Home Transformation – Before and After

We absolutely love a home transformation! Our latest before and after comes from a gorgeous townhome that was in need of some updating & a little TLC. This busy family needed some assistance getting their home ready to go on the market.  After meeting and viewing the home, we realized there were a few small renovations that would make a world of difference for this space.

When preparing your home for the real estate market, its very important to look at the home objectively and put yourself in the buyers shoes. Most homes would benefit from a visit from a professional home stager and interior decorator. As a home stager, it is our job to assist with making sure that the home will showcase perfectly to perspective buyers by making the changes necessary. Every home is different in terms of what it may need. We can help figure out what that is.

This home in particular needed a fresh coat of paint, some decluttering, new appliances, an updated backsplash and a stone countertop. The cabinets were in great shape, but the home needed a more modern update to appeal to the demographic of the home. This home is in a community with families and young professionals so it needed to speak to that age group.

The kitchen needed to be a bit brighter. We installed a clean, fresh subway tile in a crisp white instead of the dated and tired beige tile that was originally there. After ripping out the laminate and installing a beautiful white quartz countertop with a hint of sparkle, the difference was incredible! The next step was choosing a warm grey paint colour and changing the appliances to stainless steal – the kitchen was unrecognizable! For our final touches, a few new light fixtures on the main floor sealed the deal.

The home went up for sale and was sold in within 2 weeks of being listed for 98 % of their asking price!! The home owners were thrilled with the results and the new buyers absolute love the updates.

The cost of this ‘update’ was very affordable and well worth every penny. In terms of home updates, it is almost always a benefit to freshen up your space prior to the sale. Buyers love move in ready and you will reap the benefits of having your home looking its best for sale!

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Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and yes, gifts aren’t the only way to express your love but they are a sweet way to show your friends and family and express your love for them.

Valentine’s Day gifts don’t have to be expensive or lavish – a small and simple little something is often best! Here are some of our favourites….

Valentine’s Day Gift Guide

The simple design of this mug makes it a lovely gift for anyone The ‘Love’ Mug by Ed Ellen Degeneres crafted by Royal Doulton  


One of my favourite gifts to give (any time of the year) is a book. I often give my kids books for birthdays, Christmas and other holidays.  For this Valentine’s Day, a book might be a great idea for your little ones….Pete the Cat: Valentine’s Day is Cool


Chocolate is a classic but I love these limited edition ‘Be Mine’ Tic Tacs – these are great for a class party or office colleagues….


Laugh a little …with these cute pillow covers – Couples pillow covers


For the LEGO lover …. this Valentine’s Day LEGO kit is just too cute! I know my son would love it! LEGO Bricks Valentine’s Cupid Dog


Don’t forget about ‘Galentine’s Day’ – I love these fun wine labels they add some humour and sass to a girl’s night out. Be My Galentine wine labels.



I often purchase a small token for each of my kids on Valentine’s Day and I have to say I love getting their homemade crafts and cards (I know they put so much effort and love into creating them, too). I know there are a lot of ‘haters’ when it comes to Valentine’s Day but remember that this day is not just about romantic love it’s about all love – love for your family, your friends, your pets and maybe even teat yourself!


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If you have a small entry by your main door do not think that you cannot have a functional space with style. A recent client of ours was struggling with this dilemma of a small (almost not entry – as there was no defined entry space) and she needed a spot for keys, mail, last minute make up check before heading out and of course, a touch of style.  She is a huge fan of Scandinavian style with the function and minimal decor and in a small space this really works!

Small Front Entry Inspiration

Photo credit: Homeyohmy

When it comes to finding inspiration for projects – starting online is the best! There is an endless supply of styles, looks and overall ideas.  I stumbled upon this image and this was just perfect! A beautiful balance of style and function – just what our client was looking for in her entry.

We made a few tweaks to this look in order to suit her space….

Shop the look : Small front entry with Scandinavian style

If you do not have a front hall closet or really much closet space – you need to get creative.  a wall mounted hook is a perfect solution to hang up what you need – jacket, sweater, hat even a dog leash…

Beaton Wall Hook

from: Wayfair


A narrow console table is a must in a small entry – it offers some great surface space for a small bowl for keys, loose change and mail – it’s also a great spot for some extra lighting or a touch of decor.

George Oliver Woodbury Narrow Console Table

from: Wayfair


A mirror is a useful ‘tool’ at a front entry as it allows for last minute checks before heading out the door plus a mirror makes a space appear larger, so if you have a small front entry – this can really help open it up…..

Beachcrest Home Bonnie Lock-Woodsetter North Wood Wall Mirror

from: Wayfair


A basket is perfect for storing items that you still need regular access to – for instance mittens, hats, yoga mat, umbrella and pet supplies like toys….I love the natural texture that these woven baskets bring to the vignette.

DUFMOD Large Natural Basket

from Amazon


I love the texture and pop of colour that plants add to a space – if you don’t have a green thumb don’t worry! These preserved eucalyptus branches don’t need any extra care just add them to a vase and you are done!

Preserved Eucalyptus Branches

from Amazon


This fluted pure white vase is the perfect piece to hold your eucalyptus branches – I love the simplicity of this vase and of course you could use it for fresh flowers anywhere in your home.

White ceramic fluted vase

from Amazon


Some type of seating is really ideal by the front door….so this minimalist looking 3 legged stool is just perfect for anyone needing a spot to sit while putting on or taking off their shoes.  This one fits beautifully under the console so it doesn’t take up a lot of the space and I love the mix of natural unfinished wood with the dipped legs in black.

Small wood 3 legged stool

from Etsy


This look is so fresh and clean yet functional – I just love it and so does our client!

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Rounding up our most popular posts from 2017…

Thank you so much for joining us this year on our design, decorating and home staging adventures – the one year anniversary of this ‘new’ blog is coming up and to celebrate we are doing so with a round up of our most popular posts of the past year. We love and appreciate all of your comments, likes and feedback! We hope that our projects have inspired you in some way and we look forward to sharing even more in this coming year!

Here’s our 10 most popular posts from 2017

10. In July, we joined the $100 room challenge…Kristi designed a homework station just before her children headed back to school.  The final results were super cute and we are so happy you liked them, too. Week 4: $100 Room challenge – Homework Station

9. In June, a project we had been working on since February was finally coming to a close. After all of the interior and exterior colour and material selections it was time to style this model townhome.  The look was clean and fresh with lots of great textures and neutrals. a mix of modern and industrial – the final results were fabulous. Take the tour…Home Tour: Stittsville Walk


8. Home staging is a MUST (but if you have been reading our blog at all, you already know that). There are some simple ‘props’ that you can use to spruce up the look of your home and make it more attractive.  We love to share home staging tips with you! 6 Best Props to Stage Your Home


7. What we are seeing every year is these new ‘hybrid’ styles of interior decor that are emerging each and every year.  Scandinavian design has come back into fashion in a huge way but Industrial is still here – so what happened? The birth of Scandi-Industrial and it is a very popular look.  Let us explain this ‘new’ look. What is Scandi-Industrial Home Decor Style? 


6. Why is Farmhouse style so popular? Another look that was huge in 2017 and continues to be popular is Farmhouse style.  We are both big fans but we still are able to put our own spin on the farmhouse look.  If you ever wondered why this look was so popular – we did too!

5. We love home decor – it’s our passion but for some they just want a place that looks great and they don’t know quite where to start – that’s where we come in with our tips on what every living room needs….10 Things Every Living Room Needs


4. The kitchen is the heart of any home so it has to look good! We love the classic feel and the versatility of the white shaker kitchen – you can give this staple a farmhouse feel or a contemporary look it all depends on what you pair it with.  Why the White Shaker Kitchen will Never be Out!


3. Millennial Pink had a big moment in 2017 and we sure loved it! Maddie certainly did – she certainly embraced the trend in her own home and we had to share some of our favourite rooms and decor pieces that celebrated the year of millennial pink. Millennial Pink Inspiration

2. You know that red and black checkered plaid that everyone seems to be rocking these days? Did you know it is called ‘Buffalo Check’? We love this winter inspired print in clothing but also in the home…make those cold and snowy winter days at home more inviting with this plaid. Decorating with Buffalo Check


and the number one post from 2017….The 8 Biggest Home Staging Mistakes to Avoid …home staging is a MUST (as you all know) but there are times when we can forget the basics of home staging and presentation. If you are selling your home – be sure to avoid these mistakes!

We hope you enjoy the little trip down memory lane with us and we will have even more to share in the up coming year. Cheers!

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It is late December and the Christmas holidays are slowly coming to a close. Have you started to ‘wrap’ it all up? Or is your tree and decor still on full display? Storage and organizing of Christmas decor doesn’t have to be a total mess – there are so many awesome ways to pack up and make your Christmas storage easy and neat.


Christmas Tree Storage

For years, we used the box that our tree came in but honestly after year 2 the box was just being held up with some tape and it was just a mess.  Garbage bags are also a pain – you are stuffing the tree pieces into bags and I know it is damaging and really not effective.

Did you know that there are ‘Christmas Tree Bags’? Yes, these bags are actually designed to fit and store your tree.

Here are some great options for Christmas Tree Bags at all price points – be sure to find one that will fit your tree as they do come in different sizes.

Christmas Tree Storage Bag with wheels by Zober – this one fits a disassembled 9 ‘ tree. The wheels make moving the tree so much easier plus the extra wide opening makes storing the tree inside much easier.


Christmas Tree storage Bag by Sanatas Bags – this bag is designed to fit trees from 6-9 feet (disassembled) I love the exterior label option so there’s no mistaking it for sporting equipment.


Christmas Tree Storage Bag by Handy Laundry – again this bag can fit a disassembled 6-9 ft tree and the red and green colour is just perfect for the season – there is really no mistaking that this is a Christmas storage item. This is a very affordable option and it gets great online reviews!


Christmas Ornament Organizing

Like my tree, I have been storing my ornaments in boxes, old shoe boxes to be exact, and it suited us fine until we started get some glass and more delicate tree ornaments.  I will say that Christmas is a great time to get ‘new’ boxes for your Christmas ornaments – toss out the old ones you have been using for years and use boxes you received as gift wrapping.  Now that I have some special tree ornaments that I want to hang onto and possibly even pas son to my kids once they are adults – I love these ornament organizing boxes.

Here are some of my favourite ones.

Compartment Cube Ornament Organizer by Richards Homewares – this 12 x 12 x 12 box can hold up to 64 ornaments – the exterior label allows for the box to be identified, too!


Christmas Ornament Storage box by Handy Laundry – another box that holds up to 64 ornaments.  One feature I love with his piece is adjustable dividers, so if you have ornaments of different shapes and sizes, you can easily make room for them in this box.  Plus …the zipper top means no losing the lid and you can collapse the box when it is not being used!


Other Christmas Organizing Products

Christmas Wreath Storage Bag – I know my wreaths have taken a beating when they aren’t protected or stored properly, so I love this bag as it keeps away the dust and moisture.


Master Craft Gift Wrap and Storage Bag – when it comes to gift wrapping and all of the necessities, my area used to be a mess! But now with a gift wrap organizer, I have it all in one place.  It does make wrapping gifts for all occasions easier – I also keep rolls of tape and a set of scissors in mine.

So if you find the tidying up and packing up of Christmas to be a big task – maybe these pieces will help keep you organized and make the whole task easier.  So when do you plan on taking down your Christmas tree and decor?

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Ultra Violet is THE colour of the year for 2018

Ultra Violet has been named 2018’s colour of the year by Pantone this hue is described as a blue-based purple and it symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets. This colour is bold and calm at the same time – it is powerful and creative.

Photo credit: Pantone

Ultra Violet Home Decor Inspiration

Do you see yourself decorating with this colour? Maybe you find it too bold? I know personally it is a little over the top for me but I do like a more muted purple shade…so why not take some inspiration from this colour of the year and add it to your space.  Try adding it subtly into your home like bed sheets or some small decor pieces…..

Photo credit: Urban Outfitters via Dorisleslieblau.com

I love the soft and romantic feel that this hue adds to this bedroom. I know my husband wouldn’t love that much purple but I think adding some soft ultra violet bed sheets like these pale purple ones from Amazon to my white and chocolate brown theme would work beautifully. What do you think?

I love the idea of updating traditional furniture pieces with some fun paint or funky fabric – it maintains that traditional beauty but gives the piece a whole new look.  I recently painted my old bathroom vanity with chalk paint and I’m totally looking for new chalk paint projects in my home. I could definitely see using a purple tone chalk paint to update some old or boring furniture for my daughter’s room. This image really inspired me…..

Photo credit: Apartment Therapy

For my daughter’s room, again, I think I would opt for a softer hue of this ultra violet colour – she has an old rocking chair in her room that would look great in this shade. Love this Annie Sloan chalk paint in ‘Emile’

I have always thought that shades of purple were so beautiful at weddings – versatile too – summer, spring, winter or fall – there is a shade for each season….I love the look of this wedding table scape … the mix of colours, the florals and succulents, the glassware and the gold accents – it’s so romantic!

Photo credit: Lace in the Desert

A wedding invitation can really set the tone for the event – Minted has some incredible Wedding invitations – this colour is a nod to the trend this year and the layout and font and clean and simple.

Ultra Violet and what to pair with it…

Ultra violet has a great energy to it and could be overwhelming in a space but try pairing it with clean and crisp white to balance it all out. The ultra violet towels in this bathroom make a statement but do not over power the room.

Photo credit: Rotatorrod

It looks great with taupe – it brings a little more ‘pop’ to a tone that many consider a bit boring.  I love the velvet texture of these throw pillows – it’s not a true ultra violet shade but the inspiration is there and the colour plays off nicely on the pattern taupe chairs.

Photo credit: Style at Home

Try it with beige. Beige isn’t exactly trending but here are still a lot of homes with a lot of beige – if you are looking to add some of the ultra violet trend into your beige room – well it works beautifully.  Beige is a great warm and soft back drop that you can easily freshen up with a pop of colour.

Photo credit : House & Home

How about a little bit of chocolate….brown paired with purple tones – it is a little unexpected but it is so warm and inviting.  The look of this living room is chic – the mix of textures and some metallic accents makes it so sophisticated!

Photo credit: House & Home

Purple and grey work hand in hand.  They look great together and again there are so many shades of both purple and grey – the possibilities are endless….This nursery would also double nicely as a guest room as it has a soothing feel and it doesn’t look too child like.  The accent wall and the the trellis pattern drapery (also in purple) are just the right amount of bold and the soft grey and the white soften it all up.


Photo credit: unknown

I am personally not big on bold colour myself but I definitely appreciate and could see myself embracing the more muted versions of ultra violet in my home. What do you think of the colour of 2018?

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We are so thrilled and happy to host a new guest blogger this week – Mark from Foosballzone.com

5 dining tables that are insanely awesome

A dining room is where the whole family sits and spends time together over lunch or supper so it is essential for them to feel good. With an astonishing dining table, you can make the whole space look amazing.  Due to that, I have made a rundown of 5 extremely stunning tables which will draw your family in the dining room. One thing you must keep an eye on is the fact that tables like those are not for everyone. Having an amazing table like that is a statement and you should be proud if you are looking to get one of the tables from the article:

Millenium Bontempi

The Millenium Bontempi is a dining table made for contemporary homes of individuals who value basic plan. Just by looking at the table you can see that it doesn’t have any excess decorations and it looks absolutely amazing. There are two shapes of the table; rectangular and roundabout shape so you can pick the table to fit your room. What I like the most is the fact that it is produced using one material. You can pick one from 3 materials: wood, glass and steel. The greatest highlights of the table are the legs. They aren’t in the corner of the table; they are in the middle of it.

Concrete table

The concrete table is a standout amongst the most fascinating dining tables on the market, but it comes with a catch.  It is challenging to locate the perfect one. The concrete table must be smooth, equally hued and with no breaks. That means that you don’t do that alone, you leave it for experts. The ideal blend you can discover that comes with a concrete tabletop is wooden legs. A table like that is impressive dining furniture and it is for a modern house.

Foosball dining table

Another dining table made for the bachelor’s apartment is a foosball dining table. Remember this isn’t just a foosball table with glass top, it is a table made to be a dining table. A table like that will leave an impact on everybody who comes into the room, including the ladies. A dining foosball table like this one has style and class. A tempered glass over the field is lifted because the height has to be like on the real dining table. The glass covers the rods so you won’t hit them while eating dinner.

Swing dining table

I can completely picture this table in a lunchroom in Google since it speaks to the casual environment you need to have in a lounge. It is made for individuals who are kids at heart and I am certain beyond a shadow of a doubt that this table will make you smile. Awesome for family dinners because it is a rare opportunity to see your grandmother in the swing! The table is completely safe and it has enough room between the swings so you won’t feel cramped.

Driftwood dining table

This table may not be modern, but it is absolutely amazing. A driftwood table is extraordinary furniture for any home since it tells to you its story. It would be a disgrace to put the driftwood table in little lounge area so I would propose putting it in an open space kitchen/lounge area. With tempered transparent glass on top a driftwood table, the extraordinary wood will be visible forever.

Author bio:

Mark is a blogger who has a blog about foosball tables. On his blog he shares all that one foosball player has to know, including the posts about various foosball tables like the one you can look at this link: http://www.foosballzone.com/sportcraft-foosball-table/

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Christmas time is in full swing … but you say you don’t like colourful Christmas home decor. Well you are in luck, Christmas decor comes in all styles and ‘colours’ – let me show you some of the Best Neutral Christmas Home Decor …

Neutral Christmas Decor – white, gold and beige

Maybe not your typical colour scheme but this is just so elegant and chic.  Gold and white are a classic combination and by adding the beige and taupe tones – this room looks so rich! The white lights add some beautiful shine and the rustic touches like the deer head on the tree top add a woodland look which is very popular right now.

Photo credit: Kirklands

Neutral Christmas Decor – Silver, Green and White

I love Christmas decor that can really extend through the long winter months and when you opt for a neutral palette you definitely have that ability to keep up a lot of your decor through the winter.  This combination has a cool, outdoorsy vibe think evergreens, snow and ice….This beautiful staircase with evergreens and baubles is so seasonal and fresh looking!

Photo credit: Lowe’s


Neutral Christmas Decor – Brown and Gold

This combination of brown and gold is so rich and elegant. This tree has a traditional feel and the colours of brown and gold add drama and depth. Al of the the sparkle that contrasts with the more rugged textures like the burlap makes this tree make this tree one of a kind.


Photo credit: TrendyTree


Neutral Christmas Decor – Black, White and Wood

This combination is not your typical Christmas combination but it also has a great modern meets outdoors feel.  The mix of the Buffalo Check and the wood log chargers gives this Christmas table setting a relaxed and casual feel but still says Christmas.

Photo credit: HobbyCraft

Neutral Christmas Decor – Navy and Metallics

Navy Blue is a great way to add some depth and drama yet still keeping it classic with a winter feel and you can easily mix in some metallic tones like silver or gold (maybe even both).  Navy blue and white are also a great neutral combination for the season – a little unexpected but it works!

Photo credit: lushome


Neutral Christmas Decor – All White

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow…..make your home a winter wonderland with layers of white on white Christmas decor. With these colour scheme you can remove the tree and keep other decorative touches up because the white decor is more seasonal and less holiday focused.

Photo credit: skimbacolifestyle

Remember, neutral decor is never boring mix it up with pattern and texture for everyday and for the holidays,


Christmas time is here! and you know what that means…Christmas decor! I love any excuse to decorate but Christmas has to be my absolute favourite time of year – the cool air, the white fluffy snow, the music and the overall spirit of the season is just so warm and welcoming.  In my house we love to start decorating around the American Thanksgiving weekend – that way we can make the most of the season and really get into the spirit.

Over the years, my Christmas decor style has evolved and every year I add a few more pieces to the mix – here are just some of my favourite Christmas Decor items…

Christmas Decor Pillows

I love how simple these are to ad to an armchair or a sofa – plus these would look really cute in a guest bedroom (how welcoming).  This is such an easy piece to add to a room and what I really love about it, is it brings the holiday feel into all areas of the home.  You could either store away your ‘regular’ decor pillows or if you are short on space, get some Christmas pillow covers instead and zip them on for the season and zip them off at the end of the season.

This is a really cute and festive option from Wayfair

Christmas Decor Canvas

One of the big holiday trends that we seeing a lot of this year and it is a bit of a nod to the whole farmhouse look is the canvas signs with sayings – I love the simplicity of the farmhouse style and adding in a great farmhouse sign with a Christmas feel is a great addition to a fireplace mantle, a gallery wall or a front foyer vignette.

This wrapped ‘Peace on Earth’ canvas from Wayfair – is not only a wonderful message but it comes in great neutral tones so it will work with most colour themes.

Christmas Decor Wreath

The Christmas wreath is a classic, we all know that but I am loving wreaths in vignettes, fireplace mantle styling and handing indoors.  I added a festive red and white one to my gallery wall in my family room and again I love how it brings the spirit of the season into all areas of my home.  I also love the look of a wreath hanging on the outside and the inside of a front door – so chic!

When it comes to a Christmas wreath – there is a style for everyone but in my home I tend to stick to the classics like this one….

 Christmas Decor Candles

Candles are a great way to add some soft lighting – they also make a great gift.  This year I purchased some beautiful ‘Christmas scented’ candles for my kids’ teachers – I love the simple look of these ones in the mason jars – plus it is a ‘one size fits all’ gift.  Candles are great addition to a coffee table, console table or a fireplace mantle….

Christmas Decor Snowy Tree

This year, we finally purchased a new Christmas tree – we are a big fan of the artificial tree for a few reasons…it’s not as messy and high maintenance  as a real one and with 4 children under the age of 9 – we need to keep it simple.  Plus we used to travel quite a bit over the Christmas break and a real tree can lead to some real problem if it is not watered regularly, so a fake tree it is.  But there are so many beautiful options – like the one we just purchased.  I have been eying these snow flocked trees for a while and my husband surprised me with one this year and I LOVE IT! It is so pretty just on it’s own but once you add the white lights and all of the ornaments, it is just magic!

 Christmas Decor Countdown

My kids are always asking me…”how many days until Santa?”.  It’s cute and I know they are SO excited! I saw this sign at one of my favourite stores, Urban Barn and I knew it had to come home with me this year.  I love the rustic farmhouse feel of the sign and of course, that chalkboard feature – Santa stops here in # days .  We have placed ours on our mantle (we have the height) but it is actually designed to stand on it’s own, it would be great by the fireplace or at the front entry – it’s a cute addition to family friendly Christmas decor….

Do you have any favourite Christmas decor pieces?

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It is that time of year where all of the fashion and home design experts are making their predictions for what will be the hot colour of the year…. Benjamin Moore has already announced their pick for colour of the year for 2018….Caliente – and just like the name suggests this colour is red hot.

More about the colour of the year….

This colour, Caliente, is hot, sexy and has lots of bold personality….this red hue has a touch of orange so it is a bit of a departure from the purple based wine tones. For anyone who is drawn to rich and warmer tones, caliente is Perfect!

Photo credit: Architectural Digest


The experts already were way ahead of this announcement and started to declare red as the new ‘millennial pink‘ over the summer months….

Red is a great next step from millennial pink….it is bold, a little unexpected in certain places (a red kitchen island….) . It can add a lot of richness to an exterior. It can be both feminine and masculine  depend on how you use it in your space.

How to decorate with the colour of the year…

This colour is so versatile … you can add this colour in a modern space that needs a colour injection but you can also make this work in a country or nautical inspired theme.  A Persian rug in this rich hue is another way to add this tone and some sophistication into any space.

Red Rug

This boho inspired room is so relaxed and the red makes a statement without taking over the space.  this room really combines a mix of styles like modern and traditional along with some great texture.

Photo credit: Havenly.com
 Add a touch of red with some pillows – a solid red pillow might be too much red so opt for some pattern … This living room styled by Pottery Barn has a great mix of boho and fresh coastal
Photo credit: Pottery Barn

 Red Furniture

 You can add a bold punch to your space with some red painted furniture.  This lake house bedroom is fresh and colourful with painted red twin beds…
Photo credit : Country Living

 Red sofa

Alright this is for someone who is really looking to e bold in their home decor.  A red sofa makes a statement but if you love colour…why not go bold? Red is a great colour for a major piece of furniture like a sofa because it really does work with a lot of other colours…

Photo credit : House of Turquoise

 Red accessories

Red is a great colour to accessorize with! Switching up your accessories along with new trends is an easy and affordable to change up the look of your decor…whether it’s pillows in a living room or bedroom or some kitchen items.

Photo credit: HGTV.com

 What do you think of Benjamin Moore’s Colour of the year?

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