July 28, 2014:

Neutral But Not Boring…

Neutrals are a tricky business yet so many people opt for them or in my personal belief, cop out with them. I see so many HORRIBLY DECORATED spaces with neutrals because people were clearly commitment phobic when it comes to colour that they played way too safe. I feel the same way about decorating with all leather furniture. ::shudder:: Interestingly enough, the spaces people comment about the most that we've designed, tend to be the neutral ones though our Kingswood project still beats these out and it's pretty colourful but that's a post for another day.

I really do enjoy tonal colour schemes. My preference when it comes to working with neutrals as you may be aware, is navy or indigo. I just find it that much more dynamic. I like to think that we've made mauve and heather gray into colourful neutrals as well. I find that they are easier to add bursts of colour to should you want to go that way than warmer neutrals such as beige and taupe.

For our #Hurndale project, we opted to create drama with Navy as a neutral in both the dining room and the den. The dining room is a navy grasscloth and the den is a high gloss lacquer on the millwork. We've repeated the indigos/blues in the living room in velvet klismos chairs and a bergere (not a fauteil - if the arms are open it is not a bergere it's a fauteil!) but used a greige for walls and sofa and area rug. So it made perfect sense to repeat the greige up into the master instead of the navy which we're confident has done to the perfect amount in the house. The challenges with the bedroom are a mixed bag. There's a tiny north facing window in the corner which is great for sleeping but had broken blinds that let the light in at the crack of dawn. So we needed to switch this to drapery panels with black out to give the optimal room darkening the clients required. However, during the day, the room feels overly dark and heavy so we decided to employ the same trick that we used in the den. Instead of putting a light colour on the walls, we opted for a mid-tone greige in a grasscloth wallpaper so it has luster and shimmer and great texture to it. We then repeated variations on the greige but subtle changes of texture/sheen vs high contrast. By reducing the contrast in the space, we effectively made it feel bigger and ironically brighter.

The bed is a fabulous contrast in linen to the grasscloth. Both very masculine which suits our clients. We added nailheads to the bed to add a bit of sparkle which is needed given the two textures on the bed and the walls. We repeated the polished nickel finish on the lamps and on the bedside table hardware and we rounded it out on the bench at the end of the bed which also got a little nailhead love.  The bench is a fabulous woven diamond fabric in brown and cream which feels a bit tribal and adds another layer of texture - especially given the duvet cover which has a silky sheen to it. Our artwork starts to head into shades of periwinkle which I think is a great addition to the space and we are commissioning an art piece for the foot of the bed that will play up this periwinkle and heather grey vs the browns/greiges. 

Fortunately, their home in Palm Springs will be the complete opposite and rightly so. Smart and tailored in Toronto and Sassy and Fun in Palm Springs - the best of both worlds!

We've got some darker velvet bolsters to arrive and a silver leaf starburst convex mirror to go over the bed. I am a big fan of adding a convex mirror over a bed. For one, it serves as an evil eye and repels bad spirits if you believe in that sort of feng shui approach - despite having something over your bad being as less than ideal. Feng Shui is a paradox at times. It needs it and it will be gotten. I think some sheepskin rugs on either side of the bed too so you have something soft hitting your feet in the morn is also in order. Restful & sophisticated. Check and check.