Not so new because like most working artists I’m terrible at making the time to update examples of my work, so this redesign was done last fall (my bad). I’m also terrible at blogging at regular intervals (my badder). Something I’m not terrible at? Design awesome, functional, filled with (your) personality rooms. Here’s an example of that (which also happens to check off the for mentioned to-dos that keep me up at night).

Case and Point – Karen and Jeremy’s Main Flood Make Over

I hear it a lot , “We moved in, did what needed to be taken care of, had a couple of kids….. years later we realized we never got around to decorating. This place is not us.”

Karen and Jeremy wanted their place to reflect them. Right? Who doesn’t, but most of us rarely get to it. They have lived in there home for the better part of a decade with their two young daughters and cat Gatsby. They wanted to get to inspire and transform the main floor to start, so we tackled the three main areas of this typical East York semi- entry, living room and dinning room. Settling on a wish list including what was staying (couch, rug, and piano), what needed replacing and updating (fireplace, wall colour), what they wanted to do in the future (new floors, replace railing to basement, new dinning room set), and we were off.

They wanted to create a space to both entertain and hang out. Kids are welcome in this house! And more seating is needed, even if only temporary. The living room lighting need to function for them better (and be prettier). They wanted to add some serious style into the space and wanted to show case their art collection better (and I mean, they had quite an extensive collection to work with).

Style – These guys were defiantly the “Eclectic Collector”. They needed a design mash up of personal treasures influenced by travel, functional design, and aesthetic passions. Colours for this style are often bold and bright, but slip into neutral to help highlight the decorative eye candy chosen. It’s all about the mix! Layered prints, patterns, and textures.

Over all Colour – I wanted to take out the yellow under tones of the current wall colour and make the wall colour consistent through out. Using whites, off whites and neutrals like grey, and then filling up 20% with a highly saturated shades, like their existing red area rug. It’s a great baseline mix. For the walls we went with white up top and wrapped up the ceiling (Benjamin Moore American White), light grey bottom (Benjamin Moore Cement Grey). Eggshell on bottom, flat up top. I wanted to inject colour and contrast with furniture, accessories and art.

Living Room – The biggest transformation was the fireplace. It became the focal point of the room after it had a stylish makeover. We painted it Soot Black by Benjamin Moore. It is extra moody by being in a flat matte finish. And we added the coolest polygon mixed patterned tiles to the inside.

The space opened up a bit and add some shine by adding a bent glass coffee table. A new knit poof for sitting and laying on, can be housed underneath. That extra kid seating we were looking for.

A very cool little side table from Structube was added to the side of the currant blue chair and acts a a bridge to the new chair, added in mirror opposition in the dinning room. More functional extra seating for entertaining.

We found a new vintage storage unit for electronics and doubles as side table beside the couch. We softened it up behind the dark grey couch by adding some light white curtains and sheers for privacy.

As for lighting, we added a table lamp for reading and brightened the whole space up for entertaining with a new smoked glass over head pendant.

And lastly we layered in lots of that abundant art work and collectables in gallery wall formations and vignettes on the mantel and piano.

Dining Room – The layout of the room changed very little but the first thing we did was extend the table to give it more presence. We added a second occasional chair at the door way to the living room, facing into the dining room, but can be repositioned when entertaining.

We removing the curtains, which opened up the window greatly, but adding a window film to the lower ¾ of the windows to allow for privacy, but still let lots of light in.

There’s always one spot in the home that becomes the catch all and the counter between the dinning room and kitchen was it for this family. We did some editing and reorganizing and added two new bar stool make the counter a functioning eating and entertaining space.

I left them with some project ideas for the future including adding a warm, patina metal front of the kitchen high counter bar. A section of this front can serve as an edited art display area. They are also are planing to replace the iron railing to the lower stairway and constructing a bookcase or doored storage there instead. This will allow for storage of art supplies, girls’ grooming needs, and over flow from the kitchen like storage containers or serving pieces.

Front Entry – This needed to be defined and organized. We removed the floating shelf and added an actual table as landing area with mismatched basket underneath. Baskets are for shoes, hats and mitts….We added 2 mirrors above to reflect the light and be functional. We also added a great reclaimed wood style bench with storage space inside for bag storage and a coat hanging area above.

But the most striking thing we did, that hits you right through the door, is the stair makeover. Karen bravely remove the carpet to find pristine stairs beneath. Then we added the same beautiful tiles used in the fireplace to the front of the risers. A.Maz.Ing.

Soon they are going to finish a DIYed black pipe and corded cage ceiling light for ceiling as Jeremy was keen to do a very cool black pipe project in the space. Also when time allows, a reclaimed wood top will be added to the the very useful Ikea entry table. They are also planning to replace the current stair hand rail with something more modern and black, and finish hanging an impressive image gallery up the stairs.

In the end I couldn’t be happier with the way this space turned out, and I am even more excited that they have the vision and passion to take on even more projects to keep making the space more functional, beautiful and most importantly, adding all their personalities to it. I even got invited back for their first big entertaining event! What designer could ask for more?