PHOTOS BY STEVE SMITH, VISIONFIRE STUDIOS
spring, noun: a time or season of growth or development
speci?cally: the season between winter and summer
adjectives: airy. alive. anew. awakening. bright. changing. cheerful. clean. colourful.
energized. ?ourishing. fragrant. fresh. happy. inspiring. light. lively. newborn. peaceful. picture perfect. pretty. pure. refreshing. rejuvenating. relaxing. renewing. sunlit. sunny. sweet. unpredictable. vibrant. warming.
– Merriam-Webster Dictionary
The requested design brief for this laundry room could be summed up in a single word – spring.
For the past 35 years, this space has sat draughty and un?nished. The homeowners requested a transformation that would warm their home with a clean and bright vibe in a basement location – to inspire and make their day-to-day living better – all while properly re?ecting their energetic, sunny personalities.
I’ll take you along on the key steps that led to this transformation.
newborn: re-evaluate function.
When you’ve lived in a home or space for any length of time it can be extremely dif?cult to see it for anything more than it is. Gain a new perspective through an open chat with a trusted friend or hire a professional.
This prime real estate in a 1,300-square-foot home was offering excellent storage for forgotten, unused items while the homeowner did laundry nearby in the mechanical room, and hung any delicates to dry on old ?shing rope. We re-evaluated what truly was needed out of this space by developing a ?oor plan that prioritized those functions: ?nished laundry room, secondary sink, maximized closed storage for organization, and a multifunctional surface for folding, gift wrapping, scrapbooking, and crafting.
inspiring: dare to be inspired.
Equipped with a plan, the gumption to dream of a space that is equivalent in function and beauty can be overlooked especially in a hard-working area like the laundry room. But these spaces are where we spend the bulk of our time and should be as intentionally designed as the main zones.
There are endless sources for inspiration that can fuel a design for any space – Hello, At Home on the North Shore over here. But I always like to encourage you to also look within your own home at items or pallet inspirations that you know and love.
Colourful: peaceful pallet.
Colour should be a fun selection that makes you feel something. A pallet that speaks to your awakening won’t always be the same for everyone and that is the joy found in curating a space for your enjoyment.
This basement laundry needed to strike a delicate balance of bright yet peaceful, clean yet ?ourishing, to best suit its occupants. For you, it may be a jewel box of deep rich tones, a crisp white monochromatic scheme, or a distinct style like the trending Cottagecore.
Unpredictable: don’t play it safe.
There is something to be said for a picture-perfect room, no question. But the experience of living within spaces that don’t play perfectly by the rules, and add a hint of unexpected whimsy – even if only in a detail – can bring the sincerest joy. Try it and you’ll see.
Mixing the bold wallpaper with a plaid runner was a stretch for this homeowner. While the small gold frames holding cherished memories is an unexpected detail.
Rejuvenating: that’s the review.
Living with a well-designed space rooted in capturing the heart of you will have a greater impact than you could begin to imagine. I swear it. Rejuvenating your spirit, your home, and your perspective to see the potential beyond any current state.
Spring has sprung a renewed hope for those troublesome and neglected rooms. Hop to it!
Design trends of 2021 are embracing the nostalgia and need for comfort often found in casual cottage and country styles by infusing them in our modern homes – incorporating unique vintage ?nds, and a mix-and-match of textures, pattern, and colour.
Get the Look:
Mix Up New with Old: I always recommend incorporating vintage ?nds or precious family momentos to create a curated aesthetic. A favourite detail in this room is the vintage wall-mounted clothes drying rack.
Mix Up Custom with Ready-Made/Off-the-shelf: Blend high-low elements to create a unique high impact look. The painted custom cabinetry was a slight splurge to maximize functionality and bring high impact style to the space while the IKEA PAX unit helped balance the project design and budget.
Mix Up Neutrals with Pops of Colour: Have fun with colour and make selections that speak to you for the space you are designing. We went with a blend of muted tones on the walls, panelling, and cabinetry while incorporating pops of personality in the wallpaper and mix of metal ?nishes.
Mix Up Patterns, Textures, and Metal Finishes: Think in layers, like you did when dressing to leave the house this past winter. Incorporating wall panelling designs, wallpapers, textiles, accessories and metal ?nishes are only a few ways to elevate any space.
And while you are at it, Mix Up Room Functions: Think multi-functional to maximize your square footage. A room doesn’t have to have a single, sole purpose when clever space planning allows. We blended harmonious functions in one – laundry, sewing, craft supplies, and a wrapping station are a natural ?t.
What Allison is loving right now?
Colour! It is inspiring and a welcome change to see such a range of colour, shades, and tones being selected for millwork, walls, and fabrics this season.