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Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015

Let Fall Engage All of Your Senses

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The days are getting shorter and crisper and the leaves are starting to change color. When we think of fall, we think of our how intensely our senses are engaged. The crunch of leaves under our feet, the aroma of hot cider, the nip in the air, the roar cheers erupting from the stadium down the road. Here are some of our favorite ways to engage our senses during this wonderful season.

We love to hear the crackle of an outdoor fire pit  while we enjoy its toasty warmth.



We want to inhale the Hygge in through our nostrils. Do you know about Hygge? In a nutshell, it’s Scandi-speak for cozy warm and welcoming. Feelings these candles have distilled into a scent. 9335__dp

We want to see the lovely reflections of candlelight. Our least favorite thing about fall is that our days get shorter and evening falls sooner. So we make the most of it by enjoying romantic candlelight. Sempli_INCBP_filled2.jpg

We want to taste ingredients we’ve infused into our hot toddies. It’s a great time of year for cinnamon, cherries and dare we say, pumpkin spice.


We want to feel the cozy warmth of alpaca wool when we’re snuggled up under a throw.

What’s your favorite thing about fall? Please let us know by leaving a comment.




Monday, September 7th, 2015

5 Tips for Using Reclaimed Wood in Your Home

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Taken from old barns and other buildings, and even on site in some construction projects, reclaimed wood lends a rustic and warm cabin-like feel to any space around the home. One of the biggest benefits of “harvesting” wood from old structures is that you can often find lumber that’s no longer available, such as old-growth denser species and species like chestnut that no longer grow tall and mighty due to the blight. Here are some tips for using reclaimed wood in your home.


Keep bedding simple to put the focus on the reclaimed wood. This bedroom strikes just the right balance between modern and rustic, with its concrete floor, clean lines and weathered wood. (Room by Briggs Edward Solomon)

wood bedroom wall

Don’t be afraid to add color to a room with a wood accent wall. Chartreuse adds a great dash of color in this contemporary rustic bedroom. And we love the faux trophies — they add an playful touch. (wood and photo via Stikwood)

Toilet Room Makeover wm

Consider reclaimed wood in the bathroom. Annie from the blog Annie’s Blessed Nest did a lovely job on her powder room reclaimed wood accent wall.  And she’s been generous enough to share how you can do it to.



Look to smaller items that integrate reclaimed wood. Some products can add just the right dose of rustic reclaimed wood to your home. When curating our offerings, we were drawn to this table lamp because we love the contrast between the 100% recovered wood fiber base and the crisp white linen lampshade.

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Clean white is a great backdrop for reclaimed wood. It lets the wood stand out and become a focal point, but doesn’t let the rough quality overpower the room. This is an especially good way to go in a kitchen where you want things to look, feel and be sanitary.

Have you tried using reclaimed wood at home? If you’ve got any tips to share, please let us know in the comments.




Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Fresh Arrivals at Design Public


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There is such a constant stream of fantastic new goods added to Design Public that sometimes it’s hard to keep up. Here are a few fresh new designs, hand picked by me, because, well, I want all of them for my own house, very badly. Whether your home office needs some more light, your kids’ toys (or yours) need corralling, you need somewhere comfy to rock your newborn or you want to amp up your dining table with some new pieces, there’s something for you These items are just the tip of the iceberg on my own wish list, be sure to check out all Fresh Arrivals when you have a few minutes. But for now, please enjoy this little teaser!


Clean up that clutter and stash it stylishly in Ferm Living’s Half Moon Basket.


Domo adigato! Robots Wallpaper from Ferm Living


Unexpected proportions and a dash of green will brighten up your desk — The Devo Table Lamp from Lights Up!


A fantastic mid-century modern inspired rocker — perfect for  the living room, a bedroom or a chic nursery — it’s the Norman Copenhagen Era Rocking Chair – Low

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An indigo pen gone wild; I’d love to add these powerful graphic pieces to a warm Danish modern dining table with a few Dansk accessories and simple minimalist white china — ferm LIVING Pen Napkins (they come in sets of four)


Of course, on my minimalist warm modern table, I’d also allow for this wonderful black and white vase. I’m thinking spears of purple irises or floppy yellow tulips would finish it off — The Kahler Omaggio Vase

Shop all Fresh Arrivals




Friday, October 31st, 2014

Happy Halloween!


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Here’s to a fun and safe evening this Halloween everyone!

Watching Claire and Phil from Modern Family arguing between scary insane asylum and “AwesomeLand” decorations this week got me thinking about Halloween decor. In my neighborhood it’s bananas — there are giant spiders scaling the houses, and webs, gravestones, walkers and skeletons all over yards and porches. People throw themselves into Halloween so much that it got me thinking of how to keep the fun spirit of the holiday alive year-round, in a way that’s not so scary. Here are some Halloween-inspired elements deconstructed and turned into playful decor.

1) Candy colors. These bright hues cheer up any room and add a big element of happy.

2) Skeletons. The mention of a skelton reminds me of a favorite David Sedaris story, where he buys his partner Hugh a full-size human skeleton model he’s been wanting, but deeply regrets his own generosity after Hugh hangs it in their bedroom. I’d use this soft skeleton shawl as a throw to add some personality to a room though!

Thomas Paul Shawl - Skeleton

3) Gourds. I love the organic look of gourds hanging from the trees, and spying my feathered friends enjoying them as a birdhouse or feeder. There’s a helpful DIY guide for making your own gourd birdhouse over at

4) Orange. Call it persimmon, apricot, tangerine, or by some other mouth-watering name. It’s a color that enlivens a space. According to the interwebs, orange by any name is mentally stimulating and represents creativity and happiness.

"Baby" wallpaper by Aimee Wilder

5) Creepy dolls. Just kidding. This is whack. That thing’s going to come and get your while you sleep!

photo by Daniel Marbaix

Is any of your year-round decor inspired by Halloween? If so, please share it with us in the comments section.


Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

(Re)Introducing the Spanner Lounge Chair With Arms


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We are so pleased to announce that we are carrying The Spanner Lounge Chair with Arms at Design Public. Originally created in 1950 by Russell Spanner (1916-1974), the award-winning designer’s chair has been out of production for more than 50 years. Gus*Design Group worked in collaboration with the Spanner family to revive this iconic chair, meticulously matching the materials, construction and details to the original chair.

The frame is constructed of  solid birch and curved birch plywood and the seat is 100% cotton woven strapping. During the design collaboration with the Spanner family, Gus*Design Group worked hard to match the finishes (both light and dark birch) and strapping colors (choice of green, red or black strapping):

Vintage Ad for Russell Spanner's Furniture

Today we’re talking with Joran Van Lange, the designer at Gus* Design Group who acted as design and production lead for the Spanner Lounge Chair reissue, to learn more about this exciting re-release.

How did you discover the work of Russell Spanner?
I first saw his work in a design lecture while I was in school.  His original designs show up occasionally here in Toronto at vintage and mid-century antique shops, so before we even knew Russell’s background story, we were familiar with the Russell Spanner “look”, which is very recognizable.

What drew you to the Spanner Chair in particular?
There’s something really positive and energetic about the lines and angles of the chair.  It’s bold without being too serious.

Which leads me to, what about its mid-century design still works so well today?

The design is relevant today for the same reasons it was relevant in the 1950s. At that time, North American cities were seeing an explosion of compact, post-war homes, which needed furniture that was smaller scale.  The movement toward condo and small space living in the last decade has meant that consumers are again looking for smaller, lighter furniture pieces.

Aesthetically, the chair embodies the mid-century tradition of leaving components and hardware in plain view.  Nothing is hidden by panels or upholstery.  There’s a transparency in that which people appreciate.

What is the history of the chair?

The Lounge Chair was designed by Russell while he was working as foreman at his family’s woodworking factory.  It’s believed that he used some of the jigs and parts of other industrial products to form the basic components for the Lounge Chair.  As an example, the frame for the seat shares the same proportions and joinery as the industrial battery boxes which the factory produced at the time.

Where are the reproductions produced?

We felt that because this chair was originally designed and produced in Toronto, it was important to carry on that legacy and produce the re-issue here as well.

Did you learn anything new about design and production from the process of putting the Spanner Chair back into production?

We realized once we began to dissect the original chair that there are some very sophisticated joinery details going on.  Everything must be manufactured perfectly in order for the design to work.

It works beautifully.

Purchase a Spanner Lounge Chair with Arms at Design Public