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...