DwellStudio founder and author Christiane Lemieux is one of the headliners at the 2013 Interior Design Show in Toronto. (Check it out at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre this weekend, January 24-27.) She'll be speaking at noon on Saturday, January 26th about DwellStudio's cool line of modern furniture, home decor and designer baby and kids' rooms.
Born in Ottawa, Christiane has made a big splash in Manhattan, where she lives with her business partner and hubby, two kids, and dog. (Take a tour of her loft here. Her background in fashion — she worked at Isaac Mizrahi and the Gap — translates into colourful yet chic designs that are playful (see the DwellStudio bed linens, above), yet never cartoonish. For more DwellStudio style, check out the company's fun blog and Undecorate (2011 Potter Style), her first book. Christiane makes living the stylish life look effortless.
House & Home: You're originally from Ottawa. What's your favourite example of Canadian style?
Christiane Lemieux: There are so many great things about Canadian style. I think it's this subtle mix of North American and European influences that result in a sophisticated, clean chic. Lately I have been loving what Smythe is doing in clothing. I think it's subtle and wonderfully Canadian. At the other end of the spectrum — I love what The Bay is doing. They are making Canadian heritage into a globally sought-after style.
H&H: What's the best part about running DwellStudio?
CL: The best part of running DwellStudio is the people. We are like a design-obsessed family.
H&H: What's your current source of creative inspiration?
CL: Travel. I can't get enough. We are all seeing the same things online. I love to get out and see it firsthand. I just got back from Morocco with a full sketchbook. It's the best form of inspiration.
H&H: What's one easy design resolution people can make for 2013?
CL: Get rid of stuff. Clutter will never look good. Take things away and put your space back together. You will be amazed at the results.
H&H: What advice would you give to readers who want to "live a life of adventure," like you?
CL: I think it all comes down to experience. You can live a life of adventure and never leave your hometown. It's about being committed to trying something new every day. That is what I strive to do; experience new things all the time.
1. Courtesy of DwellStudio
2. DwellStudio bedding, Pretty Little Green Things blog
3. HBC Point Blanket, The Cavender Diary blog
4. DwellStudio rugs, Design Crush blog
5. Christiane's Instagram account
6. DwellStudio store, So Haute Style blog
7. San Francisco Chronicle, reprinted from Undecorate by Christiane Lemieux, photography by Melanie Acevedo, published by Potter Style in 2011