Where Do You Get Design Inspiration?

That’s a question that as designers we always face. For me, it’s a combination of places.  Magazines are an obvious choice. Sometimes I watch HGTV (who doesn’t love Sarah Richardson?). Then there are seminars, tradeshows and special events. It’s the last two that I thought I would touch on here.

Shows such as the Interior Design Show (typically held in January in downtown Toronto), and most recently The International Decorating Show (held last week in the International Centre by the airport in Toronto) are great for 1) finding new and innovative products being displayed  2) seeing terrific talks and rooms done by experts on new trends, design ideas and looks they love.  I volunteered for the CDECA booth at the Decorating Show as I belong to the organization.  For those of you who are not familiar with CDECA,  it’s the Decorator’s Association of Canada. Our mandate is to ensure consistency in decorating excellence and to steer consumers to a site where they can find accredited members- http://www.cdeca.com  (in case you are interested).  Here is our booth at the show:

CDECA booth

CDECA booth at the Interior Decorating Show

Right beside us were some ‘inspiration rooms’.  You will always find rooms or sometimes entire homes at shows such as this one, that can provide you with some insight and inspiration which you can translate in some way to your own spaces.  These were done by some top Canadian designers including Kimberley Seldon, Jane Lockhart and Lynne Spence.  Have a peak at their Christmas-inspired decor:

Inspiration Room by Jane Lockhart

Inspiration Room by Jane Lockhart

Inspiration Room by Kimberley Seldon

Inspiration Room by Kimberley Seldon

Inspiration Room by Lynn Spence

Inspiration Room by Lynn Spence

Another reliable source of design inspiration for me is the Princess Margaret Dream Home. I faithfully make a trek out to Oakville every year to see what it looks like, gather tidbits of inspiration and just wish that it was me winning this lovely home.  Yup that’s me in this year’s principal bathtub 🙂

I look forward to seeing the colour schemes and what they do in the ‘money-is-no-issue’ kitchen- which by the way looked like this:

Princess Margaret Dream Kitchen

Princess Margaret Dream Kitchen

Now I may not agree with all of the choices (for example that the fridge is in another room!), but l will always glean a little something to inspire and dream by. I do feel however there has been a lot of repetition in the overall feeling and colour scheme of the dream homes over the last few years.  Perhaps they need to get a little new inspiration also 🙂

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