Tag Archives: Cynthia Soda

The Toronto Fall Home Show 2018

The Toronto Fall Home Show 2018 – ReCap

Latest News


The Toronto Fall Home Show 2018 – ReCap

RENO & DECOR Magazine presented:“Design Intervention”


Kristiina Roosimaa – RENO & DECOR booth designer

I am grateful for Reno&Decor, who gave me a great opportunity to design their 2018 Fall Home Show booth.

In my perspective the booth was an absolute pearl at the show this year with its Scandinavian aesthetics and feel. I had a wonderful chance to work with a Danish furniture company Bo Concept Toronto and their team who sponsored the interior setting with furniture and accessories.

To my pleasant surprise the walls for the created room settings all came pre-prepped with my specific instructions for painting which was sponsored by Benjamin Moore. In my opinion it is a great platform for the designers and sponsors who make this happen a great opportunity to be seen.

Thank You again for the opportunity.



Thanks to all the designers that participated in Design Intervention:


RENO & DECOR would like to thank the following sponsors of Design Intervention:


SHARE  

Featured Products


rd_on18_design101_fi

Design 101: Light My Fire

Latest News


Design 101: Light My Fire

Choose from a variety of fireplace options to turn up the heat this fall

By Cynthia Soda

Being a summer baby, I soak up the hot sun for as long as I can get it. But once our days get shorter and the leaves change colour, it’s time to turn back on the pilot lights on your interior gas units, and warm up those cold hands and feet once again.

HUMBLE BEGINNING

In our first home as newlyweds, my husband and I didn’t have a fireplace; so every year I’d long for a mantel to decorate for the holidays and yearn for the soothing sounds of a fire during dinner or movie nights. Let’s just say that the fireplace channel was a staple when we wanted to create that ambience on a beer budget. Now, even though we have a builder-grade gas fireplace insert, there are so many options out there that make this designer girl long for an upgrade yet again.

THE POSSIBILITIES

In past projects, we’ve used linear fireplaces, see-through and even double- and three-sided units with clear, black or amber crystals, river rocks, or driftwood log inserts–all depending on the style esthetic of the home. In condos where we wouldn’t be able to install a gas unit, but still wanted that cosy feeling, we installed Dimplex units, which use a seemingly magical combination of water vapour and lighting to give the lifelike illusion of flames and smoke, yet perfectly safe with no emissions and a cool flame. Of course, there are a variety of electric units that can essentially be plugged in anywhere, if space and budget are tight.

THE FEATURES

As a designer, we like to push the limits of what’s possible, getting our clients the biggest bang for their buck, all while abiding by building codes and ensuring the health and safety of our end users. Endlessly in search of the next big thing, we get excited about new technological advances being made in design staples like the fireplace. Units that can provide heat, but are cool to the touch, are safe for families with small children, and allow you to get the function you want without having to compromise on style. Valor radiant gas fireplaces use a unique hidden ducting system that draws heat up and recirculates the heat in the room, allowing the use of combustible materials (i.e., wood mantels or surrounds) closer than ever to the unit. This means that the walls around the fireplace are kept cooler so there’s less worry about surface materials and things like artwork, your TV or stuffed animals left by the fireplace of getting hot. This allows us designer-types to be creative with finishing materials and design. Not to mention the fact that these style units burn less gas and provide more heat leaving more in your pocket.

Fully functional without the use of electricity, the installation of a radiant gas fireplace would keep your family warm and safe, especially in the event of a power outage in the middle of winter. The plethora of design options existing today have me re-thinking the possibilities of the fireplace as an art feature, as well as a functional heating unit, and a place to warm up inside as it cools down outside.

Cynthia Soda is owner, principal interior designer of Soda Pop Design Inc., a multi-disciplinary interior design firm providing complete custom renovation and design services for residential and commercial clients throughout the GTA. Soda Pop Design Inc. focuses on merging the client’s lifestyle, personality and architecture to create customized, liveable luxury. sodapopdesign.ca Instagram: @csodapop, Twitter: @sodapopdesign

SHARE  

Featured Products


The Toronto Fall Home Show - September 28 - 30, 2018

The Toronto Fall Home Show – September 28 – 30, 2018

Latest News


The Toronto Fall Home Show – September 28 – 30, 2018

Enercare Centre, Exhibition Place
100 Princes’ Blvd., Toronto, ON

RENO & DECOR Magazine presents:

“Design Intervention”

From September 28 – 30, 2018 at the Toronto Fall home Show, visit RENO & DECOR booth # 1319 to have all of your Design, Decor and Renovation concerns put to rest. Design Intervention runs every day from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. On-hand will be a host of design and decor experts along with your favourite R&D contributors offering free 15-minute consultations. Be sure to bring along your photos, samples and floor plans to ensure you get the most out of your appointment.


Kristiina Roosimaa – RENO & DECOR booth designer

Kristiina Eljand-Roosimaa is an experienced Senior Designer with over 17 years of consistent excellence in design and customer service.  Born in Estonia, the daughter of an architect father and vocalist mother, Kristiina was schooled in Toronto, Canada at the International Academy of Design.

After graduation from the academy, Kristiina honed her skills in Europe as a Junior Designer at a high profile drapery & design boutique.

From textiles, Kristiina moved to interior design and key client management establishing her own design/build firm and professional reputation before returning to Toronto in 2011.

Since her return to the Toronto area, Kristiina has opened her own design practice bringing the Nordic Living style and design simplicity to the Canadian landscape and mixing it with the Canadian comfort sensibility to create her own “Scandonadian” design style.

We can’t wait to see what she does to our RENO & DECOR booth at the Fall Home Show. Be sure to check it out.


Stage presentation:

Presented by RENO & DECOR Magazine. Saturday, September 29 at 2pm

Behind the Pretty – A well-designed home renovation must be functional first and enhance how you live in your home. Toronto designer, Rebecca Hay and interior designer, Cynthia Soda will get you “Reno Ready” as the participants of the Design Panel.

Learn their top designer tips to creating a stressfree renovation. Sharing their stylish, innovative design ideas and leading-edge products for today’s renovations.

Revealing the true benefits to working with a designer with their latest before and afters of familyfriendly, liveable luxury home projects.

Don’t miss the chance to get reno-ready this fall.


Design Intervention appearance schedule:

For updated designer appearance schedules, please keep checking back here.

Friday, September 28 = 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Friday, September 28 = 11 am – 3:30 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 11 am – 1 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 1:30 pm – 4 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 1 pm – 3:30 pm

Friday, September 28 = 11 am – 2:30 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 11 am – 1:30 pm

Friday, September 28 = 2:30 pm – 6 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 2:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 10:30 am – 12:30 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 12:30 pm – 3 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 3 pm – 5:30 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 11 am – 1:30 pm

 

Friday, September 28 = 3:30 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 3 pm – 6 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 11 am – 1:30 pm

Sunday, September 30 = 11 am – 3 pm

Friday, September 28 = 2:30 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 3:30 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, September 29 = 3 pm – 6 pm

Friday, September 28 = 11 am – 1:30 pm


RENO & DECOR would like to thank the following sponsors of Design Intervention:

See you at the show!


SHARE  

Featured Products


rc_jj2018_design101_fi

Design 101: Made-To-Measure

Latest News


Design 101: Made-To-Measure

This baby bungalow gets a major function and style boost

By Cynthia Soda

Photography By Jason Hartog

It’s (now) safe to say that there’s no place like home for our newlywed clients, whose 1950s bungalow was in desperate need of updates in both style and function. What was once a “well-loved” piece of Toronto real estate is now a fresh, functional home, bursting with colour and personality on the inside.

MINI SPACE GETS A MAXI PLAN

It’s not about the amount of space you have, but what you do with it that makes the difference. When we attack a design project, we tend to think of each space as a puzzle. As soon as the pieces all fit together, we have the basis to add the fun to the function. With the main floor at a scant 710 square feet, our small space included a front entrance, side entrance and stairwell (with landing), kitchen, living room, dining room, two bedrooms and a main bathroom. Each space was separated into zones of use, which created small rooms that weren’t conducive to the homeowners’ modern living requirements. To add to the challenge, there were architectural elements in place (like the stairwell opening taking up valuable kitchen cupboard space) that provided some opportunities to get creative with design solutions.

“It’s not about the amount of space you have, but what you do with it that makes the difference.”

STRUCTURAL SHAKE-UP

The main concern was squeezing every functional ounce out of the available space and making it more personal and reflective of their style. Taking down the walls between the kitchen, entrance and main living zones meant not only opening the rooms to optimal light, it also provided the opportunity for a considerably large island (given the square footage) and customized cabinets to house every kitchen utensil and small appliance the couple owned, and then some. Removing the walls between the dining and living area also meant that we were able to incorporate a large sectional, comfortable lounge chair and a cosy dining area with room to grow.

SMALL BUT NOT SHORT ON PERSONALITY

For many, adding colour to an interior can be a scary thing. If you have a small space, it can seem even scarier. Since colours may evoke an emotional response, most tend to worry that they’ll tire or get bored of the colour, or that it won’t be “timeless” and they’ll have to re-do everything in a couple of years. Incorporating a grey-blue and white scheme provided a twist on a neutral canvas that makes the vibrant colour accents pop throughout the space. The blue tone of the cabinet colour is amplified with the blue-glass backsplash providing contrast and balances against the wood tones of the floor and counter stools. A designated space for wine bottles and glasses was also an important feature for our clients, offering an opportunity to integrate glass uppers, adding a bit of sparkle to the kitchen.

STORAGE & STYLE

The main bathroom maintained its existing footprint, which included a narrow vanity and sink, but the custom-designed cabinets maximized the amount of cubic footage and storage capacity for toiletries and extra linens. The conversation-starting, black-andwhite hexagon floor tile is a casual nod to the era of the home, and provides the basis to incorporate yet another opportunity for colour.

While it is true that styles are constantly evolving, it is important to design with function and form in mind. When styles change, or your tastes evolve, you can buy new cushion covers, swap out the rug, the accessories (even have your cabinets re-painted) but as long as the layout works, you will always have a home that is equal parts stylish and functional, no matter the square footage.

SOURCES

CUSTOM CABINETRY: Designed by Sodapop design, built by Colclo Custom Woodworking; LIGHT FIXTURES: Wayfair; FLOORS: Maple Sandstone; PAINT: Cabinets Chantilly Lace & Flint, WALLS: Wickham Gray, Benjamin Moore

Cynthia Soda is owner, principal interior designer of Soda Pop Design Inc., a multi-disciplinary interior design firm providing complete custom renovation and design services for residential and commercial clients throughout the GTA. Soda Pop Design Inc. focuses on merging the client’s lifestyle, personality and architecture to create customized, liveable luxury. sodapopdesign.ca Instagram: @ csodapop, Twitter: @sodapopdesign

SHARE  

Featured Products


The National Home Show & Canada Blooms 2018 - ReCap

National Home Show & Canada Blooms 2018 – ReCap

Latest News


National Home Show & Canada Blooms 2018 – ReCap

RENO & DECOR Magazine presented “Design Intervention”

Rebecca Hay – RENO & DECOR booth designer

I thoroughly enjoyed designing RENO & DECOR’s – Design Intervention booth this year for the National Home Show.

Inspired by lakeside living, the booth was a unique “cottagey” space with shiplap walls, comfortable and classy furnishings and great colourful decor items like handcrafted cottage themed pillows. The summer’s night sky mural and charming check bedroom walls added unique touches typical of a lux Muskoka retreat.

Thank you to all the wonderful people who came in to enjoy our little cottage and talk design!


Winners of the Contests:

  • The Velux skylight and installation – Maria T of Mississauga
  • A 2 hour in-home design consultation with Rebecca Hay – Bethany L of Toronto
  • A gift card and bench from UpCountry – Sandra S of Toronto



Thanks to all the designers that participated in Design Intervention:


RENO & DECOR would like to thank the following sponsors of Design Intervention:


SHARE  

Featured Products


The National Home Show & Canada Blooms

The National Home Show & Canada Blooms – March 9-18

Latest News


The National Home Show & Canada Blooms – March 9-18

Enercare Centre, Exhibition Place
100 Princes’ Blvd., Toronto, ON

RENO & DECOR Magazine presents:

“Design Intervention”

From March 9 – 18, 2018 at the National Home Show, visit RENO & DECOR to have all of your Design and Decor concerns put to rest. Design Intervention runs every day from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. On-hand will be a host of design and decor experts along with your favourite R&D contributors offering free 15-minute consultations. Be sure to bring along your photos, samples and floor plans to ensure you get the most out of your appointment.


Rebecca Hay – RENO & DECOR booth designer

Celebrated as one of Canada’s rising industry leaders, Toronto designer Rebecca Hay has a diverse portfolio ranging from luxurious private residences to large scale commercial projects both in Toronto and nation wide.

With a focus on exceptional quality, Rebecca Hay Designs offers a full range of interior design services, specializing in luxury residential. Rebecca’s designs infuse old with new, creating a signature blend of traditional and contemporary. An extensive network of resources and partnerships allow Rebecca and her team to deliver outstanding, hands-on service, and beautifully creative solutions that bring their clients’ visions to life. In addition to her residential design work, Rebecca and her team create award-winning sales pavilions for some of the top home builders in the GTA.

Rebecca Hay Designs – National Home Show/RENO & DECOR Booth inspired by classic and casual lakeside living.

Rebecca Hay Designs is pleased to announce we will be providing the design creation for the upcoming Design Intervention booth #4118 at the National Home Show.

Muskoka inspired and naturally nautical, I based the RENO & DECOR booth’s decor scheme on this classic summer home aesthetic. We have incoproated walls in painted white shiplap to add textural interest while creating a relaxed cottage living atmosphere. The crisp white walls will be balanced by the soft and varied wood tones of the furniture which was all selected from our furniture sponsor this year UpCountry and added in some fun custom hand printed pillows by Cottage Cloth which emphasize the nautical theme and easy going vibe.

We created these outdoor living spaces by adding a rich night sky mural provided by Ruth Baker Design and paired it with outdoor furnishings to simulate lakeside summer living. A custom “boathouse” bar was designed to create an outdoor entertaining zone, built by Pure Kitchens and paired with sleek black stone counters from Select Granite and a luxe faucet from Watermarks. In addition to comfortable indoor/outdoor living and entertaining, we wanted to include a bedroom vignette. With a buffalo check pattern created by Peacock Living, the walls are graphic, bold and fun.

The booth showcases a glimpse into lakeside living at it’s best.

Come visit me and the team while at the National Home Show this March and get design inspired!


On Monday, March 13 @ 2pm and Friday, March 16 @ 2pm – be sure to catch Rebecca on stage along with Kate Davidson and Linda Mazur as part of RENO & DECOR’s “Designer Panel”. The panel will be discussing “Realities Of A Reno”

Regardless of the size of your project or the footprint of your space, creating  a beautiful and luxurious aesthetic in our homes can be accomplished with a well laid out plan.  Style and luxury is not determined by the size of your space, but the design.  We can garner inspiration by all that we see, but realism is always necessary when renovating, not only about the space you’re working with but also your budget.  A good design can deliver all that your heart desires while creating for you a wonderfully luxurious, relaxing and inviting home that reflects your individuality and needs for years to come.

If you’re considering an upcoming renovation, join GTA designers Linda Mazur, Rebecca Hay, Kate Davidson at the National Home Show stage, where this panel of designers will be discussing how to make the most of your upcoming home renovations without compromising on luxury, style or functionality.  They will take you through the key aspects of renovating, share their top renovation strategies as well as fave kitchen, bath and home products to consider including in your homes in 2018.  Get inspired and reno ready in 2018!


Design Intervention appearance schedule:

For updated designer appearance schedules, please keep checking back here.

Friday, March 9 = 11 pm – 1 pm

Saturday, March 10 = 11 am – 3:30 pm

Friday, March 16 = 3 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 11 am – 2 pm

Sunday, March 18 = 1 pm – 4 pm

Saturday, March 10 = 3:30 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 2:30 pm – 6 pm

Sunday, March 18 = 11 am – 1 pm

Sunday, March 11 = 2 pm – 5 pm

Monday, March 12 = 2:30 pm – 5 pm

Wednesday, March 14 = 11 am – 5 pm

Sunday, March 18 = 2 pm – 5 pm

Friday, March 9 = 1 pm – 5 pm

Tuesday, March 13 = 11 am – 3:30 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 11 am – 2:30 pm

Friday, March 9 = 11 am – 3 pm

Friday, March 9 = 5 pm – 6:30 pm

Tuesday, March 13 = 12 pm – 2 pm

Friday, March 16 = 4 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 6 pm – 8 pm

Sunday, March 11 – 1 pm – 3 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 11 am – 1:30 pm

Monday, March 12 = 12:30 am – 4 pm

Sunday, March 18 = 11am – 2 pm

Sunday, March 11 = 11 am – 2 pm

Wednesday, March 14 = 11 am – 1:30 pm

Friday, March 16 = 11 am – 3 pm

Sunday, March 11 = 11 am – 1 pm

Saturday, March 10 = 11 am – 3 pm

Sunday, March 11 = 12:30 pm – 4:40 pm

Tuesday, March 13 = 3 pm – 5:30 pm

Friday, March 16 = 3 pm – 5:30 pm

Sunday, March 18 = 2 pm – 4 pm

Thursday, March 15 = 2 pm – 6 pm

Friday, March 16 = 11 am – 3 pm

Sunday, March 11 = 2 pm – 4:30 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 2 pm – 4 pm

Saturday, March 10 = 2:30 pm – 6 pm

Monday, March 12 = 11 am – 2:30 pm

Wednesday, March 14 = 1:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Thursday, March 15 = 12 pm – 4 pm

Saturday, March 17 = 2 pm – 6 pm

Saturday, March 10 = 11 am – 3:30 pm

Thursday, March 15 = 11 am – 2 pm

Sunday, March 18 = 11 am – 2 pm


RENO & DECOR would like to thank the following sponsors of Design Intervention:

See you at the show!


SHARE  

Featured Products


GTA Home & Reno Show 2018 - ReCap

GTA Home & Reno Show 2018 – ReCap

Latest News


GTA Home & Reno Show 2018 – ReCap


RENO & DECOR Magazine presents “Design Intervention

Visitors to the Design Intervention booth were treated to a combination of design advice and inspiration. The advice was courtesy of our host of design experts that were on hand to provide free 15 minute consultations. The inspiration was provided by the amazing booth space designed by Kate Davidson of Kate & Co Design Inc.. Using furnishings and accessories from Casalife and custom murals from Ruth Baker Design, Kate was able to create a beautiful, open space full of colour.


I took a different design approach when designing this years booth for Reno & Decor and created one space two ways. As a designer I like to work with colour and textures and tried to showcase how designing with colour can effect how we interpret our living spaces. Working with Casalife furnishings we created two cohesive looks from one living, dining and work spaces. One space was more moody with richer dark tones, while the other side was created using softer visual materials creating a light and airy feel.”

kateandcodesign.com

INSTAGRAM: kateandcodesigninc

 

 



Thanks to all the designers that participated in Design Intervention:


RENO & DECOR Would like to thank the following sponsors of DESIGN INTERVENTION:


SHARE  

Featured Products


Design 101: Function Before Form

Design 101: Function Before Form

Latest News


Design 101: Function Before Form

by Cynthia Soda
photography: Stephani Buchman

The building blocks of design always begin with function, beauty is just the cherry on top

Let’s face it: we’re all drawn to beautiful things. I personally have a knack for coveting the most luxurious item in a store—not unlike many people I know. However, committing the faux-pas of purchasing that very beautiful, very expensive item, only to find that it won’t fit into your space, is something we designers use our trained eye to guard against.

CART BEFORE THE HORSE

Selecting finishes, furniture and accessories is inconsequential if the space lacks function. It’s heartbreaking when I field requests from potential clients, who are halfway through a renovation, asking for help on picking paint colours and cabinet-door styles amidst missed opportunities to add value through sightlines, accent features, or integrated storage. It is the “putting lipstick on a pig” idiom—you can dress it up all you want but the main issues remain unresolved.

TIP FOR YOUNG FAMILIES:

Coffee tables with drawers to store children’s colouring books and crayons, or ottomans with hidden toy storage, work for families, as well as quartz countertops do to protect against stains. For flooring, try wire-brushed engineered hardwood, or even waterproof, scratch-resistant vinyl-click flooring with that wood look.

FIRST THINGS FIRST

Function is at the forefront of every great designer’s mind. It’s absolutely essential to plan with people and purpose in mind. Once the needs of the client and issues of a space are identified at the outset, every decision made stems from there. Empty nesters, who travel frequently and love to collect and display art, have different needs from a couple with young children and weekly extracurricular activities to attend.

PRETTY DYSFUNCTIONAL

Interior design is constantly evolving. Styles change, but function is much more difficult (read: expensive) to modify once it’s been laid out. Sightlines are one of the most important considerations to make. Imagine sitting down to an elegant dinner, and from the table your guests can see the powder room door is open with a glorious view of the toilet. Or think of the parent making dinner, having to run back and forth from the kitchen to the family room in order to keep watch over their toddler playing beyond the wall dividing the spaces. Paint colours, wallpaper and fabrics (no matter how pretty) won’t fix these issues. With a focus on layout and function at the beginning, each of these finishes would enhance the spaces they’re in, instead of acting as a distraction from more serious, underlying issues.

TIP:

To stand the test of time, big purchases like the sofa should be upholstered in a durable, easily cleanable and beautiful finish. Alendel, Maxwell and JF, among other companies, offer versatile, simple-to-clean-and-to-care-for fabrics, which have been (or have the option to be) treated with inherent stain-repellents.

LONG-TERM SUCCESS

When designers put together furniture concepts for a space, each piece is carefully considered in order for all parts to contribute to the whole. Even if it’s not in the clients’ budget to purchase everything at once, they will have a road map to follow in order to build upon their design over time, piece by piece. You can change the cushions, the rug, the accessories when styles change, but as long as the layout works, you will always have a home that is equal parts stylish and functional.

CYNTHIA SODA is owner and principal interior designer of Soda Pop Design Inc., a multi-disciplinary interior design firm providing complete custom renovation and design services for residential and commercial clients throughout the GTA.

Soda Pop Design focuses on merging the client’s lifestyle, personality and architecture to create customized liveable luxury.

SodaPopDesign.ca
Instagram @CSodaPop
Twitter @SodaPopDesign


SHARE  

Featured Products


Function Before Form

Function Before Form

Latest News


Function Before Form

by Cynthia Soda

As designers, we are drawn to beautiful things. It’s easy to covet the most luxurious item in a store and online shopping makes constant temptation effortless. However, purchasing that very beautiful — very expensive item — only to find that it doesn’t fit your space is something designers are trained to guard against. It is a tug-of-war to distill and restrain and to put function first.

Assuring you meet the function requirements ensures that form solutions offer maximum enjoyability.

Selecting finishes, furniture and accessories is inconsequential if the space lacks function. Designers add value to the decision-making process well before thought is given to aesthetics. It can be disappointing when clients are halfway through a renovation and we step in to help with paint colours and cabinet door styles and see missed opportunities to add value through space configuration, sightlines, accent features, or integrated storage.

Function is at the forefront of every good designer’s mind and it’s absolutely essential to plan with people and purpose in mind. Every decision stems from the needs of the client and issues of space. Empty nesters who travel frequently and love to collect and display art have different needs than a couple with young children and weekly extracurricular activities to attend.

As a designer, it is essential to understand the clients, their current needs and their future needs. It is also important to understand the value of the space and the amount of investment that a space can withstand relative to the value of the house.

Implementing a program of requirements is a good idea, regardless of project size. This provides a basis of communication with the client and is a starting point for decision-making. Styles change, but function is much more difficult and expensive to modify once walls are built and doors are installed.

A few of the most important considerations are as follows:

Usage

Understanding behaviour is the job of a designer. How do people behave in a space? What is it being used for? How will they use the space over time? The difference between art and design is the user requirement that design demands.

Sightlines

Sightlines are one of the most important considerations to be made. Imagine sitting down to an elegant dinner and from the table your guests can see the powder room door is open with a glorious view of the toilet. Or think of the parent making dinner having to run back and forth from the kitchen to the family room in order to keep watch over their toddler playing beyond the wall dividing the spaces.

Circulation

Providing for appropriate circulation is important. Minimum distances around islands, in bathrooms, in front of appliances and around furniture is an important part of avoiding frustration. Circulation also affects the future usability of the space. It is always recommended that designs reflect the concept aging in place and thought is given to how someone might navigate the space with mobility aids.

Reach Distances and Ergonomics

There are standards in the interior design industry and for good reason. Years of research dictate cabinet heights, countertop heights, corridor widths, lighting heights and other specifications. While challenging these can be fun and provide inspiration to the designer, ultimately function must be respected and the user requirement is paramount.

Maintainability

It is easy for interiors to look great in photos. However, cleaning, maintenance and durability should be considered before any decisions are made. A lot of problems can be avoided with time dedicated to the research of what a product or finish offers to a client. Appropriateness of use is extremely important. For example, in our cold climate designing finishes and storage that withstand snowy, salty boots and bulky winter coats at the front entry is necessary.

CYNTHIA SODA is owner and principal interior designer of Soda Pop Design Inc., a multi-disciplinary interior design firm providing complete custom renovation and design services for residential and commercial clients throughout the GTA.

Soda Pop Design focuses on merging the client’s lifestyle, personality and architecture to create customized liveable luxury.

SodaPopDesign.ca
Instagram @CSodaPop
Twitter @SodaPopDesign



SHARE  

Featured Products


Designing for Comfort

Designing for Comfort

Latest News


Designing for Comfort

by Cynthia Soda

Ergonomics is concerned with the relationship between users and objects. It sets parameters based on scientific study for designing and arranging things people use so that the people and things interact most efficiently and safely. Practical examples of the application of ergonomic study include standard working heights of surfaces and that are comfortable (or uncomfortable) such as the desk chair in your office. We, as professional designers, almost intrinsically know how to apply these principles to our clients’ environments. The thing is, if everything around you fits and works with you, you don’t think about it. It’s when it suddenly doesn’t sit right, and your hand starts cramping at your workstation or your counters are too high, do you notice it. Designers have a distinct responsibility to all of our clients to think about the comfort of the end user.

When we set out to create functional and beautiful spaces for our clients, we are starting down a path that will ultimately lead to the optimization of our clients’ well-being and overall satisfaction. Having said that, the practical facet of designing for comfort only touches on one aspect of our design process and applies to everyone. It’s the emotional aspect of comfort that truly sets our designs apart for our clients. If you’ve created a space that works perfectly but evokes little to no emotion from the user, what fun is that? Enter — “why I love my job”. In a world that is constantly evolving, where there is perpetual change, it forces us to dig deeper. My clients LOVE to scour online resources like Houzz and Pinterest to send me ideas of what they like, dislike and covet for their space. They also have their own collections and interests that need to be incorporated one way or another and it is our duty to ensure that those cherished “things” are thought about and incorporated. After all, home is where the heart is, right?

I remember joking with my husband after we had moved into our first home together that home is really where your stuff is. It was that first feeling of visiting our parents in what suddenly became “their house” and it was time to go “home” that stuck with me. Suddenly we were without the comforts of home. We didn’t have everything that was ours at our fingertips. We suddenly felt more at ease in our own space where we could make our own decisions and mistakes and be surrounded by the colours and things that told our story. As designers, we need to tell our clients’ story through our filter. That’s why they hire us. If they knew exactly what they wanted and how they wanted it, they wouldn’t pick up the phone in the first place.

An important skill that we develop early on in our career is to listen, observe and pay attention to nuances in order to ensure that at the end of the day, our clients feel great walking through their door. They have a sense of pride of place and all the comforts of home are at the ready and incorporated in an efficient but meaningful way. The ultimate result is a well designed space that reflects our client’s personality and ensures both physical and emotional comfort for years to come.

CYNTHIA SODA is the Owner and Principal Interior Designer of Soda Pop Design Inc., a multi-disciplinary interior design firm providing complete custom renovation and design services for residential and commercial clients throughout the GTA.

sodapopdesign.ca


SHARE  

Featured Products