Interview: Julie Carlson Of Remodelista Shares Reno Tips

Julie Carlson is one of the founding quartet of the Remodelista blog. Along with Janet Hall, Sarah Lonsdale and Francesca Connolly, Julie favours classic and livable design over trendy and transient looks. A veteran of three renos, we asked Julie for her best reno advice, and about the launch of her beautiful new book, Remodelista: A Manual for the Considered Home, sure to be a hit with the legions style-conscious fans that make up her daily audience.

HH: Where do you get your inspiration?

Julie Carlson: I don’t pore over magazines like I used to. I cruise around other architecture sites, there is so much out there, I feel like it takes a while to find your way. I will look at Pintrest first for inspiration. Diane Keaton is great, she is on there all the time. Pintrest is so voyeuristic! I knew she was in in New York filming a movie with Jack Nicholson but I could see her pinning. She has written for us because she is such a design maven.

HH: You just launched your book, Remodelista: A Manual for the Considered Home, what will your online fans like best about it?

JC: The visuals are beautiful, every picture by Matthew Williams has this incredible light. There is so much detailed information about how to recreate the spaces, what paint colours are used, what flatware Julianne Moore has… our writer sleuthed out every aspect. I still love print and it’s so much fun to flip through the pages, there is nothing to replace that experience.

HH: What’s a big trend you’re noticing?

JC: I think Edison lightbulbs will fade away. The Plumen twisty lightbulbs that came out a couple years ago are popping up more, and they are energy efficient.

HH: After living through three renos, what advice do you have to share?

JC: The one thing I wish I had done was move out. The first one, we lived there and it was exhausting. I had young children and it was dusty. You get so tired of contractors tramping in and out. If you can afford it, move out. And it’s always worth it to use an architect. People try and economize with a design build firm or contractor, but I really think it’s penny wise, pound foolish: architects are trained to look at space in a different way.

HH: What was the last thing you bought for your house?

JC: I try not to buy too much but I actually bought the most beautiful glazed silver tray by a Japanese potter, Masanobu Ando, at Mjölk on my last trip to Toronto. That was the last time I bought anything for my house. I think those guys at Mjölk are geniuses, you are lucky in Toronto to have one of the best stores in the world.

See photos from Julie Carlson’s latest book (including her own Mill Valley, California living room) in this Remodelista gallery

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