O Canada!

This Sunday July 1st marks the 145th birthday of Canada.  Canada Day, originally called Dominion Day, celebrates the anniversary of the July 1st, 1867 union of colonies into a single country called Canada within the British Empire.

It’s the day when Canadians don their red and white, fly the flag and celebrate with parades and parties.  The Canadian flag adopted in 1965 is a red flag with a white square in the centre with an 11-point red maple leaf.  I like the design of the Canadian flag; there is a balance to the flag that gives a sense of stability and reassurance.  Good qualities for a country.

And just as important in the world of interior design is the scheme of balance.  A room in our home that is in harmony gives a balanced approach to everyday living.

This seating arrangement, mirroring the design of the Canadian flag, has a balance to it that indicates comfort and reassurance – a sense of welcome.

Whether you are celebrating Canada Day or not may your weekend be full of harmony and happiness.


Images: Flag via Modmissy,  West Elm Sweep Arm Chair, Eero Saarinen Tulip Side Table

The Ladies’ Lounge

I live in a neighborhood close to downtown Toronto nestled on Lake Ontario.  In the early 1900’s the neighborhood was used as a summer retreat for Toronto residents less than 10 miles away.  Large private homes and ‘cottages’ sprang up in the area which still remain standing today.  Many of the homes originally built were never intended to last 100 years – but they have.  Garages constructed to originally house buggies or Model T’s were narrow wooden structures built apart from the house.  One of these old wooden garages belongs to a friend of mine who I have named ‘Superwoman’.  Superwoman (SW) is capable of anything – she can leap tall buildings if she puts her mind to it.  SW has transformed her old wooden garage into a ‘ladies lounge’ – the female version of a ‘man cave’.  What SW started with was this:

And this.

At some point in the history of this garage a former owner had built a chimney and drywall the inside. (I suppose to use as a workshop.)  There were remnants of old linoleum on the floor and many, many holes where raccoons and squirrels entered to take up residence.  Of course SW had a lot of her own ‘junk’ in there too.  But once SW decided that this valuable piece of real estate could be better used there was no stopping her.  Out went the junk, the drywall was ripped down, the chimney was dismantled, the numerous holes were covered, the linoleum was pulled up etc. etc. etc.  SW had her work cut out for her.

But after many months of hard work the Ladies’ Lounge is finally ready.  Stay tuned for the reveal!


With the warm weather now here the majority of us will be heading to a ‘big box’ store to purchase our outdoor furniture but Vondom, a manufacturer of outdoor furniture, lighting and flowerpots takes the experience to a whole new level. Vondom collaborates with the most prestigious designers and architects of the world to create a new form of understanding in outdoor decoration. “VONDOM works to create art, always in search of the natural beauty of the product, giving them their own personality, always bearing in mind the vanguard of contemporary design, simply and balance.” Here are a few pieces from the vast collection of Vondom. Enjoy!

The Pillow Collection

The Rest Collection

The Stones Collection

The Vertex Collection

The Faz Collection – used indoors here.

The Vela Collection – lit by LED lights

The Quadrat Collection

All images Vondom.com

Summer Porches

Yesterday I wrote about my front porch and how in summertime it is my oasis.  Today I thought I would share some other porches.  Enjoy.

Nothing says ‘hazy, lazy days of summer’ better than a porch swing.  This one from Better Homes and Garden magazine is the ideal spot for an afternoon nap with its green and white ticking on a watermelon colour swing piled deep with vintage-inspired floral pillows.  Languor away!

Wicker, rockers and wood suggests a country cottage feel.  This porch from Canadian House and Home says “you’ve arrived”, now sit back and unwind.

Nothing says ‘calm and cool’ like a porch decorated in blue and white.  This porch’s appeal is the combination of indoor furniture – a drop leaf dining table and mirror, mixed with director’s chairs and vintage finds.  Cut flowers from the garden appeals to the senses with both beauty and scent.

A porch doesn’t have to be big to be great.  Carving out a spot needn’t be about large square footage but rather any nook can fit the bill.  This porch from Houzz shows how a small space, appropriate sized furniture and a great view is a perfect recipe for ‘drinks at five’.

While away the day drifting into a dreamy evening on this all white porch.  The mixture of a white wicker settee with an industrial-style coffee table provides a nice contrast.   But what I really loved was the unique table.  This large white table top sitting on 2 huge white bases combined with wooden benches is a fabulous update of the age-old ‘picnic’ table.

So…..where will you be spending your lazy, hazy days and relaxed evenings of summer?  Let me know.

Images: 1,3,5 – Better Homes and Garden  2 – Canadian House and Home  4 – Houzz

Time to Recline

There is nothing better than getting supine in the summertime!  Stretching out and enjoying the sunshine atop a fabulous chaise lounge.  As we head towards the weekend I thought I would share some beautiful chaises to put you in the mood to lay back and relax.

The first chaise is the Faz Tumbona by Vondom.  www.vondom.com.  This contemporary modular chaise designed by Ramon Esteve is available in 11 fabulous colours.

The Canasta Chaise Longue by Patricia Urquiola for B & B Italia www.bebitalia.it is both traditional and contemporary in design.

Next is the Tropicalia Chaise from Moroso www.moroso.it.  The design envisages a tubular steel structure with complex geometrical shapes, embellished with a clever weft of threads that alternate solids and voids to a specific pattern, paying meticulous attention to detail.  Fun!

The Papillon Contoured Chaise by Michael Berman for Brown Jordan www.brownjordan.com is a contemporary take of a design classic.  This chaise’s curvilinear and cocoon-like shape with wing details echoes that of the papillon (butterfly).

The Bask Lounger from CB2 www.cb2.com is a study in sleekness.  This minimalist reclining lounger in grey-on-white stands on its own or looks great en masse poolside or dockside.

Have a great weekend!

Paris in Spring

Paris in spring.  How lovely.  My friend visited Paris recently with her husband.  I was not invited as three is a crowd!  Instead each day my friend sent photos of her sightseeing adventures so in spirit I was there too traveling to all of Paris’ beautiful attractions.  The wonder of technology!  The gears are already in motion planning my ‘Paris in Spring’ adventure for next year.  In the meantime I thought I would share some of my/her photos to showcase some sights of Paris.

When one thinks of Paris the Eiffel Tower always comes to mind.

And the Eiffel Tower at night is just as beautiful.

Of course a bit of culture is always on the travel agenda.  This is a photo showing the veil of undulating glass of the restaurant in the Paris Opera House – Palais Garnier; named in recognition of its opulence and its architect, Charles Garnier.


One must shop in Paris.  My friend knowing I would love the streetscape and window dressing of CHANEL sent this photo just for me.  Quite dramatic isn’t it?  My friend’s husband could not figure out why this photo was taken.

When in Paris one must dine like a Parisian.  Quand à Paris il faut dîner comme un Parisien.  This is a photo of Steak Tartare with a raw egg in the middle!!  Apparently ‘we’ scraped the plate clean!

Not being able to see all the beautiful sights of Paris (in reality) my friend brought me home a ‘taste’ of Paris – French macaroons from the famous bakery Ladurée.  The decoration of the original 1862 pastry shop was entrusted to Jules Cheret, a famous turn-of-the-century painter and poster artist.  Cheret sought inspiration from the painting techniques used for the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and the Garnier Opera.

What a great vacation!