Wednesday, March 30, 2011

plank floors like no other

I am guessing you have to be good at puzzles to get this floor right, but if you are - WOW!  How unique and gorgeous are these plank floors?  They come in a variety of colours and woods.  I love the organic feel to them... wish I had some floors to re-do!  I love them!!  Check them out - Bole Floor

Saturday, March 26, 2011

social media in design

I am not one for getting out there with the party goers, doing all that schmoozing and shoulder rubbing.  But it is said to be good for business.  It's hard work - well for me anyway.  For some it comes by naturally.

This week I completely stepped out of my comfort zone to see what this schmoozing business could do for me.  A while back I was invited to be in the audience of CityLine for a special show for only tweeters and bloggers.  It was on Tuesday, the 22nd and will air next Tuesday, March 29 at 9am on City TV.  We were asked to tweet during the show and were given the # (for those who tweet know) for the show. #clparty it was.  While there I managed to 'schmooze' with some vivacious, bubbly outgoing women of whom a few I actually 'knew' from twitter and blogs.  We ended the show with a swag bag of goodies and then got invited to The Ritz for lunch!

Well, how could I say no to The Ritz!  It did mean I would have to do that 'schmooze' thing though.  So I bravely walked over to a couple of ladies from Oakville that were looking for the subway and said 'let's go together - I know the way'.  On the subway ride over from Dundas Square to The Ritz we connected.  Bingo - that is what it's about, right?  They do design, photography and cook so we had that in common.  And following each other on twitter means we are privy to that many more events and get togethers where we can do more schmoozing, which I think turns into business eventually.  You know, just knowing people.

When we got to the Ritz I continued to keep that smile on and talked to several other people, including the gorgeous Tracy Moore, seen in this photo with me.

Which takes me to the next social event I attended on my own this week.  The official launch of Dabble magazine with editor Kimberley Seldon.  It was held at Elte, a place I frequent often for shopping with my clients and a place that I've been to for other presentations.  So I was not prepared for what this was - huge - over 1000 people!  We got another # for the night #dabblemag it was.

I got there feeling a little under-dressed - stilettos and cocktail dresses seemed to be on most women.  Luckily I braved my charcoal wide leg pants and a funky jacket instead of jeans and a sweater!  I suppose I was the most comfortable in my shoes literally, but not figuratively.  I picked up a martini on the way in but not having eaten very much before going I felt the booze three sips in and had to drive home, so I honed in on the food, put my drink down and just walked around seeing some familiar faces.  I said hi to a few I had just met two days prior at CityLine, and then squeezed my way to the front awaiting the presentation by Kimberley.  The music was loud so talking to anyone meant leaning in a la night club style - totally not my thing!

During the presentation I did see those two lovely ladies I had just talked with on the subway over to The Ritz so I talked with them a bit and after the presentation, grabbed another chicken skewer to make sure the alcohol was absorbed well (it totally was but it was an excuse for more food) and I left the scene. 

Phew!  I made it!  It is totally out of my comfort zone to go out like that on my own and push my way into small talk conversations.  But I did it and I think I feel proud of myself.  Will I do it again?  Probably.  Doing something you are a little afraid of is healthy once in a while not only for the soul, but I'm guessing for business to.  Will have to wait and see what comes of all of this other than a bunch of new twitter followers.  And if nothing else, then a story can always come out of it. :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

commercial decorating - thoughtcorp

Residential decorating is quite different than commercial decorating.  In residential the client means everything - they make the final decisions and they dictate where the mood goes, giving me the guidance to really help them make it theirs. SO satisfying!  In commercial, while the client still dictates, it is a much wider appeal that needs to be considered.  There are so many different opinions and ideas coming forth that need to be sifted through to come up with a plan that hopefully most will like.

I prefer residential.  I get to be more creative and the satisfaction is more deeply felt by the client.  BUT...

The past two months took me into a commercial space (company - thoughtcorp) that involved a move from a cool downtown heritage building office space, to a generic high-rise space further away.  My request was to 'funkify' the space on a very limited budget.  I knew what he meant so I had to perform magic!  I spent over 75 hours on this project, of which maybe five were on design decisions - the rest was on logistics, dealing with so many different individuals, working with salespeople and the red tape of the office building - crazy!  I thought I would pull my hair out and that this would only reinforce my preference for residential decorating.

But alas, I was pleasantly surprised!!!  In the end I realized there really IS satisfaction in commercial projects.  The end results pleased so many of the staff and I felt the wonderful camaraderie of a large group of people come together.  Praise came my way tenfold and it couldn't have made me happier.

Monday, March 14, 2011

classic green sofa

It is all the rage to get a statement sofa, so why not go for an au courant fresh green fabric on a sofa like this Pottery Barn classic.  The green will add just the right amount of punch and colour to any room.  And with green you can add any colour in pillows as an accent.  Really, any colour goes!  Try it!

Monday, March 7, 2011

shabby chic painted stairs

There are so many stairways that are grand, split, curved or totally decadent, but hidden stairs behind a wall like this are just so cozy.  And it just seems more appropriate to go up to your bedrooms on a staircase that is tucked away rather than always passing through a grand foyer.

I love the simplicity of the wall hanging and the little settee.  Very sweet and completely balanced.

And of course you know I love the white details.  Consider painting your stairs if they look too heavy.  Here just the treads were left in natural wood, but you can paint it all, or paint just the spindles, stringers and risers leaving the rest wood.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

orange walls

Orange is my daughter's favourite colour.  She's asked to have an orange room for as long as I can remember and now at almost 20 years old still loves the colour.  And I get it!  It's such a happy colour.  You can't help but smile when you see orange, and its warmth adds the perfect glow to any space.

Consider orange for one of your rooms - a bedroom, the kitchen, a dining room (oh so appetizing), or even your foyer.  Here are a few to try.
Benjamin Moore's:
Prairie Lily - CC-98
Tropical Orange - 2170-20
Pumpkin Cream - 2168-20
Electric Orange - 2015-10 - looks similar to this kitchen.

Why not try it - it's just paint!!