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The No-Rules Approach
to Interior Design
by Christiane Lemieux 



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Entries from July 1, 2011 - July 31, 2011


Going Industrial

I'm a firm believer that old things should have a second lease on life. That's also the design philosophy of the owners of this 1922 brick house in Copenhagen. For them, things should not pretend to be more than what they are. The most important thing is that they have a real value especially when they're original, old and have the possibility of being used in other ways than originally intended. It's clear the decor of the house is marked by their love of old things. Most of the materials and furniture used are repurposed, like the kitchen tiles which they took from a hotel demolition. They also gave new life to a large cabinet they got from a hospital and now sits tall in their living. Even the curtains are made of old tablecloths and their canopy bed in the master bedroom is made with water pipes. That's what I call industrial chic.

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Slumber Party

What do these adorable poufs remind you of? To me they look like cute little snails crawling through the floor. Right? They're designed by Dutch artist Aleksandra Gaca for Casalis. The comfy Slumber Pouf is made in a three-dimensional elastic fabric and it's highly flexible. It conforms to your body when you sit on it and spring to its original shape when you get up. These durable cuties are made with high-quality Kid Mohair, and best of all, they're washable. What a fun way of lounging while adding a great touch to a room.

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Summer Trends

• Written by UK based guest blogger Daniel Nelson, design writer for

Trends forecasting is a terribly difficult game to play, especially when new products can arrive and steal the show mid-season — all it takes is a well placed Missoni print and the direction can change. Over the past three months we have seen users in the US steer from their usual hiding place creating 'feminine' and 'classic' interiors and moving over to creating modern, contemporary living spaces. So, what does this say about the changes to interior design for 2011?  Who can say? But we do know that as we're well emerged into Summer, our minds head towards clearing space and creating lighter, airier spaces that make us feel calm and peaceful.

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Clock Wise

Here's to a passionate duo of woodworking and design professionals who work from home to create these one-of-a-kind time pieces. Everything started with one small and unforgettable clock, but as they became inundated with requests to make more, they decided to start their little Toronto-based enterprise known as Clockeee. Made of durable birch plywood with water-based lacquer stain, they have created four different collections: Industrial, Summer, Zen and the most recent, Life. Clokeees are fully customizable to your needs and made with the environment in mind. Neato!

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One With The Environment

Three thousand miles is quite the distance to travel to get to your summer house. But for the owners of this dreamy Nova Scotia cottage it's certainly worth it. Their inspiration for the 2,400-square-feet shingled cottage came from local barns with a nod to the spare Scandinavian aesthetic and obviously the outdoors. Eliot and Alexandra Angles, both interior designers from Los Angeles, based their color palette on the land and sky with ten different shades of blue, gray and green. I'm in awe of their delightful mix of furniture styles, with pieces coming from Europe, vintage shops from the region and even a neat end table Elliot made for their bedroom out of driftwood found on the beach. It really doesn't take much to see how seamlessly the interiors of this house blend in with its beautiful surroundings. I take my hat off to the Angles for creating such a peaceful and magical getaway. Applause please!

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A Wall is Born

In my line of work, I'm constantly exposed to new and interesting materials and finishes for the home. There are so many out there it's hard to keep track. One that I've been using in some of my projects with excellent results, and have fallen madly in love with, is this modern embossed three-dimensional wall covering by Inhabit. They're lightweight wall tiles that work together through an automatic pattern repeat to create large-scale dimensional walls of any size and shape. I find it to be a great solution to dress up any dull wall in a home. They automatically, and without much effort, add some character and spark to the room. For the longest time, I've been dying to bring this project home and use it on a brick wall which I've wanted to revamp for a while. It was hard to choose from all the patterns they offer, but since I wanted to somehow maintain the feeling of brick, I chose the Seesaw pattern. So I rolled up my sleeves, and with the help of my best friend Luis, we embarked on the perfect weekend project. The result: a slicker and modern brick wall. What do you think? To me, it's the best example of decorating to your heart's content. You can see how it turned out after the jump. 

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Neo-rustic chic

Maintaining the charm of a countryside vacation was the motor that drove the renovation of this delicious villa in Palmela, Portugal (near Lisbon), under the talented hand of interior designer and owner of Poeira, Monica Penaguião. She combined the agricultural origins of the house with relaxed sophistication and striking simplicity. Her use of color and textures is masterful, using soft white as a canvas. Monica is a designer after my own heart who pays exquisite attention to details. Probably the smallest room in the house, the bathroom, is one of the most surprising spaces in this neo-rustic chic home. The unexpected use of elements, like the velvet chair and colored toilet paper rolls, is quite dashing. I don't know about you, but I can see myself lounging by the pool of this precious Portuguese cottage.

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Pink Swan

“The Swan chair is a perfect mix of organic modernism and pop art and my goal in this design was to address both of those qualities by making a poppy allusion to the female form,” says Jonathan Adler of the inspiration for his Pink Swan project chair. SUITE New York has invited nineteen world-renowned designers to create a personalized version of Arne Jacobsen's iconic Swan chair for the second installment of the project. The chairs will be auctioned off on October 1-31, 2011 on with proceeds benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. What a fun project for such a great cause. Here are some of my faves.

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