What do you get when you take some good design planning and add a superhubs who can basically do anything? A One Room Challenge that keeps moving forward despite endless sickness.

Remember how I said I was better last week?

Welp…that lasted less than 24 hours. The flu decided to tag team with a chest infection which may or may not be related to the subsequent situation that will from here on be referred to as “the neck business” (aka a possible bulged disc in my neck). It’s more likely that the neck business is a remnant from my previous car accidents, but let’s just say I’ve been at my glamorous and glorious BEST this week. Haha!

All that to say, I have not lost my sense of humour. I firmly believe that while I can’t choose my circumstances, I CAN choose my attitude. So I am choosing to be insanely grateful for my amazing husband who has accomplished a minor miracle single-handedly this week (along with the help of our friends at Karastan and Alexanian).


First things first, Graham has essentially finished the built-in! We just need to do some touch-up paint and get the upper doors on the two upper side cabinets and then it will be wrapped up with a bow on it. Here’s how it looks as of today:

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As you can see above, the gorgeous Karastan Leighland broadloom in the Graphite Cluster colourway is now installed thanks to my friends at Alexanian. I can’t recommend them highly enough. The installation was truly effortless, and as anticipated, the addition of this beautiful 100% New Zealand wool broadloom has totally transformed the space.


This month is actually National Karastan Month! Through to November 8th you can get any Karastan broadloom or luxury carpet for your home at the lowest prices of the season with no interest until January 2018. They even have a $1000 cash back coupon just for you my special readers!

As if that wasn’t enough, Karastan is also hosting a sweepstakes on now through November 3rd. You could win an 8×10 area rug and up to $1000 off a SmartStrand silk carpet. Here’s where you can enter. If it were me, I’d be getting all over that in a hot minute! Crossing my fingers and toesies one of you wins. x


Without a doubt, the addition of the broadloom has made the space instantly warm, sophisticated and inviting, and with the addition of our classic Metrie French Curves Scene II 7 1/4″ baseboards it is really starting to feel polished.


I love this stage of a project, when we are past the messy middle and the layers of finishing details start to fall into place. The crisp warmth of the Farrow & Ball Wimborne White looks so sharp against the graphic pattern in the charcoal Leighland broadloom, don’t you think?

We’ve also put up the first of the paneling details, and to be totally honest I’m contemplating stopping here for a couple of reasons. One, this style of paneling is in keeping with what we’ve done in the rest of the house, and two, with the lower ceilings in this basement, busy may not be better.


Metrie’s Pretty Simple Scene II panel mould is my go-to for applied panel moulding, and it’s what we’ve used through our entire house, from the living room/dining room to the boys bedrooms. It is a timeless classic with enough dimension to be interesting while not being too over-scaled or overwhelming.

My initial plan was to work with a slightly smaller moulding on the inside of each of these lozenges to create a second “pane” of paneling, but as I said, we may stop here. The height of the cellar doors on either side of this panelled feature wall dictated the height of the panels. The tops of the doors with their French Curves Scene II casing installed stop a mere 2″ from the ceiling, so we repeated that with a 2″ gap from the baseboards to the base of the panels.

This is a departure from what we’ve done in the rest of the house with typically a 6″ margin on all sides, but again, low ceilings have forced our hand. We’ve left 4″ on the sides between the individual panels for more breathing room, and I think once it is painted in I’ll be happy leaving it here. I still love the Kelly Wearstler-inspired paneling style from my initial inspirational mood board, but I think it is better suited to a larger space. If I had done all tall and narrow panels we would have either ended up with four appropriately proportioned panels (which breaks my rule of odd numbers) OR we would have had five very narrow lozenges that would have looked way too busy.

I reserve the right to change my mind, but that’s where I’m at as of today. You’ll have to check back on Reveal Day to see where I finally land with it!


Upstairs our home is beginning to look like a bit of a design warehouse with all the goodies arriving. We just assembled these gorgeous brass and black marble floor lamps from Renwil today and I think they will be absolutely perfect downstairs. Their simple downlights will allow us to layer the lighting, which is super critical when creating a warm, approachable, sophisticated space.


I’m also beyond excited to see this gorgeous, award-winning image  entitled “Float” by Mandy Blake arrive. My friends at Posterjack printed it onto plexi and finished it with a super thin floating frame that stands an inch and a half off the wall, and it looks beautiful. I can’t wait to hang it in the space.

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“Float” will be the anchor piece over the sofa, and it totally reminds me of my childhood when I spent countless hours reveling in the weightless acrobatics that water afforded me.

Naturally this won’t be the only art in the space. I’ve decided to make the blank walls of the exercise room a bit of a leaning gallery with this massive piece from Minted as the foundation.

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I love the way Minted float framed the piece for me, and can’t wait to unpack it and get it into the space. Just a bit more painting of baseboards to do first! Then we can also add this graphic and dramatic Layers print from Jaime Derringer for Minted to the mix, framed by my lovely friends at Framed & Matted.

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And last but not least, probably my favourite piece in the space will be this ethereal, magical limited edition photograph Into Dreams I by the brilliantly talented Amy Friend via Citizen Atelier.


This emotionally-moving series was created when Amy, mourning the loss of her grandmother, photographed her scarves and other garments left behind as a means of creating a time capsule for the soul. The end result is breathtaking, and the delicate blush ground of this image will connect elegantly with the blush velvet cushion on the sofa, adding my favourite hue of green to the space in an effortless way. I’ll be framing both this piece and the Jaime Derringer piece in slightly over-scaled Framed & Matted frames with a lot of white space provided by the extra matting to give them more breathing room and quiet drama.


Other pending deliveries include the striking Cohen statement chair from Bernhardt.

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Upholstered in white hair-on-hide, this chair has the most elegant lines and refined presence without being overbearing, perfect for this smallish space. Hair-on-hide definitely falls into the camp of liveable luxury for me, as the texture is decadent while the natural qualities of the hide make it surprisingly durable. This is a timeless chair that could honestly work in any room of the house, and I’m thrilled to introduce it to our home.

Also on the pending deliveries list are a pair of Bernhardt Petrified Wood Side Tables.

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I adore the organic poetry of the petrified wood, and the approachable sophistication and casual elegance they contribute to the room’s design. They are also completely indestructible, making them perfect for a room where the boys will be hanging out a lot.


I’m also anxiously awaiting the arrival of two different hide rugs from my friends at AllModern. Unfortunately, the white hair-on-hide rug I had initially chosen was backordered until the end of November, so they are sending two alternatives for me to choose from. I love a layered space, and I’m excited to choose just the right piece to solidify this room’s effortlessly curated vibe.


Last but certainly not least, I’m practically giddy awaiting the arrival of the most exciting detail going into our exercise room. No, it is not a piece of exercise equipment (although we will have an amazing Pilates Reformer in there). It is actually something to use after you exercise (and after any number of other life activities). Friends, meet the LG Styler.


When I attended the summer media event put on by LG, the Styler was without a doubt the introduction that most knocked my socks off. Given that this revolutionary home appliance is a steam-based at-home dry cleaning system, that’s rather apropos.


By now I’m guessing most of you have read about the toxic dangers of dry cleaning chemicals. In fact, several years ago Environment Canada named dry cleaning chemicals the #1 environmentally toxic eco villain. When you consider that your skin is the largest organ in your body and one of the organs through which we absorb the most toxins into our system, what we put against our skin matters. A lot. Especially when we get warm and sweat and our pores open up even more to what we have on (hello dry-cleaned business suits and “starched” shirts!).

Until now, all of those “dry clean only” pieces in our wardrobes (which let’s face it, make up at least half of any professional’s closet) left us with a serious dilemma. Care for our clothes properly and expose ourselves to harmful toxins, or show up looking less than perfectly pressed with suits, silks and such that just never get properly cleaned.

That problem is a thing of the past thanks to LG‘s brilliant introduction of the Styler. This game-changing home appliance has 3 Main Settings:

1. REFRESH: release wrinkles without ironing. Refresh a suit that needs de-wrinkling and deodorizing. Use the pant crease function (see below) to get perfectly pressed pant legs. Use the “heavy” cycle for extra stanky pieces (think hot yoga wear or a suit you wore to a particularly nerve-wracking presentation). The Styler comes with a specialty hanger built into the door for the pant crease function as well as two other hangers that work with the steam and moving hanging action to literally “shake” that stank right out of your clothes.

(Sing that last line to the tune of “I’m gonna wash that man right outta my hair” and you’ll love it even more!)

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2. SANITIZE: This setting is the solution to every hockey mom’s nemesis. One hockey player reported that his wife let him bring his hockey equipment into their house for the first time in 40 years after sanitizing his equipment in the Styler. If it’s been nasty for some time you may need more than one cycle to get it perfectly clean, but the Styler has yet to meet sports equipment too stanky for its sanitizing superpowers. Other benefits of the Sanitize setting:

  • kills up to 99% of allergens and bacteria
  • great for throw pillows, down duvets, dog beds, sneakers and other household items that are typically hard to clean

3. GENTLE DRY: This setting is perfect for restoring a wool coat that gets wet. Think of using this setting for the delicate treatment of any garmet prone to shrinking such as wool and cashmere. You can also use the scent-delivery system with your own essential oils to, for example, infuse your pillow cases with lavender before bed.

Given the number of miraculous uses for this amazing appliance (and it’s extremely tidy dimensions), you can see why I now want to add one into several rooms in the house. Just a few locations on my dream house wish list include:

  1. The Laundry Room (natch)
  2. The Mud Room or main family closet to refresh outerwear regularly.
  3. The master walk-in to refresh those pieces of clothing that would otherwise hang on the back of the door (too smelly to go back in the closet, but not smelly enough to hit the wash yet).
  4. The Garage for all our kids’ sports equipment.

If I were designing a spa I would also specify this brilliant appliance for the reception area. What a decadent added luxury to have your coat steam-cleaned for you while you are getting pampered!

Gratefully we do not have to wait for our Dream House to have a Styler in our lives, and because it doesn’t require plumbing (all it needs is a regular electrical outlet!), it can truly be integrated anywhere. With our laundry room right off the media/exercise rooms, it will integrate perfectly with the form and function of this space, and I literally have a pile of dry-clean-only pieces eagerly awaiting its arrival.

As you know, I’m not the only one who’s made some serious progress this week. Be sure to check in with the other design daredevils along for this crazy One Room Challenge ride. There are some incredible spaces coming together and I cannot WAIT for Reveal Day in just a couple of weeks!

Jana Bek | Chris Loves Julia | Shannon Claire | Coco.Kelley | The Curated House

Driven by Decor | The English Room | From the Right Bank | Sherry Hart

Hi Sugarplum | House of Jade | Hunted Interior | The Makerista | Making it Lovely

Marcus Design | Pencil & Paper Co. | Megan Pflug | Place of My Taste | Suburban B’s

Waiting on Martha  Media Partner House Beautiful | TM by CIH


Until then, pop back this Friday for the post I meant to share on Monday before the aforementioned “neck business.” It’s totally Dream House drool-worthy and you won’t want to miss it!