A California-Inspired Home With Laid-Back Christmas Style
When Kristin Andersons and husband Andrew Iacobucci bought this historical home in one of Toronto’s oldest neighborhoods, they knew they wanted to settle in by Christmas — but it was already August. Luckily, designer Colleen McGill, Kristin’s longtime friend, understood the urgency, jumping right into the renovation to make sure they got their Christmas wish.
Kristin wanted to introduce a cool, West Coast vibe inspired by her years living in California studying and producing films. At the same time, she knew the rooms needed to feel cozy during the colder months. Colleen’s solution was to paint all the walls in Benjamin Moore’s Cloud White, then layer in beachy textures, such as sisal rugs and breezy linen drapery. Finally, she added hits of blue in textiles and tabletop accessories. Click through for a look inside.
The foyer’s jewel-like light fixture looks especially dramatic against the black-painted ceiling, while marble tiles, arranged in a checkerboard pattern, have old world panache. (Jesse, the family’s golden retriever, likes them, too.)
Kristin with her two daughters, Emme (left) and Tess. A cedar garland tied to the banister with white bows and silver baubles fills the foyer with the scent of evergreens.
Patterned pillows fill the living room, where a Carrara marble mantel serves as a handsome focal point. Above the fireplace, a mirror Kristin inherited from her grandmother complements the warm metal accents that surround it, while a clear Lucite coffee table provides display space without adding visual weight.
Bright whites and coastal blues, seen throughout the house, bring a breezy vibe to the rooms.
A pair of twinkly twig trees decorates the family room for the holidays. A comfortable sectional dominates the space, emphasizing the room’s informal appeal, and the durable sisal carpet introduces casual texture.
The kitchen underwent a few impactful cosmetic changes during the fast-paced reno. Colleen replaced the old countertop and dated backsplash with Carrara marble for a serene new design. Painting the cabinetry white gave the space a fresh, clean feel. White Eames dowel-leg chairs are a hip counterpoint to the traditional harvest table.
French doors and floor-to-ceiling windows bathe the eat-in kitchen in light.
The upstairs den is comfortable and bright. Having lived in California, homeowner Kristin wanted to bring that easy coastal style to the home. The grasscloth-laminated coffee table and hits of blue adapt the look for a colder climate, while new paneling adds architectural interest.
Kristin wanted Jake’s room to feel masculine and grown-up. Colleen chose an upholstered bed with a tall wing chair–style headboard, then layered in brass sconces and woven storage baskets for warmth and texture.
Colleen placed two chaises lounges in the principal bedroom to give a generously sized, under-utilized space by the windows fresh purpose. They also provide a spot for the couple’s daughters to sleep when they bunk in their room during family sleepovers. An antique chest brings a sense of history, while linen drapery adds softness.
A floating vanity and concealed storage help the principal bathroom feel light and airy, while a leggy black metal stool has a grounding effect. Small hits of greenery add festive charm but don’t detract from the room’s serene vibe.
The charming built-in bed in Emme’s room doubles as a fairy-tale retreat. Kristin and Colleen chose the pale pink hue for its feminine yet sophisticated feel. The floral light fixture looks just as pretty turned off or on.