101 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer

Happy Monday!  

It has been far too long since I have posted on the ol' blog and I thought this subject would be the best way to transition back into regular blogging.  If you didn't already know that hiring an Interior Designer was super valuable, I thought I would share 101 reasons why it is the best investment you can make towards your home.  Thank you to all of the designers who contributed to this list through Capella Kincheloe.

101 reasons to hire an interior designer


101 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer

  1. Save money
  2. Spend money - wisely.
  3. the WOW Factor
  4. So you don't have to do it yourself.
  5. To-the-trade-only
  6. Designers are not emotionally connected to your home to make the changes needed (like a doctor diagnosing and treating herself!)
  7. Great sources
  8. Knowledge
  9. Experience
  10. To style your bookshelves
  11. Fewer headaches
  12. Do you know what a gimp is?  A designer does.
  13. Turkish corners, butterfly corners, knife-edge, dressmakers, and so much more.
  14. They know how high/low to hang sconces.
  15. Designers come up with things you wouldn't have thought of.
  16. They know a shower head can be too high or too low.
  17. They know that sofa arm height is important to how you use your sofa
  18. For solutions you haven't considered.
  19. Designers speak the language of contractors, architects, and builders. 
  20. Confirmation you're headed in the right direction.
  21. Designers care about the end result as much, or sometimes even more than you do.
  22. To be the bad cop with contractors and vendors so you don't have to
  23. They worry about your project in the middle of the night so you don't have to. 
  24. Not only do they help you select the best light, they know where to hang it.
  25. Your project will get done and not let it languish.   
  26. No more piece by piece.
  27. Designers deliver a full room or house complete with accessories so you can sit back and enjoy.
  28. Designers wrangle contractors and vendors while you can focus on the rest of your life.
  29. To help manage and control your budget
  30. Designers can set realistic expectations of what is possible.
  31. Network and industry connections only available to the trade
  32. They have learned from past mistakes and can help avoid future ones. 
  33. They provide a guiding vision throughout the process
  34. Share creative solutions
  35. Designers create a plan for lighting, knowing how to keep everything the same temperature.
  36. Access to customization
  37. Working with a designer provides added protection and project insurance.
  38. You can get therapy and design for one price.  Just kidding, most designers aren't licensed therapists, but sometimes get treated as such.
  39. It’s almost impossible to have perspective on your home (too close to the trees to see the forest!!). 
  40. You are missing out on 90% of what’s out there buying retail.
  41. You don’t want your neighbors copying you.
  42. You want your neighbors to copy you. 
  43. You don't want to copy your neighbors (or Pinterest).
  44. So you don’t have to live with 20+ paint swatches all over the room. 
  45. To not waste money resolving bad design decisions.
  46. If you're spending money on the reno, spend the money to do it right the first time.  
  47. To keep track of all the orders.
  48. Save time. 
  49. Professional plan of action.
  50. Trained eyes will see things you're going to miss.
  51. Better resources and relationships.
  52. Designers think ahead, they know what is coming on the horizon and can prepare for it.
  53. They'll know if the coffee table is the right height and size in relation to the room and the rest of the furniture.
  54. Designers are skilled in the "mix": high/low, time periods, styles to keep your space interesting and cohesive. 
  55. You'll have somebody on your team.
  56. Increase the value of your home.
  57. Designers want to delight and dazzle you.
  58. They can push your boundaries (in a good way!) and help you think out of the box. 
  59. They can help incorporate historic details when appropriate.
  60. Designers can help you and your partner agree on a design style by being a neutral third party.  (See #38)
  61. International Building Codes
  62. A designer can maximize your space. 
  63. So you'll have a home you love to be in and show off to friends. 
  64. To maximize quality for your money.  
  65. They'll know how to set the priorities for the project.  
  66. Designers know what needs to get done first, second, and what can wait.
  67. They know where to find faux plants that don't look fake.
  68. Designers go beyond what is trendy and give good design.
  69. The records they keep help for insurance purposes - if you have a catastrophic event like a fire or natural disaster.
  70. Designers can help with LEED and green building methods.
  71. They can figure out where the light switches should go based on your preferences, not the builder's.
  72. Virtual Reality walk-thru, 3D renderings, and to-scale plans.
  73. White-glove installation - they can install a house from empty to lit candles & a set table.
  74. They know what materials are good for houses with kids & dogs.  
  75. Designers can help you find a place for everything and make it easy to keep it in place.
  76. To spend more time enjoying your home with your family.
  77. Somebody needs to decide on the grout type, color, and width.  
  78. Designers are problem solvers.
  79. Designers are project managers.
  80. Designers are creative.
  81. Designers are innovative.
  82. Designers are diplomats.
  83. They'll know how to keep all finishes the same or appropriately mix them.
  84. Do you know the standard measurement for lights above a dining table?
  85. Your faucet spouts will be neither too short or too long.
  86. You can avoid having your house featured on McMansion Hell.
  87. They don't sound sexy, but maybe you really do want groin vaults.
  88. Designers can turn unused space into your favorite spot in the house.
  89. Fluffing pillows so they look natural, but still orderly is harder than you think.
  90. You can have function AND form.
  91. The devil is in the details.
  92. The details are not the details.  They make the design.  (Thanks Charles Eames)
  93. Designers know how light, direction, and other colors affect paint and can account for that.
  94. They can make a perfect bed and know what makes a bed perfect.
  95. They can discuss the virtues of kiln-dried wood, hand-tied construction, and sofa fillings.
  96. Do you know that composite "leather" is not really leather?  Designers do.
  97. ADA Standards for Accessible Design
  98. Designers know how to utilize negative space.
  99. They can add color to your home without it taking over or being too colorful.  
  100. Designers know the right scale and when and how much they can push scale up or down.
  101. Because they're awesome.


Benefits of Minimalist Decorating

Over the past year or so, I have embraced a more minimalist lifestyle.  And this has definitely made its way into my decorating. Lets be clear here... Minimalism does not have to be an empty room with white walls. Minimalist decorating is the idea of quality over quantity.  Decorating your space with items that have meaning to you, rather than many items that simply fill the space.

A minimalist space does not need to feel cold and sparse...using texture and natural materials can give a minimalist room a cosy comfort.

Benefits of Minimalist Decorating:

Leaving empty spaces on the walls, in the corners of the room and on surfaces around your home naturally brings a sense of calm.  Visual clutter is stressful to the mind and soul.

Mimimalist decorating

Choosing to decorate with fewer furniture pieces and accessories covering every space in the house, makes it so much easier to keep a clean home.  Knick knacks and extra furniture pieces collect dust, which affects our health....and lets be honest, the thought of dusting and vacuuming around a room full of stuff can be overwhelming.

Minimalist decorating

Minimalist spaces often feel larger and more open because the focus is on the important design aspects of the room rather than overwhelming with clutter.  A simple artistic vase on a coffee table vs stacks of books, magazines and trinkets speaks to the design of the overall space.  Less stuff makes a space more inviting.

Joseph Dirand Architecture - Montaigne

Minimalist decorating often enhances the functionality of a space with the added benefit of a calming and decluttered haven.  Have you thought about minimizing your decorating?

Love your home,

Monday Inspiration

Happy Monday!  Its nice to be back blogging....I took last week off to spend time with the kiddos on their first week of summer break.  So much inspiration this week....

Would love to start and end my day at this dining space....

9,362 Likes, 34 Comments - Homepolish (@homepolish) on Instagram: “When the space drops the mic for you. #dammnnnnnhunny // Design by @jaejoo_ of #HomepolishNYC for…”

This kitchen is absolutely stunning...love the wall of stone with the simple modern black cabinets.

Kitchen - Huntershill House in Sydney Australia by Handelsmann and Khaw

The addition of velvet ochre pillows in this neutral bedroom is perfection...adds a touch of warmth.

I like how the grey on the floor was mirrored on the ceiling in this modern bathroom.

Honingraat tegels

Remember, inspiration is everywhere!

Love your home,

Decorating tips for the Ultimate Bedroom Retreat

For most of us, our bedroom becomes our retreat at the end of a long day.  So, with this in mind, we want the space to be calming and uncluttered.  I suggest to "under decorate".....meaning, don't make the space too busy.  "Less is more" in your bedroom sanctuary.

As always, before I decorate a space, I purge.  Start with a clean slate.  Your bedroom should not be a dumping ground for old clothes waiting to go to goodwill or stacks of bills or loads of unfolded laundry.  Make your bedroom a clutter-free zone.

Elliot Brass Button Headboard

Choose a paint colour that is calming and not too dramatic.  I like to stick to light neutral colours. Let the bedding and accessories do the heavy lifting!

It's no surprise blue is one of the most popular bedroom colours, the hue is ultra calming and cooling (perfect for getting a good night's sleep).

Choose furniture pieces from different collections. For instance, the dresser/nightstands can be a different material than the bed frame, as in the photo below.  It adds layers to the design of the room.


Instead of bright, bold bedding and drapery, keep to neutrals with an added textural interest.  All white bedding doesn't have to be stark if it is layered with a wool blanket and faux fur pillows. Texture adds the cosy factor!


We are aiming for a santuary.....not a hotel room.  Make sure to add some personal touches.  A great way to accomplish this is with artwork.  Choose pieces that have meaning to you.  A particular painting or artist that you like.....or maybe a gallery wall of family photos.  This is where you can get a little creative.

pinterest // shannonleftwich #house #bedroom #diy

A bedroom retreat is the ultimate in luxury.....enjoy your personal get away.

love your home,

Monday Design Inspiration

Hello Monday!  So nice to see you again.  Join me as I share my favourite pins from the past week.....

This light fixture definitely makes a statement!  This understated colour palette speaks to me!

inspiration for repurposed version - I see upside-down ceramic pots and some kind of round glass balls in my future.

Love the detail on this wall...so simple but packs a huge design punch!


This mirror is perfection!  Love the storage detail for a small bathroom.

Statuario Matte. Maple Apartments. Melbourne, VIC / sliding mirror

The large scale floral blinds are amazing with the grey walls, marble tub surround and brass details.

Get inspired this summer with floral updates around your home. These gorgeous blinds will instantly update your bathroom, giving it a fresh, elegant look and feel. Find more inspiration at housebeautiful.co.uk

Remember....inspiration is everywhere!

love your home,

Monday | Pinterest Inspiration

Its Monday and I am ready for a brand new week!  Love getting my week started with some major design inspiration from Pinterest.  Here are a few of my favourites over the past week.

Love the art work in this room.....I think this would be a great DIY project.  The daybed is killer too!

gold velvet daybed

I am on the hunt for a screen in my backyard and I love the different width of boards on this one.

Ipe hardwood fence                                                                                                                                                     More

Think outside of the box when adding art on a large wall....Love this idea.

PLANETE DECO a homes world - Bienvenue sur mon blog qui regroupe les belles décos intérieures à travers le monde.

Wallpaper on the stair risers....Genius!

Have you come across anything that has inspired you this week?!  Would love to hear!

Friday Favourites....Outdoor decorating

Its Friday and the countdown is on till summer holidays!  We have had some wet weather this week which has delayed some of our outdoor yard work, but hopefully this weekend we will get a few things cleaned up.

You'll notice from my friday favourites that I have outdoor decorating on the brain....

I love these easy DIY garden projects using sticks and twigs....something you could could put together in an afternoon.

Looking for outdoor furniture and came across this sofa....perfect for a small area.

These hanging chairs, which my girls would love, are on sale!

Super simple log rack to make stacking wood much more organized.

Perfect outdoor coffee table.....

Outdoor Dining

Its May!! Time to start spending more time in the backyard now that the snow has finally melted.  I have been scouring the stores for weeks to find the perfect outdoor furniture/accessories.  I'm excited to show you everything once we get it all set up. In the meantime, I have gathered up a few combinations for outdoor dining furniture for you to use in your own backyard.

But first, a few tips when shopping for outdoor furniture:

1.  Pay close attention to the details.....some furniture is labelled "outdoor" but is best kept covered or away from inclement weather. Make sure it states specifics like temperature and UV protection.
2.  Make sure you cover your furniture when not in use...this will definitely increase the lifetime of your furniture.
3. Outdoor fabrics have come soooooo far in the past few years.  There are many more colours and fabrics to choose from and the prices are way more affordable than they once were. Get creative!

chair one  | table one | chair two | table two | chair three | table three | chair four | table four

Staging Your Home for Resale

We are coming up on the busiest time of  the year in the Real Estate business....Spring!  You may be thinking of listing your home in the next few weeks but are overwhelmed with the idea of getting it ready for show.

Why Stage your Home?

There are overwhelming statistics that confirm homes that are staged/styled sell faster and for a higher price.  Home Staging gives you a competitive edge in a market full of potential buyers. It makes it easier to visualize the property as their future home.....and a potential buyer is more willing to walk through a home viewed on-line that has already been staged.

Combination of black a marble. Luxe

What are the most important areas to stage?

The most important areas of the home to stage are the living room, kitchen, master bedroom and bathrooms.  These are the spaces that potential buyers look at most closely when deciding to purchase a home.

Hometalk :: Bathroom Ideas :: Gwynn Harlow's clipboard on Hometalk

What to concentrate on when staging your home.

The 5 most important steps towards staging your home are:

1. Purging and Depersonalizing... clear out all of the clutter from each room and take down any personal pictures and memorabilia.  Potential buyers want to imagine themselves living in the home.

2. Repaint the home in a neutral light colour palette.  You want to appeal to a wider group of people.

3. Deep clean and fix up small issues in the home, focusing on the kitchen and bathroom.

4. Organize and focus on your storage space....potential buyers are always looking for more storage.

5. Update flooring in the main areas if the existing flooring is in poor condition.

If you are feeling like you need a hand, CONTACT ME and we can set up a consultation to discuss areas you can concentrate on to get your home ready to sell.  I love helping people get the most for their homes.


Outdoor Planters

Its that time of year when we can start planning our outdoor landscaping!! In our neck of the woods, "planning" is the key word since we are still dealing with snow. Ugh!

I personally love the ease of planting flowers in pots around our backyard.  I have rounded up some of my favourite planters  from around the web.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Front Entry Makeover

Our front entry has had many different looks since we moved into this house 13 years ago.  Its latest design has brought much more light into a space that was once very dark and dismal.  We have painted the walls bright white, replaced the old 1970s metal bifold doors, changed the baseboards and trim and also replaced the front door with one that has a large window.  All of these small details have made such a huge impact!

This is what the entry way looked like when we first toured through the house in 2003.  Eeeek!  The wallpaper and flooring were quickly replaced.

I don't have a lot of pictures of the space immediately after the first big change, but for many years, this is what it looked like.  I LOVED this paint colour...Benjamin Moore Chelsea Gray.  But it did make the space still very dark.  We replaced the front door a few years ago, which definitely brightened the area.

Over the past few years, my personal decorating style has really changed.  I am drawn to more minimalist, bright spaces which are now reflected in our home.  I also love reusing old furniture pieces as you can see in this photo.....we cut the legs off the old IKEA sofa table (circa 1996 which was sanded and repainted).

I feel like I need to add something to this wall, but haven't quite decided what yet...

I also love these satin nickel knobs...they are really clean and simple.

We are so happy with how everything turned out.  On to the next space!


Green with Envy.

Happy St Patrick's Day!  I hope you all have your favourite green outfit on today!  Green can also look really great in your home.  You can simply add a few of your favourite house plants or you can take it up a notch and go for a beautiful green sofa!  Here a few stylish homes incorporating the colour green.....

Green velvet and dramatic art                                                                                                                                                                                 More:

Have fun celebrating tonight!


Decor Inspiration: Wallpaper Murals

If you are looking for something bold on your walls....such as a full wall art installation....look no further than wallpaper murals.  They are stunning and will steal the show in any room you choose to hang them.

Blossoms Mural: Anewall.com


Anewall.com  has the best selection of murals....and they are all self adhesive and can be respositioned. Along with the very first floral image I posted, here are some of my favourites....

Foggy Hills Wallpaper: Anewall.com

Nuage Mural: Anewall.com

Blooming Garland Mural: Anewall.com

Marble Mural: Anewall.com

Another place you can find great murals are Walls Republic and they will even make a mural out of pictures you find on Shutterstock.  Very cool!!

Off to find the perfect mural....


Small Bathroom Reno: Sinks

So glad its Friday....its been a great week, but we have had some really cold, snowy weather which I'm happy to say is leaving us this weekend!!

I am just starting the process of sourcing fixtures for a very small bathroom renovation we are undertaking this year.  We live in a small house which means small bathrooms.  So, I will have to get creative with the size of fixtures and also storage ideas.

Today I thought I would tackle bathroom sinks.  The bathroom is teeny tiny and will not have the room for a large storage vanity.  I am working with a maximum depth of 18" which probably means a wall mounted sink and faucet.  There is a possibility of restructuring the layout, but I am going to try to stick with these measurements for now.




little green notebook

Which do you prefer?  Do you have any experience renovating a tiny bathroom?

Have a great weekend,

Decorative Moulding

Adding moulding to your walls is one of the best ways to up the "luxe" factor of your home.  Custom trim on the walls, baseboards and crown moulding is a unique way to bring texture and style to any room.  Here are a few of my favourite rooms from around the web....

Studio McGee | Our Top Pinned Images this Week:

Ribbon No. 5 landed in such a chic place!  Thank you, @annavalentina, for sharing this photo of its cool new home. ❤️ #tphstudio #art #originalart #painting #angelachrusciakiblehm:




Formal Sitting Room - Studio McGee:

LUXURY DECOR |  Kelly Wearstler Furniture  | www.bocadolobo.com/ #luxuryfurniture #designfurniture:

Love It Or List It Vancouver: Lorraine & Geoff:

Staircase Detail - Gray Painted Stairs and Railing, Gray Wainscoting:

Kährs | Wood flooring | Parquet | Interior | Design | www.kahrs.com:

Lovelovelove this - panelled wainscottingl:

South Shore Decorating Blog: What I Love Wednesday:

What do you think?  Are you dreaming of rooms you can add some decorative moulding to?  I sure am!!!


Shopping for the home....in the Fashion Isle.

Sometimes the best place to shop for home decorating accessories is in your favourite clothing store. The last few years there have been a few large clothing chains that have opened their doors to another market...home decorating.


I like H&M's home section for small bathroom accessories and throw pillows. They have fun with their line and even have an area for the kiddos.

I love the European feel of Zara's clothing stores.  While we do not have Zara Home in any of the stores in Canada, we are still able to order online.  They have a lot of items to choose from, including furniture, lighting, hardware, bedding, tabletop and much much more.

Simons is a trendy clothing store based out of Quebec, Canada. They are massive and have something for everyone....all styles and budgets.  They even have a home section that boasts lots of stylish accessories.

Where do you find the most treasures when you're shopping?