Whether you’re preparing to host family and friends, or just want to get into the holiday spirit, we are all looking for ways that we can make our homes welcoming and festive this season.
There are thousands of websites filled with ideas, and countless magazines showcasing incredible-looking themes — but sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference.
If you’re not looking to break the bank, but want to make a festive impact, we suggest enhancing an often overlooked space: the entryway.
First impressions are made when people step into your home, and this makes the entryway the best place to start.
Here are our top three ways to make your home welcoming:
Entryways can be both welcoming and functional. They are also high traffic areas that are highly visible and set the tone for the rest of your home. Depending on your space, we suggest adding:
A stylish bench.
This will not only look fantastic but will help your guests with putting on and taking off their boots.
A sleek console table.
These slim tables are great for entryways, offering a place to drop your keys and display seasonal decor.
A helpful coat tree.
Coat trees are not only practical for holding coats and scarves, they are also an on-trend focal point in your entryway.
Mirrors are a great way to bring light and sparkle into a space, and an entryway is an ideal space for a mirror, as people tend to check their appearance before leaving the house.
Mirrors come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and colours. You can mix and match them on a wall, or even lean them up against each other on a shelf or on the floor. The options are virtually endless.
Depending on your space, you can add a single large mirror, or multiple smaller mirrors. Alternating design and shape is on-trend and will bring visual interest to your entryway. Mirrors can also be hung or placed on a shelf or table.
There are no rules, so play around until you find the perfect arrangement.
Area rugs are often forgotten about, but they are very important as they make up an integral aesthetic of an entryway.
Stepping on the entryway rug is the first thing, and last thing, people do when they come to your home.
It is important to have a rug that can handle some wear and tear, while still looking fabulous.
Kalora rugs offer a stunning array of area rugs to suit any home. From wool, to jute, to synthetic fibres, they have it all.
Today’s housing market has exploded and prices are through the roof. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or are considering making a move the costs of purchasing a home are prohibitive.
So what are people doing?
Trends show that people aren’t buying homes as much as they once were. Instead, they are investing in their current home and making it a space they can continue to enjoy for years to come.
Homeowners have started to realize that any type of house — detached, semi, townhome, or condo — can be upgraded and updated. You can make your house a home.
At Smitty’s, our decorators love to help homeowners breathe new life into their homes by updating their spaces with new furniture and accessories. Here are some of our favourite ways to turn your house into a home.
The kitchen is the hub of every home. It’s the place where you spend many hours preparing meals for your family and friends — and the dining table is at the heart of every kitchen or dining room.
Your dining table is used as a surface for entertaining, working, playing games, and as a place to gather around for quality time. It is a multifunctional workhorse.
Selecting a new dining table is a great way to update your space and meet your current lifestyle needs.
How do you choose the right dining table?
There are several important considerations to think about when selecting a new table:
How big is your space?
How many people need to fit around the table?
Do you need a table with extensions, to fit more people?
Do you want a round, square, or rectangular table?
Will the table need to be versatile and used for more than just eating?
Sometimes all it takes is updating your dining table seating to give your space a whole new look and feel. There are more options and styles to choose from than ever before — and you can mix and match seating to suit your needs.
How do you choose the right dining chairs?
There are several important considerations to think about when selecting dining chairs:
How many people need to fit around the table?
This is important when deciding how wide each chair should be.
How tall is your dining table?
Most tables range between 28-31 inches and people typically prefer sitting with 10-12 inches of space between their lap and the tabletop.
Do you want arms or armless?
If you want arms, do you want the chair to slide underneath the tabletop?
Would a bench provide you with more flexibility?
Benches can slide under a table and save on floor space.
Our showrooms are filled with amazing chairs, from wood, to fabric, to leather, to metal — we’ve got it all.
For the biggest impact, the number one piece of furniture to update in your living room is your sofa. By replacing a sofa, sofa bed, or sectional, you can make a room feel completely different.
How do you choose the right sofa?
There are several important considerations to think about when selecting a sofa:
How much room do you have (both width and length)?
How many people are you looking to fit on your sofa?
Do you want your sofa to fit into a corner of a room or divide a room?
Do you need extra sleeping space for guests?
Do you have pets and need to consider cleaning or fabric options?
Smitty’s Pro Tip: Don’t forget to measure your front door. You don’t want to order a new sofa only to find out that it won’t make it into your home. As part of our service, Smitty’s can offer you a free check measure, to ensure your furniture will fit into your home.
We have a huge selection of sofa styles ranging from traditional to modern. We also offer brands that are customizable — allowing you the flexibility to select your fabric, legs, and throw cushions.
The expert decorating team at Smitty’s will work with you to find and customize unique pieces of furniture to suit your space. By ordering your furniture in October, you can have your new furniture (and your refreshed space) in time for the holidays!
The famous quote, “a place for everything and everything in its place”, rings true today as we try and find suitable places to store our belongings.
Another phrase that is often used amongst homeowners is, “You can never have too much storage space”.
We all know that, over time, we accumulate more and more items in our homes — it just seems to happen! The tricky part is having places to put these items, so that they are accessible when we want them and hidden away when we don’t. The other consideration is that we want the storage to look good, and fit our lifestyle and decor.
The good news is that there are functional and stylish options at Smitty’s to help you with this challenge.
Take your space from cluttered to organized
There are many storage options to choose from, it just depends on your room and your style. When you come into Smitty’s, our expert decorators can assist you in finding the best choices for your spaces. In the meantime, we hope to inspire you with some of our favourites storage options:
Trendline ottomans with hidden storage (above)
These ottomans open to reveal a large storage space, perfect for blankets, magazines, books, remotes, games, and more.
Dimplex fireplaces with visible storage
These stylish units provide a terrific spot for your television and handy storage below. It’s perfect for storing DVDs, CDs, games — and the fireplace will keep you cozy and warm this winter.
Magnussen bookcase and entertainment units with rolling doors
These storage units were inspired by the wineries in Napa Valley and offer adjustable shelving, pullout bin-style drawers, built-in LED lighting, and wire management drawers for your television, DVD player, etc.
Amisco living room island tables are the latest way to provide more space
This adjustable island can function as a table, a serving island when guests are visiting, a working desk, and an additional storage space for lighting, books, snacks, and more.
Whatever your needs, Smitty’s has the solution to maximize your space and solve your storage concerns. Visit Smitty’s and check out the latest spectacular storage solutions.
As we prepare for the cooler weather and hosting season, many of us look for ways to make our homes warm and inviting. Incorporating rich and darker tones into your living spaces is a great way to add depth and warmth — include a fireplace and you’ve got the perfect, cozy space!
There are many rooms that can benefit from some deeper tones, richer furnishings, and enhanced decor, but the most commonly asked questions we get are about how to add warmth to the living room.
Here are our top three ways to add warmth to your living room:
1. Dimplex Electric Fireplace Media Consoles
Available in different styles, these rich-toned consoles offer a handcrafted look and a finish resembling reclaimed wood. The rustic-chic look is a great way to update your space, while the built-in fireplace will provide ample warmth and act as a wonderful focal point in your living room.
The added bonus of the Dimplex console is the concealed storage, built-in cord management system, and reinforced structure to hold a large television.
2. Wood Coffee Tables & Occasional Tables
Nothing says richness and warmth like real wood. Adding a wood coffee table or occasional table in your living room will warm up the look of your space, and will be helpful for storage and hosting.
Coffee tables are available in styles and shapes to suit any living room. From round, to square, to rectangular, you can find them in solid wood or combinations of glass and wood, or metal and wood.
Occasional tables also come in a range of styles and shapes. They can serve as a stylish addition to showcase your home decor — and they’re the perfect place to set-up refreshments when you are hosting guests.
3. Leather Sofas & Accent Chairs
Is there anything cozier than curling up in a leather sofa? We don’t think so.
Leather provides a high-quality look and feel, it’s very comfortable, and it is extremely durable. Our leather furniture comes in a wide variety of styles and, if you prefer, selected brands are customizable. Our expert decorators will guide you through the process of choosing your leather, your legs, and the coordinating pieces.
Adding a leather sofa and accent chair is a great way to give your living room a warm look and feel for years to come.
As we prepare ourselves for the cooler weather, we start to think about ways we can make our homes more comfortable because we will be spending more time indoors. For some people, it’s as simple as adding a throw blanket to a sofa. For others, it’s about staying on trend and updating their space so it feels fresh. Here are the top four trends for Fall 2017.
Oversized Furniture Is Out & Scaled Furniture Is In
Remember when it was all the rage to buy that extra deep and extra wide sofa? Your feet couldn’t touch the floor, but it was in style. Bigger was better.
Things have changed. Now designers are moving towards less bulky furniture pieces. Smartly and beautifully crafted sofas and accent chairs are replacing those enormous pieces that took up half your floorspace.
Brands like Palliser, Magnussen, and Brentwood (just to name a few) are designing and producing furniture that fits your space, and doesn’t overwhelm it. Thinner arms, shorter depths, and sleeker designs are the way to go this Fall.
Industrial Is Out & Wood and Gold Is In
Shiny and brushed metal, like steel, are now taking a back seat to wood and gold. Designers are moving towards warmer palettes — and just in time for Fall!
Now, the trend is to incorporate solid wood pieces that are finished in deep, rich tones. Carefully crafted furniture pieces, either classically designed or with a contemporary feel, are where it’s at.
Warmer metals are also en vogue. Bronze, gold, and champagne colours and accents achieve a subtle elegance unlike the sharp contrast of brushed steel.
Brands like Artage, Amisco, and Durham excel at designing beautifully crafted pieces that achieve this warm and elegant style with ease. They can also custom-create pieces and blend wood and gold together for a classy look.
Greige Is Out & Jewel Tones Are In
There was a time when everyone painted their walls in soft tones, purchased neutral colour rugs, and arranged beige furniture in every room in their home. For some people greige is just fine and will never go out of style — for others, it’s time to bring in some colour.
You don’t have to go crazy with colour to bring your room into Fall style. You can achieve a more colourful look by adding a fun accent chair, gold side table, or coloured throw pillow.
Many of the brands we carry at Smitty’s allow you to select your finishes and fabrics. This means you can do anything! Pair a neutral sofa with bright throw cushions or add neutral/solid coloured pillows to a patterned sofa. It’s all up to you.
Seamless Upholstery Is Out & Nailhead Details Are In
There was a trend towards seamless upholstery. This style of finishing makes for a more formal look for your sofas, chairs, and other accent pieces.
This Fall, nailhead detailing is in. Whether it’s a footstool, bed frame, or accent chair, finishing the seams with nails adds a fun bit of energy and style to your furniture. Nailheads can be simple and run only around the edge, or they can incorporate additional patterns and designs.
Brands like Durham, Magnussen, and Donald Choi (to name a few) are experts at finishing their unique furniture pieces with the hot nailhead trend.
Come and visit Smitty’s to check out the latest styles in furnishings for your home.
At Smitty’s Fine Furniture, we are proud of our talented team of decorators! Our decorators work on-site in our Hanover and Kitchener locations to help our customers make informed decisions about purchasing new furniture, updating their existing pieces, and planning whole rooms that fit their budget and lifestyle.
September 2017’s Decorator of the Month is Gina!
Gina has been with Smitty’s for over 31 years and has worked in many departments.
Gina began her career with Smitty’s in the buying and accounting departments, but much prefers serving customers directly and has enjoyed helping them design their rooms and homes for over 20 years.
Gina’s gift is finding a clear decorating vision. She loves being able to help people, who cannot visualize or articulate their needs. By getting to know her customers, she is able to put together a home that will thrill them in the end.
Gina stresses that, although she can work with customers directly in their home or in the store (whichever they prefer), she can really help customers best when they bring in pictures, samples, and dimensions of their space. A picture is worth a thousand words, and combined with talking and learning about her customers, she is able to identify their style and needs.
“I have had the opportunity to work in several areas within Smitty’s during my 30 years as an employee. My passion and knowledge of furniture, design, and space planning has lead me to my role as an Interior Decorator/Sales Consultant. Understanding my clients’ needs and wants is the platform by which we start developing a plan together. My goal is to find solutions that exceed my customer’s expectations!”
While the kitchen may be the hub of your home, the bedroom is your personal sanctuary — it’s also where you will spend the most time over the course of your life, so you want it to be perfect.
It is important that a bedroom is comfortable so you can feel calm and get the rest you need. But bedrooms can offer a lot more than comfort, and they aren’t just a place for sleeping. More than ever before, bedrooms are incorporating style and character and are becoming a fashionable oasis in people’s homes.
What are the steps to creating your ‘wow’ bedroom?
Get To Know Your Style
First things first, you need to ask yourself what you like. You can sift through some home design magazines for inspiration, but it might be simpler and more fun to take the HGTV Bedroom Personality Quiz.
Styles include romantic, dreamer, rebel, creator, and more!
What Is Your Colour Palette?
Once you have a sense of your style, it will be important to examine the colour palette in your space, and in your home.
Are you looking to paint your bedroom, or keep it the same colour?
Do you want your bedroom to blend in with the rest of your home, or stand out?
Do you like bold colours, or are you more interested in neutral tones?
How much room do you have to work with?
Is there a theme for your room (e.g. black and white retro, or airy beach)?
Do you want your furniture to match, or mix and match?
After you’ve answered these questions, you will be better prepared to begin selecting bedroom furniture pieces.
What Style of Bedroom Furniture Should You Choose?
There are many options to consider when selecting your bedroom furniture, and you don’t have to limit yourself to just one.
Classic bedroom style traditionally incorporates a wooden bed frame with a wooden headboard, matching bedside tables, and a matching dresser with or without a mirror.
You can choose a sleigh bed, with its lovely curved headboard as the centrepiece to your room. Then, you can finish the look with solid wood tables, matching dressers finished in rich, deep coloured stains, and matching bedside lamps.
This classic style offers a warm look that will stand the test of time.
Contemporary bedroom style can incorporate a wide variety of furniture pieces, from wood to steel and upholstered to iron.
You can pair a bed frame and headboard with matching nightstands and offset the match with a different style of dresser.
You can also jazz up the centrepiece of your room (aka your bed) by selecting an extra large headboard.
Traditional headboards are typically 0-3” wider than the bedframe and extend upwards between 14-29” above the horizontal plane of the bed.
Contemporary headboards can extend along the wall, taking in the width of your nightstands, and they can be as tall as you like.
The Mix & Match
Mix and match bedroom style allows you to pair pieces from different sets without being limited to one particular look and feel for your room.
You can pair a new headboard with an antique style dresser, and then match it with a contemporary bedside table. There are no rules.
This carefree look is easily updated and can be altered to go with your ever-changing style.
You Can Do It!
There are a lot of ways to turn your bedroom into a ‘wow’ bedroom. Come and visit Smitty’s and our expert decorators will help you bring your desired look to life.
It’s true that soft, muted colours are warm and relaxing, but greige (grey/beige) is moving toward more of a foundational colour than a statement colour. Trends come and go. Styles constantly change. But, in 2017, colour is king.
You Don’t Have To Ditch Your Sofa
Just because the style gurus are suggesting that “colour is in” doesn’t mean that you need to get rid of your grey couch — unless it’s falling apart, or you no longer love it, in which case you should kick it to the curb.
You can enhance your current furniture with pops of colour.
One of the hottest trends this year is to add colourful accents to your home. You can do this quickly and easily without breaking the bank.
Cheery coloured throw pillows are a great, and inexpensive, way to bring colour into your space. You can add to, or replace, your existing cushions and give your furniture a whole different look and feel.
Don’t be afraid to mix and match sizes, colours, and patterns. It’s okay to pair stripes with polka dots, or green with blue. This is no longer considered clashing — it’s fun, funky, and totally en vogue.
At Smitty’s, we have a huge selection of gorgeous fabrics, in all the colours of the rainbow, for you to choose from to make your custom throw pillows.
Refreshing the lighting in your space will make a huge difference in your home.
Whether it’s side table lamps with colourful bases, or floor lamps with interesting shades — new lamps will not only light up your space but they will help to give your room new life.
Another consideration is to create layered lighting to enhance the atmosphere in your space. Mixing task lighting (like a reading lamp next to your sofa) with ambient lighting (like a corner floor lamp) is what designers call ‘layered lighting’.
Layered lighting will help to give your room a different feel and this is an easy way to make a big difference in your home.
Colourful vases, candle holders, and artwork are budget friendly, quick fixes to bring colour into your space.
Mixing colours, shapes, and items together on a side table, coffee table, or dining table is a simple way to give you a pop of colour.
These smaller items are also easy to move around from room to room, making it a quick way to change around your space.
The trend for 2017 is all about texture. Texture isn’t just about fabric, in the design world it also refers to depth and variety. Adding pieces of decor that are different heights, sizes, and colours will provide your space with texture.
A great way to bring some colour into a room is with accent furniture.
Accent furniture is a piece of furniture that stands out in a room, but complements the existing design, layout, and colour palate.
This can be anything from a comfy chair, a glass coffee table, or even a mirrored side table.
By placing a piece of accent furniture into a space, you can easily add definition, colour, and even drama. Sometimes, adding a new chair that has a bit of flair can enliven a space and make it feel totally different and refreshed.
Updating your existing furniture
Perhaps you love your sofa, or your side chair, and you don’t want to replace it. That’s perfectly alright.
A great way to freshen your space, and bring in some colour, is to recover your furniture. That way you get to keep the pieces you love and update them with a great new fabric.
At Smitty’s, we have hundreds of fabric swatches to choose from for all your recovering needs and desires. From genuine leather, to wool, to cotton, to microfibre — we have it all!
Our in-store decorators will work with you to find the perfect fabric and will guide you through the process and timing of the upholstery experience.
At Smitty’s Fine Furniture, we are proud of our talented team of decorators! Our decorators work on-site in our Hanover and Kitchener locations to help our customers make informed decisions about purchasing new furniture, updating their existing pieces and planning whole rooms that fit their budget and lifestyle.
June 2017’s Decorator of the Month is Christina McClure
Christina is a certified interior decorator at Smitty’s Hanover location.
A natural born decorator, Christina was the kid who rearranged all of her family’s rooms so, her career choice was easy to make. Christina achieved her three year Interior Design Diploma in 2007.
Skilled at being able to identify customers’ needs, Christina is focused on resolving customers’ issues in their home and then she determines the best style to suit her customers’ lifestyle.
Christina breaks her customers’ needs into individual steps. This helps her customers feel comfortable with the process, and they are never overwhelmed. This process also saves her customers time and money — her customers feel lucky to have Christina on their side.
Often, Christina can help a customer identify how to break a project into phases. This helps the customer in two ways:
#1 - They don’t have to spend a large amount of money at one time.
#2 - They don’t have to replace the pieces that they treasure, like their grandma’s buffet.
Christina’s belief of function over form is especially important to her when helping her clients choose the right mattress for themselves. As a car accident survivor, Christina knows how it feels to live in pain, and she strives to improve the lives of her customers.
Christina believes that there is nothing more powerful than walking into your own home and feeling happy to be there!
“I think of myself as a detective. I gather up all the design clues and help my customer sort through the possibilities that will fit their unique lifestyle.”
We’ve all been there...you’re browsing Pinterest for design inspiration when you see the perfect piece of furniture for your space. Whether it’s a sofa, accent chair, media furniture, or an accessory, you just have to have it.
But in our quest to make our homes Pinterest-perfect, we often don’t stop to consider what each piece of furniture will look like in our space, or if it will even fit.
Enter the room planner from Smitty’s Fine Furniture. Our room planner is available online 24 hours a day, seven days a week — so it’s perfect for those late-night Pinning sessions. It’s also easy to use. Here’s how:
When you open Smitty’s room planner, you’re given two options.
#1- You can select a pre-measured bedroom, dining room, or living room layout that matches one in your home.
#2 - You can choose to build your own, custom layout.
Simply get the measurements of the room you want to decorate, enter them into the room planner, and select the room shape that best matches your room.
Make the room your own
Whether you choose the custom room option or pre-measured rooms, there are more ways to make the room your own.
Take stock of where the doors, windows, power outlets, and other structural features are located throughout the room. This will help you with deciding where furniture and accessories can go, without getting in the way.
Furnishing your room
Once you have the technical parts of your room down, you can start furnishing!
Choose from a wide range of styles and shapes to build the perfect space for you.
It’s easy to drag and drop furniture to place it where you want it, and you can experiment by rotating each piece and tweaking its positioning. You can also adjust the size of each piece of furniture to match the piece you have your eye on. If it doesn’t fit, just choose another piece and work within the confines of your space. It’ll save you a lot of heartache.
Come into Smitty’s
Designing the room of your dreams with Smitty’s room planner is easy — and it doesn’t stop there. Once you have a room plan that you’re happy with, print it off and bring it into our Hanover or Kitchener location, (or email it to us), our highly trained team will be happy to help you find the furniture to match your space.