As Promised...

Well, as promised, I did visit the One of a Kind show this morning! I was in a bit of a hurry, but I went first thing and overall I really enjoyed it! It reminded me how many people have great ideas and actually go out and start their own businesses! It definitely takes a lot of perseverance, especially when things aren't strong economically, so I have to give them all credit.

There were so many innovative products at the show, and they had a great mix of clothing, jewelry, bath and body, food and art. I know this blog is SUPPOSED to be about ideas for the home, but bare with me for this one post! I found some amazing gift ideas that I want to share with you!

Luved Clothing
Not only does their clothing follow trendy styles and use comfy material, everything is one size fits all! Don't worry, you petite little things, you won't look like you're drowning in fabric. Their styles wrap, tie and hang in such a way that you will look effortlessly chic. Also, each piece is pre-washed and available in a variety of colours. A few of my favourites...

this is J
Being so obsessed with fabric, I love seeing new prints and designs whether they're on sofas or clothing. This is J creates custom designs and then hand-prints them onto adorable items like headbands, mitten cuffs and "p. jammers". All of their pieces are very yoga-inspired, and the colours and prints are so unique. The hats, gloves and scarves are the perfect gift for the active (and stylish) women on your list.

If you're lucky enough to have a cute little one to buy for this year, I have found the best handmade baby gift ever (at least I think so...)! Raplapla is a company based out of Montreal that makes contemporary rag dolls and animals that have so much character, it's hilarious. They have even created little profiles for each doll, like "Mathilde is a dance teacher from Istanbul. She gives classes in tap-dancing and loves spicy bread and meringues. She has a blue and green bird tattooed on her shoulder."

I've always been a huge jewelry lover. It's one of my favorite souvenirs while traveling and I think it makes a great gift. Erin Tracy's display stood out from so many others today because of her contemporary style - not to mention that she couldn't have been nicer! I absolutely love her merge rings, which are individual rings of gold, silver and acrylic that stack and do not use a traditional stone or diamond in the setting. I highly recommend you take a look at her website (I had some trouble getting photos!).

Eles designs by Laura Serrafero
I must be crazy about the brushed gold and silver jewelry that's out there, because I also loved Laura Serrafero's display. She offers a beautiful selection of rings, bracelets and earrings (to name a few) that are timeless and feminine.
I hope that you had some faith that I would indeed find a few nice things for the home! One of the first pieces I noticed in the main display was a beautiful wood coffee table by KinoGuerin. Made in Quebec, their furniture is sleek and contemporary and uses woods and veneers to create amazing contrast. The approach behind the work is to find equilibrium, and I think their pieces are the perfect balance of practicality and modernity.

Morin Choiniere

This was actually the first item in the show that I really fell in love with. Morin Choiniere is also based out of Montreal, and they design the most impressive candle holder/wall fireplace I have seen. It would be perfect in a condo or apartment, or even a living or dining room that doesn't have a traditional fireplace. With only two hooks and a few tealights required, I think this product tops the list of my finds from today.

You still have time to visit the show if you're interested! Visit One of a Kind for more information...and inspiration.


Trimming the Tree

Alas, it is officially the Christmas season. I spent yesterday decorating the tree and fireplace mantle, and even found a few cute new ornaments at the grocery store of all places! Houses are adorned with lights, including the mammoth Christmas tree outside of work. Today, I glanced out the window to see carolers and sleigh rides passing by on the street. It truly is a magical time of year.
Every few years, it's nice to change up the tree colours and ornaments, but it seems that this year, anything goes! I've seen a lot of blues, whites and silvers in magazines, but I think there's something to be said for sentimental ornaments, like the homemade ones from preschool or the family heirlooms on the tree. Country Living had a great slideshow of Christmas decorations, and they definitely got me inspired!

I hope these photos also get you excited about this wonderful time of year! Happy decorating!

Everything Barbara

A few weeks ago, our rendering instructor gave us our final project: design a hotel suite from the ground up (well, we did get a floor plan). I quickly decided that New York City glamour would be perfect for this space, and I've had so much fun choosing furniture, accessories and designing millwork that will make this space suitable for even the pickiest socialite. When it came to sofas and coffee tables, I kept coming back to the master of furniture design: Barbara Barry.

I've had to stop myself from creating somewhat of a Barbara Barry showroom, although I don't believe that would be a bad thing. She uses classic, simple lines to create extraordinarily elegant pieces, and her design philosophy is equally as inspiring: "Design is a dialogue; a constant interaction between living spaces, the people that inhabit them and the nature that surrounds them both". She continually references the importance of making interiors suitable to their external environment, and her latest project may be her best example yet.

When a Wyoming couple approached Barbara to design their dream home in Jackson Hole from scratch, she decided to draw on the natural colours in the landscape, like ivory, sage and blue. Veranda has published this beautiful article and slideshow, but here are a few of my favourites!

These gorgeous home photos were taken by David Meredith.


One of a Kind

The One of a Kind Christmas show is being held at the Direct Energy Centre from November 26th to December 6th, and I have vowed to get down there this year.

I recently posted a link to Etsy, an online arts and crafts store selling the work of many creative entrepreneurs. I think it's wonderful to support local artisans and give meaningful gifts that have been created by these talented people. If you're hesitant to shop online, or just want to browse for unique gifts this year, I'm sure the One of a Kind show will not disappoint. They even have an online gift guide with a sneak preview of the goods!

But that's not the only thing I have to share....

How does an amazing day in Toronto with four of your girlfriends sound? How about the kind of day that involves a $1000 shopping spree at the One of a Kind Show, free show admission, lunch for four, afternoon tea at the 'King Eddy', dinner for four at AGO's FRANK and a room for all four of you to sleep like princesses at Le Meridien King Edward? Oh, and how could I forget that you'll be driven around in a limo! What a mouthful. Enter the contest HERE!

Good luck and happy shopping!


The Homes of Aerin Lauder

Photo: {this is glamorous}, edited from Allure magazine

I always find it inspiring to read about successful young women, find out about their road to success and learn how they really live.

Aerin Lauder Zinterhofer, the granddaughter of Estee Lauter, has definitely become one of those people to me. Of course, she had the good (great!) fortune of being born into the Lauder family, and with that came many perks; unlimited amounts of make up ranking highest on her list, I'm sure. In all seriousness though, Aerin seems to be a classy and intelligent woman who balances life between roles as wife and mother of two, and Senior Vice President for Estee Lauder. And of course, her homes in East Hampton and New York City are as glamorous and elegant as you would imagine.

In the July/August issue of Elle Decor (yes I know I'm behind the times), they captured both of her tastefully chic homes. Together, they are truly two of my favourite "celebrity" homes, and her use of whites, blues and feminine accents have created quite a signature look. (Supposedly this was a favourite colour combination for Estee, and Aerin has stayed true to a lot of her traditional taste.) There's an element that reminds me of Celerie Kemble's style (which I also love), and despite its formality, I really can picture two young boys running around either house.

Aerin worked with Victoria Borus of B Five Studio, but it's very apparent that she has her own innate sense of style based on her fashion choices, and more importantly, her position as Creative Director at Estee Lauder. In the article, Aerin even gives a little decorating advice:
1. "The easiest way to freshen up a room is a new paint color.”
2. “I update the dining room by finding a fabulous new fabric. I’ll have it made into a tablecloth or just fold a length of it and run it down the center of the table.”
3. “Make the most of children’s artwork. I use terrific frames and paperweights from the Conran Shop to showcase my sons’ art.”

Here are a few of the incredible rooms from Aerin's East Hampton home:

I love these vintage Frances Elkins stools!

In her Manhattan home, she seems to have created a very family-oriented space, with of course, her signature touch of elegance.

The eggplant walls make such a beautiful contrast with the white artwork and gold chairs. This room must look gorgeous at night.

Ah, the piest de resistance! Aerin's Manhattan dressing room remains one of my favourite rooms of all time. This was the first room of her home that I ever saw, and I'm still in awe.

A big part of my obsession with this room is the beautiful wallcovering by Gracie. I have found a close alternative from Romo, another great wallcovering and fabric company, that would give the same effect.

The first two are "Tamaki", the second two are "Seraphine". Both are available in about eight colour varieties.

I know, I felt happier after seeing her homes too. To read the full Elle Decor article, click here.


'Tis the Season...Almost

Photo by Paulo Guerrinha.

This morning, as I hurried to work, I turned the corner to find the world's largest Christmas tree proudly sitting in the center of the courtyard. I'm not typically my most observant self first thing in the morning, but this tree could not be missed. After assuring myself that this tree was not something I had obliviously walked past daily for the last few months, my terrible estimating skills put it at about 25'. I guess this means that Christmas is on its way.

I'm actually quite excited to see these signs of Christmas popping up here and there, be it in beautiful store windows or magically appearing trees. Christmas has always been my favourite holiday, and I love the decorating, cooking, eating and gift wrapping that it involves.

My mind is bursting with Christmas post ideas that I look forward to sharing as the season gets closer, but for this slightly premature holiday post, I'd like to stick to Christmas cards.

I know that for most people (truthfully, I'm one of them), sending Christmas cards has become a thing of the past. I think of my Mom sitting at the kitchen table, writing to old friends and family. But sometimes a "Merry Christmas" email or facebook message doesn't have the personal touch that a holiday like Christmas demands. I have two beautiful ideas: not-your-typical ready-to-buy Christmas cards, or for the Martha Stewart types, a few ideas you can try yourself.

I say, if you're going to bother sending something, make sure it's unique and not just from a box of assorted cards. Many crafty people have started their own businesses making greeting cards, and Etsy is a great source for handmade crafts like these.

I love LouellaPress' double-use idea. She has created these beautiful round cards that can be hung as ornaments afterwards...and really, its in good time. Gone are the days of taping cards around doorways!

Lockette makes these fantastic contemporary Winter Berry note cards. They're a beautiful change from the traditional red and green. It must be the decorator in me that loves them, because it's actually fabric! They're almost worth framing!

Paper Hearts Card Co. has designed these adorable scalloped Christmas cards that have a really rustic feel. Julie Cameron makes beautiful cards for every occasion with lots of pop-ups and jewels - very cute.

For something more whimsical, and not to mention GREEN, Night Owl Paper Goods has the most fantastic birch Christmas cards and tags. These Pup Warm Fuzzy cards are both youthful and unique.
If you prefer something more traditional, Luxe Paperie has designed this gorgeous Pear Tree card set. How very elegant!

If you're a DIY-er who loves the charming style of Night Owl's cards, create your own! They sell round tags with imprints of their Christmas designs so that you can design your own card.

Back to my obsession with fabric, and wallpaper, or anything leftover around the house. Lockette has also designed these adorable reindeer and tree cards with fabric cutouts. There are so many beautiful papers, wallpapers and fabrics available now that would look great on Christmas cards. Sometimes even the simplest cards are perfect.

I really admire the creative entrepreneurs like those found on Etsy, so take a browse through some of their products or let them inspire you to create your own!
Related Posts with Thumbnails