Design & Decor Blog

Christmas cat

While I was decorating my Christmas tree last week, my gorgeous, fluffy Persian cat, Alaska, was constantly playing around with the ornaments, the branches and the lights – it made the process that much more whimsical and fun. I had purchased the most adorable reindeer hat for him and we had a little photo shoot once the tree was finished. Isn’t he the cutest?
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my final five gift picks

Here are my final 5 gift picks – from delectable hand soap to cozy throw blankets, these are items I would be thrilled to receive any day!


Hand Poured Soap Bites, $18 each, Aromachology

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decorating my christmas tree

We’re talking Christmas trees here at the Style at Home offices. I put mine up a few weeks ago and thought I’d share some photos.

Growing up, my parents always put up a real Christmas tree. There’s nothing like the smell of fresh pine in the house during the holidays. But now I put up an artificial tree. I wasn’t keen on the idea at first but I found a beautiful 7-foot tree at Loblaws (part of their PC Home collection) and I must admit, I love it!

My tree is decorated very simply. My colour palette is red, silver and white. White lights, a silver bead garland and sparkly icicles add the perfect finishing touch.

Ta-da! The end result. It’s simple but I love it.

What’s your Christmas tree colour palette?

christmas tree highlights

Having spent the better part of my weekend choosing, buying and decorating my Christmas tree, it was only fitting that I snap a few photos to show you the end-result! This is the first Christmas I am spending in Toronto and I really wanted to make it feel special. I decided on a white and silver colour palette this year, a beautiful classic.

My only pet peeve when it comes to Christmas trees is spending money on a – usually very unattractive – tree stand. My alternative is to ‘plant’ the tree in a dark grey planter, half filled with gardening rocks and half filled with neatly packed soil. It makes the tree stand out that much more and also allows you to invest in a planter that you can use once the spring makes its way back in.

Now, for the ornaments! Isn’t there something just magical about putting up that very first ornament? It gets me every year. Here are a few of my favourite ornaments – they all bring back a happy memory of the place where I found them.

You might have read my post listing expert tips to decorate your Christmas tree. Filling your tree with inexpensive ornaments and then edging it with your special pieces was key to getting a professional look. I have about a dozen of these silver balls, scattered around the tree.
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nigella lawson christmas cookbook giveaway

The holidays just got sweeter!

We’re giving away three of Nigella Lawson‘s Christmas cookbooks just in time to get it under the tree!

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fab find: holiday cards

Fab find
Snowflake holiday cards, $6.26 (set of 4); Simple Ink on Etsy.

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4 great christmas cookies

If you’re a regular on, then I’m sure you know about our amazing Cookie Swap Contest. If you’re new here, I’ll give you the scoop: Simply submit an original recipe and original photo of your favourite holiday cookie and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a KitchenAid stand mixer. We’ve already started publishing the amazing recipes we’ve received. You can check out all the entries here. But the contest doesn’t close until 5pm EST today so there’s still time to throw your hat into the ring! (Don’t forget to read the full contest rules.)

Ever since we launched this contest, I’ve been itching to get baking! So even though I can’t enter the contest, you’ve all inspired me to get into the kitchen and whip up some holiday treats. Here’s a quick look at what I baked this weekend:

This classic shortbread cookie was easy to make but a bit time consuming; after cutting the cookies out with a cookie cutter, the dough had to be frozen for about an hour. Also, a friend told me that ‘real Scottish shortbread’ is made with rice flour but none of the recipes I found called for rice flour. How do you make your shortbread? With or without rice flour?

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one of a kind christmas show & sale – part four

This Sunday is your last chance to stop by the One Of A Kind Christmas Show & Sale, happening here in Toronto. I’ve shared three parts of this four part series rounding up my top 20 favourite artisans from the show.

Catch part one through three of this series right here! Last, but certainly not least, here comes part four!


1. Coucou Salut

Montreal based illustrator, graphic designer and textile artist, Shannon Adolph, creates playful home wares crafted from silkscreened fabrics. You probably noticed her and her work on the front page of the OOAK website as she’s one of this years Rising Stars! Visit Shannon at booth H-43 to chat with her about her process.

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one of a kind christmas show & sale – part three

Have you checked out the One Of A Kind Christmas Show & Sale going on right now in Toronto? I’m sharing my top 20 favourite artisans from the show in a four-part series.

Catch part one and two of this series right here! Here comes part three!


1. Denture Thief

Their name is just as quirky as their product. Amanda, the creative force behind Denture Thief, transfers her hand drawn illustrations onto fabric to create unique house wares. I think her pillows would be the perfect hit of colour and playfulness in a nursery or kids room. Stop by booth C-12 to talk with Amanda and learn more about what inspires her designs.

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christmas tree decorating tips at the teatro verde store in bayview village

A couple days ago, I made my way to Bayview Village to get some very timely holiday inspiration. Away from the ever-increasing busyness of Toronto’s downtown core, this chic little mall is filled with beautiful hand-picked stores that are stocked with special holiday finds. During my visit, I was introduced to Shawn Gibson, the talented co-founder of Teatro Verde, a great resource for home decor items. Here are some of his tips to decorate your Christmas tree to perfection this year, as well as a few of the pretty trees in the store.

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