Thursday, July 1, 2010

Todd Selby

If you are into eclectic interiors or are looking for quirky inspiration, The Selby is in your place is a great new book by Todd Selby that shows you that true style is all about the details! Here are some of my favourite pics...

Sunday, June 13, 2010

LU prints

These Scandinavian inspired, eco-friendly, silk screened prints were handmade by Ulla Clark in Pemberton, B.C. She has a small but beautiful selection of pillows, table linen and aprons. Check them out... LU prints

New Build

Like many of you out there I would love to one day design and build a new home. I thought I would post a collage of photos of different homes that inspire me and create a small vision of what my future dream house might look like.

This home would be built on an irregular shaped lot surrounded by the trees and rock that are typical of the Pacific Northwest landscape. I would also love for these elements to be incorporated into the structure. The majority of beams, millwork and structural components would be Douglas Fir or Red Cedar, with some local granite and stone elements. I would also add concrete, floor to ceiling windows and my personal taste for some industrial aesthetic throughout.

Essentially, I envision a sort of a turn of the century mill, barn or warehouse meeting a contemporary concrete home, and adapting itself to a beautiful West Coast lot. We can all dream, can't we? :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Upholstery Fabric

I found this link on a few blogs and thought I would repeat it here. This is a fantastic source for high end modern upholstery fabric. They have an amazing selection! Sadly, they do not ship to Canada...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


I am starting to get more and more inspired by quirky fashion photography. I love the dark navy satin and green wool texture in this shot. I also love the splash of charcoal fur.

It reminds me for some reason of Paola Lenti furniture, and their dynamic use of colour and texture. The grey, white and black colour scheme is getting so overdone...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Kitchen Ideas

A Seattle based company called Kerf is designing and manufacturing beautiful handmade plywood cabinets, with colourful laminate and wood veneer finishes.

These kitchens would look amazing in a post and beam home; updating the function of the kitchen while staying true to the spare style and use of practical materials.

Kerf also make free standing cabinets, built in units and bathrooms.

I am a huge fan of plywood. It is an amazingly flexible material, not only in a literal sense but in its incredible range of uses. It is also environmentally sound (depending on the source) and inexpensive.

Friday, October 16, 2009


Dear new owners of a mid century home, here is an exciting idea for your bathrooms, kitchens, foyer and entrance... Fabulous abstract modern mosaics!

Oh yes, you say, that's an amazing idea! Imagine what we can do with choice of colour and design. Forget paying a fortune to Bizazza or Sicis, let's create something all on our own that will give our home its own unique feature and echo its modernist past.

These fantastic tile mosaics were designed by Paulo Werneck (Brazil) and Vancouver's own BC Binning.

I would love to see something similar across the wall of a large shower or bath enclosure. They would also work well as a kitchen backsplash or entrance feature.

The use of these mosaics would depend on the individual house and what original or expected interior choices would be made to coexist with them. (e.g., colour, texture and lighting) The possibilities are limitless in terms of what you can do. I would even be tempted to break from the traditional modernist mold and create something abstract that reflects something of the new owners personal taste or history.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Design ideas for your recently purchased mid century home...

This mid century gem just sold in the British Properties and I immediately daydreamed about updating the interiors for its new owners.

I think the first practical investment would have to go towards a new geothermal heating system. I know, I know, so expensive; but how will you enjoy all those expansive windows without monstrous heating bills and ravaging the environment? Trust me it will be a lot cheaper than replacing all of the windows with custom made wood framed double paned replicas.

The green shag will have to go... Almost everything else will stay!

Replace that nasty wall to wall with some fir, oak or cherry (FSC approved of course!) trying to work with the orange toned wood on the walls and stairs. I would also choose small plank or parquet to match the era.

Next? Curtain fabric. I would make a choice of fabric once the owners and I had decided what furniture and artwork would be placed in these two rooms. If the furniture is very minimal and neutral in colour, I would probably choose a retro print or Scandinavian inspired fabric. If the furniture and decor was eclectic, I would choose a neutral toned fabric for the curtains. Given that Vancouver is situated in a rain forest, most of my interior decisions work around keeping things light and expansive.

More ideas to come...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Don't do this.

Hello. I have decided to resurrect this blog; my tiny forum on interior design in the bloggosphere. My situation makes it impossible for me to work for now, so this will have to be the outlet for my passion in the short term. To survive some of the worst moments over the last year and a half I would often close my eyes and design! design! DESIGN!

So, my first post after returning to live in Vancouver, and the north shore more specifically, is PLEASE DON'T DO THIS!

If you are lucky enough to get your hands on a sweet, spare and gloriously simple post and beam; please don't try and turn it into a faux craftsman or a Whistler style condo. Good God in heaven, don't we have enough boring architecture in this city without having to destroy the few homes of architectural and historical interest!

I came across these photos and they make me want to SCREAM. Sadly, most of the real estate buying public in Vancouver completely misunderstand these buildings.

Someone has spent a whole heap of money trying to make an unadorned, modern and streamlined structure, heavy, traditional and bulky.

I wish that there was a government body on the north shore that would declare these little gems as heritage, protect them from being knocked down and offer owners some design guidelines. I fear that they will never be given their due here until it is far too late.

Sooooo... lucky new owners of a post and beam...... why not try this?

Or this...

Or this...

Saturday, March 1, 2008

My Last Post

Yesterday, after many months of waiting, my eldest son Max was finally diagnosed as being on the mild end of the Autistic Spectrum. Now that we know what his condition is, we are going to move back to Canada and start to help him overcome his speech and language delay and behavioural difficulties. I now plan on dedicating the years ahead to working with him full time and coordinating all the treatments and activities that will benefit him (while also looking after my 3 month old son). This means, however, that I will no longer have the time needed to upload regular posts on this blog and so this will be my last post. I can't begin to describe how amazing it has been to connect with other interior designers and design enthusiasts from around the world and how it has benefited and expanded my own knowledge and aesthetic. I hope that over the last year my blog offered someone out there a little inspiration.
Au Revoir. Toute a l'heure.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Fun Tiles

I saw these tiles in The Guardian over the weekend and thought they were fabulous.

The alphabet tiles are from Pedlars and the vintage postcard tiles are from Welbeck

Thursday, January 31, 2008

My Latest Project: Dublin

Here are some photos of a project that I completed before the baby arrived in December. This was a renovation of a four bedroom, five bathroom home over three floors.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Nathaniel Harrison Smith

Born December 3rd, 2007. Nathan joins his brother Maxwell Alexander Smith (3) to make our family complete!!

I will be back in the new year with photos of my latest project and with regular weekly posts. Happy Holidays to everyone who reads this blog.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


I love parquet flooring and would love to use it in a future project. It lends itself well to reclaimed timber and can provide endless possibilities in both classical and contemporary patterns. I found this image on the New York Times website incredibly inspiring.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Private Courtyards

I am incredibly fond of private courtyards in residential housing design. They seem to work especially well in hot and windy climates, where they offer protection from the elements. If you are lucky enough to have the prevailing wind blowing in the right direction, the ideal placement of the courtyard would be to face southwest so that you would get the late afternoon sun and sunset.

Courtyards are a perfect way to add privacy and to subtly extend the interior space outside. I have posted two contemporary examples of courtyards here designed by Spanish architect Alberto Baeza which I found inspiring. I would personally add more plantings to these courtyards, as part of the joy of owning a private courtyard is the ability to look out into your own secret garden.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Industrial Facility

Sam Hecht and Kim Colin founded Industrial Facility in London in 2002 with a goal to bring fresh and functional modern design to everyday objects. I love the balanced blend of simplicity and utility in their designs, especially in their work for Muji, Epsom and Whirlpool.

The variety of objects that they work on is also refreshing. Checkout this mini-kitchen from Whirlpool, printer from Epsom and cookie cutter from Muji.