interior design

My Apartment: Bedroom Planning

It has officially been one year since I took possession of my one bedroom apartment (what?! How is that possible?!). So far, I've been focused on every area besides the bedroom, because it's the one area guests don't really see. 

Now that the rest of my space is more or less finished (just a minor list left: runner for the front hall, paint dining table, new side table lamp, find hardware for bookshelf doors), it's time to give the bedroom a little loving. I really dislike my bedroom right now - it simply doesn't function properly so it always ends up a mess. The layout is very strange because of the placement of doors, windows and radiators. And the white walls and lack of bedskirt, etc. leave it feeling very temporary and dorm-ish.

I've finally come up with a plan that I feel very confident in. I had bits and pieces of it brewing for awhile, but I had my big eureka moment recently while watching The Intern. I love every set Nancy Meyers has designed (Something's Gotta Give, The Holiday, etc.) but I think Jules's house in The Intern is my very favourite. It literally made my heart skip a beat. And when I saw her dark grey master bedroom, I knew this was the piece to the puzzle that I had been missing.

Jules's Bedroom in The Intern, Designed by Nancy Meyers, via Architectural Digest

Those charcoal walls were speaking my language, and the play between greys and natural linens really works well. I love the idea of wall sconces as I don't have room for bedside lamps. Picking the perfect grey is proving tricky, but I'm leaning towards Elegant Boutique by Para. Do you have a favourite?

Here is another room that is inspiring me for my bedroom:

Victoria Solomon's Apartment, Designed by Victoria Soloman, via The Everygirl

The grey here is a bit lighter and probably better for my space that doesn't get much light. And those sconces are my dream. MY DREAM! They are reasonably priced, but still out of my budget so I'll have to find an alternative.

Other things floating my boat:

Michelle Adams's Bedroom via Lonny Mag, 2012

I've been obsessed with Pyne Hollyhock for the bedroom ever since I saw this spread of Michelle Adams's place way back in 2012. If I haven't gotten sick of it yet, I doubt I ever will. Of course I can't afford much of this fabric, so maybe just a small lumbar pillow on the bed?

Also I'm craving emerald green. I used to always say I want an emerald green headboard, but I think that a neutral headboard is better. Instead, I am going to get a couple of large emerald green velvet pillows from

Live Love Smile

.

The hardest thing for me to master styling wise is making the bed look good. I tend to get very hot while I sleep, so I need to use the thin 'cool' IKEA duvet cover, but it makes the bed look flat and uninviting. I think the key is to layer, I can always take a thicker, fluffier duvet cover off before I go to sleep.

Here is the current state of the bedroom (I'm only showing you all this because I love you...):

Okay now I am sufficiently embarrassed. Time to get ready to paint!!

xo
Tiffany Leigh

Project Northlake: Kitchen Reno - Progress Pictures

So much has been happening in my childhood kitchen since the last time that I posted! Although by no means a glamorous post, I thought it might be fun to show you some of the behind the scenes moments and fill you in on a bit of the realities of the reno. My family has been doing most of the work on the kitchen so far. The progress has been quick, but not without its share of setbacks.

We needed to find a new tiler, the hardwood installation got delayed, a hole got punched through the wall into the dining room during demo, we painted the entire first coat of paint before realizing that the colour was mistinted and drying far too bright, our area rug was cut to the wrong size by the binders. What I've come to learn in this industry is that projects rarely, if ever, run perfectly smoothly. When embarking on a renovation, you need to be prepared for things to go wrong, but sometimes managing expectations is easier said than done. Luckily, we are back on track and the finish line is in sight!

We started by tearing out the dated railing that separated the kitchen from the sunken family room. This is really going to help to open up and modernize the space.

My parents ripped up the linoleum floors and carpet and my older brothers pitched in with the demolition of the kitchen. I was especially excited to see the bulkhead go. The new cabinets will reach to the ceiling, making the room feel much bigger and taller, as well as adding extra storage.

My dad took care of the new insulation and moving some outlets. While he had originally planned to do the drywalling himself, we thought it best to bring in a professional to patch the walls seamlessly.

The last time I was home, the painting had started. We are really lightening up the space with a soft, muddy blue/green colour rather than the coffee colour seen in the

'befores'

It's hard to believe that when I'm in Waterloo next weekend we will have our hardwood floors and new cabinets installed! Then it will be a couple of weeks for the new quartz counter tops to be made and installed. I can't wait to show you the big reveal!

xox
Tiffany Leigh

Sketch Inspired by Stephanie Sterjovski

A few months ago I did this sketch of my friend Stephanie Sterjovski's place from her feature in The Everygirl, as captured by the photography of Anna with Love.
If you guys aren't following Steph's blog, you should be. She is gorgeous, talented, and has one of the biggest hearts out there. I can't believe I forgot to blog this little rendering!

Here is the shot that the sketch was inspired by:
Photography: Anna with Love, via The Everygirl
Can you get over that black and white striped chair? She found it at Homesense Canada. I adore it!
Happy Wednesday! xox
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Evolution of a Drawing: Modern Industrial Reception Area

It's been a little while since I shared my drawings with you guys, so I thought today I would show you the process of drawing this:
The first step is always the pencil drawing, in which you set your vanishing point, horizon line, and objects. Then I trace over this with a fine tip black architectural pen:
 After this is complete, I go in with varying shades of Prismacolor French Grey markers and add depth with shadows. I always love how this looks at the end and get nervous to add any colour!
Finally, I go in and add colour to get to the final result.
Next week I will be sharing the entire project! Stay Tuned!
xox
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Watercolour Wednesday's: Shiny Floors

Last term my entire rendering class was done using watercolour, so I have a lot to show you! This week, I'm sharing a practice exercise we did based on page 21 of "Interior Design Illustrated: Marker and Watercolor Techniques" by Christina M. Scalise. This is one of my favourite books that I've had to buy for school.
I love the way this painting turned out and I really feel that the floors look successfully shiny (maybe even a little slippery!). Happy Wednesday.
xox
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Term 5 Final Project: Advanced Residential / Piano Mansion

Do you all remember me talking about my major studio project for the fall, and then basically disappearing off the face of the blogging earth? Well, let's just say that this project consumed and challenged me more than any project to date, but that the satisfaction of completing it (and getting a great mark) was well worth the long hours, piles of discarded ideas, and even tears.

If you recall, my original concept for the house was the piano (as the client is a family of musicians), but as I developed the project further, I moved away from such a literal shape and idea into a larger concept of the stage and performance, into a liveable concert hall idea. I kept some of my original concept, such as the pitched roof, but basically, I wanted the home to capture and reflect the feeling of grandeur associated with attending a night at the theatre, as well as creating a liveable environment that was simultaneously conducive to entertaining, parties and performance. Here is the final result (click on photos to see them in larger format):
I was basically architect, structural engineer, landscaper and interior designer for this project and I also had to consider barrier free elements as one family member is in a wheelchair...did I mention the plot of land we were given was on a cliff like hill? That's a lot of hats to wear in ten short weeks, but I am so happy I pulled it off and proud of myself for not giving up!

Here's to a new term! xo
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Advanced Residential Project Inspiration: Piano Room & Sketches

First and foremost, I want to send a huge thank you and a warm hug out to each and every one of you for the overwhelming amount of support, encouragement and positive messages that I received through the blog, instagram and e-mail regarding yesterday's post. My heart is so full at the thought of this community and all we do for one another. :) You are the best.

Now onto a more fun topic. Last week I shared some details on this term's design studio - a 4000 square foot residential property which we get to design from the ground up. We received the program and the occupants are a family of talented musicians. They have a grand piano.
I actually took piano lessons when I was younger and while I never made it too far (I always hated practicing when I could be outside playing) I still plan on taking my piano with me into my first real house. All of this led me on a hunt for some piano room eye candy.
Stacey Brandford Photography via Desire to Inspire
via Robert Brown Interior Design
Atlanta Homes and Lifestyles via Little Green Notebook
I'm consulting with a talented piano playing young man (we will call him M.) on this project as a client sounding board. He says he would want a wood coloured grand piano, rather than black. Something like this I'm thinking...
via Markdsikes
I mean, burled wood? Let me pick my jaw up off the ground. Simply stunning.

 And while I know last week I said that my favourite old house is the direction I wanted to go in architecturally, I am now considering really running with this piano concept. I've sketched up some ideas for the shape of the house inspired by the shape of the piano and am really digging it. Realistically when am I ever going to be able to design a budgetless custom mansion? NEVER! Why not push myself to do something outside of the box? Here's a peek at my initial brainstorming work:
I might have to start practicing again, feeling inspired! Do you play an instrument?
xox
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One Room - Two Palettes: Transitioning your Home Decor for Fall in Five Minutes

We all know that the big trend I am loving for fall is black and white. I say 'trend' because it's a popular look this season, but let's face it, black and white is about as classic and timeless as it comes. While during the spring and summer my space employs a bright, lively and colorful palette, I decided to try on a different look for the colder seasons and went glam with black white and gold.
The changes were simple and only took about five minutes to complete. I didn't buy anything new, just used items I already had around my place.This goes to show you that switching up your decor doesn't have to cost a lot of money or take a lot of time. Also don't be afraid to improvise! The dalmation dot pillow cover is really a dress from H&M tied around a pillow form. Shh don't tell!
First I switched out the art pieces. Next I traded the colourful throw pillows. Lastly, I changed the items in my tray to fit the scheme.
Decorating Tip: Removing the dustjacket off of your books will often reveal more neutral covers!
I like any excuse to play around and experiment with styling. Do you change the palette of your rooms with the seasons? I hope you all had a great weekend
xox
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Term Four Final Project (& Tips for Creating your own Design Boards)

I did it! I survived my fourth project week.
This one was a big one - Each term more is expected of us as our knowledge base grows. I can't believe I'm officially 1/3 done my degree already. How time flies!
Today I thought I would share my final project and some tips for creating professional looking design boards (for all those fellow design students following my blog! xo)
 1. Be consistent. All of your boards should look exactly the same if you were to take all of your images off of them. I like to prepare my boards with a grey background (complimentary to almost anything & allows your work to shine) and a second pop of colour that goes with the scheme of my design. In this case a fresh, minty green.
2.Don't overcrowd your boards. It will overwhelm the viewer and look messy! Also, everything you put on your board should be mounted on a piece of foam core to create dimension and layers. Shout out to the lovely Steph Sterjovski- I used her picture as the perfect 'mint shopper' inspiration!
3. Your first board should always outline your design concept. Use a small group of images & the concept statement. I also like to highlight the three key words that illustrate the feeling I am trying to create with my design.
4. Use a title block at the bottom of each board with your name & class title, board title, and board number.
 5. Your renderings should be the stars of the show. They will pop more if they are surrounded by a black boarder.
 6. Try not to put all of your boards together in one day or by your eighth board things might start getting a little crooked and sloppy (see above ^).

 7. Always dress to match your boards. Just do it.
Warnings: Doing these boards is costly, time consuming, and will result in major 'designer bags'...and not the good kind of designer bags. I'm talking the ones under your eyes here people. Proof is in the pudding:
I'm very proud of how far I've come in one short year!! I can't imagine where I will be when I graduate. This week I am visiting my parents in Waterloo before term 5 starts on October 7th!
xoxo
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Thrifted Thursdays: Love on Sunday

Is it Thursday already? Time is flying my loves.
Today is a fun day because I'm over at Love on Sunday sharing my favourite thrifted find. You better believe that playing favourites with my treasures is no easy task...can you guess what I chose?

Amy is awesome. She is a fellow Toronto blogger (holla!) and design enthusiast. She is even in design school too! Pretty much twins, you know? Take a look at her fabulous city home:
Her styling is too good, right? That second image is so very Kelly Wearstler and has my heart. 
I'm now more convinced than ever that I need a nude... are you blushing?

So head on over and see if you're right about my fave thrifted item and to fall in love with Amy's blog! And don't forget to enter yesterday's giveaway if you know anyone with a baby in their lives...
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