Primed By Design | Milton Interior Decorator

Lofty space needs grander entrance, Best Laid Plans by Donna Jean MacKinnon, July 24, 2008

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Sherry’s 1,535-square-foot condo has a loft feeling, according to interior designer Sharyn Kastelic,

“I love the spaciousness and the barn doors,” says Kastelic, owner of Primed by Design Inc.

However, there are a few design flaws. A unit this large ought to have a gracious entrance. As it is, people walk through the kitchen to the living room.

Kastelic advises enlarging the foyer by removing the bit of den wall, left of the door. “I would do something interesting with the floor, like setting a large circular mosaic lime­stone medallion into maple hard­wood in the centre of the enlarged foyer. Then I’d centre a contemporary crystal chandelier over the medallion,” she says.

Kastelic also advises building a large storage closet along the ensuite wall and a chest and a mirror against the exterior wall. Next to the front door, there’s also space for a bench with an artwork above.

Kastelic suggests using the long hall for a picture gallery and directing track lighting at the art in order to draw attention from the kitchen.

Because Sherry and her husband do not take occupancy until next summer, they have time to consider finishes and detailing. Kastelic recommends dark wood for the kitchen cabinets and repeating the limestone mosaic on the backsplash.

“I’d also install limestone tile on the washroom floors for consistency and flow,” she says.

Sherry’s large kitchen is ideal for entertaining guests while she cooks. She just has to add three perching stools with comfortable backs.

Sherry has ample space for a six-foot expandable dining table outside and parallel to the kitchen door. She can easily keep six chairs at the table and use an extra one as a desk chair. There’s also room for another dining chair against the short wall opposite the terrace. Kastelic recommends reconfiguring the closet that opens into the bedroom and living room. She would get rid of the doors and eliminate the partition and then build new walls by continuing the ensuite wall and the dining room wall until they intersect.

“This will leave a triangular niche, in the corner, that can be outfitted with glass shelves and accent lighting. Sherry can use it to display a collection of ceramics,” Kastelic says. “Then she can use the open closet, in the bedroom, for a computer desk and home office.”

In keeping with a loft concept, Kastelic urges Sherry to keep the living room furniture to a minimum. This will enable her to turn the long living room wall into a smashing feature. She suggests covering the wall with a natural-looking faux stone veneer cladding, from Erth Coverings (

She would also install a low-profile electric fireplace on the “stone” wall, flanked by simple low bookcases in dark wood. At the dining room end of the ersatz stone wall, Kastelic would like to see a large colourful work of art, highlighted with track lighting.

Sherry has plenty of space for a seven-foot sofa, two swivel club chairs and a 42-inch round glass coffee table in front of the fireplace. There is also space for a console table against the back of the sofa.

“I would anchor this grouping with a wool area rug (8-by-10-feet) in a neutral colour,” Kastelic says. “I’d also add throw cushions and accessories to reinforce the colours in the dining room art.”

Besides worrying about oddly angled walls, Sherry writes she has two other concerns.

“We do not want the TV in the living room and I need to find a good location for an upright piano,” she says, adding that the triangular area marked “work” will make an ideal piano room.

Kastelic advises centering the piano, in the triangle under a classy pendant light fixture. She would enliven the space with a large plant in the sharp, glassed-in corner and a tall torchiere in the opposite corner.

Kastelic recommends using the second bedroom as a multi-purpose space furnished with a sofa bed, large ottoman and small end tables with swing-arm lamps above. All this will fit along the exterior wall, facing a television on the bathroom wall.

Note: The Furniture Layout Plan on the right was not included in the original newspaper article.

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