Our best home decorating tips and more!
The question I get asked most often is what paint I use to give vintage furniture new life. My go-to brand is Benjamin Moore's Advance paint in a pearl or semigloss finish. It goes on streak-free and is durable, so you won't see signs of everyday wear and tear. Apply it with a foam roller along with a great-quality brush and people won't believe it was a DIY!
Great Reads: Garden State
Known for her lush, romantic and vibrant floral designs, Floret Flower Farm owner and Instagram superstar Erin Benzakein has written her first book, Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden, and it’s packed with practical gardening advice and inspiring floral projects for each season. You’ll learn everything you need to know to plant, cultivate and arrange beautiful blooms, including seasonal gardening tasks, her favourite varieties of some of the most popular flowers (such as dahlias and roses) and how to prolong the life of cut blossoms.
Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden (Chronicle Books) by Erin Benzakein with Julie Chai, $41.
Cool Tool: All In One
Whether you need to open a bottle of wine, hang a gallery wall or assemble furniture, the Canadian-designed Kelvin.36 urban multitool does it all. The compact device integrates 36 tools and functions; it’s like having a toolbox in the palm of your hand.
Kelvin.36, $60 each, kelvintools.com.
Sarah Gunn, Home & Garden Director
Photography by Sian Richards
Summer is my favourite season for so many reasons. Near the top of the list is that it’s prime time for garage sales and antiques markets. I love hunting for treasures and items that could use a little DIY love. Here are my best tips for shopping like a pro.
1. Go with an overall budget in mind for the day, and stick to it. This will force you to make smart choices and avoid impulse buys. To keep you focused, make note of what you need or collections you may want to expand.
2. Always, always negotiate! Whether you’re purchasing one item or several, a good rule of thumb is to offer about 30 percent less than the seller’s starting price.
3. Inspect each object for defects and only buy pieces that you can visualize in your home.
We’re drawn to colour mostly because of how it makes us feel. While warm colours (reds, oranges and yellows) are believed to evoke energy, optimism and passion, cool colours (blues, greens and purples) exude a serene, peaceful feel. It’s no secret that I—not one to be influenced by trends—love pastels. My go-to palette is informed by a childhood spent near the ocean. Soft shades of blue and green and pale neutrals combine to create a space that feels like home no matter how far it is from the sea.