Browsing Tag



Current Love: Colored Lacquers on Wood Furniture

flat table peeled

Sharing similarities to the paint-dipped mini-trend, I noticed more wood furniture that exhibit strong color accents. I love it! It feels fun yet sophisticated. This makes these pieces easy to live with which means that you can justify the investment. I highlight some of my favorite pieces. I would welcome any of these in my interior.

For Your Dining Room

flat table
photo credits: Flat Table by Jo Nagasaka for Schemata Architecture Office

My ultimate favorite is the tables by Japanese designer Jo Nagasaka of Schemata Architecture Office. Which girl could resist that fluorescent pink epoxy finish? I can’t! Jo Nagasaka started to apply the epoxy coats to smooth and regulate the table tops of antique tables. I find that the effect is stunning. Continue Reading


Balcon and Bénitier by Inga Sempé Are Now Available in Ceramic

balcon and benetier by Inga Sempe

The Balcon collection that French designer Inga Sempé created for Moustache was originally made in beech wood. A white ceramic version of the shelf to screw and the tidy to screw are amongst the few new items that Inga Sempé will present at Maison & Objets Paris 2013. The Balcon series is great to deposit small everyday objects or to hang next to your bath.

top picture: White ceramic Bénétier (a tidy) and Balcon by Inga Sempé

balcon shelf and benetier (tidy)balcon collection in beech wood for moustache
Balcon collection in beech wood for Moustache

Her new Vapeur lamps with coloured patterns will be presented at the same time. Stop by Moustache booth, Hall 8 – Stand B23 to see them.



New Uses for Old Things: Wooden Boxes …and Tips for a Rustic Meal

storage made of wooden boxes

storage made of wooden boxes
Photo: Wooden Box Service Stations at Clyde Common via Remodelista

Each fall, I crave for cosy space and comfort food. There is a design lesson to take home from the service stations at Clyde Common, a Portland restaurant located at the Ace Hotel. You could replicate their design to organize your pantry, your linen closet, or to create storage in your craft room or your kids’ playroom.

Laid-Back Food Presentation

serving steaks on a wood cutting boards
all food photos by David Reamer for Clyde Common

After reading their story on Remodelista, I was curious to see how Clyde Common interprets the European style tavern. I wanted to see how it differs from what is happening here in Montreal. This led me to food presentation that you can steal for your next fall or winter dinner party.

family style at the table

Even though I am a stylish girl, I appreciate the laid-back feeling of food being served on cocottes, cast-iron pans and wooden cutting boards. When I host an everyday dinner party at home, I leave the fancy food presentation to the professional chefs and concentrate my energy on cooking delicious food. Through simple tricks, I add flair to my meal.

charcuterie tray
A crowd-pleaser: the charcuterie tray

Finally, a cute way to serve crudités with their vinaigrette. Even if people don’t eat it, they pleasantly decorate your table.

veggies in a mason jar

What is your favorite way to serve food in fall or winter?


Design for Kids: Puzzle Playhouse

modern playhouse puzzle kids wood

Any parent will tell you that toys, books and gear have a way of taking over the home, and that there’s a constant battle to find clutter-busting solutions.

Small and versatile, this puzzle playhouse by Modern Playhouse was created by industrial designer Svend Nielsen with design-savvy, eco-conscious parents in mind. Made from sustainably-sourced natural maple wood, the playhouse assembles (or disassembles) in less than 10 minutes without any tools, so you can set it up for the day and store it away when kids are on to something else.

modern playhouse puzzle kids wood

And since kids have a style their own, Modern Playhouse offers a couple of other models. Though they won’t disassemble quite as quickly as the Puzzle Playhouse, their Circle Playhouse was a finalist for design in the Play category at the 2011 Dwell Modern World awards.

modern playhouse circle wood kids

Though they’re built to last for generations, these well-designed playhouses aren’t for everyone’s budget. Modern Playhouse also offers accessories like playhouse furniture sets and sustainable felt storage options.

+ Puzzle Playhouse from Modern Playhouse, $650



Clever Bamboo Tray by Domestic Aesthetic

bamboo tray

bamboo tray

The topographic surface of this bamboo sushi tray delivers a structural space to hold the soy sauce, the wasabi and the ginger. It does not stop there. You can use the unusual surface to display jams and jellies on your cheese tray. You can also check what I said about other cool serving ware products by Brooklyn-based Domestic Aesthetic.

+ Domestic Aesthetic Bamboo Sushi Tray $45 USD at  Nimli


Eco-Friendly DIY Sandbox

diy covered sandbox oh dee oh

diy covered sandbox oh dee oh

If you have the space, a sandbox is wonderful backyard addition that can keep kids occupied for hours. It provides an instantly-accessible outdoor space for kids to build and create.

The builders of this DIY version – Carla and Jason of Small + Friendly – definitely thought outside the sandbox with the double-duty lid/deck design, and paid special attention to make it eco-friendly and safe for their son.

Not only is it built with salvaged wood, the hinged cover helps keep the sand free of environmental waste (like leaves and grass clippings). They also sealed the wood with low-VOC sealant so the mini deck is safe to play on.

What kid-friendly features would you like to add to your backyard?

+ Deluxe DIY Sandbox on Small + Friendly (via Oh Dee Doh)


New Uses for Old Things | Wooden Pallets

wood pallet coffee table reuse

wood pallet coffee table reuse

April may be the month when the urge to spring clean takes over, but it’s also the month when we seem to give the most thought to our environmental impact. While you’re in the midst of purging and re-organizing, don’t underestimate the power of re-purposing. Case in point: the lowly wooden shipping pallet.

They’re easy to overlook leaning against dumpsters and tossed in ditches, but wooden pallets also have built-in rustic charm with a nod to industrial functionality. With a bit of TLC, they can be transformed into fresh furniture pieces or smart storage. We rounded-up a few clever DIY examples. Don’t miss all the step-by-step instructions for these projects in the “Sourcing” section below!

Pallet-Turned-Coffee Table

A bit of sanding, four castors, a glass top and a coat of stain or paint turn these pallets into large coffee tables with built-in shelves for storing books, magazines and removes.

wood pallet reuse table lounge day bed

Pallet-Turned-Day Bed

Add a futon mattress or high-density foam topper to a painted pallet to create a day bed or lounge. Perfect in a finished basement or a teenager’s bedroom.


wood pallet wine rack plate shelf reuse

The basic construction of wooden pallets makes them prime storage solutions (especially for wine). On the left, they’re stacked and lined with deep rectangular baking sheets for bar storage. Mounted on the wall (right), the slats are perfect for displaying a collection of pretty plates.


wood pallet balcony garden

For apartment dwellers who want a balcony garden without tons of hanging baskets or heavy pots, line a pallet with landscape fabric to keep soil inside – then plan to your heart’s content.

+ DIY Coffee Table 1 from Noepa Hjertet /  DIY Coffee Table 2 from Fjasevashuseton, both on
+ DIY Day Bed from Siljesol on
+ DIY Wine Shelving from
+ DIY Plate Rack by Katrin Arens on Remodelista
+ Balcony Garden from Life on the Balcony


Christmastime Block Puzzle | Etsy finds

Christmastime Block Puzzle tree and owls

Christmastime Block Puzzle tree and owls

Last night, I had to refrain myself from buying these awesome Christmastime Block Puzzle by Tiny Giraffe for my baby to-be. The tree and owl theme goes well with the nursery bedding I bought this weekend. But since we will be in the middle of our renovations, there will be no Christmas decorations for us this year. My husband suggested that I wait until next year. Although it breaks my heart, I know that he is right.

Christmastime Block Puzzle :: christmas tree and rudoph

It’s something to put on your Holiday shopping list if you need a cute educational and inexpensive toy for toddlers. The 4 blocks will produce 6 bright, festive images. The set arrives inside a ready-to-give packaging. For $4 more, add a personalized drawstring bag to store the block puzzles.

Christmastime Block Puzzle :: bird by tiny giraffe

You may recall that I introduced two adorable block sets by Tiny Giraffe earlier. I still plan to order mine once the renovations are completed. Especially now that a reader, who received the two sets of Zoo blocs that she ordered, told me that the blocks are super cute.

+ Christmastime Block Puzzle by Tiny Giraffe $14 USD on Etsy


Awesome Environment-friendly Wood Cutting Boards by Gray Works Design

farm market cutting board by gray works design

farm market cutting board by gray works design

I cannot resist the beautiful rustic charm of reclaimed wood cutting boards. They make awesome serving trays or plates. They transform a simple soup and sandwich meal into a delightful affair.

Bistro Look

cafe cutting board :: bistro plate

Although serving food in wooden café plates is an expensive option, I feel that it is worth every penny. As long as they are roughly of the same size, they do not have to be identical. It’s definitively something to put on your Holidays wish list. It’s on mine!

The Most Practical Size

sunday sustainably harvested wood cutting board by gray works design

My favorite one, due to its versatility, has to be the Sunday Styles Cutting Board. A 22 inch long, this wooden board works perfectly as serving ware on a buffet table, to serve antipastos at your dinner table, as a cheese plate or to eat your breakfast on weekends.

Gray Works Design produces one-of-a-kind, handmade footed cutting boards, bistro plates and bowls in their small studio located in Woodstock, NY. The collection varies from small to extra-large formats, depending of the products. Made with locally and sustainably harvested or salvaged American hardwoods, the  are protected with natural, organic, food safe finishes. Gray Works Design’s products are all available on Etsy.

+ Rustic Cutting Board in Hand Planed Rock Maple by Gray Works Design $70 USD on Etsy
+ Cafe Cutting Board in Salvaged Cherry $56
+ Sunday Styles Cutting Board in Sustainably Harvested Walnut $95
+ via Fonetik

FOOD + DRINK FOOD presentation

Three Food Presentations in Wood Platters

wood party platters by jme and pork shoulder recipe by Chef Peter Hoffman of Savoy

wood party platters by jme and pork shoulder recipe by Chef Peter Hoffman of Savoy

It is probably the sense of comfort that emerges from the wooden tray platters that captures our senses. But whatever is the reason, I know that I have a hard time to resist to pictures like those. Take the party platter of the JME collection. Or how appetizing is the roast pork shoulder served with a garlicky cilantro sauce and grilled summer vegetables?  You can find this recipe by chef Peter Hoffman of NY restaurant Savoy on It was first published on page 113 of Saveur, June-July 2010 issue.

cheese and pate platter served on a wooden board :: as seen on simply photo

Jen of Simply Photo captured one of the most delightful cheese and pate platters. She photographed it when she ate at Cafe, the restaurant of the Terrain at Styer’s of Glen Mills, PA. You can buy online their artisan bark boards, in a small or a large format.

+ Party platter and bowl set by JME £20
+ Pork Shoulder with Summer Vegetables recipe – photo by Todd Coleman for Saveur
+ Large Ash Bark Cutting Board $32 at Terrain – photo by Simply Photo


CedarWorks Indoor and Outdoor Playsets

rhapsody beds and activity sets by cedarworks

Serendipity swing sets by cedarworks

Swing sets and play sets are a sure way to keep your kids and their friends playing for hours at home. The selection at CedarWorks is to die for. I would love to be a kid again. They have smaller sets but I’m showing you the awesome ones that you would get if money was no object.

The castle aesthetics of the Serendipity Series was the first to caught my attentions. Tons of components are available to stimulate imagination and keep your kids active all day. My favorite parts are the ladders, the rock walls, and the activity ladders. Accessories include a steering wheel, a bucket on a rope and a spyglass.

Indoor Play

But after careful review, I am more impressed by their indoor collection. Some items are available for indoor and outdoor usage.

rhapsody bunk bed with ladder, slide, chalkboard, tree by cedarworks

The Rhapsody bed sets with their choice of loft beds or bunk beds would be super cool for sleep overs and play dates. The bunk bed in the above set acts as a day bed.

rhapsody beds and activity sets by cedarworks

Before you splurge in a bunk bed with an activity center, see how your kids act at night around toys. Some kids may be too distracted by the toys to put that type of arrangement in their bedroom. On the other end, it may provide an extra bed in the playroom.

rhapsody bed

How Much it Costs?

No idea! I was only able to dig online that their sets are expensive. I can’t give you an idea because CedarWorks do not share their prices on their Web site or on their media information. CedarWorks expects that you call them to know how much it will cost. It feels so dépassé (outdated)!

+ Serendipity 1 by CedarWorks
Rhapsody Bed 2
+ Rhapsody Bed 4