Design Therapy: Creating a Family-Friendly Home

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In today’s fast paced world, parents with children are living their lives differently than those of my generation. In my day, we had a separate living room for my parents to entertain and host their friends and colleagues.

This room was filled with silk and satin covered chairs, full and grand draperies and wood that glistened and shined, making it possible to see your reflection in it. We were forbidden to play in this room. Today, there is an abundance of beautiful, innovative and functional products to make your living spaces pleasing to the eye, yet durable for all ages. Here is a list of some of my favourite items to include in our family-friendly home:

#1 A multi-functional coffee table puts a whole new twist on the TV trays that I remember. These stylish sleek tables suit many homes. Their resistant finish makes them easy-to-clean and perfect for kids to colour, play or eat on.

#2 Window coverings have come a long way from the simple slat aluminum blinds. Honeycomb shades are a great option. They do not collect dust and are made from fabrics that are easy-to-clean. They can also come with a remote cordless operation system making them a safer alternative to traditional hanging chains.

#3 Wall-to -wall carpeting is not as common as it used to be. Innovative carpet squares allow you to easily assemble wall-to-wall custom rugs, or runners in any shape or size. This product is durable and is available in a myriad of colours and patterns. If a spill or mess happens, replace the square, not the whole carpet.

#4 Drawing on the walls is a thing of the past. Try magnetic wallpaper. It is considered a “green” product as the magnetic coating is made from non-toxic natural magnetic minerals used in dietary supplements.

#5 Using durable fabrics is key to the longevity of your upholstered furniture. Choose a tight weave fabric with no nap to ensure a snag-free surface. In addition to using a durable fabric, consider adding slip covers to your furniture. If it gets dirty, it can easily be washed at home or sent to the cleaners.

Written by Paul Semkuley

Paul Semkuley

Paul Semkuley, principal of re:source lifestyles, a Toronto-based Interior Stylist, combines his love of art, fashion and design to offer a unique decorating point of view. With an extensive client base in Toronto and the GTA, his firm incorporates a client’s existing collection of furniture and family treasures in unique and unpredictable ways.

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