This past weekend, I visited Canada’s annual Interior Design Show 2014 in Toronto and photographed my favourite things. Here are some of the best things I saw.
Decorative tile is a big category this year, since pattern underfoot and on the walls is a huge design trend. Mettro Source has some great ones. Their Arabesque porcelain series in the classic Moorish shape was very cool, and comes in white, pale grey, grey or black.
This concrete tile from Creekside Tile Company Ltd. caught my eye for its earthy palette and rustic patterns. The dyed concrete tiles can be used indoors or out, and each tile is hand-pressed, creating a relaxed, imperfect look that I love.
The watery, iridescent tones of these glass tiles by Edgewater Studio are so fresh. This Vancouver-based company has a made-to-order program, so you can choose the pattern, material and colour that’s perfect for your project.
Quebec-based Jardin de Ville, which has stores in Toronto and Quebec, featured beautiful tablescapes and outdoor appliances in their booth.
This griddle takes its name from the Spanish word plancha, meaning iron or grill. The cast-iron surface sits atop two gas burners and uses minimal oil to cook everything from fish to eggs, and won’t create any smoke. Condo owners can look forward to an electric balcony-friendly version available at Jardin de Ville this summer.
I loved the combination of the black cast-aluminum table and teak chairs (that spring when you sit!).
This sleek outdoor shower from Jardin de Ville is a Swedish design and hooks up easily to a hose.
Bigfoot Door showed off their amazing high-performance doors and windows, but what caught my eye was the black iron log rack mounted on the wall. Wonder where that came from? Such a simple design.
W Studio recently launched Picture-Perfect Carpets, an exciting program that can turn a high-resolution image into a custom area rug. Imagine the possibilities!
Over at Studio North, Canadian furniture designer Laura Langford showed her Lounge Chair No.137 (Burnt) in dark chocolate leather with a charred ash frame. Pretty gorgeous!
These unique bedside tables by Drake Wood Design are handcrafted using maple, walnut and cedar of Lebanon, and finished with a limestone handle. They would be beautiful in a cottage or country home.
I loved the simple form of Jonathan Sabine’s ash shelf. Jonathan was inspired to create this piece after noticing scaffolding in an old Japanese film. I’m continually drawn to Japanese minimalism for pieces in my own home.
After this inspiring roundup, I look forward to seeing what IDS15 has to bring.
1-2. Jenna Cadieux
3., 5., 7. Margot Austin
4., 8-13. Lynda Reeves
6. Lauren Petroff
House & Home took over the stage at the Interior Design Show in Toronto on Sunday, January 26 with a panel of style experts that included Lynda Reeves, Suzanne Dimma and Sarah Richardson. To kick off the day, Lynda Reeves and Kelvin Browne, the executive director and CEO of the Gardiner Museum, discussed how to keep trad pieces looking fresh. To illustrate the point, Lynda displayed images from three of Kelvin's homes (shown below) that have been featured in the magazine, from a quaint country stone cottage, to a soaring modern structure that Kelvin designed, to a downsized city apartment. Lynda highlighted the furnishings and accessories that Kelvin used in different homes, then Kelvin shared his top 10 tips on freshening traditional style and finding pieces that will stay with you for decades.
1) Love the stuff you own. Kelvin's first tip was to make sure that you never buy for a "look" as it will never work. Instead, shop for things that you are actually drawn to and excited about.
2) Buy old things. "Some reproductions can cost more than the real thing," Kelvin says, suggesting antique stores, auctions and estate sales as great sources for antique bargains. "Older items will also have a great patina to add personality that you can't get with a brand new item, and antiques are particularly affordable now."
3) Never buy fancy. "Basically, you'll look desperate and no one will be comfortable if you try to decorate to impress."
4) Orderly is good but you should feel as though you can put your feet up. Comfort is key, you want to be able to use your whole house.
5) Personality isn't clutter. "A small number of meaningful items scattered throughout a home is fine, and should be done to create a sense of self in a home."
6) Don't pay for a patterned sofa. Kelvin explained that couches are a big budget item and should be kept neutral to last with changing styles and tastes. Because of their size, Kelvin likens a sofa to a "beached whale" that gobbles up space, and is too big of investment for a pattern you might tire of (on a side note, a well constructed sofa can easily last 20 years, so be prepared to switch up the upholstery to get the most mileage out of it).
7) Furniture doesn't need to be big to be comfortable. Small condos need small furniture. "Mid-century furniture tends to be more compact."
8) A theme pulls everything together. Everyone is mixing periods but editing is required to create a cohesive look.
9) Not everything is a bargain. "Sometimes you need to invest to get something that looks great and will last."
10) Leave time for evolution. "Never furnish a place immediately, see how the pieces you already have work in a new space, and then move things around."
From these tips, Lynda and Kelvin agreed that it is important that a home reflects you. Books, travel souvenirs, art, and family heirlooms all show your personality and should be on view rather than hidden away. Kelvin's final word: "Never be a stranger in your own home."
1. House & Home April 2013, Virginia Macdonald
2. House & Home August 2006, Virginia Macdonald
3. House & Home April 1997, Ted Yarwood
4. House & Home April 2013, Virginia Macdonald
5. House & Home April 2013, Virginia Macdonald
6.House & Home August 2006, Virginia Macdonald
7. House & Home April 2013, Virginia Macdonald
8. House & Home April 1997, Ted Yarwood
9. House & Home August 2006, Virginia Macdonald
10. House & Home April 2013, Virginia Macdonald
The weather outside was bone chilling but the party was in full swing last night at the 2014 Interior Design Show at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre on January 23.
The "See the Light" trends space showcased four interiors, including one by designer Shirley Meisels of MHouse Inc., which was presented by Suite 22 Interiors. Meisels put together a trend room for Italian brand Kartell, featuring this closet stocked with fabulous vintage wear (and her own collection of purses). Notice how the light is built into the closet's rod, how cool is that?
“It’s all about glamour,” says Shirley of her trend room. “I love mixing, making a room feel cosy and modern. Eclecticism is a big trend for 2014, mixing metals and vintage and modern looks. The Kartell lights are plastic so I explored the idea of something upscale, using plastic in an unexpected way. People tend to set them in more of a casual space, in this room it feels sophisticated.” Watch this video and see how Shirley put her philosophy into practice when decorating an Edwardian home.
At Korhani Home, models were dressed in carpet fabrics to show off the fashion forward appeal of the brand’s patterns and colours for 2014.
Inside the interactive showcase, models of a very different kind were dressed in Korhani samples in settings from the Mad Hatter's tea party to the court of Versailles.
Jason Cass of Farrow & Ball posed with Bertie Blue (who has his own #bertieblue hashtag, natch), a skeleton painted in F&B's St. Giles Blue. The theme of the exhibit was science lab, and Bertie lends a touch of Biology 101 authenticity.
Over at Andrew Richard Designs, this model is immune to the -18 temperatures outside and reminds us that better weather lies ahead.
Andrew Bockner (shown at left with brother Richard) pointed out that the marine-grade leather sofa shown behind them will make a big splash in 2014. “The quick-dry foam lets you leave it out all the time because it releases water, and the leather is really durable, it's treated with a new process from Japan.”
And we bumped into H&H senior design editor Margot Austin with designer Grace Castaneda (you can catch a glimpse of Grace's work in this sleek lounge-inspired living room or her own country home on H&H TV online). They both had some fun turning this poster into a living tableau.
Don't miss House & Home Sunday on January 26 as Lynda Reeves and Kelvin Browne of the Gardiner Museum take the H&H stage at noon to discuss how to give well-loved furniture and traditional elements fresh energy. At 1:30 Suzanne Dimma and Mark Challen debate the balance between design and decorating, and at 3 p.m. Mark quizzes designer Sarah Richardson on the best way to create beautiful and happy rooms (for a preview, Sarah talks about IDS here).
1-3., 5-6., 8. Wendy Jacob
4. Korhani Home
7. Michelle Gelman
I think we can all agree that January is bananas. Everyone is doing everything with fresh resolve, from hitting the gym to fixing up our homes. The result is a sort of frantic optimism that usually simmers down to a sustainable productivity. (Or completely evaporates, but I'm still being optimistic!). Perhaps not coincidentally, the calendar is chockablock with events that aim to inspire design enthusiasts to update, upgrade and embrace change.
In Toronto, the Interior Design Show (IDS), Come Up to My Room, Capacity and Toronto Design Offsite all kick off this week. This year, IDS welcomes Moroso's Creative Director Patrizia Moroso as international guest of honour; the above sofa is by Marc Thorpe for the brand. In Paris, Maison & Objet takes place from January 24 to 28 and will reveal what's new and next from nearly 3,000 different brands. And NY Now will do the same on this side of the pond from February 1 to 6.
But don't let all of this attention on the latest and greatest obscure the biggest trend of 2014. Marketers already have a term for it: JOMO or The Joy of Missing Out. The decade came in on a wave of frantic connectivity that made us social voyeurs and left us constantly wondering, "Are we missing out?" A few years older and wiser, our collective answer is, "So what?"
Twice a month, Google is hosting silent "mindful lunches." App creators are giving us guided meditation sessions at our fingertips. And our homes are reflecting this desire to stop multitasking and live in the moment.
The trend doesn't manifest itself as a style so much as an attitude. As I hop from event to event deciding what's hot and what's not, I'll be asking myself: Is this of the moment? More than ever, the answer will have less to do with colour and finish, and everything to do with how we want to live in the here and now.
It's awards season and there seems to be little doubt that American Hustle will be gathering up statuettes from now until the March 2 Oscars. Opinion on the film is divided, but I enjoyed it, especially the costumes and sets. My favourite interior from the film is the Upper East Side apartment of Sydney (played by Amy Adams). I want to move in. That's the genius of great production design; it has to be appealing to our eye now yet still look right for the time of the story. Designer Judy Becker definitely pulled it off.
The set was built on a soundstage, but it looks like an apartment in any given North American metropolis. List the key pieces and you could just as easily be making up a trends list for 2014. Here are some of my favourites:
Who knew we'd ever love these old style parquet floors again, and yet we find our hearts warming to them. On the walls, grasscloth is the perfect way to lend dimension and interest to surfaces otherwise devoid of architectural character. This one is from Philip Jeffries.
The eating area and a bit of the kitchen are visible in the first and second images above. The seating includes two icons — Thonet bent-wood counter stools (check out Crate & Barrel's interpretation shown) and the Cesca S32 by Marcel Breuer.
Abstract art makes one of the few colour statements in the space. This piece from Anthropologie is in the same spirit.
The living area is all about white with pops of red.
If you painted the legs of the Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams Martin sofa and matching club chair white, you'd have virtual clones of the pieces on set. Who knows, maybe that's what the set dressers did.
There's plenty of shiny brass on set, including this table and a matching side table. It's a 1970s interpretation of Art Deco and you can buy it on 1stdibs.
The finishing touches for the living area include an oversized version of an Anglepoise lamp similar to the London at Structube, large potted plants like this palm from Ikea, a shag rug (of course!) like this one from CB2, and a tumble of cushions in deep red boho textiles. You can find these at Ikea now, though they aren't on the website since they are all one-of-a-kind. Etsy is also a great source for this style of pillow cover.
1. (set photo) via Birds of a Feather blog, (chair) Classic Design 24, (painting) Anthropologie
2. (set photo) via Thrifty Amos blog
3. (Parquet floor) no credit, (grasscloth) Philip Jeffries
4. (Thonet bent-wood counter stools) Crate & Barrel, (Cesca S32 chair) Classic Design 24
5. (table) West Elm, (pendant light) Gubi
6. (painting) Anthropologie
7. (set photo) via Birds of a Feather blog
8. (sofa) Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, (chair) Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams
9. (table) 1stdibs
10. (lamp) Structube, (palm) Ikea
11.(carpet) CB2, (pillow) Etsy
The 2014 Interior Design Show is fast approaching. This year features over 300 exhibits showcasing innovative designs and concepts from established designers and emerging names, all under one roof at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, North Building, from January 23 to 26. Get your tickets here!
Join H&H on Sunday, January 26 as we take to the main stage for decorating talks. See H&H's Lynda Reeves in conversation with Kelvin Browne of the Gardiner Museum at noon, followed by H&H's Mark Challen with Suzanne Dimma at 1:30 p.m. and special guest and design expert Sarah Richardson at 3 p.m. (Get more information about H&H's Sunday Speakers Series here.)
I asked some of our design editors which exhibits they’re most excited to check out at the show this year. Here’s what they said:
Meg Crossley, H&H Senior Editor: designboom mart & Studio North
I am most excited for the designboom mart, a design bazaar featuring unique items for sale by interesting artisans and shop owners. Last year it was fantastic. It showed a real mixed bag of things: linens, pottery, books, jewelry and more. (I am wearing the ring I bought last year and have had so many compliments!)
It added a great sense of fun to the show because you could leave with something in a bag beyond brochures. A word of advice: it got busy very quickly, so it’s a smart idea to get there early.
Second for me is Studio North. In particular, I love the chairs in Studio North. I think this could be the place we see the next big statement chair.
I always love this exhibit because I think you really see things either totally on-trend or before the trend happens, because you aren't seeing things realized for mass market. Instead, you’re looking at one prototype, one single piece. It always hits home to me that these individuals are creating, which feels closer to true design.
There is an excitement to seeing the prototypes or smaller batch pieces and knowing this could end up in large scale production, or I could be seeing some of these pieces in houses in the future.
Morgan Michener, H&H Senior Style Editor: designboom mart
I'm getting excited to walk the aisles and reconnect with designers and see new products and innovations. Last year designboom mart had so many great, affordable products for purchase — it was a fun destination to hit before leaving the show.
Sarah Hartill, H&H Style Editor: Solo Home
The idea of jetting off on the weekends to an energy-efficient bunkie really interests me. I'm drawn to the design of Joel Loblaw’s work. I'm particularly interested in seeing the end result, considering the collaboration with Style Garage’s aesthetic.
Lauren Petroff, H&H Assistant Design Editor: Studio North
This year, I'm really looking forward to exploring Studio North. It's great to see what aesthetic themes emerge from the collection as a whole, and I'm excited to see up-and-coming Canadian and international design talent.