I’m Coming Home

  • “The majority of furnishings were custom designed and manufactured for this project. We wanted to feature and honour our clients’ existing art and sculpture collection.”
  • The foyer and living room walls are painted Benjamin Moore Swiss Coffee OC-60.
  • The fresh and neutral fabrics and finishes create a classic palette that stands the test of time, allowing the Gregory Hardy painting above the custom sofa to stand forward visually from the room’s other elements.
  • One of the most dramatic changes to the home’s layout occurred when the kitchen was opened to the family room. The structural change required the addition of a supporting beam hidden in the ceiling, circumventing any visible bulkhead and allowing the rooms to flow from one space to the other without visual interruption.
  • Adjacent to the newly renovated kitchen is the open concept family room. This is a favourite spot for the family to linger after a busy day.
  • The handsome vignette with the stepped mirror and a custom wood chest is a nod to the drama and beauty of art deco styling.
  • A bright and sunny breakfast area with 15’ cathedral ceiling and banquette seating completes the kitchen area. The team selected a banquette to allow for wider pathways and a stunning sight line from the kitchen. Kitchen cabinetry lines the walkway and provides extra storage and the visual flow the family required.
  • Practical finishes were mandatory in the all-white kitchen, which features satin sheen lacquered cabinetry, stone countertops and stained walnut for the island.

A large family demands a big makeover. Fortunately, Tomas Pearce Interior Design Consulting has the talent and muscle to satisfy such a tall order. When the CEO of one of Toronto’s largest and leading luxury condominium developers approached cofounders Tania Richardson and Melandro Quillatan, he was looking for an update as well as a strategy for developing a home that supports the needs of his wife and three teens.

The first floor of this century-old, 3,500 square foot home in Lawrence Park, Toronto is much improved these days owing to its recent renovation which resulted in an improved aesthetic and functionality. The initial lack of architectural interest and weak flow was transformed, resulting in what is now a more current and transitional design.

“Select a neutral palette to provide longevity. Decorative lighting, art and accessories arethe elegant finishing touches.”

Original floors were replaced with wide hardwood planks throughout the main level. In the 375 square foot living room, Tomas Pearce Interior Design Consulting created several conversation areas, with key furnishings linking them together for larger events. Here is how to create a picture-perfect living room.

The living room’s soft colours are reflected in the mirrored coffee table from Cocoon Furnishings in Oakville. Some more online acrylic mirrors were ordered to make the room look even larger. The patterned area carpet from Elte Carpet and Home provides a geometric anchor to the light coloured furnishings. Layers of lighting—potlights, sconces and table lampsare sourced from suppliers Sescolite, Casalife and Royal Lighting.

The addition of the banquette within the bay window amplifies usable space and provides additional seating, which comes in handy when entertaining.

When choosing furniture and accessories, select hues and undertones that pair well, creating cohesive flow throughout the home.

“To ensure consistency from room to room,” says Melandro, “use a single wall colour, place furniture strategically to achieve comfortable flow, keep wall paneling and any trim consistent.”

This century-old home has never looked better thanks to its much-needed update.

Photography by Larry Arnal

Reality Check: Custom Sectional

“Choosing a custom sectional isn’t all play,” says professional designer Nyla Free. A big investment piece like the sofa requires careful consideration. Follow our step-by-step guide to choosing right the first time.

Step 1: Define the Space
Sectionals are used in a variety of spaces—family friendly to modern sophisticate. In open floor plans a sectional can define the conversation or TV watching area, creating a distinction between spaces. For maximum curl-up comfort, aim for a seat depth of at least 42″. To accommodate an adult conversation zone, then a standard seat depth of 36-38″ and a seat height of 18” facilitates ease of sitting and standing.

Photography by Lori Andrews

Photography by Lori Andrews


Step 2: Perfectly Sized
A custom sofa—sectional or otherwise, allows the consumer to select virtually any size to suit the space. Before you shop, draft a room plan to determine the optimum length, width and depth required. In small spaces, avoid wide arms which eat up available seating.

Step 3: Comfort Zone
Feather, foam, down, or dacron? It’s as critical to understand what’s on the inside of a sofa as it is to love what the outside looks like. A combination of feather and down gives a soft, cloudlike feel to back cushions and decorative toss pillows. Foam and dacron provide firmness to seats. Designers often choose a “sandwich wrap” using a combination of foam wrapped in feather and down to create comfort and shape retention.

Step 4: Fabric Selection
Movie nights, sleep overs and cushion forts require fabric to stand the test of time. For extra durability look for polyester blends, wool, or even an outdoor fabric. Choose linen, velvet, rayon or silk blends for rooms with lower traffic and less action.

Photography by Lori Andrews

Photography by Lori Andrews


Step 5: Piecemeal
Because sectionals come in at least two pieces it’s important to identify where each component connects. If the back of the sofa is visible to the room, make sure it has a clean and visually appealing break from section to section.

Step 6: Measure Twice
Avoid tight squeezes and potential disappointment by measuring ceiling heights, stair widths and corners prior to ordering. Large pieces of furniture require extra care during delivery, whether you live in a house or condo.

Step 7: Cushion Control
In general, a single bench style seat creates a more modern look. But it can be difficult to turn and fluff a large seat cushion. Do adjust seat widths to accommodate specific needs.

Photography by Lori Andrews

Photography by Lori Andrews


Step 8: Sit Test
It’s advisable to pay a visit to the upholstery shop when the sofa is about 75% complete. At this stage, the sofa is ready for a “test drive” and it won’t be too late to modify cushion firmness or arm and seat height. Ask your upholsterer if this service is available.

Step 9: All in the Detail
Piping, nail heads and a wood base typically provide traditional styling. Looking for something more modern? Add top stitching, metal legs and boxed cushions. Be creative and confident when selecting finishing details to create a custom sectional perfectly suited to your design needs.

Step 10: Ready to Enjoy
Whether you’re popping popcorn, cuddling beneath covers or relaxing with the Sunday paper, a well-made sectional is an investment as versatile as your favourite sweater.