece.  The settee has 9 cushions fixed to an invisible metal tube frame, stuffed with Gellyfoam® and covered in ‘ecological fur ‘available in different fur lengths.  Fun, fun, fun!  Cipria for Edra.

This chair seen on is a Mid Century Modern classic piece covered in faux fur.  Serious but not too serious.

So I decided to do my own version of a faux fur covered chair.  I went with yellow to give a pop of colour in a very white guest room plus it matched one of The Hudson Bay stripes in the Point Blanket.  My family have coined it the ‘Big Bird Chair’ (à la Sesame Street).

Oh well….it makes me smile!   Yellow faux fur



Inspiration Hits – My Newest DIY

I was struck by inspiration recently.  Whomp!

I believe my setting and scenery had everything to do with my inspiration – sitting in the backyard, feet up, warm dappled sun shining through the canopy of trees and a cuppa tea by my side.  I was reading my July issue of Canadian House and Home magazine and came across a photo in an article titled Relaxed Seaside Living.   House and Home Relaxed Seaside Living

I loved this calm, neutral living room with slipcovered furniture, sculptural rope floor lamp, lots of weathered wood and organic textures.  But there was one particular detail that caught my eye.

So I was inspired to DIY.     DIY Pillow.

Canadian Maple Leaf.


Fringed Pillow..


And in the wink of a D-eye-Y this was my creation…..      Canada Flag Pillow.

My Canadian Flag pillow.  Perfect for my ‘Relaxed Lakeside Living’!

I chose to use neutral, organic fabrics for a faded, worn look but also these are the tones of my cottage interior.  See my cottage renovation here:

Oh Canada!

All images via Modmissy

Solair Chairs

I have this childhood memory of sitting in the backseat of my parent’s car while on our way to someone’s cottage. (Not sure who’s cottage – my memory’s not perfect!)

The sweltering heat of July was blowing in through the open windows (non-existent air conditioning!) causing us 4 kids crammed in the back seat to stick together but it did not matter because somehow I had won the coveted position of a window seat.  I had an unimpeded view.  Happy, happy!

On our journey I remember passing by a roadside motel, with a name something like Lakeside Motel or Three Lakes Motel, and thought it funny that there was no lake in sight although there was a pool out front.  The motel was a long, 1-storey stucco building painted bright white with green roof shingles and blue painted doors.  To the side of each blue door was a very ‘mod’ looking chair in bright orange.

I have never forgotten this image – colourful yes, but it was the groovy orange chairs that I fell in love with.

Those chairs were the Solair Chair designed by Canadians, Fabio Fabiano and Michelange Panzini in 1972.   Solair Chair

The designers were recruited by an injected-molding plastics company, Industries Provinciales Ltée, of Quebec to produce a comfortable and stylish modern indoor/outdoor chair.  The chair was designed in one weekend!  The chair fell off the ‘design radar’ for a number of years but has recently made a big comeback.  The Solair chair is now in production and distribution by Industries Emile Lachance Ltée

I recently came across these chairs for sale in a rainbow of colours at The Hudson Bay Company  in downtown Toronto. Solair Chairs

A feeling of nostalgia came over me especially when I realized that my childhood memory is now an iconic piece of Canadian design.  (The chair, not my memory!)

These chairs also reminded me of these juicy colours! Juicy Fruit


All images via Modmissy

A Heavenly Home

Continuing on the theme of religion in décor I thought I would share another transformation of church to home.

The former St. Jakobus Church located in Utrecht, Netherlands originally built in 1870 was converted into a beautiful modern townhouse in 2009.

With almost 5000 sq. ft. of living space and ceilings that soar to 14 metres (46 ft.) high the Utrecht-based firm of ZECC Architects undertook the transformation from church to home with a great attention to light, space and functionality.

Converted Church Utrecht

Converted Church

Converted Church interior

Converted Church interior

Converted Church interior

Converted Church interior

Converted Church bathroomTruly a ‘heavenly’ transformation!

Images via ZECC Architects

Happy Valentine’s Day

Will you be mine……….



Eames Eiffel chairs are red,

The Pascal Tarabay clock says its ten to two.

A very cool bamboo magazine rack,

And a Jonathan Adler pillow just for you!


Image designed by Modmissy

  1. Eames Eiffel Chair
  2. Classic Clock by Pascal Tarabay
  3. Red Bamboo Magazine Rack
  4. Red Letter Pillow

Happy New Year!

I want to say farewell to 2012 – it was a good year.

I remember as a child on the 1st day back to school following New Years the teacher would write in big numbers on the chalkboard the new year.  And I would think “Wow.  The future.”  The future held so many unknowns, so many mysteries.  But that was when I was 7, 8, 9, 10…. and at that age my learning curve was steep and my ‘unknown’ curve was even steeper.

As one gets older life is broken down into increments of time.  4 year university degree, 20 year mortgage, 2 year bank loan, net 60 days, 40 hour work week, 8 hour shift, 3 weeks holiday, 2 ½ hour movie, 4 hour drive, 6 week delivery date, etc.  Life is intervals of time mapped out in doable increments.

The future is not quite as much a mystery but life undoubtedly is.

So let’s welcome in the New Year and start 2013 as a new beginning with lots of wonderful opportunities that lay ahead in our future.

Health and happiness for the New Year.


Happy New Year.

My Mother

My Mother.

Affectionately known as ‘Nornie’ to her close friends and family.

My Mother was an identical twin and as close as 2 peas in a pod but my Mother was also one-of-a-kind.



It was from my Mom that I got my sense of design and love of décor.  My Mom had a passion for decorating and keeping a beautiful home.

In my parents very first home my Mom painted the living room’s 5th wall (ceiling) red to coordinate with her new crimson red curved sofa.  Ground-breaking.

When my Mom was expecting their first child my parents moved to the suburbs – a larger home for their 4 children (born within the next 5 years) and more space for my Mom to decorate.

When we were very young my Mom enrolled in night school to take an interior decorating course.  I remember my Mom’s design boards with little swatches of fabric, carpet and paint.  She loved attending this course even if it meant leaving my Father at home with 4 small children – and even if it resulted in my Father doing a quick trip to the hospital emergency unit with my brother who needed stitches after falling on the fireplace hearth!

My Family

My Mom made her design choices slowly and meticulously.  Whether it was the fabric choice for the new sofa or drapery, the shape of the custom built kitchen table, the pattern of the wallpaper for the new feature wall or the paint colour of the garage door, my Mom made her decisions carefully.  Mom decorated on a budget but her home indicated otherwise.

My Mom was aware of trends and the latest in décor but chose the classics.  I grew up with mahogany, wools, silks, cotton damask, Louis XlV and gilded furniture.  Mom took me shopping to fine furniture stores like Eaton’ s Gallery of Fine Furniture, we visited art galleries and she taught me how to identify different fabrics.

I fondly remember my Father every few years saying to my Mom, “Well Nornie, it’s time for a new car, what colour shall I order?”  My Mom liked to coordinate the car with the colour of our home’s exterior!

Unfortunately my Mother never met any of her 11 grandchildren or got to retire with my Father.  And she never got the pleasure of helping her children decorate their homes.

Twenty-seven years ago today my Mother lost her battle with Cancer.

I miss you Mom.



My Christmas Door Wreath

The wreath:  A circle of flowers, boughs, or leaves worn on the head, placed on a memorial, or hung as a decoration.

The door wreath whether you celebrate Christmas or not, is a wonderful way to greet guests at this time of year. (especially if your door is ugly and needs replacing like mine – but that’s another blog!)

My childhood family’s first Christmas door wreath was a faux cedar one that my Mother was quite proud of.  Mom had paid a good penny for this wreath and subsequently that wreath adorned our door for many years.  It was very pretty at the onset but should have been laid to rest sooner than it was.  Note to self: cost cannot always be amortized!

As a kid I remember making my first Christmas wreath from IBM Punch Cards.

IBM Punch Card.

For those of you who may not know what an IBM Punch Card is (ie. too young) they are probably the earliest icon of the Technology Age.  Before computers of today these ~3” x 7” cards were coded or ‘punched’ with data and then fed into a computer to input information.  Seems primitive but we wouldn’t be where we are today if it were not for these cumbersome cards.

An IBM Punch Card Wreath

IBM Punch Card Wreath

When I moved into my first apartment I had a pine cone wreath that I purchased from a co-worker who was making and selling them.  But when the pine cones started falling off beyond repair this wreath became fire tinder.

Pine Cone Wreath

Over the years I have always purchased a natural pine or cedar bough wreath.  Beautiful.

But this year I decided to change it up.  Since my Christmas tree is not ‘strong’ enough to hold decorations I made a door wreath-ornament-holder.

So I started with this…

DIY door wreath

And DIY-ed this….

Door Wreath


Brother® Business Smart

Nobody said you can’t have it all!

Speed, intelligence, versatility and outstanding good looks!

No not Superman but the Brother® Business Smart all-in-one printer.

Brother Business Smart MFC-J4510DW

At an exclusive event hosted by Yummy Mummy Wall Candy blogger, Sarah Gunn and Brother® I met the MFC-J4510DW.  And I fell in love!

With its cool, sleek, sexy design this new printer has the ultimate combination of printer, scanner, copier, fax and wireless networking.  With fast print speeds, low print costs and the ability to print 11” X 17” format using landscape print technology which greatly reduces the overall size.  The engineers thought of everything.

My Printer, Scanner, Fax vs. Brother Business Smart

But it’s the designers who I tip my hat to – this new piece of technology looks good!  In the past printers/faxes/scanners/copiers have not had a true sense of style.  Instead we always hid these bulky, boring ‘beige’ pieces rather than showcasing them.  We tucked them in desks, cupboards or drawers so they were out of sight.  Now not unlike other ‘smart’ technology the Brother® Business Smart is a piece of technology you display.  Its black and white, compact clean lined design fits into any home’s décor.  It’s cool, it’s hip.

As I always say “Design is everywhere” and finally that motto found its way into the world of printer technology.

Thank you Brother®!


One of a Kind Show

I attended the One of a Kind Show on opening day – fabulous!

I hate to admit how long I was there for (6 hours!!) but there were so many great things to see, beautiful things to buy and over 800 talented artisans to meet.

The One of a Kind show first started in 1975 and is the largest consumer craft show in North America.  Everything sold at the show is made by hand in North America by Canadian and/or American artisans.

This year’s show had a real ‘bringing back the cottage’ vibe with a lot of natural, organic and re-purposed designs.

Here were some of my favourites.

Tremblay Mills  had beautiful salt and pepper mills.  Made with original materials (mill on right is made from the banksia nut) and vibrant colours these works of art give a whole new meaning to ‘Seasons’ Greetings!

Cedar Mountain Studios creates wall art from reclaimed cedar boards.  In their backyard studio a team of nine artists, 2 dogs and 1 cat design and build pieces that will make you stop, read, ponder and laugh.

The Identity Apparel Co. had a colourful booth.  I love Hudson Bay point blankets and Identity has re-purposed them into pillows and totes.  Also knapsacks made from 1945 Swiss Army mess hall tents waxed canvas were very cool.

Industry keeps making the same thing over and over expecting a different result from us.

Imagine Woods goal is to create new wooden tools that really work for you… like a curved spatula for round frying pans and one-handed salad tongs. The result is a line of Rock Maple kitchen utensils that are ambidextrous, beautiful, long lasting and most of all, useful. Brilliant!

Wineplanks creates from recycled oak wine barrels unique serving trays, and candle holders.

And I love the undies at The Candi Factory  Sweet!

Definitely a show worth checking out.

All images via Modmissy