West Coast Style – What does that mean exactly?

This phrase is used a great deal here on Vancouver Island. What exactly does it mean? Well, for each of us it may mean something slightly different.  It can be our design style or our food choices and the way we live our daily lives.  As an interior designer, we hear this term a fair bit when our clients are looking for a certain style that characterizes where we live.  

For us it means natural colours, lots of light and the use of wood, stone, glass and natural fibres in the products we choose. This does not have to be rustic by any means.  The finishes and colours we select have a very timeless and classic feel in the way they are interpreted.

Here is an example of what we are currently working on.  It displays the natural colour palette that is both warm and organic, yet the materials and the way they are interpreted offer an elegant and polished design style.

West coast photo #1West coast Photo #2

We hope you enjoy finding your west coast style and what that means to you.


7 Most Common Preconceived Ideas About Interior Designers

I just wanted to debunk some general misconceptions there are about interior designers. With all the TV programs out there about interior designers, people seem to have these misguided ideas about us.

#1 I can’t afford an interior designer.  This is not true.  Interior designers are here to work within your budget.  They can work on small scale and large projects.  The media and magazines just tend to show the most expensive and elaborate jobs.  This makes the public feel that designers are only for the rich!  We are here to make all spaces beautiful and most projects have a fixed budget and we must work within it.

#2 People think that designers won’t be able to find their style.  They feel that designers are there to push their own ideas and go big.  We are here to help you find your style.  Your home is personal and it should reflect your taste.  An interior designer is there to help you find your style and make it a reality.  We are there to create a unique space that you will love.

#3. Interior Designers just pick paint colours.  There is this idea it’s all fluffy and girly stuff, just to make things look pretty.  This is hardly the case at all.  An interior designer is a trained professional who is knowledgeable, about building and safety codes.  They must be able to read blueprints and drawings, from both architects and builders.  They are well versed in building codes and regulations.  They are trained to design safe, functional and beautiful spaces.  Colours are just the icing on the cake.

#4. Interior designers are snobby and unapproachable.  Not true at all, we are regular folk just like you, who take pride in our work and enjoy working with people or we wouldn’t have entered this profession.  Unfortunately, reality shows like to portray designers that are over-the-top and dramatic, but they do this because it brings in good ratings.  It certainly doesn’t help with the overall perception of an interior designer.

#5. An interior designer has a perfect and immaculate home! Ha! Some designers may have this, other don’t.  They have busy lives…


Organizing the Kitchen

‘You should love and use everything in your home and live within your “space means”, like you live within your financial means’ – Stacey Platt, professional organizer

The kitchen is often referred to as the heart of the home, where everyone comes together to enjoy a meal and engage in lively discussion. Often times this space can be underutilized and cluttered. Here are some of our favorite ways to organize the kitchen to create a more functional space for the whole family.
Kitchen Organization Blog#1
1. Cleaning Supply Closet
The start to a clean and organized kitchen/ house is a designated place for cleaning supplies – even better when it is hidden and unexpected! Having a centrally located place for these items allows easy access incase of spills while utilizing a previously unused gable end.
2. The Hidden Butler’s Pantry
Who doesn’t like a secret room? We love this hidden butler’s pantry! Everything has a proper place and is not taking up valuable space for immediate items in the kitchen cupboards.
3. The Spice Drawer
The spice drawer has been around for years, but just recently it has become more of a staple in everyone’s kitchen. This is just one of many ways for your inner chef to organize all your spices in one neat and convenient place right by your stove. Having all your bottles labeled and close by is great for adding those last minute pinches of spice to any meal.
4. Tray Storage
Ever wonder what to do with all your awkward sized tins and trays?! We love this above- the-oven tray storage with removable dividers to accommodate any shape and size.
5. Garbage/ Recycling Centre
Whether you are lucky enough to have weekly curbside service, or you have to transport your recyclables to a local drop off centre, theirs is the necessary first step of storing and organizing. Here is one of many customized solutions which tucks neatly under the counter in a concealed drawer.
6. Tablet/ Recipe Book Holder
Ever wonder where to put your cook book or iPad while looking at a recipe? Why not have a stand mounted under the upper cabinet…