Meet the Designer


How clever is her logo?

The very best thing about my day job is the teenagers. And then they grow up and into their gifts and talents and, sometimes, if we are very lucky, we get to see where their journeys take them. Such was the case this past weekend at IDS2013, when BMad and I got to see and chat with Jess Tasker, talented owner and designer at Trunk Studio Design.

It was great to see her after 10 years (!) and to see her truly beautiful designs.
She has had a lot of great press lately and deservedly so.


Here is what her website has to say about her beautiful work:

Trunk Studio blends the clean lines of the Danish Modern furniture tradition with a new Canadian aesthetic. Designer Jess Tasker works with Nova Scotian woodshops to ensure her designs transition seamlessly from paper to their functional form. Her designs are inspired by Canadian culture and landscape, while also incorporating aspects of her Danish ancestry. Trunk Studio was accepted into the Studio North section of the Interior Design Show (IDS 2013) where the Station Chair, Scout Side Table and a ‘yet-to-be-unveiled’ Toque Wall Rack will make their debut on the Canadian and International design scenes.

Designs are subtle, yet creative as she plays with angles and mixes wood species. Pieces must be aesthetically pleasing but also functional and long-lasting. Much like hand-stitched quilts, the character shines through in the details. In other words, the patterns put on display by the wood grain and the design elements engaged. By working with small woodshops to produce her furniture, she is able to insure that pieces are built to a high standard of quality. Trunk Studio pieces are essentially functional works of art.


The furniture is gorgeous to look at, but what you can’t tell from the photos is how beautifully it is made; the quality of the joinery and the finish of the wood is divine. The pieces are sturdy and durable, as well as lovely to look at. I wish you could feel how silky and perfect the finish is. I wish you could feel how comfy the chairs are!
The craftsmanship is exacting and each piece really is a work of art.



I love the way the furniture hearkens back to Danish mid-century design; the blue fabric is even a re-issue of Danish mid-century fabric. If I were buying, I’d get a Station Chair with upholstery made from 100% wool blankets manufactured by a P.E.I. family — talk about Canadian!





This past Saturday, BMad and I spent a very enjoyable day at IDS2013, the International Design Show.
There was so very much to see and I wore out my phone battery with taking photos! I am still feeling giddy and dizzy with ideas and inspiration. Can’t wait to share some of them with you here.

To begin, I found some very exciting paint options (Oh, how I love to paint up flea market finds!), including a 102 year-old company of which I had never heard before. The woman at the General Paint booth was very helpful, informative and generous. She was so very passionate about paint– I felt I’d found a kindred spirit!


BMad’s book– a promotional gift from General Paint.

When she learned that BMad is an artist, she gave him a gorgeous book in which the company’s trend forecasts for 2013 are detailed. What you cannot tell from my photos (he loaned me the book for blogging purposes and I am loathe to give it back– it’s so very pretty!), is that the various paint swatches are textured to mimic the finish of the paint and the surfaces on which one might use that particular finish. Isn’t that smart?


I am excited to try out this new brand of paint on some upcoming projects.
In the meantime, here are some of the stunning images from the book.

Each trend section includes some inspiration photos. This jelly mould illustration makes me swoon!

Each trend section includes some inspiration photos. This jelly mould illustration makes me swoon!

Here is the trend, "Refine," taken in part from the  jelly mould inspiration.

Here is the trend, “Refine,” taken in part from the jelly mould inspiration. Love these colours.

The inspiration for the "Rebirth" trend.

The inspiration for the “Rebirth” & “Renew” trends.

I love this inspiration image for the "Renew" trend.

I love this inspiration image for the “Renew” trend.

The "Renew" palette.

The “Renew” palette. My favourite– am dying to use some of these!

This is my favourite image in the book. Breathtaking, no?



I guard my Sundays jealously. Ferociously, really.
I like to start off the week/end the weekend quietly.


From September to June, my Sundays afternoons are given over to  Girding My Loins.
I mean, Getting Ready For The Week Ahead.
Part of the prep is the ritual of having a restful soak.


Since we (finally!) finished our bathroom reno last year, I can really indulge.
Something that smells pretty, something that looks pretty , a soothing cuppa and a good read are all part of the ritual.



While I was at Ikea recently, getting sucked into buying a bunch of pretty things I really don’t need, er, picking up napkins, I fell for this adorable bedding. I had already snagged a pair of cushion covers in a similar fabric a few months back and they make me smile every time I see them. Clearly I had to have the pretty linen bedding, too!


It’s bright, it’s cheerful, it would go a long way toward bringing the guest room into the 21st century. Except it looked wretched with the bedskirt (I totally forgot about the bedskirt when I bought the bedding…). No worries, I knew just what to do– I would whip up a bedskirt from some of the pretty linen tea-towelling they have at Designer Fabric.
In red. Perfect.

Except the red was sold out.
Which meant I had to sacrifice the pretty table runner I’d made over Christmas and turn it into a bedskirt.
It looks just as I’d hoped– bright and homey.


Of course, I also needed new toss cushion covers. I made them out of fabric I’ve been saving to cover a mid-century chair I plan to put in our TV room when it gets remodelled. One day.
(Don’t worry– I still have enough to cover the chair!)
The silly bird print looks perfect with the sunny polka dots.

The trouble is, I like the way the bed looks (and it does, admittedly, look better in person than in the photos), but the room does not gel any more.  I am all for a little design tension, but this is just off. I am going to have to go back to the drawing board, I think. Which is sad because I love the polka dots.

Fear not, Gentle Reader– I have a plan!

I Get Antsy…

…if I haven’t had a project for a while.
Now that I am not wrapping presents and decking the halls, I look around our little house and wonder what I can get my mitts on in the way of a project….

Obviously, ripping out the kitchen, adding a pantry and screened-in room off the back of the house, replacing/fixing our front porch, resurfacing the driveway, building a new garage and (finally) getting the front yard landscaped are all worthy and deserving projects that MUST be tackled. The sooner, the better, really. But, since the budget and the work schedule cannot accommodate those projects, I decided to give the guest room a bit of a facelift.


I like our guest room a lot. It is a good size (though it has no closet), the bed is really comfy and it is home to some favourite antiques, a combination of heirlooms and my own thrifty scores. I filled it up with my usual mix of inherited bits (vintage suitcase to store my belts, my grandmother’s cedar chest, M’s great-grandfather’s Windsor chair), salvaged bits (antique iron finials, some chairs decoupaged for a school play,a piece of wrapping paper framed above the bed, cards & postcards framed), and some cheap and cheerful antique store scores (the flaking hoosier that holds my handbags, the bedstead– half of which remains in the basement because I need to build a better frame to support the mattress). And I was happy with it. I made the duvet cover and the bedskirt, as well as the curtain (not shown) and I really, really liked the whole look for a very long time. But I am a bit tired of the bedding. The bedding is well over 10 years old now and I am not so into the toile look anymore, even though it works well with the rest of the room.


I decided it was time to freshen up a bit! Stay tuned to see how it worked out.

Light Me To Bed


For the final instalment in this week’s candlelight theme, let me invite you into my boudoir. Hee!

In the fall, I was given a truly lovely gift: a little votive candle from Diptyque. It is, in short, a luxury of the highest order. For good reason: it smells divine! The scent is lavender– perfect for the bedroom because it aids in relaxation and makes one sleepy. As someone who does not fall asleep easily, I find that my luxury candle has become a necessity. When the votive size had been spent, I made sure to replace it, splurging on the full-sized version this time.
It sits alongside a photo of my beloved, departed “Men” and whatever book I am reading.


I love my recently-acquired nightly ritual of lighting the candle, filling the room with lavender scent and then cozying up in bed.


Have a lovely, restful, candlelight-filled weekend.

Life’s Little Luxuries


Glossy magazines.

A good ol’ gossip session with a girlfriend.

A satisfying, engrossing (if not overly-literary…) read.

Truly yummy wine.

Snuggles with a cat (or three…).

Time to oneself.

These are life’s little luxuries.
Here is another one: candlelight.
If I had my way (and I often do!), I would light our home solely with candles.


In the deep, dark depths of our northern winter, I thought I’d bring you some images of  a few of  the candles that keep our house warm & glowing.

On Collections, III


In the end, although I like some design tension in a vignette, I decided to go with a soothing, cohesive look when displaying my little collection of glass stoppers.(After all, M does call the living room my “Zen Room”…) The pretty bowl from West Elm has a floral pattern and colour that are echoed in the Domino book, and the curved lines of the candle holders also tie in with the organic, curvy lines of the stoppers, bowl, and patterns. Of course, some flickering candle light adds sparkle, and that is never a bad thing, is it?


I was fooling around with the settings on my camera and ended up with these pale, sort of washed-out photos, with only the aqua of the book showing up in colour.  I kinda like these shots, as it turns out…

delovleydelightfulHappy Birthday to my step-mum and Happy Friday, everyone!
Why not try (re)arranging a few collection-based vignettes at your house this weekend?

On Collections, II

In order to display my pretty glass bottle stoppers, I have tried interspersing them in my mantel vignettes, but they just look a bit lost and I worry that the light of my life, the very BUSY little cat whose name starts with P, will knock them off during one of her illicit forays into the mantel-scape on her way to perch on top of the living room armoire…

BUT, another moment of magpie impulse led me to acquire a lovely bowl, edged in my favourite aqua shade.
Serendipitously, it is perfect for  displaying my hoard, er, collection of stoppers!

Final vignette reveal to come. 😉