A Dream Home for a Single Mom & Daughter




Living Room sans wall art and accessories


This past October I began working for a new client, a single mom and her young daughter, who had recently purchased an outdated and neglected 70's sidesplit in a suburban neighbourhood north of the city.  After taking possession of the house in February of last year she hired a contractor to go in and update the entire house with new flooring, new baseboard, new windows, new kitchen and bathrooms and everywhere a fresh coat of paint.  When I first met the client this past September the work had all been completed and she was in need of some help to get the entire house outfitted and furnished from top to bottom - she'd be starting from scratch and wouldn't be bringing anything with them to this house except their clothes.  She works full-time and was looking for someone she could hand the entire project over to so she wouldn't have to do anything except give approvals when necessary (and write cheques of course!).

This project would be a departure for me because normally I would be involved in the renovation process as well but in this case I was coming on board at the completion of the renovations - making any changes to what had been done to date was not an option so my mission was to work with what was there.  Not even so much as a new coat of paint, truly a first for me!!!  But I was up for the challenge.  An entire house from scratch, 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, mud-room, foyer, living room, dining room, eat-in kitchen and family room all  be completely furnished and made ready for mom and daughter to just move-in and begin a new life in their dream home.   I would have about 2 months to do the planning and sourcing/ordering main pieces and then another 2 months to do all the remaining sourcing, purchasing and have everything delivered and installed.   With a very modest budget and a short time-line, I could do a few select custom pieces but the bulk of the purchasing would have to come from readily available or in-stock sources.  We originally had hoped for an early February move-in but due to several delays in deliveries (and practically nothing being 'in-stock' at any retailer!!!) we're now scheduled for completion and move-in at the end of this month.  Its been a purchasing marathon.

The past 2 weeks at the house have been a flurry of activity with multiple deliveries of things that were ordered months ago and deliveries of all the things I've been purchasing and acquiring since early December.  New lighting is going up, window coverings are being installed, furniture is being put in place and very quickly this house that has sat empty for the past year has suddenly starting looking like a home and the neighbours are becoming very curious. : )  With so many rooms to pull together there's a million little details to attend to and dozens and dozens of last minute purchases to make.  Over the next two weeks I've still got some small miscellaneous pieces to buy along with wall art a couple of runners, some bedding and some accessories (ok I've got a LOT to do yet).  When filling an entire home from scratch for real people to actually live in (not a show home) the list seems endless..............but I'm starting to see the sparkly light at the end of this long winding road.

Inevitably, the more effort you put into trying to wrap-up a project,,,the faster things unravel.  It seems like with each newly delivered item, there seems to be a newly delivered issue that comes with it that needs to be dealt with.........


Family Room with custom armoire,,,and still no final selection on area carpet.  Carpet option no.2 will be delivered tomorrow for approval.  Fingers crossed.



The Mudroom....I just found these little treasures today, a Williamsburg style hall bench with coat hooks and storage under the seat, the basket is authentically really old and weathered, I love it.  I'll pull the rest of the room together around these.



The Dining Room,,,the chandelier was partially installed today.  The table was scheduled to arrive between 12:30 and 3:30 this afternoon,,,,,,,,its 9pm and it still hasn't shown up and no-one even bothered to call.  This was the second attempt at a delivery, the table originally arrived mid-January but was damaged and a replacement was ordered, which was supposed to have been delivered today.  So tomorrow when I'm not as %$#% mad,,,,I'll make some calls and try and find out what the problem is this time.



The Guest Bedroom...still needs the rest of the bedding and a night table.  Even though we had the smallest amount of the budget allocated to this room, its become my absolute favorite.  Given carte blanch to do whatever I wanted in here,,,,once I found the antique iron beds, everything else seemed to come together with such ease.





Remember this sketch I posted here.......



Well here it is almost all completed.  This is the little girl's room - the custom headboard and skirt were delivered last Friday, the headboard still needs to be mounted up on the wall.  Her Mom ordered a regular height box spring which you can see when used with a pillow top mattress makes this bed a little too high for kids so the box spring is being exchanged for a low profile model.




So stay tuned for lots more updates and all the before and after shots coming soon!



All Photos:  Carol Reed