Name: Eloïse and Jose
Location: Verdun; Montreal, Canada
Size: 1,400 square feet
Years lived in: 1 year; Rented
It’s always impressive to enter a big, open, high-ceilinged living space, filled with huge windows, abundant natural light, and a massive brick wall. Despite these delightful architectural features, it could be quite challenging to make this type of room feel cozy, balanced, and comfortable, but Jose and Eloïse achieved it by simply using a few helpful tricks.
Since vast rooms can handle larger-scale furniture, Jose and Eloïse defined two zones in which they set up bulky pieces, such as the gigantic pine table that can seat up to 12 people in the dining area. Along the table, they placed a large buffet that they found on Kijiji (the eBay-owned Canadian competitor to Craigslist). They comfortably filled the living room with a large L-shaped sectional, a big coffee table, and a massive rug to add softness. They filled vertical height in the space with a huge bookshelf on one wall and strategically-organized art on the opposite one. A tall mirror is used as an accent piece with height that visually occupies the vertical space between the kitchen counter and the bathroom door. A few potted plants, two big speakers, and frames on each wall finish the arrangement.
Their style is eclectic, and they’ve gathered pieces from different style and era. “Kijiji is definitely our friend,” says Eloïse.
Eloïse is in wine accessories, and the store where she works supplies a lot of restaurants with glasses and cellars. Jose is the co-owner and executive chef at Anabel, a trendy wine bar located in the Mile-End. They both love to entertain, and their big, open space is amazing for that.
Our Style: We just get things we like, without necessarily sticking to a style or trend. But if we want to label it, we could possibly say that our style is eclectic.
Inspiration: We don’t really have an inspiration. It took a while to get all the pieces together because we love to shop and look around until we find the perfect piece. We got most of our stuff on Kijiji, too. Also, we’re not ashamed to say that we shop at HomeSense and Ikea regularly. You can always find good deals and quality products.
Favorite Element: We both love the bookshelf in the dining room and the gallery wall. The bookshelf is filled with our cookbook collection and [a small sample] of Jose’s Jordan collection, and the gallery wall shows pictures we took ourselves. We also love to hang out on the balcony, it’s always very quiet and sunny from noon until sunset. Also, you don’t see it in the pictures because they were taken in the summer, but we got an 11-foot-high Christmas tree. It looked majestic!
Biggest Challenge: The space itself was our biggest challenge. Painting the walls was a lot of work because of the 14-foot-high ceiling. Also, choosing a layout and finding the right furniture to fill up a big open space was a bit tricky.
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)
What Friends Say: We have friends and family over a lot, we have so much space for it and the open kitchen makes it great for entertaining. They’ve all seen the place change since we moved in and everybody is impressed with all the work we put in and how great it turned out.
Biggest Embarrassment: We didn’t want to take pictures of the walk-in and the bathroom. We didn’t do much to these rooms. They would require a big investment to make them to our taste. We don’t feel it’s really worth the costs since we don’t own the loft.
Proudest DIY: The table is one of our proudest DIY. It was painted in a dark color. We stripped it down to the natural wood finish. Also, putting up the gallery wall with our own pictures was a nice project.
Biggest Indulgence: The biggest indulgence was probably the paint and wallpaper, especially since we rent the place. Also, plants and flowers inside and on the balcony. We got great deals for everything else since we found most of it on Kijiji!
Best Advice: Ask for advice! We asked a lot of people around us and in hardware stores to make sure we were doing the right thing for the table and the gallery wall (not as easy as you’d think to put it up on a brick wall!).
Dream Sources: Apartment Therapy and other design blogs, food blogs.
PAINT & COLORS
- Sico paint: Hailstorm (6207-41), Freezing rain (6207-31), Grey drizzle (6207-21)
- Superfresco Easy wallpaper: Origin green (32-219) and Blue mountain (SR026597)
- Shoe rack: Ikea, found on Kijiji
- Decorations: HomeSense
- Couch: Ikea Karlstad found on Kijiji
- Rug: Ikea
- Table: found on Kijiji
- Chair: Ikea Poang
- Mirror and console: HomeSense
- Pine table: found on Kijiji
- 80-year-old chairs: from Eloise’s great-grandmother
- Buffet: found on Kijiji
- Chimney mantel: vintage, found on Kijiji
- Trinkets: from V de V
- Bedside tables: Ikea, found on Kijiji
- Mirrors: Ikea
- Console: Ikea, found on Kijiji
- Mirror: found on Kijiji
- Trinkets: HomeSense and Zara Home
- Lights: Ikea
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)