Sunday, January 31, 2010


So apologies are in order - I completely forgot about my part 2 of 2 on Window Treatments exploring Faux and Real wood amidst the kick-off of this year's wedding season.

I promise I'll be back to that shortly and thanks everyone for submitting your questions and pictures. I love the brainstorming and transformation part of the process.

Next up, getting ready for your big day.

If anyone in your social circle is getting married, please forward my blog to them.

Thanks and see you at The Camellia!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Shaking things up!

Well it's taken a few weeks to recover from the holidays, I actually had a little mini-break with husband (sans kids, kids' girlfriends, dogs, to-do lists, clients, get the picture) and it was lovely.

It led to this revelation: I love January.

Sure, January usually means freezing temps (so cold that the mercury in the thermometer is off the scale), my skin usually resembles the Sahara desert during the dry season, and summer seems like a cruel joke. (I won't dwell on the fact that it is 26degrees C (36 with the humidity) in Antigua right now and my girlfriend who lives there, is out sailing as I write this.) I'll just ignore the mountains of snow in our backyard!

But here's the thing - after the hustle and bustle of the holidays January affords us time to stop and catch our breath, maybe even think (novel concept having a thought or two). And in that moment I stop and take stock, remind myself to be grateful for all that I have, as I envision the year ahead – full of white space, waiting to be filled in.

But sometimes, as you sit there thinking about the kind of year you’d like, your mind can wander...mine wandered to Window Treatments (probably because I was looking at my blinds thinking they’re a little dated).

Window treatments and Blinds have come a long way. Gone are the Wall-to-wall sheers that were so popular before, and in its place is a staggering assortment of new options - Panel Tracks, Skyline panels, Mandalay Multi-Shades, Sheer Vertical Wraps, Silhouettes, and the list goes on.

It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the plethora of choice and this is where I come in. I’ll do a brief in-home, walk-through consultation to assist you in selecting the best treatment for your windows.

Aesthetically, installing window treatments in coordinating styles and colors will finish your room; on the practical side they offer privacy,
help with keeping the warm air inside your house in the winter and the heat out of your house in the summer ($ saver), add to the R-Value of your windows - the higher the number the better the insulation effectiveness ($ saver), and help to prevent sun and uv damage to your floors and furniture. More importantly they'll help you qualify for the Home Renovation Tax Credit.

Maxxmar is one of two lines I carry and I was lucky to be able to tour the manufacturing plant of Maxxmar, a Canadian manufacturer of blinds. I’m going to say that again - Canadian manufacturer (when was the last time you heard that?).

Before I visited their facility, I hadn't given any real thought as to how blinds were manufactured, so it was quite enlightening to see the various steps involved in manufacture. I was impressed with the state of the art machinery, laser cutters, lighted testing stations, and the many hours of labour that go into the making of a blind or shutter.

Most of our customers love the Mandalay Alternative Multi-Shades featuring Light Filtering, Translucent, and Room Darkening, all in one blind. Have a look at for more information.

Wooden blinds are making a huge comeback as we embrace our natural environment. Next week I’ll discuss Panel tracks and the difference between Real wood and Faux wood.

On an slight tangent, Maxxmar recently completed the Art Gallery of Ontario project, a Design Build Project that required a fully automated, operable louver system that incorporated over-sized custom louvers and panels for sections 10feet in width and 24 feet in height on three separate floors. The end result was the Aero Maxx System which allowed them to create 8 " wood louvers with 2" thick centers and 60" in length. I thought it was pretty impressive!

If you’re toying with the idea of shaking things up a bit, consider window treatments. If you’re unsure what you’re looking for, take a few pictures of the room and email them to me, along with approximate sizes. I’ll send over some recommendations. Alternately you can visit me at the store to review brochures and samples.