What do you want to discover in Ottawa?

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Sarah Richardson in Ottawa

"Are you a Designer or a Fan?" asks a young woman sitting next to me. Later, I learn it is Paula McCooey, Home section journalist of the Ottawa Citizen. We quickly chat about home decor, our kids, and our love for Sarah Richardson, as we patiently wait for her arrival.

All of Ottawa's beautiful people were dressed to the nines, some in sky-high stilettos and most with a designer bag clutch to their sides.
Sparkling Perrier and a healthy assortment of delicious sushi were on the menu. Macaroons and mini desserts with coffee followed.

I had the privilege of attending a launch party hosted by Elite Draperies and Home Decorating (Ottawa) on Wednesday, April 9. "Kravet Collections" is a print and weave fabric line by Sarah Richardson, HGTV star from Sarah's House, Design Inc. and Sarah's Cottage. Her classic, timeless, abundant, clean, colourful and bright styles are what she is best known for.
Sarah's reputation includes repurposing, refinishing and recycling old furniture, which requires talent, a good eye and confidence! Not everybody is willing to be seen picking up an old chair off the side of the road. I've done it, but it takes courage.

The designer world has a reputation for its exclusivity, riches and vanity. This competitive industry is filled with amazingly creative talent and considered a luxury for most common folk. But after carefully taking in all of Richardson's advice and talking to a few guests, interior design seems more attainable and built for real living. I like that.

Richardson, powerful female entrepreneur with international panache, shared great advice with her guests.

When you create a room, Richardson suggests using the following formula: 1 part to 1 part ratio.
- feminine vs masculine
- new vs vintage
- calm vs fun
- beautiful vs practical

Richardson says she designs rooms for living. "There shouldn't be any 'off-limits' rooms for your kids. Your space should be youthful and make a statement." she says. “Use a monochromatic colour scheme for each room, but invest in big-ticket items that are neutral tones. This way you can change up the decor by one replacing the smaller coloured items” she advises.

Richardson suggests starting by drawing inspiration from creativity like art or fabric. “Use texture and layer different patterns” she says. Reinterpreting and repurposing are a huge part of Richardson's design.   
"It's not about where you get, it's about how you use it" she says.

A powerful female entrepreneur, Richardson suggests to use fashion as an indication to help describe and understand the client’s design taste.

Richardson highlighted the importance of building relationships with suppliers.
She admits to being a perfectionist, and expects everyone that she works with to give it their best. She also stressed the importance of being vested in your own work and to be responsible for all the details.

To close, Richardson shared one of her favourite quotes by Charles Eames "The details are not the details, they are the design."

We think that’s great advice for any “fan or designer” to follow.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Ottawa 2014 Garage Sales

Think of this as a gift from me to you!

I've decided to compile this years Ottawa Neighbourhood Garage Sales. Here we go:

- May 31 Riverside South Garage Sale
- May 24 Glebe Garage Sale
- June 7 Awesome Alta Vista Garage Sale
- September 6 Old Ottawa South Porch Sale

I found this website http://gsalr.ca/garage-sales-ottawa-on.html that compiles estate sales and garage sales. Don't forget to check Kijiji for a local listing too ;)

These Neighbourhood garage sales are not to be missed!
Please let me know in the comments below if you have any to add.