Design & Decor Blog

easter egg cookie pan

Fab find
Easter egg cookie pan, $14.95; Crate and Barrel.
fabfind eastereggpan easter egg cookie pan
Decorating eggs at Easter is like eating turkey at Thanksgiving, except you don’t eat the pretty little eggs. This year, why not decorate something delicious that you’ll actually eat? Crack the eggs for breakfast and, instead, bake some egg-shaped cookies! This non-stick pan bakes 12 cookies at a time, with six different Easter-themed designs for easy, edible treats you won’t want to hide.

What type of cookie would you bake in this pan?

ultimate kitchen accessories

I spend a lot of time in my kitchen. Whether it’s recipe testing, browsing through a new cookbook or organizing my ever-growing collection of bowls, plates and napkins, I always find a comforting aura to this part of my home.
I often get asked what kitchen accessories I couldn’t live without. For me, it’s often the small things that make cooking a smooth and fun process. I’ve compiled some of my favourites — all inexpensive items that make cooking and baking as easy as pie.
Collage1 ultimate kitchen accessories

1 Stainless steel knife rack
This is really the most efficient way to store knives. In a minute, knives are safely put away and readily accessible.

2 Kuhn knives
Paring knifes are one of the most useful tools to perform small tasks in the kitchen. I love the range of colours Kuhn offers. They are also made with a carbon steel blade which helps keep them sharp.

3 Apple tea towel
The designs at Ferm Living are absolutely stunning. I love their organic cotton kitchen towels — they have the perfect pop of colour for any kitchen space.
4 Silicone tongs
Most chefs do not use tongs in professional kitchens but I find them to be one of the most useful tools in a home kitchen. The silicone ensures you won’t scratch the surface of your pans.

5 Garlic press
This incredibly inexpensive tool is ideal for mincing garlic in seconds.

6 Mixing bowls
I use mixing bowls for seasonings, marinades and garnishes. I love these bowls from Anthropologie. Stacked on a shelf in different colours, they are beautifully functional.

7 Silicone baking mat
This silicone mat does not need to be greased and is completely non-stick. It’s perfect for making any type of cookie and replaces parchment paper.

8 Microplane
This is my absolute favourite! You can use it to grate zests, chocolate and parmesan cheese.

9 White silicone cookie spatula
This silicone spatula is slanted to make it easy to move cookies from a baking mat to a cooling rack. It’s also a practical tool for other tasks in the kitchen.

Jennifer Bartoli is a Montreal-based food writer, photographer and recipe developer who grew up in Paris. Her longstanding passion for food took her to New York City, where she studied at the French Culinary Institute. For more delicious recipes and more, check out Jennifer’s blog, Chocolate Shavings.

makeover monday: chair before & after

It’s finished. My ugly, orange-y pink chair has been given new life and has made its way home to me.

On Thursday, I made my way to Carrocel Restorations to pick up the chair and when they brought it out, I was floored. It was just perfect. Not only did they reupholster it in the DwellStudio fabric I chose from Robert Allen, but they also took the entire thing apart and rebuilt it with new foam and added some piping and nailhead details. Carrocel also sprayed the wood in a Benjamin Moore white as a finishing touch.

I am so beyond pleased with the work that Carrocel did and would highly recommend them to anyone looking to get a piece refinished (check out their fascinating videos on furniture restoration). The quality and attention to detail is remarkable, and they kept me updated on the chair throughout the whole process.

And now, without further ado, here is my fabulous new chair!

chair final before makeover monday: chair before & after

The 'before' shot {Purchased for only $30, the chair had a great shape but the fabric was hideous and the construction was a little worse for the wear.}

chair table makeover monday: chair before & after

Here is the chair at Carrocel Restorations in its most deconstructed state.

chair final makeover monday: chair before & after

Taa daa! The finished chair, sitting in my living room.

chair final side makeover monday: chair before & after

Thanks so much to Robert Allen for bringing the DwellStudio fabrics to Canada, and thanks a million to Carrocel for the immaculate job you did with the refinishing.

Carrocel was awesome in taking a ton of photos during the process, so stay tuned for when we show you a step-by-step of how they refinished my haggard ol’ chair. PLUS, you’ll get to see what was stuffed inside!
So what do you think of the final product?



colourful kitchen accessories from west elm

Spring is here at last! The warm weather has finally arrived and I’ve started my usual spring clean up and purge. It’s also got me itching to give my bland, white kitchen a much-needed boost of colour and life. I began my hunt for accent pieces this weekend and found the perfect stuff at West Elm. These vibrant accessories are such an easy and inexpensive way to infuse some colour into a neutral space.

measuringbowels colourful kitchen accessories from west elm

Pop Colour measuring cups, $19 per set of four

ricebowls colourful kitchen accessories from west elm

Rice bowls, $12 per set of four

towels colourful kitchen accessories from west elm

Tea towels, $9 each

salt+pepper colourful kitchen accessories from west elm

Pop Colour salt & pepper shakers, $12 per pair

I love the unique shapes and fruity colours. Next up—cook something fabulous and show them off!

win a $200 gift card from posterjack!

I’ve always loved printing off my own photography and making my home a personal art gallery with my own prints hanging on the walls. However, it’s always seemed that the mainstream stores never crop it to the proper size and custom can get rather expensive.

Enter — the answer to my photo woes. This photo enlargement site has been the absolute easiest way for me to print of photos in large scale. The material options are endless as well — photo paper, canvas, peel-and-stick, custom framing or collages.

Want to know the best part, though? Besides the fact that it’s a Canadian company, Posterjack is super affordable. You can get a 24″ x 36″ print on photo paper for only $20 (even cheaper than the big box stores, who don’t do as good of a job either).

Here are a few prints I got done for my own house {keep reading to see how you can win $200 for Posterjack!}:

posterjack ashleigh win a $200 gift card from posterjack!

I took this photo of my friend Ashleigh (former Style at Home associate art director) on a weekend roadtrip to Gananoque last fall. I just love how the silhouette turned out.

posterjack hermitage win a $200 gift card from posterjack!

The photo in this image is at the Hermitage Museum in Amsterdam. I was wandering around and found a quiet corridor with breathtakingly large light fixtures.

posterjack cowboys win a $200 gift card from posterjack!

I took this picture of my boyfriend when we were in Dallas a couple of years ago for the Cowboys Thanksgiving game. I figure this is a much more attractive way to show team spirit in the house than by hanging a jersey on the wall!

posterjack maastricht win a $200 gift card from posterjack!

One of my favourite photos, I took this when I was in Maastricht, Holland, for The European Fine Art Fair. I love Dutch architecture and this shot really reflects that European charm.

Now here’s the fun part — Posterjack has given us a $200 gift card to present to one lucky reader! Such an awesome prize because you could gets tons of photos printed or go big and get a mega-sized canvas.
To enter to win, just leave a comment {with an image if possible} telling me about your favourite photo you’ve ever taken {you can link to it online, as well}.

Good luck!

*Contest closes April 29th, 2011 at 12pm EST. Open to all residents of Canada, except those in Quebec. Not open to any Transcontinental Media employees, their families, or any other persons with whom they reside.

toronto shopping: manor

I was so honoured when I was invited to be a contributing guest blogger for Style at Home. Some people may know me from my blog, Aubrey & Lindsay’s Little House Blog, where I tackle DIY projects and decorating in the home I share with my husband Aubrey and new baby boy Oscar. Some may also know me from my stationery and art business, Penny People. And if you don’t know me, you’ll quickly find out that I’m on a constant lookout for inspiration for my home and art.

One way that I find inspiration is visiting shops throughout the city. There are a few in Toronto that are so wonderfully curated that you can’t help but find inspiration for your home just by admiring the vignettes they create. Even if you don’t live in Toronto, these photos will hopefully inspire you as they do for me!

One of my favourite shops in the city is called Manor. It sits on the corner of Yonge and Golfdale in Toronto’s Lawrence Park neighbourhood.

manor toronto shopping: manor

Manor is packed with amazing little goodies that are perfectly bunched together.  I’ve never gone in and not found something I loved — in fact, I usually want to take it all.  So here are some of my favourite vignettes from the store. It’s not an inexpensive store, mind you, but if you’re looking for a special piece, you’re likely going to find it here.

Untitled 2 toronto shopping: manor
1 The alabaster lamp had me at first sight for its height and simplicity. I also really love how those two yellow vases were paired against it.
2 I’m a sucker for architectural prints and also for this wall colour (Benjamin Moore HC-157 Narragansett Green).
3 The collection of little circular mirrors would be a perfect way to spruce up an empty wall.
4 One of my favourite vignettes is a collection of faux allium flowers with a natural wood coffee table, woven basket and high gloss tray.
5 Little dishes to hold your butter – perfect for a hostess gift.
6 You’re likely to see zebra print in lots of awesome colourways, but I fell for a new take, this gorgeous pink and taupe paired against the coral print in the back.

Want to see more finds from the store? A chandelier from Manor hangs in our son’s room and our TV stand is actually a coffee table from the shop.

Manor, 3377 Yonge Street Toronto, Ontario;. 416-544-1700
Closest intersection: Yonge and Lawrence
Neighbourhood: Lawrence Park

typography art

A couple of months ago my friend started a little thing called “Wine, Cheese and Documentaries”. It’s a night spent with wonderful friends, sipping wine and devouring cheese and other goodies while watching…you guessed it, a documentary film! Yesterday was Round 2 of WCD. We watched Helvetica, an independent film on fonts, typography and the graphic design industry. As a wannabe graphic designer, I found the film both fun and fascinating. Given the surge of typography art work popping up in homes across the globe, it was definitely relevant to interior decor. Designers and home owners alike are using them to instill a quirky and dynamic sensibility into their interiors. The best part is that graphic posters, like  the ones shown below from Ikea, offer big impact at a small price tag.

1 – you’ll be seeing red with the Olunda Picture by Ikea ($59.99 CDN, 69W x 93L x 5H cm). I love how restraint meets rage in this bold typography print!

Ikea Olunda Picture Alphabet typography art 2 – get more for less with the Kort Art Cards by Ikea ($4.99  CDN/ 5 pack, 13 x 18 cm). Plunk them into an inexpensive frame and you’ve got punchy art for pennies!

Ikea Kort Art Card Swedish Places typography art

3 – paint by number takes on new meaning with the Bild Poster by Ikea ($10.00 CDN, 51W x 51L cm). Count on this clever collage to deliver a curated feel in your home. Ikea Bild Poster typography art

Art is all in the eye of the beholder. These days, art can literally be anything! So what’s your fav style of art? Oils, acrylic, mixed media, digital…leave us a comment and let us know!


Amy Walters is a Winnipeg-based design enthusiast and blogger. For more design inspiration from Amy, check out her blog aDESIGNdock.

domison debuts in toronto

Toronto just got a little more family friendly and a lot more design savvy! Last night marked the official landing of Domison in Toronto, bringing design tag team My and Thien Ta Trung with it. Their new flagship store, located at 35 Jarvis Street, in the furniture district of downtown Toronto, means these sibling designers are finally branching out from their Montréal hub. I was fortunate enough to get a first peek at the collection on my own home turf.

The name Domison evolved from a combination of the words “domicile” and “maison”, though it seems just as much a philosophy as it is a play on words. The goal for this furniture boutique is to offer strong, well-designed pieces at affordable prices that can make your house a home.

domison livingroom domison debuts in toronto

My and Thien are known for their modern aesthetic and their fabulous design and craftsmanship, all of which is evident the moment you walk into the showroom. The furniture and decor accessories are a balance of avant-garde pieces with clean lines and bold pops of colour and intricate details.

domison yellow couch domison debuts in toronto

The neon yellow sofa sits at the front of the store, nearly spanning the entire length of the platform it’s presented on. Its size, geometric shape and intense colour make it an incredible showstopper piece to start off the space.

domison blue bench domison debuts in toronto

I can’t get enough of the bright colours! They are used thoughtfully, as accents and statement pieces, so the pops of yellow, blue and orange really grab your attention as you move through the showroom.

domison tie lamps domison debuts in toronto

The decor accessories mesmerize me. While the furniture tends to stick to clean lines and geometric shapes, the accessories lovingly play with shape and texture. These table lamps, made out of plastic cable ties, are one of my favourites.

domison paper tree 416x460 domison debuts in toronto

Speaking of playing with shapes and textures, this paper tree installation is unbelievable. It’s actually the handiwork of Paprika, a graphic design and strategic marketing firm, who also designed the posters and media kits for the store.

domison designers1 domison debuts in toronto

With a new location in a new city, the designers will be dividing their time between both Domison stores. For now, My will return to Montréal while Thien stays in Toronto to nurture their newest venture, so be sure to stop by to say hello and check out their latest collections. The designs will be coming from their Montréal studio and, according to Thien, we can expect new pieces each month.

Where these two will go next is not certain at the moment, but this is definitely not the end of the road. With their focus on the opening of this store, they also look forward to future expansions across Canada and beyond in hopes to bring Domison designs to all homes.

What do you think of the Domison aesthetic?

colourful canadian-made cushions

Fab find
Handmade pillowcase, $25 US each; Milk & Cookies Canada on Etsy.
fab find cushions green colourful canadian made cushions
fab find cushion pink colourful canadian made cushions

I’m always on the hunt for new cushions to change the look of my home, but can’t bring myself to pay over $60 for one. You sit on them, lean on them — in a few month’s time, that throw pillow is not going to look like you paid $200 for it.
I can’t get enough of these cushion covers that I spotted on Etsy. Handmade in Toronto by Milk & Cookies Canada, the colourful cushion covers sell for $25 US a pop, but you can also get some styles for $20 US each. If you do want to go the designer route, they also have fabrics from DwellStudio ($35 US each) and Kelly Wearstler ($75 US each).

What’s the most that you’ve paid for a throw pillow?

samsung digital cameras

When I was invited to check out Samsung’s latest digital camera lineup, I admit I wasn’t expecting to be blown away. Samsung is known for TVs, not cameras, right? Well, they wasted no time in showcasing innovative new products that proved that Samsung is a legitimate player in the lucrative digital camera business. Here are some of the features you’ll find on new Samsung cameras, that make them some of the most innovative on the market:

samsung PL121 samsung digital cameras Samsung PL121
Cool feature: This compact digital camera features ‘Two View’ – dual LCD screens, one on the back and one on the front so you can see yourself when you’re taking that self-portrait to upload to Facebook. Love it!

samsung landscape samsung digital cameras Samsung WB210
Cool feature: This camera can take a seriously wide angle shot. You don’t need to lug around a heavy SLR to get a great panoramic photo. It’s got a 21mm ultra-wide, 12x Super-Zoom Schneider-KREUZNACH lens – and if that sounds like Greek to you, it just means that you’ll get a wider, deeper perspective with crystal clear sharpness.

samsung wifi samsung digital cameras
Samsung SH100
Cool feature: This camera’s Wi-Fi capability makes it seriously cool but the best part isn’t even that you can share your photos with friends, family and other Wi-Fi enabled devices. The best part is that it has an Auto-Backup feature – meaning you can wirelessly download photos to your computer with the touch of a button. No hunting for wires and cables to free your photos from the camera. Now THAT’S cool!

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