A playful and personalized family home
Blogger Brittany Robertson of Oh My Dear transforms her new build in Grande Prairie, Alta., into a playful and personalized family home.
“If your walls lack architectural detail, shelving and artwork are a great way to create interest,” says Brittany. She and her husband, Jade, made the coffee table for a fraction of the four-figure price tag of a similar one.
“When I dress shelves, I use a mix of items that look interesting together,” says homeowner Brittany Robertson. “I incorporate a living element like a potted plant or fresh flowers, a meaningful object like artwork and something white like a piece of coral to balance everything out. It’s a foolproof equation.”
Warm metallic accents are carried throughout the home, brightening the family's space and creating a place that feels stylish yet cozy.
Brittany accessorized her all-white kitchen with playful accents and a variety of metals. The island, outfitted with weathered-wood stools, is her daughters’ favourite spot for eating lunch and doing homework. “The stools add warmth and are a tonal complement to the island and the flooring,” she says.
“I didn’t want our dining room furniture to look like it was a set,” says Brittany. To break up all the wood, she placed upholstered chairs at opposite ends of the table. “We eat dinner here every night. The large window looks out to our backyard, and beyond that is the countryside.”
“I wanted the guest room to be multifunctional, which is why I chose a daybed,” says Brittany. She painted the original dark laminate panelling behind the bed a soft white, which inspired the blue and white scheme. DIY artwork complements the fresh palette.
To make the decor and design features stand out, Brittany chose light grey for the walls. “Neutral walls allow me to switch up the decor with ease, which is important, as I change my mind a lot!” she says.
“People often ask me how our mostly white house can be so cozy, and I tell them it’s because it’s decorated just for us,” she says. That means pretty pastels for Elizabeth and Paisley, sleek metallics for the grownups and an abundance of meaningful touches like accessories and artwork – much of which Brittany DIYed.
Personalize your wall with $1,000.00 credit to Minted prints!
+ Take an online style quiz
+ Upload photos of your wall or room
+ Access a Minted stylist for professional recommendations and renderings of your wall
Prize Value: $1,079.00
Enjoy this refreshing sangria all summer long.
A refreshing white wine sangria that's super-easy to make.
1 In a large pitcher, combine the melon, wine and simple syrup.
2 Chill for 4 to 5 hours to allow the fruit to absorb the wine.
3 When ready to serve, add the soda water, gently stir and pour.
Makes 1 large pitcher.
Refined eclectic condo design
Designer Olivia Hnatyshin has a case of the blues... but in the best way possible.
The living room's custom sofa was one of Olivia's first investment pieces. “It fits four or five people comfortably,” she says, “so it’s perfect on movie nights.” Whether it’s a cocktail party or a casual get-together, the young designer loves to host.
Another enterprising effort was accommodating her childhood piano – which Olivia’s parents threatened to give away if she didn’t take. “It’s just one big, non-functional piece of furniture,” she says. “Creating a vignette around it with a tufted bench and pretty artwork helped distract from the fact that I have a huge, clunky black piano in my hall.” And she’s glad it’s there: The stylish setting encourages her to play it whenever there’s a spare moment in her busy life.
“Sometimes if you go literal with a certain theme, it works,” says Olivia, who typically mixes styles and eras, but in her entryway stuck to a strong Chinese influence, from the Foo dogs to the faux bamboo mirror and console. The leopard-print stool is actually Olivia’s old piano bench updated with fresh fabric.
The pagoda chair Olivia’s sitting in is one of her favourite pieces in the home. “It’s like my spirit animal,” she says. It was a steal at $90 and already upholstered in a fabric she loves.
Olivia didn’t change much about the builder-grade white kitchen, apart from adding a portable island as extra counter space for cooking and entertaining. “Where do I draw the line when I know this isn’t my forever space?” Olivia asked herself. For her, it proved to be the kitchen.
“Turquoise has been my favourite colour since I was little,” says Olivia. “I’m always drawn to it.” This is evidenced in the array of toss cushions on display on the living room sofa.
“Bedrooms should be a little more moody,” says Olivia of the reason hers is imbued with deeper blues than the rest of the condo. The room’s starting point was the Schumacher fabric on the lumbar cushion – the wallpaper and bedding fell easily into place after that. Above the bed, the gallery of small plates provides an unexpected spin on the traditional. Some are extras from Olivia’s own dish set, others are from her mom and the light blue one in the centre is a hand-me-down from Olivia’s paternal grandmother.
The armoire in the living room was a $300 antiques store score and acts as Olivia's media unit, where she tucks the TV out of sight when not in use. The artwork flanking it is also a creative moneysaver: framed coaster souvenirs from a trip to New York City. She also incorporated refinished vintage furniture, such as the sidechairs flanking the living room armoire.
The living room is awash in watery blues that are amplified in glass details for an airy, ethereal effect.