Two down, four to go! It’s really just one week since this whole design dare began, but with the speed of life {which is apparently faster than the speed of light} it’s already blurring by. Here’s how my selections are shaping up as of today.



Weekend plans to install the wallpaper were foiled by the flu, but we did get the grooves of the panelling filled and sanded and the stone of the fireplace removed, so I don’t feel completely unproductive.

The super hubs had to travel for work and left Sunday, so I’ve been waiting until he gets back to tackle the paper as a team. I just keep picturing myself wrapped in a swath of wallpaper and unable to extract myself! OK, not really. We’ll get it done, folks.

In the meantime, this week has been all about finalizing some of the {bigger} details. I feel like I’m living on the edge here at the intersection of deadline + decisions yet to be made. Take end tables, for example. I’ve got two of these brass beauties secured and on their way, but I’m still landing on my other pair.

Crossing fingers I can make a pair of these stunners happen.

If not, there is a back-up plan. Just a significantly less glamorous one. We’ll see what comes together on photo shoot day!

Gratefully, all of the fabrics have arrived and are in the capable hands of the talented Hollie Cooper, who is also working on a One Room Challenge space of her own. Here’s the fabric story in all its glory.

Let me take you on a tour of what is going where. The black velvet in the middle is going on the pair of custom Kravet sofas which are being finished as we speak.

{Perhaps we can all pause and say a prayer that they’ll arrive on time for the photos?}


After more than a decade in this business, I’ve come to know that if it can happen, it will happen. That’s why I ordered these babies back in August. That might sound crazy if you’re not a designer, but good quality, bench-made custom furniture takes time. It’s the difference between 8-way, hand-tied coiling that will keep the seat from sagging for life vs. zigzag springs that will give you 3 years tops before you have a hungry sofa and you’re the main meal. Kiln-dried, dowel-joined hardwood frame vs. a Lord-knows-what mix of composite materials and toxic glues. Down-wrapped cushions vs. cheap foam that breaks down quickly and leaves you regretting that “deal” of a furniture find. If there’s one place to invest in a room like this, it’s in the main furniture pieces. This is where you do life, after all. My motto? Go for liveable luxury and do life well.

{Consider the above your personal checklist for quality on your next sofa purchase.}

I’m also all about texture and inviting comfort, so I ordered four of these gorgeous Tibetan wool pillows from Fibre by Auskin, which will pair beautifully with this stunning luxe Python print from Kravet.

Having drooled over this Cassaro ombré chevron for months, I’m thrilled to have found a home for it on this little bench I picked up at Aberfoyle Antiques Market.

This photo doesn’t show the full range of the ombré – it fades into a really light dove grey with just touches of the black. I absolutely love the dimension this fabric creates! I’ll be stripping and painting those feet this weekend, and then it’s off to Staci at Switch Studio for the final step in the ugly duckling transformation. I’m thinking this will be the perfect little perch to warm yourself in front of the fire on a cold winter’s night.

Speaking of cold winter’s nights, this decadent Kravet Couture chevron faux fur will be magically transformed into a blanket thanks to the lovely Hollie and her genius ways. Perfect for power snuggles.

The champagne metallic linen is headed for a life as our drapery panels. It’s hard to see in the photo, but this simple fabric is incredibly radiant and will add a subtle sophistication to the room.

The reptilian velvet you see above will be the pin board fabric for my desk area, which I have yet to introduce you to. Friends, meet the “before.”

This desk and shelf are neatly tucked against the wall opposite the fireplace, framed in by the stairs. As you can see, it’s all helter-skelter right now as we are moving things around to fill and sand the grooves, but once it’s finished this will be a super practical hub for our household – my office during the day, and Noah’s homework spot at night. That’s why I’m beyond excited to have two of these gorgeous faux bamboo Hollywood Regency chairs on their way to me from 55 Downing St.

I have been searching all over the earth for an unexpected yet practical chair that can function at the desk but also be stylish enough to be flipped around and pulled into the living room when we have groups of friends over. Enter these bamboo beauties! I must say, the selection of chairs at 55 Downing St. really impressed me and I nearly went in the direction of one of their gorgeous wingbacks, but these lovelies are light and will be easy to move around. They also won’t close in the space and will keep the floor plan feeling open and inviting. So thrilled to have found them!

Once they arrive, I’ll be painting the frames black and then Miss Hollie will be making seat cushions in a gorgeous dove grey mohair from Kravet. The piece-de-resistance will be lovely lumbar cushions in this gorgeous silk ikat from Bermingham & Co. I absolutely love the story behind it.

Unlike most fabrics which are dyed or printed after they are woven, Ikats obtain their distinct designs through a process of “tie-dyeing” the warp threads in specific pre-determined patterns before the weaving process begins.  The manipulation of these individual dyed threads on the loom create the “blurred” patterns most associated with Ikat fabrics.  In fact, the Uzbek name for this textile is “abr” meaning “cloud.”

All-in-all, the fabrication process employs 37 separate steps, requiring over one month to produce 200 yards of Ikat fabric. It is truly a labour of love and artistry. The patterns are determined by the artists who create them, and they are all one-of-a-kind. Once that 200 yard run of fabric is sold, that’s it. I love having something with such a special story and process coming to make its home in our home. Very special.

And that, my friends, is the fabric story! Check in with me next week for updates on lighting and to see where we are at with our progress.

In the meantime, go get your design inspo on by checking out what all of these lovelies are up to in their daring transformations.

Apartment 34 | Arianna Belle | Because It’s Awesome | Coco+Kelley | Christine Dovey | Design Darling | Design Indulgence | Design Manifest | The English Room | Vanessa Francis | Hi Sugarplum | Honey We’re Home | Jojotastic | The Pink Clutch | The Pink Pagoda | Simplified Bee | Style Your Senses | A Thoughtful Place | Kimberly Whitman | The Zhush | TM by CIH | Guest Participants

Until next week, my design daredevils!