Oct 21, 2014
Video: Decorating for small spaces
Video: Decorating for small spaces
Video: Decorating for small spaces
Small space: Relaxing neutral condo
When decorators Nicola Marc and Beth Gold of Marc Gold Interiors came across this one-bedroom suite in a reovated 1920s building they knew they were in for a challenge. They agreed that the 800-square-foot condo in Montreal's trendy Le Plateau neighbourhood offered the right bones, needing just a few modifications.
"This was the first time that we had worked on a project where the client didn't want any colour," says Nicola. "As a result, we had to look closely at texture, scale, shape and form." The client's only other request was tied to the desire for a soft palette in grey and pebble. She wanted her new home to be a calming, serene retreat - a place she could return to after a busy workday and sigh contentedly.
Before: Living room
The wall dividing the living room and dining room was knocked down, the one separating the kitchen (shown above) was left intact.
After: Living room
The hardwood flooring was stripped and finished in a soft white-washed grey, custom wood radiator coverings were built, the wall between the dining room and living room was removed to open up the main living space for entertaining.
The oversized custom rug connects and ground the living and dining areas. Its diamond pattern lends a subtle yet distinctive design element, explains decorator Nicola Marc.
The rough-hewn mirror in the living area acts as a focal point but doesn't overwhelm. Petite sconces enhance the mirror's large scale and keep the look au courant.
The ornate vintage coffee table, painted in a neutral hue, offsets the modern boxy sofas. "The coffee table can be easily moved around to accommodate traffic during a party," says Nicola. Indigo blue was chosen as the only accent colour because it embodies calmness.
The sightline into the kitchen from the dining room was designed to appear un-kitchen-like. The wall in view was covered in a seagrass wallpaper, which provides warmth and texture and balances the kitchen's custom finishes (like the Carrara marble mosaic floor) and sleek stainless steel appliances.
"For kitchen renos, even ones on a budget, we encourage homeowners to consider custom components because it allows you to make the most of your space," says Nicola. A small work area in the corner is a better use of space than cabinetry.
Stainless steel appliances
The galley-style kitchen features a pleasant mix of modern (stainless steel appliances and quartz countertops) and classic (marble mosaic flooring and recessed-panelled cabinetry) elements. Opting for seagrass wallpaper instead of a tiled backsplash lends the narrow space depth, warmth and texture.
The elegant smoky grey settee in the dining area converts seamlessly into extra living room seating post-meal. The pair of white porcelain pendant lights offers a lovely soft touch, while the client's existing rustic wooden dining table adds a warm textural element to the space.
The neutral palette condo offers an equal devotion to balancing sharp lines with delicate curves, softening glints of shiny metal with milky porcelain and enhancing natural textures with subtle patterns.
"The effect is an intimate tone-on-tone space that feels very harmonious," says Nicola.
A more traditional nursery design with cheerful touches of whimsy
Find inspiration from this cheerful nursery with transitional charm.
This baby's room is as calming as it is cheerful, making it the perfect transitional space for designer Erin Shearer’s younger son.
Here’s how to achieve a similar look
1 Opt for playful pieces. These colourful wildlife prints not only lend youthful whimsy to the nursery but also have major staying power for when the child grows older.
2 Paint walls in a neutral shade to create the perfect backdrop for showcasing bright accessories and fun, festive touches.
3 Scour salvage shops for time-worn furniture that tells a story, such as this antique rocking chair. It’s one of the easiest ways to add character to a space.
Get the look
Väte pendant lamp shade, 22", IKEA, $9.
Watercolour whale print, White Doe Prints, from $15.
HBC wool baby blanket, Hudson’s Bay, $125.
Felt Layered Snowflake stocking, West Elm, $36.
Iron Kennedy crib, RH Baby & Child, $849 US.
Areaware Fauna Pico Fox toss cushion, The Modern Shop, $24.
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
Can you tell which country-chic console is the high and which is the low?
Can you tell which country-chic console is the high and which is the low?Credits: Michael Nangreaves; produced by Stacy Begg & Morgan Lindsay
We designed a country-chic living room console and styled it to match on budgets behooving both a cart horse and a thoroughbred. Can you tell the difference?
1 A-Street Prints Reclaimed White Washed Boards wallpaper in Cream, Brewster Home Fashions, $320 ($160 per double roll).
2 What Lies Ahead print on standard paper with White Premium Wood frame, 44" x 44", Minted, $468 US.
3 Acrylic and metal Column table lamp with cotton shade in Polished Nickel, West Elm, $239.
4 Hans Wegner oil-finished oak and hand-woven paper cord Wishbone side chair, Design Within Reach, $1,315.
6 Jute, leather and cotton Shiva rug, 5' x 8', Urban Barn, $249.
7 Trees in the Morning 2 artwork by Masood Omer (22" x 28"), Art Interiors, $700.
8 Vintage ceramic ginger jar, Cynthia Findlay Antiques, $1,200 (per pair).
9 Vintage ceramic bowl, Cynthia Findlay Antiques, $195.
10 Antique ceramic lidded jar, Cynthia Findlay Antiques, $195.
1 Whitewood eastern white pine click floor boards (10' x 6" x 1") The Home Depot, $174 ($10.20 Per board)
2 Framed horse print (40" x 40"), HomeSense, $299.
3 Canvas studded glass and brushed steel Sonia table lamp with polyester blend shade, Canadian Tire, $130.
4 Beech and paper cord Denmark side chair in Beige, Structube, $239.
6 Hand-loomed hemp and suede Overbrook rug in Natural (5' x 8'), EQ3, $150.
7 Kingston 14 artwork by Ian Varney (16" x 20"), Canvas Gallery, $550.
8 Vintage ceramic ginger jar, Cynthia Findlay Antiques, $595 (per pair).
9 Vintage ceramic bowl, Cynthia Findlay Antiques, $65.
10 Vintage ceramic lidded jar, Cynthia Findlay Antiques, $15.
Got an über-practical yet plain-Jane storage unit? Dress it up with a custom skirt. The stylish traditional element will add formal flair to the room while concealing the unit’s contents (we’ve stocked ours with liquors and glassware to create an ersatz bar, but you can stash just about anything in yours). A glass top will finish the look and protect the fabric. In addition to a centre pleated slit, the High console skirt features an elegant pleat at either corner for a fun decorative touch.
With sophisticated transparent bases and chic cream-toned fabric shades, these classic cylindrical table lamps will suit any room. All that’s left to match is your budget.
1 Aerin crystal Lineham with linen shade in Polished Nickel, Cocoon Furnishings, $1,088.
2 Glass and aluminum French Column with linen shade in Polished Nickel, Restoration Hardware, $375 US.
3 L2 Lighting glass and chrome-plated steel Chloe with linen shade, Lowe's, $245.
4 Canvas studded glass and brushed steel Sonia with polyester blend shade, Canadian Tire, $130.
Blue and white ginger jars have held their position among decor royalty for centuries – impressive, considering their blue-collar roots. So named for their function of housing ginger and other spices in ancient China, the vessels have transcended utilitarianism and – more often than not – get to, well, sit there and look pretty. We love the casual look created by mixing the jars with an array of matching two-tone chinoiserie ceramics, such as an antique lidded jar, a vintage bowl and more recently produced plates and teacups (these are by time-honoured manufacturer Royal Copenhagen).
Get ready to be floored: While our High tongue-and-groove wall treatment is fully faux (we bet the wood panel-look wallpaper had you fooled), the Low wall is clad in white-painted floorboards. Both options are simple DIYs that bear the country-chic aesthetic of shiplap panelling. Floorboards are easy to install on a wall, as long as you know how to handle a hand drill and have some help balancing on a ladder.
Not every piece that suits our High or Low room sets makes the cut. This month, stylists Morgan Lindsay and Stacy Begg came across this sleek hurricane candle sconce just a little too late. “The product’s brass finish would have glammed up the rustic, time-worn look a bit,” says Morgan.