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Although you may not see them grace every page of the glossiest magazines, affordable furniture retailers are all across this great country of ours. Leon’s is celebrating ONE HUNDRED years in business and I thought that milestone deserved a second look.

Below, you’ll see a room built around three key Leon’s pieces from their current collection. If you’re one of the many, many people far away from the boutiques of Canada’s cities, this one’s for you.

 great finds at Leon's

I started with this inspiration tear from L.A. designer Peter Dunham. Known for his West-coast, laid-back casual vibe, Peter’s rooms are a delicious mix of earthiness and global travel. He uses warm colours, natural materials, and fresh plant life to create relaxing, layered interiors. I love the mix of dark leather (chair) and the warm palette. Let’s see where Leon’s could fit in.

 Leon's leather sofa

For my interpretation I’m creating a living room, so this Leon’s leather sofa is perfect! I’m not usually a fan of leather sofas (except for old beaten up library-types), but the simple handsome lines of this one have won me over. It will look that much better in 50 years ? all cracked and worn! This colour is pretty dark, so if you have a sofa like this, follow Peter’s example and keep the walls light, creamy and neutral.

 Leon's sofa table

This Leon’s sofa table would make a perfect console and looks like an old flea-market piece. Hang a chippy old painted mirror over it and pile up tons and tons of your books underneath in tall, eccentric stacks.

 Leon's chest of drawers

This Leon’s chest of drawers could read as sort of Nantucket, but I think in this imaginary room it would work. This would be a hit of brightness next to the deep, rich tones and freshen the room up. Use it in a living room to store just about anything from DVDs to board games to extra blankets. Or a whole lot of junk drawers — heaven! I’d create an eclectic tablescape on the top with found objects, photographs and more books. See? I told you Leon’s could do it!

Now I have to add in a few key, affordable extras to round out the look.

 West Elm chevron striped rug

Ground the seating area with this dazzling chevron striped rug. I picked up an 8’ x 10’ on sale at Toronto’s West Elm for $199. It reminds me of the African textile on the bed in Peter’s inspiration room above. The brown and oatmeal stripes are perfection with that sofa.

Read more on chevron rugs in my May 25, 2009 blog post.

 EQ3 chair

Round out your seating with a pair of these inexpensive numbers from EQ3. Their mod shape and airy legs are a nice counterbalance to the heavy sofa. And a little mid-century vibe throws off the look in a good way.

 IKEA solid colour pillow

 IKEA solid colour pillow

 Ten Thousand Villages pillow

Time for colour! Burnt orange and taupe will be perfect with the chocolate leather, and the mix of patterns and solids (along with that rug) will be the perfect balance. Interesting, but not too much, right? The solid cushions are from Ikea and the patterned one is a steal from Ten Thousand Villages.

Just goes to show you that “big box” doesn't have to be boring.

Photo credits:
1.
Peter Dunham
2. Leon’s,
The Dolce Collection Sofa
3. Leon’s,
The Blakeley Collection Sofa Table
4. Leon’s,
The Colours Collection Chest
5. West Elm,
Zigzag Rug
6. EQ3,
Melody Chair
7. Ikea,
Sanela Cushion Cover
8. Ikea,
Ritva Cushion Cover
9. Ten Thousand Villages,
Kalamkari Pillow

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