Blend 2012 and Giving Thanks…

On this Thanksgiving weekend in Canada, I thought it would be appropriate to wrap up last weekend’s adventures by giving thanks to those who worked so hard to coordinate our Blend extravaganza, the annual Canadian Design & Lifestyle Bloggers West event that coincides with Vancouver’s annual IDSwest weekend.

Here’s to our network organizers…

Victoria Lambert, Edin’s House blog & co-creator/owner of the FAT Paint Company

Barbara Marek Matson, hodge:podge blog

Nancy Marcus, Marcus Design blog

Karla Amadatsu, Kerrisdale Design Inc. blog & Principal of Kerrisdale Design Inc... see Karla’s work on the cover of September’s Style at Home, and on p. 120-127.

Danielle Hardy, Urban Walls blog & Owner of Urban Walls Vinyl Decals

A huge and heartfelt THANK YOU! Without your hard work, dedication, and attention to detail, Blend 2012 would not have been the amazing event that it was. And thank you once again to our premier sponsor, IKEA Canada, who made the scope of this event possible!

This year the St. Regis Hotel was our host where we enjoyed a fabulous party atmosphere complete with tasty finger foods and beverages. Also returning this year to lend their support with generous prizes was Delta Faucets. Thank you all so much!

And do you recognize these familiar faces? That’s right. Tommy Smythe joined Suzanne Dimma and Mark Challen (Canadian House & Home), to spend some time socializing with us at our party. What an awesome surprise… Did you get to take in their presentations at IDSwest this year?

Don’t you just love Tommy’s smile?!

His wit is equally engaging 😉 Thank you, Barbara, for capturing this photo!

Our evening was topped off with swag bags filled with goodies galore. Here’s a little peek at what was inside…

All displayed here on the infamous desk painted in Para Paints ‘Sweet & Juicy’ orange (P5072-85)… relevant because Para Paints was the sponsor for the presentation stage at IDSwest this year!

And here’s a special shout out to all the businesses that contributed the swag!

1.  IKEA Canada…our amazing sponsor!


Blend 2012



5.  FAT Paint Company

  • Sample Pot of ‘Grey Gull’ FAT Paint, a new and exciting chalk paint co-created by Victoria Lambert of Edin’s House!

FAT Paint


Stimuli Magazine - on line


  • Hand Painted Colour Card for Annie Sloan Chalk Paint… these colour cards are awesome, because the colour sample is an actual dab of the paint!

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint - Hand Painted Colour Card


Michelle Morelan Design

So there you have it! The swag within the swag bags, and the businesses who helped make them happen!

I would also like to mention the amazing door prizes given away throughout the evening, gorgeous items such as paintings by the multi-talented Michelle Morelan (mentioned above), and Heather Ross (you can see a recent sample of Heather’s photography in October’s House & Home issue p. 68-74), decals by Urban Walls (mentioned above), artwork by Nancy Marcus of Marcus Design Inc., gift certificates from IKEA Canada, and many, many more. Thank you to each and every one of you for your contributions! You helped make this Blend an event to remember!

And I’m still remembering last year’s!

To end on a personal Thanksgiving note… this year Thanksgiving crept up on me, and kind of caught me by surprise. Can I just say, I was so not ready! Fall decorating? The leaves are just starting to turn colour! And the sun was shining all weekend. It was just so beautiful and warm… I still haven’t gotten any major fall decorating done! Eeek!!!

But here’s what I did manage for our table. Quick and easy, with a little nod to fall colour.

Gerber Daisies for Table Centrepiece

Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian friends! I hope you have had a really amazing weekend… and to my American friends, yours is just around the corner 🙂 Have you got any decorating done for fall? Any decorating tips you’d like to share?

Thanks for stopping by!

Photography by Sheila Zeller unless otherwise stated.


IDSwest 2012: A Final Tour Through the Show

Omer Arbel 28D Bocci Desk Lamps

Now that the buzz has died down a bit, I thought I’d do a photo tour through the show with you! And seriously, this is just a snippet of IDSwest this year. But you know how it goes. It’s hard to see and do everything! Even so, this post is photo heavy, so you might want to grab a coffee, and settle in for a bit!

Up first are the whimsical Chickadee bird houses designed by Trevor Coghill and Nathan Lee of Contexture Design.

Chickadee Bird Houses

This exhibit features the prototypes designed for the Chickadee! If you’re loving them, the Chickadee bird houses are slated to be launched in time for Christmas.

This next exhibit was created by Hatch Interior Design out of Kelowna. This design firm specializes in sustainable interior solutions for the modern work place.

Hatch Interior Design Exhibit

5 interior designers were invited to create 4’x4′ spaces for IDSwest, and this is the space created by Hatch! I’m thinking all you need is a laptop, and you’re good to go, but I’m not so sure about the ergonomics of that stump 😉

In the background you see the sign for MOES Home Collection.

Want a closer look?

MOES Home Collection Exhibit

MOES is a family owned and award winning home decor retailer. They have been in business for over 20 years, travel the world for fashion forward furnishings, and they source new pieces every week.

And we also had IZM modern furniture featuring their high quality handcrafted pieces.

IZM Modern Furniture

IZM furniture is built to last, to age gracefully, and to stand the test of time.

Back again this year was Salari Fine Carpet Collections with their always popular Salsa Lounge poufs by Paulig.

Knitted Poufs

Don’t you just love their texture and colour? And you have to admit, they bring in a little cozy, too! Salari also launched a new collection of hand-knotted carpets that were inspired by photography. Totally stunning, but sadly I didn’t manage to get any photos of these beauties 🙁

And speaking of cozy, how about this Trapper Chair by Identity Apparel’s Home Division?

Vintage Hudson's Bay Point Blanket Trapper Chair by Identity Apparel Home Divison

Identity is a brand stemming from the ideals of what it means to be Canadian.  And this one-of-a-kind chair is made from a vintage Hudson’s Bay Company point blanket. Now how Canadian is that?

The glow of light you see hanging in the background of Identity’s exhibit is actually this!

Identity Apparel - Antler Light Fixture

Antlers. Are they in, or out? Either way, I thought this was a pretty cool feature that totally suited the theme.

And then there’s Montauk Sofa.

Montauk Sofa

Seriously. What’s not to love? I wish I captured the whole grasshopper lounge chair in this photo, but it was super hard take a photo of this exhibit without people walking in front. This was a veeery popular stop!

Here’s a close-up of the walls (and the ceiling)!

Montauk Sofa Exhibit

Did I mention how much I love the Grasshopper Chair? See, there it is again, bottom left!

If you saw my last post featuring Matthieu LeBlanc’s reclaimed wood creations, then you know how much I love his approach to design.

So when I saw these pieces by mth woodworks

mth woodworks - organic resin in hollowed out stumps

I was totally blown away to learn these salvaged pieces have been filled with organic resin! Isn’t this the coolest eco-friendly idea yet? And if these pieces from mth’s Bloom Collection aren’t enough, what do you think of this coffee table, also from their Bloom Collection?

mth woodworks - Bloom Coffee Table

I am totally loving the juxtaposition of this modern top and salvaged wood base.

ox + monkey. This gorgeous ceramic sculpture is one of theirs.

ox + monkey - ceramic sculpture in acrylic case

Yes, you read that right. This sculpture is ceramic, made to look like torn paper! Can you imagine the work involved? This piece was actually in a clear shadowbox, and I can see why!

I loved this colourful exhibit by Beyond Beige Interior Design. I just thought it was so much fun, and really demonstrated a great mix of pattern and colour.

Beige is Dead Exhibit

And even though I’m not a huge fan of yellow, I thought this light fixture made a perfect statement in this space! If you want to see your space infused with character, there’s no doubt, Beyond Beige can make that happen!

Lighting is always a big draw, and these pendants were no exception. They marked the Robinson Lighting & Bath Centre exhibit, and when I saw them I just had to get a photo.

Duravit - Robinson Lighting & Bath Centre

Don’t ask me what that green horseshoe is on the glass shade! I think it’s just the way my lens caught the light!

But for lighting the real show stoppers were definitely Omer Arbel’s Bocci 28D desk lamps.

Omer Arbel 28D Bocci Desk Lamps

Do you think the fact they lit up the bar, facilitated the ‘stopper’ part? 😉 Well, okay, it might have been the price, too. These lamps were being sold at an incredible price, for the show only, and were available in both yellow and gray.

One of the exhibits that caught my attention was Global Surface Solutions. Concrete fabricators out of Kelowna, they specialize in crafting unique concrete surfaces and products suitable for both interiors and exteriors.

Like this fully sealed concrete desk.

Global Surface Solutions - Kelowna

Looove this desk!

And all that you see here including the wall!

Global Surface Solutions - Kelowna

My friend and thrifting buddy, Carol from Carol Smyth Colour & Design was on the inside track with this exhibit! She consulted with this company to help them plan their booth. Check out Carol’s blog article for close-ups of the gorgeous vignettes she planned for them, and for a little more behind-the-scenes scoop!

Also working with concrete, was Sticks & Stones Furniture.

Sticks & Stones Exhibit

Sticks & Stones specialize in custom built furniture that features the contemporary beauty of wood and concrete. They work with recycled or reclaimed wood and materials to create one-of-a-kind furniture designs that are both modern, and functional.

I know the Aya Kitchen designed by Kelly Deck Design has swept the internet, but I couldn’t imagine leaving this star out of the mix!

Aya Kitchen Design by Kelly Deck Design

I interviewed Kelly Deck at IDSwest last year, and if you missed it, you can catch up on the interview here. You will see reflected in this kitchen, the intelligent, timeless design Kelly speaks of!

Would you love to call this kitchen your own?

I know I’d sure love to call the Brent Comber table my own!

Kelly Deck Design - Reclaimed Stump Side Table

Did you notice the gold detail in the crevices?

What I really appreciate about the Aya kitchen is the collaborative effort that went into its conception, and which ultimately resulted in its standing ovation success!

And as we exit this photo tour, I wanted to leave you with a little more of…

Brent Comber Exhibit

A creator of sculpted and functional objects, design environments, and a specialist in designing modern urban forms from ancient sources.

Brent Comber Exhibit

Brent Comber Exhibit

Brent Comber Exhibit

Isn’t Brent’s work incredible?

I hope you enjoyed the show as much as I did.

{UPDATE: The Marilyn Denis Show did a great recap of IDSwest}

{Click here to view}

I’d like to extend a special thank you to Jason & Leonie for once again providing our dlbWEST group with press passes, bubbly and the opening night tour! Definitely a great way to get the show started!

Thank you for stopping by!

Photography by Sheila Zeller