October, 2009

Wooden closet tub!

October 22nd, 2009


Anna van der Lei presented her “Badkast” a closet shower hybrid at the Design Academy in Eindhoven. The bath features closet doors and a rail to hang clothes. I think another practical purpose would be using the rail as a drying rack for wet clothes that come out of the laundry, and bath towels.


The structure itself is made from Larch wood which has a very similar grain to Ash wood.


The designer was inspired by Finnish Saunas and communal dressing rooms, you can read her artist statement after the jump

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: General | 1 comment

Inspiration: Pia Wallen’s Swan Chairs

October 21st, 2009

Picture 1

We were thrilled to visit Pia Wallen at her studio loft in Stockholm in June. It was one of the nicest spaces Juli and I have ever seen and it hasn’t left our minds. The beautiful white floors and walls, large windows, and hits of black and red heavily influenced our design decisions at the cottage and no doubt will come back when we eventually renovate our apartment.


The one thing we can’t forget was how comfortable and intimate her collection of old weathered Swan chairs were. We all sat together around this coffee table eating Swedish strawberries and talking about her designs.

Pia’s loft via Stockholm Ateliers (book)

Now these Swan chairs have since become our obsession…

swan chair

Another great example of black leather Swan chair against white painted floors.

via Homebug

Arne jacobsen and lamp

Black leather Swan chair and AJ floorlight is a winning combination from Jonnieeleven’s Flickr page.

.Arne Jacobsen swan chair

Contemporary colours with rustic floors via Fritz Hansen.

Picture 3

You may remember our article on the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel in Copenhagen way back in June. Mid-century modern teal in Suite 606.

Picture 5

Conference room signage at the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel.

Filed under: General | no comments

ella+elliot for Tas Design Build

October 20th, 2009

Not too far from the Junction, at the corner of Dundas West and Bloor Street, is the very cool looking Giraffe condo project. Modern baby store extraordinaire ella+elliot were invited to decorate the baby/kids room of their model suite.


“Ella+elliot was very pleased to learn that our design skills piqued the interest of major Toronto condo builder Tad Design Build. Their company was interested in launching a new condo called “Giraffe”. A hip, modern building for hip, young families. When they approached us to design a kids’ room for a model suite at their sales center, we were thrilled. There is no better client than one who gives you complete freedom! The only constraint: It must be for a toddler aged three to five, and suitable for boys or girls.

“We decided it would be a great idea to represent the “ella+elliot look” in a room. The blue on the walls of the room is our signature colour; used in the store on everything from business cards and tags, to tissue paper and ribbon. Wechose a pallet of primary colours, paired with black and white, to keep it gender-neutral.


“The Frames Wallpaper from Graham&Brown is ella+elliot in a wallpaper: fresh, modern, and multi-functional. We saw that teenagers and even adults used this paper in their spaces, so we knew it would grow with the child. It was essential that this room be interactive, so in addition to supplying coloured crayons for the wallpaper, we added a small chalk wall as well. An element like this can also grow with the child: use it for now as a fun chalkboard, in the future it will be a simple dramatic black stripe when no longer used for colouring.


“The Loom collection from Nurseryworks was chosen for this room because it is multifunctional, modern, beautiful and sustainable (it looks like Oak, but is made of Catalpa wood, a rapidly-growing, less expensive, more eco-friendly wood). The Loom crib is shown in the room with the Toddler Conversion Kit in place, and the Loom Storage is the perfect sized desk for a three to five-year-old. When the child gets older, the storage system can be used as a simple bookshelf. Nurseryworks also makes a twin size bed (and a bunk bed!) in the Loom style, so it would be easy for parents to add more pieces to this room as the child grows.

“The accessories in this room were chosen for their bold colour pallet. We noticed how wonderful the Mod Dots bedding from Skip*Hop looked with the Numbers print from Binth, and the rest took off from there. The wool rug adds a bit of luxury, and is surprisingly kid-friendly. It is warm and comforting in winter and absorbs excess moisture while playing, even in the heat of summer.

“This room is available for viewing on-site at the giraffe sales center, located at 1540 Bloor Street West (Bloor & Dundas) in downtown Toronto.”

Oh and visit the ella+elliot store, located at 188 Strachan Avenue, just south of Queen Street West, where you will find even more beautifully crafted baby/kid friendly furniture!

Filed under: General | no comments

How was everyone’s weekend?

October 19th, 2009

On Friday night a once in a blue moon event occurred. We went out. Specifically three art openings and a dance party, with a side of Poutini’s.

Stop number 1: The Royal Family, collages by Aprile Elcich at …industtrees (1234 College Street) until November 12th.

royal family019

Entitled “The Royal Family”, this mixed media collage series was inspired by a pair of scrapbooks found at the St. Lawrence antique market filled with newspaper clippings of Queen Elizabeth and her family during the 1950’s and 60’s. Aprile’s collages recreate the scrapbooks, changing the composition and adding materials to give each page a deeper meaning. All of these pieces are created on the actual scrapbook pages themselves, resulting in brittle and delicate collages which further the character and feelings of nostalgia in each piece.

royal family018

This is Aprile’s first solo show, and she did an amazing job with the window displays and curating. Yes, she even painstakingly painted the windows!

royal family013

Although …industtrees is a tiny, new gallery, the work showed really well in the space. Started by three friends, Cameron Kowalchuk, Mark Di Giovanni and Patrick Guilbault, …industtrees strives to offer a gallery space to artists who are underserved by the larger established galleries in the city. Definitely check them out if you are a local artist and want to show your work!

royal family006

A close up of Ingratitude (When the Reign Comes)

royal family012

Aprile also has some of her smaller trunk show items available, like herb garden tags, notebooks, and limited run books.

royal family001

Aprile is also really into making show ribbons right now, so she made a bunch for the show too (should have grabbed one!). Silly me didn’t take a photo of the piece that we nabbed – but it’s titled Why Jackie Cheered Up. Congrats Aprile!

Stop number 2: An evening of Fashion + Art: Jessica Jensen SS10 Handbag + Women’s Collection along with Joshua Jensen-Nagle Photographic Works at Thrush Holmes Empire.


We were greeted in the entrance by this new piece by Joshua Jensen-Nagle and gasped. His artwork is so moody and evocative, and this latest venture of photos taken along the East coast are exquisite. We already have two pieces by him but boy do we wish we could get one from this series.


I love how Jessica’s handbags were treated as art. Then again, she uses luxurious materials, and the attention to detail and craftsmanship are high end.




This is also Jessica’s first foray into womenswear, debuting with a collection of day dresses. This applique dress was my favourite.



And this is where Jessica and Joshua meet in the middle, as a couple and as artists. The photographs Joshua took of Jessica’s line are indisputably his style and compliment her look book perfectly. Dreamy and timeless.

Stop number 3:  TIME IS ALL WE’VE GOT, A Collaborative Project by Braden Labonte and Neil Klassen at Board of Directors (1080 Queen Street West) until October 25.

This was an unscheduled stop and a happy one at that, as I am a fan of Braden Labonte’s work (he has eluded me for years, and everytime I am in the position to buy artwork, I miss his show or don’t have any money). As such, I didn’t take any photos, so I grabbed a few off of his website. But head over there to see more, because he is a real talent.

Picture 5

We like this cross sculpture and you will see why once our store is open.


This piece is lingering in our minds…it’s titled dead bird and it is 24″ x 32″ oil on mylar.


This series of oil paintings are only 5″ x 4″ in size yet have impeccable detail. Braden is a master at light, shadow and human anatomy. This piece is titled how we do.

Stop number 4: Tuff Meat 2nd anniversary at the Gladstone Hotel, a dance party that happens 2-3 times a year.

I just wanted to share this little nugget because my best friend throws down an amazing indie dance party.




DJ Tuff Ghost, aka Jennifer Reinhardt and in the background, DJ The Meat, aka Jen O’Brien.


Tuff Meat photos by Taylor Shute.

Stop number 5: Poutini’s House of Poutine, 1112 Queen Street West.


You already know that but I wanted to say, it was 3:30am and the House was rocking. Packed with people and loud music, it was almost its own party. And the poutine was HEAVEN. I ate almost an entire container to myself, and don’t regret it one bit.


Homemade gravy, cut fries and large chunks of squeaky cheese curds. Oh lordy!

Poutini’s photos via Poutini’s House of Poutine as by then I was in no shape to be a takin’ photos.

Oh and one final thing. I was just reading this post over, and there is A LOT of amazing talent in this city.

Filed under: Toronto | 1 comment

Carouschka Streijffert’s loft and studio

October 16th, 2009

Well good news, our house is sold!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Between that, thanksgiving, our anniversary and a mini bout of sickness, this week has been a bit of a wash. So in the meantime, here are some beautiful images to pass the time.

Picture 6

I can’t believe those windows. It’s such a lovely light space.

Picture 3

Another unique staircase, I really would love to have a spiral staircase one day.

Picture 1

Picture 2

Ahh… Sunken living rooms……

Picture 4

Via Skona Hem

Filed under: General | 7 comments

Space: Jennifer Hannotte

October 12th, 2009

Everyone loves a good before and after! If you are currently looking at houses that are stuck in the 70s, or renovating said beast, Jennifer Hannotte’s home should help put you at ease. Oh, by the way, if you notice that furniture keeps moving around in the photos, Jennifer is a self-professed space changer-upper…I just couldn’t decide on a few photos to share so I basically ransacked her flickr.



Who are you, what do you do for a living? We are Jenn, stay-at-home-mom to Beatrix and Willa, and Marc, a tv director.


Inspiration for home? I don’t know that there ever was or is a specific point of inspiration, and there is certainly no absolute goal. I love interiors and our relationships with them, and the objects we surround ourselves with – figuring out the story in all of that.



Most Cherished item/ Favorite Piece? I don’t cherish any of it! I tend to buy and sell things on craigslist like a maniac – I try to buy things that I know will be easy to sell again at the same price I paid so I’m never out of pocket, but get the change I think I need!


[what an amazing find! Definitely a quality piece, and quite possibly a Poul Cadovius]

Best Deal? The teak wall unit – i only have 2/3 of it set up and I paid $300. And, the Fritz Hansen chairs (one in Willa’s room and one in the entrance way) – they were sitting in an office I worked at in Winnipeg and I asked the boss if I could take them – he said yes!



Biggest Splurge? I suppose the counter tops (quartz); they were also the only thing we were sure about since the beginning of the kitchen reno.


Most Gratifying DIY? For me, the floors upstairs [look after the jump for photo]. They were beyond repair and we weren’t in a position to replace them. i hand-sanded, primed and painted them and it totally transformed the whole feel of the 2nd floor of the house. Marc’s would be the ‘backsplash’ in the nursery – again, because we couldn’t afford to do otherwise, we took inspiration from an image from Living Etc. and found a bunch of boards in the rafters of our garage and cut them down and screwed them up.


What would you do differently? The farm sink in the kitchen! It’s not even made to be in a peninsula so the back side of it is unfinished and doesn’t exactly look great. The floors in the laundry/toy storage/mud room – it’s an industrial rubber flooring which I thought would be perfect for the multipurpose room, but the colour I chose nicely highlights every bit of dirt, salt from the snow, etc.


Plans for future? The exterior of the house leaves a lot to be desired, but we still have 2 bathrooms to deal with and are considering converting the huge attic space. The list is long!


Kids room 1:



[Love the scrap wood backsplash feature next to the change table…this set up is perfect for those random 2nd floor kitchens.]

Kids room 2:



Click through to see the before (ack!) and afters! And remember, if all else fails, coat everything in white paint. It just works. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Toronto | 8 comments