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• It should be manufactured by a known and trusted company; • It should meet the criteria for a furniture piece with a certain functional purpose: the wardrobe has to be capacious and the coffee table, stable. The looks should not be paramount - think practicality; • It is important to make sure that the aging and distressing has been technologically correct. Architecture-wise, the prevailing style of such furniture is French Provincial. Provence style furniture has come a long and winding way. The style has started defining itself as far back as the end of the 16th Century and was fully developed by the mid1800s. Provence style furniture has a classic look yet an everyday feel and function: dining tables and chairs, beds, console tables, chests of drawers, and china cabinets.

Distressed and Aged Antique furniture has been the pride of many collectors for the last century. People like the feel of history in their homes, and what’s better to provide it than furniture that’s been around for centuries. Nevertheless, not everyone who likes the classic forms of the past had had the means of paying big bucks for them until some smart manufacturers came up



with a great idea of distressing or aging perfectly new pieces. Today, a furniture set that looks like something from the old times can be found in any modern furniture showroom. Yet, before looking for the most economic set, think of how long it is going to serve you and whether it will have the same splendid look after a few years of existence. When buying such a “fake antique”, use the following criteria:


To save time, woodworkers of the south of France would cover their furniture with regular oil-based paint without preliminary treatment. Long and hot summers in Provence made the paint fade and crackle – these were the beginnings of French Provincial style, initially as a local style and later, with the Cote d’Azure gaining popularity, the trademark of the South of France. It has been a few decades that many respectable designers around the world have started employing the technique of the old French furniture makers. They also complete the style with new elements and more modern features and boldly experiment with combining Provence with other styles. For example, Provence has put roots into Victorian style; it lives in piece with the purity of classic lines and, of course, can easily become an integral element of eclecticism. Distressed and aged furniture is a beautiful and fashionable way to improve your decor and demonstrate your unique taste.

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August 2013



BONSAI The word bonsai is Japanese for “a plant on a tray”. No matter what tree you want to reconstruct in your miniature, it has to be an absolute replica of its real outside counterpart. or people with New Age inclinations bonsai possesses special energy, capable of absorbing thoughts and feelings of the home inhabitants, and react to them in its own way. Its cosmic mission is to preserve the spiritual, maintain ties with Nature, and draw humans out of their obsession with things material. A bonsai tree that has lived in the home for a few years allegedly helps develop in its owner intuition, an ability to interpret dreams, and even foresee the future. Japanese say that taking care of your bonsai you gain the art of living in harmony with nature. Nevertheless, a hobby of growing a bonsai has positive influence even upon skeptics,



especially shut-ins, because it does not require too much getting out, time, or money. It is no worse a pastime than, let’s say, travel - in the sense that you will learn a lot while growing a bonsai tree. You can buy an expensive ready-made bonsai plant – or you can grow it from scratch so to speak. If you are patient enough to wait for the result for a few years, the tips below are for you. The first and most important step is planting a shortened tree cutting into a pot 8 to 9 cm in diameter and taking care of it. To shape the tree into the form you want, use special bonsai wire or any soft wire you have available. Carefully wind the wire around the trunk and branches as densely as possible to keep the plant flexible but prevent snapping. As your little tree becomes stronger, free it from this tight “girdle” and rewrap the wire a little looser so that the trunk does not get damaged. When the tree has acquired the needed shape, remove the wire permanently.


Pinching the branch tips and removing unwanted shoots during the strengthening period help shaping the plant. In the spring after the second year has passed cut the root of your bonsai tree by a third and transplant it into a special bonsai container – you can actually use any container with punched holes. Add soil and decorate with moss, miniature animal figures, or anything your imagination tells you. A bonsai requires regular watering while the soil is drying until the moment the soil is so saturated that the water starts oozing through the draining hole. Every third day spray the leaves with water and dust them. During warm months, your new plant will be happy to stay outside for a few hours. Make sure it gets uniform sunlight everywhere. Yet, try not to disturb your fussy plant in bad weather. Excessive heat or cold, as well as draughts, may damage even the most healthy bonsai plant.


Incredible Bathurst Manor backsplit on a huge lot 52x169ft. About 2500sq.ft. 3+1 bdrms, 3 wshmrs. Completely remodeled and renovated. Excellent layout. Dark eng. wood & porcelain floors, flat ceilings, potlights, new custom

front, interior, garage doors, all custom vanities. Exquisite gourmet kitchen w/ marble counter and backsplash, builtin VIKING S/S appliances, island w/ built-in gas range. Large dining with w/ out deck. Large family with w/out to patio w /lime stone interlock. Master w/ensuite (Jacuzzi & shower stall) and W/I closet. Prof. finished basement w/ bdrm and 3-pc wshrm. New insulation to walls&attic, 200amp. Designer’s painting... too many to list. Just see it!!

Asking $989,000


suitable for any type YONGE/BAYVIEW/ Stunning, of family bungalow w/loft. 3+1 4 wshrms. Excellent layout. OLD COLONY, bdrms, ceilings. Hardwood&limestone Richmond Hill 9ft floors. Master bdrm w/ensuite

Asking $699,900


Stunning and bright semi-detached linked only at garage. 3 bdrms, 4 wshrms. Stylish open concept. Large upgraded kitchen w/granite counter, tumble marble backsplash, S/S appliances, undermount sink. Breakfast area with walkout to 2-tiered deck. Spacious great room w/ fireplace. Hardwood floors. Prof. finished basement w/large recreation room & 2pc wshrm. Direct access to garage. Freshly painted.

on main floor, bdrms w/semiensuites on 2nd. Custom kitchen with built-in brand name S/S appliances, granite c/top. Professionally finished basement w/kitchen, family room, bedroom, bath. Located in desirable area lots of parks, lake, Ice arena,new community centre.

Magnificent home on a premium RAVINE 0.7 acre lot, backing onto conservation area. Absolute paradise and elegance about 5200 sq.ft. and 2300 sq.ft lower level. 4 bdrms+2 bdrms+library, 6 wshrms. A fusion of classic and contemporary elegance with impressive architectural details & superb craftsmanship. Luxuriously upgraded including smooth high ceilings, Brazil cherry hardwood, cornice mouldings, baroque columns, custom wrought iron Juliette balconies and staircase with flying cherry wood stairs, stone fireplaces, granite floors. Exquisite dream gourmet kitchen with built-in S/S high end appliances. All bedrooms have ensuites reverted with tumble marble. Gem of the property are stunning grounds with waterfall, swimming pool, golf, French garden, large greenhouse, spectacular patio and pagoda. Fully equipped home theatre with sound isolation, wainscoting panels, ceilings and Tiffany scones! 800K spent on upgrades! Too many to list! This home is a true masterpiece!

Asking 499,900


Asking $2,675,000


August 2013

Stunning completely renovated corner 3-bdrm+solarium, 2-full wshrms, about 1500 sq.ft unit with great view from windows. New wood floors throughout, new wshrms, doors. Large kitchen with new cabinets, S/S appliances, breakfast area & window. Very large master bdrm with ensuite and W/I closet. Parking. Maintenance includes all utilities. Gym, sauna. Close to parks, school, shopping.

Asking $329,000




property. A participant may deduct any reasonable expenses incurred to earn business or property income (i.e microFIT.) Note that the participant’s personal home consumption of electricity is a personal expense that is not deductible for income tax purposes (I.e. net-metering & off-grid.) Can I use my grid-tie PV solar system during a grid power outage? Only PV solar system designed with battery backup can give you power during a grid power outage. PV solar systems without batteries turn off automatically during a grid power outage to prevent the possibility of injuring workers who repair the grid power lines. When grid power is restored, the PV solar system turns on automatically. Do I have to worry about maintenance of my PV system?

It may seem difficult finding your way through the field of solar energy but it’s not as complicated as it seems. The answers to the most frequently asked questions, provided by Logitest Solar, will clarify the way solar power can benefit your business or home. How much does a PV solar system cost?

PV solar systems without batteries are virtually maintenance free. There are no moving parts and nothing to lubricate or adjust. Rain keeps the solar array clean or if needed you can rinse off dust and dirt with city pressure water from a hose. Performing a cleanup for roof installations can be a hazard!

The price of a PV solar system is determined by its size and type. Logitest Solar offers portable off-grid packages (DIY off-grid packages) starting from $1,500 plus HST. MicroFIT turnkey packages start from $15,000 plus HST and net-metering turnkey packages start from $5000 plus HST.

Can my roof withstand the weight of a solar system?

Is there enough sunlight in Ontario for solar panels to work?

How much can I save on my hydro bill with a PV solar system?

Based on the data taken from Toronto Pearson weather station, Southern Ontario gets an average of 4.2 hours of sunlight a day. Ontario gets 20% less sunlight per year than Los Angeles. However we also get 35% more sunlight per year than Berlin, Germany, and Germany is the world’s leader in the solar energy market.

Savings can be all the way up to 100%. It depends on the initial investment and type of a PV system you install. If your main goal is to offset your hydro bill, there are three possible options: netmetering, microFIT, or off-grid.

Are there any tax breaks or government rebates associated with solar energy projects? Generally, costs associated with the purchase and installation of renewable energy property are considered capital costs of depreciable property, which are deducted over a period of several years, based on a prescribed percentage. This deduction is referred to as capital cost allowance (CCA). Unfortunately there are no government rebate programs associated with solar energy projects at this moment. Is there a warranty on your products? All the materials provided by Logitest Solar Inc have a 10 to 25-year manufacturer’s warranty. Also a complimentary 1 to 3-year labour warranty is applied to all the projects installed by Logitest Solar Inc.

Our structural engineer makes the calculations and drawings of the system for the approval by your city, which guarantees that the current structure will sustain the weight of the PV solar system and the project is safe to proceed with.

The decision is yours. We’re confident that you will find Logitest Solar offer the best value when it comes to products, price, service, and after-sales service for your solar power system. Call us for a quote and discuss your needs with one of our expert solar consultants – we look forward to speaking with you. Logitest Solar Phone: 416-479-3555, Fax: (905)761-9778 Email: Address: 42-400 Creditstone Rd. Concord, ON, L4K 3Z2, Canada

How will a PV solar system affect my house insurance policy and premiums? At a minimum, the value of the structure will increase by the cost of the solar panels, which means that your insurance premiums will likely increase by some amount. Talk to your insurance broker to get a clear idea of your potential insurance requirements. As this is still a new program, not all insurance companies offer this coverage. How will a PV solar system affect my income tax return? The amounts earned by a homeowner under a microFIT contract are considered income from a source that is either business or



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August 2013



In Vino Veritas

People who like company and play host often always have a few bottles of wine handy – be it dry table or fortified wines, ports or dessert sorts, brand name or simple but hearty peasant kind wines. No matter what wines you prefer in your home, they still need special treatment to keep their best qualities intact. To allow the wine to breathe and its cork to stay moist, the bottle needs to be held in a horizontal position. The answer to this requirement is a wine rack.

HOMEMADE ONE-INGREDIENT ICE CREAM Soft and delicious one-ingredient ice cream made without the use of an ice cream maker. Is it possible? Yes and this miraculous ingredient is none other than a humble banana. Turns out that a frozen banana, whipped up in a blender, produces all-natural ice cream of the custard consistency. Optional ingredients can be butter or honey. An easy and fast dessert devoid of artificial additives – what a great idea! The secret is that a banana contains a small amount of fat, which gives it creamy texture when whipped. Note 1: Fully ripe and soft bananas with mottled skin are the best for making this kind of ice cream. Note 2: The whipped-up banana “ice cream” is soft. If you prefer harder texture, refreeze it after it’s made. How to Do It

1. Peel a few bananas. 2. Cut them into small pieces, spread on a plate and place in the freezer for a couple of hours. 3. THOROUGHLY whip the frozen bananas in a blender. First it will look like banana dust but do not despair, keep up whipping until you get a creamy substance. Use the pulse mode to prevent the blender from overheating. Use a spoon to stir the mass from time to time. If using peanut butter or honey, add it at the very end. 4. Your ice cream is ready! Enjoy!



Of course, not many of us keep a veritable professionally equipped wine cellar but anyone can afford a wine bottle rack. If chosen well, this item may carry a double function – that of wine storage as well as a design element. A built-in wine rack has become an integral part of many modern kitchens but, in this case, it has a strictly utilitarian purpose because, in most cases, such racks are hidden within the kitchen furniture and only get exposed when pulled out. Therefore, we, the lovers of interesting decor, prefer using this kind for storing bottles containing oils and vinegars while looking for something more spectacular for holding our wine bottles. First of all, let us decide where exactly we want our wine rack. Of course the most convenient place, apart from the kitchen, will be either the living room or the dining room (unless they represent one and the same large room in your residence). In the dining room, place the rack next to your hatch or the sideboard while in the living room it can be situated on the mantle shelf or the TV stand, placed next to the coffee table or hung on the wall. It is more complicated for the kitchen considering that wine does not like temperature changes; therefore the wine rack needs to be placed away from the window, the fridge, and, of course, the cooktop and the oven.


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OASIS IN THE CITY! Enjoy the view of sunset in your incredible backyard (67’ x 187’ lot) surrounded by mature trees backing to conservation area!! Beautiful house, about 2400 Sq.Ft., 5+1-bdrm, 4-wshr. Very clean & comfortable. Unique layout. All large rooms. Lots of updates: roof 2011, new CAC, new high efficiency furnace. Limestone & hardwood floors. Family room with wood fireplace & W/O to huge sundeck. Nice updated kitchen with limestone & hardwood flrs with W/O to garden. Gorgeous FINISHED BASEMENT with recreation room, huge bedroom, new laminated floors, potlights, large closet, separate shower, bath, kitchenette. Oversized 2-car garage, interlock & much more… Walking distance to best schools in area, golf course, stores, transit. Very close to Yonge St. Do not miss!.


Luxurious Primrose Complex!!! Spacious & fully renovated unit with beautiful view & huge open balcony. Very bright & clean. About 1100 Sq.Ft. 2-bdr, 2-wshr. Marble & laminated floors throughout. Good size eat-in kitchen, large master bdrm. Parking, locker. 24/7 gated security. Excellent amenities. Gym, sauna, outdoor pool, tennis court. Low maintenance fee ($577) includes all utilities. Steps to shopping mall, bus stop, good schools.

Asking $310,000


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Stunning, completely renovated CORNER unit, about 1500 Sq.Ft., 3-bdrm+solarium, 2 full baths. The best exposure in the building. Wood floors throughout. Designer painting. New eat-in kitchen has greenhouse window. S/S appliances. Potlights. All doors are new. New baths. Very large master bedroom with W/I closet & 4pc bath. Lots of mirrored closets. Parking. Low maintenance fee includes all utilities, even cable TV. Gym, sauna. Direct bus to Finch station. Steps to park, bus stop, good schools, shops.

HOMELIFE VICTORY REALTY INC. Brokerage 10720 Yonge St, #226, Richmond Hill, ON L4C 3C9 BUS: 905-737-0033 FAX: 905-737-3132


Gorgeous 3-bdrm, 3-wshrm well maintained semidetached in high demand area. Bright & comfortable. Practical floor plan. Open concept kitchen & family area. Hardwood floors. Move in condition. Walkout to long backyard. Fully fenced yard. Central air/ vacuum and more... Walking distance to schools, park and shopping centre.

Asking $399,800

Asking $329,000

Asking $649,900


Stunning & bright, about 1900 SqFt, 3-bdrm, 4-wshrm SEMI-DETACHED on premium crescent lot. $$ spent on upgrades. Stylish open concept floor plan. Spacious family room area with gas fireplace & TV niche! Large kitchen with extended cabinets, granite countertop, backsplash, undermount sink & S/S appliances. W/O to 2-tier custom deck. Hardwood floors. Professionally painted throughout. Direct access to garage. Professionally finished basement. Close to all amenities.

Asking $499,900


Over 2000 SqFt detached, 4-bdr, 3-wshr house with partially finished WALKOUT BASEMENT located in prime South Summerhill location! 5 yrs old, very good condition. Open concept layout. Hardwood floors. Family room with gas fireplace. All large bedrooms. Master bdrm with W/I closet. Laundry on main level with exit to garage. Nice kitchen with S/S appliances. Water softener. Central air and vac. Excellent schools around (Terry Fox & Sir William Mulock Schools). Close to park, shopping, transport.

Asking $538,800


GREAT POTENTIAL INCOME PROPERTY! Upgraded raised semi-detached 3+3-bdr, 4-wshr BUNGALOW on large lot located on a quiet street in a high demand area. Lots of upgrades: hardwood floors, neutral painting, thermo windows, new roof 2012. SEPARATE ENTRANCE to finished 3-bedroom basement apartment. Great backyard with cherry trees. Close to parks, schools, public transit, shopping.

Asking $559,000


Practically new 3-bdr, 3-wshr beautiful townhome with lots of upgrades. Bright & clean, tastefully upgraded & decorated. Hardwood floors. Upgraded kitchen with granite countertops, central island, pantry, beautiful backsplash & S/S appliances. Breakfast area with patio door to backyard. Walk-in closets in all bedrooms. Family room w/gas fireplace. W/O to b/yard from garage. West facing house inspired by modern design approach & filled with positive energy. Steps to bus stop. Minutes’ drive to plazas.

Asking $514,700


Stunning, rare, suitable for any type of family! 3+1bdr, 4-wshr with excellent layout, located in desirable area (great schools, lots of parks, lake, ice arena, new gorgeous community center). This house has master bdrm with ensuite on first floor and two bedrooms with bathroom on 2nd floor. Finished basement with kitchen, bdrm, fam. room & bath. Lots of renovations have been done! Custom beautiful kitchen w/central island & limestone floors, granite counter, newer S/S appliances with Bosch cooktop. New custom curtains & much more...


Simply stunning! Over $60K spent in quality upgrades! Condo townhouse, 3+1-bdr, 3-wshr with excellent floor plan. Porcelain tiles & hardwood on main level. Fabulous eat-in kitchen with granite countertop, ceramic b/splash, new cabinetry, S/S appliances, Potlights & W/O to yard! Living room with new electr. fireplace. All brand new bathrooms with granite & new vanities. Ceramic shower stalls. All closets have organizers! FINISHED BASEMENT with bedroom & storage under the stairs. Low maintenance fee.

Asking $519,000


Fabulous Westbrook home, 5-bdr, 3-wshr, over 3300 SqFt. Professionally landscaped on a premium lot (44.29x141.19 feet). Completely upgraded. Excellent floor plan. Open concept with 9’ ceilings. Library with French door on main level. Circular oak stairs, potlights, crown mouldings. Family room. Two fireplaces. New roof. All bedrooms are very large. Too many good features to list... Excellent location with great schools, including French School. Must see!

Asking $699,000


August 2013



The next consideration is the style. For the country style home try an interesting and amusing wine rack made in the shape of a wooden wheel. In the minimalistic decor, use one made of bent glass or plastic or a hi-tech design. For a young people’s dwellings try such fun designs of bottle racks as for example a guitar-shaped one. Of course, in the classically decorated home whose owners most likely prefer upscale wines, the wine rack should match both the

style of the decor and the noble product it is intended to hold. One more aspect to be thought through is the size of the wine rack. If you order wines by the box or planning to amass a collection of them, forget small racks and go for ones that have at least a few dozen cells. A

designer-created floor stand made of artificial stone will be great for holding an exclusive collection. For serving the wine, you may consider a single-bottle wrought-iron holder that will be yet another decorative element on your festive table.

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August 2013




Comfort and style of your home greatly depends on the right choice of window dressing. Even the most modest dwelling can turn into an upscale place with a beautiful and fashionable set of drapes. Selecting the style in which to dress your windows, take into consideration your general decorative style, the view from the window to be dressed, the shape of window frames, and, of course, your personal preferences.



To create a luxurious look use velvet or tapestry fabric; if your inclination is towards Oriental, use light sheers. To give the room a dressy look, employ tulle arranged in intricate folds and lush draping. As far as the colour scheme of your curtains goes, remember that warm pastel tones promote relaxation while rich and bright colours excite. To emphasize uniqueness of your home, use bright and unusual patterns in curtain fabric.

Within the great variety of fabrics offered by manufacturers you can find assorted patterns and textures, including natural fabric – cotton, linen, and silk, fabrics with added natural elements like hemp and


palm fiber, and many others. Many prefer synthetics that are heavier and dust-resistant, especially if treated with a special solution to prevent fading. Trendy types include metallic-based, crimped, and fabrics with acid-etched patterns. No matter what the global trend is in any given year, people in different countries of the world have their traditional preferences. For example, French like dark and heavy velvet with numerous tassels and valances; Americans, light fabrics freely wound around a ceiling-installed rod, falling down in beautiful folds; and Germans, roller blinds that can be used by themselves or paired with fabric curtains.

Miracle Staircase Architect Moon Hoon from South Korea has applied a lot of thought and creativity to convert a regular staircase that we use at least several times a day into something even more useful, as well as an object of art. His multifunctional staircase became part of a private Panorama house. To save space, the staircase also became a bookcase. It contains not only enough space to keep the family library but also a reading space, work zone, and a large family room. The staircase is also fitted with a slide to make going down the stairs fun and saves time. This feature is probably the most attractive for both children and adults.


August 2013



The Lowdown on Second Units #2 - Ensure that the unit complies with Building and Fire Code requirements. Typically, a basement apartment will require a door that leads directly to the exterior from within the unit or an egress window which opens into a well, and a fire rated separation between the units.

Second units are self-contained living units in dwellings which are also referred to as secondary suites, basement apartments, in-law suites, or accessory dwelling units. The benefits of second units are well documented. Second units meet the housing needs of households facing financial challenges. They can also assist first time home buyers with limited equity in carrying a mortgage, older adults to remain in the homes and age in place, or families to provide housing for adult children or other relatives in need. They offer affordable housing choices using the existing housing stock and can sustain communities that have experienced population declines. Although there are many benefits, there are also a number of challenges associated with second units. The impact on the neighborhood, parking, impact on services and infrastructure and safety are amongst the top concerns. Safety of second units is regularly identified as a concern. Many second units are set up illegally and do not meet Ontario Building Code and Ontario Fire Code requirements. Research shows that there are many preconceptions around occupants of second units which result in community concerns. These include ideas regarding household size, the “fit” of new residents in the community, or that neighborhood safety will



be a greater issue as second units are established. The most reliable data on second unit occupants: • Over half of second units were occupied by a single person • Across the country, just under half of second unit occupants were a relative or close friend of the second unit owner

#3 - Obtain a building permit for construction and obtain a license for the second suite. Your property taxes will be affected and you should do your homework well ahead of time but if done right, adding a second unit could be an ideal project for you and your family.

• In Toronto one-third of occupants had a close relationship with the owners Studies found that nearly one in five Canadian households rent out part of their home. Financial reasons (paying mortgage, increasing income, retirement income) are listed by three quarters of owners as the reasons for renting a unit. In addition to financial reasons, many owners identified the following reasons for renting part of their residence: • to avoid living alone • to provide a home for adult children or elderly relatives; and • for assistance with home maintenance services If you are thinking of adding an accessory dwelling unit to your home, here, in a nutshell, is what you need to do: #1 - Contact your local municipality and find out the current zoning regulation for your property. If you live in Mississauga, you will be happy to know that there have been recent changes to the official plan, allowing for a greater number of approved applications for second suites.


Peter Khatami

Peter is Senior Project Manager and Co-Owner of Nostco Construction, a Design/Build company serving residential and commercial clients throughout the GTA. Peter prides himself in working tirelessly on his clients’ behalf to bring vision to construction reality.



August 2013



A New House for New (or Old) Books Buying books and magazines but there is no more place in your bookcase to keep them? For those with an unlimited budget the solution is simple: go to a store and buy more shelves. The rest of us can use a little imagination and work to create something interesting and, often, unique.

3. A “hanger” shelf – you can use a bracket.

6. Shelves covered in wallpaper.

Here are twenty-five ideas for creating a bookshelf. 1. Shelves with brackets.

7. A shelf made of leather belts. 4. A shelf constructed of two stepladders and a board.

2. A shelf from IKEA – its compartments are connected with regular paperclips.

5. Books in a “drawer”. 8. Yet another shelf made of a stepladder.




9. This cute shelf can be purchased through the Internet for $15.

12. A shelf made of a wooden box and a map.

15. A dresser-shelf made of boards, drawers, and a cart.

16. A shelf made of boards and ropes.

10. Shelves constructed of wooden pallets.

17. The improved commercial version of the above.

13. For steampunk lovers: a shelf constructed of pipes.

14. Ditto: a shelf made of pipes and boards. 11. A different version of a pallet shelf.

18. Shelves made of wine boxes.


August 2013



19. A shelf constructed from a wooden cable drum and wheels.

22. To create these hanging fabric shelves you will need two curtain rods, two double brackets, and fabric of your choice.

23. This version if offered by IKEA: spice racks are fixed at the sides of a dresser

20. A shelf constructed from a magazine holder.

24. Retro style: use old benches.

21. A shelf made of a perforated ribbon using colour pencils and a rope.

25. A shelf made of plywood for various sized books. Just glue together a few sheets of plywood and paint them.





August 2013



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August 2013







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August 2013



FLOOR CUSHIONS In some cultures, floor cushions are seen as full-blown furniture like sofas and armchairs in Western societies. For example, in Japan floor cushions have long been the most popular piece of furniture for dining and guest seating. The main purpose here is simplicity of life and practicality, which floor cushions definitely promote. Therefore, Japanese styles look very modest – they are solid fabric or wovengrass cushions, not fluffy but rather resilient.

Arabic Middle East, on the contrary, has always appreciated luxurious and leisurely style. Their brightly-coloured cushions are easy to move from the sofa to the floor and back. All shades of red and sunlight tones, floral ornaments, and stripes – all this has always been characteristic of the Arabic way of life. Arabic cushions are usually very fluffy, of various sizes. You won’t see floor cushions in India as often as in Japan or, say, Morocco but those there are, are characteristic by their rich and intricate ornaments and deep gemlike colours. They have been used as foot ottomans or a place for servants to sit for centuries.

PLACING YOUR FLOOR CUSHIONS There are a few rooms that can benefit from the beauty and comfort of floor cushions: THE LIVING ROOM: Try to place them around your coffee table to define a relaxation zone, combine with or replace the sofa, or throw them on the floor by the fireplace. An extra large well-defined cushion will easily function as a coffee table. The best living rooms to decorate with cushions are those with as little tall furniture as possible so that the eye is drawn to the floor level. Do not forgo a rug on the floor. Lounge style calls for as many cushions to use for rest and relaxation as possible as well as for the absence of firm-framed seating. THE NURSERY: Toddlers and teenagers alike spend a lot of time on the floor for conducting various activities and communicating with friends. The colours of floor cushions should conform to the tastes of the young occupants of the room. IN THE GARDEN OR ON THE PORCH: Resting means, first of all, relaxation, and this is exactly what floor cushions provide. Since you are looking for this “soft furniture” for the outside, you don’t have to be confined by a certain style of the interior. Use pillowcases to create any colour scheme or style you wish. What is important when selecting floor cushions for the outside is the fabric and the filler: they’d better be waterproof.




It might be your dream home! Nowadays, it has become quite normal to have a large house on a small lot. Less often you can find in the heart of the city a neighborhood, where all houses are situated on large lots, surrounded by forests and undisturbed nature. Fortunately, there is a magnificent spot in the city of Vaughan where an established neighborhood with million-dollar houses offers luxury living. This magnificent home was custom designed and built in 2007 on a 0.7 acre lot backing onto a conservation area. Absolute paradise and elegance about 5200 sq.ft. and 2300 sq.ft in the lower level. Modern open concept layout with impressive architectural details & superb craftsmanship. This stunning house combines the beauty of interior, exterior, and landscaping design. Exquisite dream gourmet kitchen with built-

in S/S high-end appliances. All bedrooms have ensuites reverted with tumble marble. Gem of the property are stunning grounds with waterfall, swimming pool, golf, French garden, large greenhouse, spectacular patio and pagoda. Fully equipped home theatre with sound isolation, wainscoting panels, ceilings, and Tiffany scones! 800K spent on upgrades! Too many to list! This home is a true masterpiece!


Ingrid Sterekhova

HomeLifeVictory Realty Inc.

Sales Representative

Direct: 647-863-4020 Bus: 905-737-0033

Claudia Kovalev Sales Representative

Direct: 416-710-2753 Bus: 905-737-0033

August 2013



Luxury Hotel in a Cave

This is how the abandoned quarry in Shanghai looks now .....

An artist’s view of what the finished Cave Hotel will look like in 2015.

This architectural wonder is being built inside a 100-meter deep, water–filled abandoned Chinese quarry located at the base of the Tianmensham Mountain in the Songjiang District and it is to be a part of the project called the Shimao Shanghai Wonderland, a large-scale theme park being constructed by the Shimao Group in association with Inter-Continental group of hotels.

The Songjiang Hotel as it has been named, was designed by the British-based

Atkins firm, and sustainability is an essential key factor of this unique design. It will have around 400 rooms spread out over 19 stories two of which are to be underwater. These two floors will have an aquarium that will look out onto an underwater restaurant. The other 17 stories will be built into the walls of the quarry overlooking the sunken lake. Two more stories will be above ground and the roof will only be 15 meters above the cave. The building will use geothermal power mechanisms to produce its

own electrical energy and lights and it will be fitted with an eco-friendly roof. Atkins is providing architecture; structural and civil engineering services for this leisure resort in China. The $529 million Songjiang Hotel is expected to be completed by 2015, with rooms to cost around $300 per night. Aside from a swimming pool, the cave hotel will also offer an experience of extreme sports, such as rockclimbing and bungee-jumping, as well as water sports. Also, the hotel will house facilities such as restaurants, banquet hall and conference rooms. Visitors will have the luxury of viewing the hundred-foot high waterfall from their hotel room windows. Construction work on converting the abandoned quarry into the five-star underground hotel begins. The five-star Songjiang Hotel will have an aquarium with glass walls that look out onto a restaurant and guest facilities.

Residential Planning & Design T: 416.520.4595 Copyright © All Rights Reserved – Marina Orlova Interiors Inc.





Is Your Water Safe?

Canada has one of the safest water supplies in the world. However, it is virtually impossible to know what is in tap water because its quality may be different in different places, seasons, or even houses. Municipal water treatment systems – as sophisticated as they are - cannot deal with all of the contaminants or even test for them.

The phenomenon of bottled drinking water is growing fast because many people believe bottled water is safer or healthier than tap water or they just prefer the taste and convenience of bottled drinking water. Nevertheless, because the bottled water industry is not regulated, it is important to know what we buy and drink. Research shows that nearly 40 percent of all bottled water is actually re-processed municipal water. Many manufacturers claim that their water is “glacier water” or “mountain spring water,” which may or may not be true. The best way to assure that the water you drink is what it seems is the filter. Filtered drinking water from your tap or well is the safest, healthiest, and least expensive way to go. There are various methods of tap water filtration, and we are going to discuss the most popular of them. Pitchers and Dispensers. These are the least expensive and easiest to use. Pitchers usually hold between six to twelve cups of water. Larger dispensers hold up to eighteen cups and have a spigot for easy pouring. The disadvantages of this filter type are that the filtration process in them is slow, the amount of water that an be filtered at one time is limited, and the filters need to be changed frequently thus overshadowing the system’s economic advantages. Countertop. Countertop filters can filter larger amounts of water, are easy to install and do not clog easily. They are connected to the tap with a pipe or a tube. The disadvantages are that countertop filters do not always fit certain types of faucets, especially

in older homes, and you need an additional outlay of funds to purchase the right hardware, their look is not very appealing, and they may clutter the countertop.

Faucet Mounted. These filters are simple in both use and installation – just remove the aerator and attach the filter directly to the faucet. Faucet mounted filters are convenient and can produce a large amount of filtered water. Most have a valve that allows you to switch between filtered and unfiltered water. The disadvantage is that faucet mounted filters sometimes clog, leak, or break. Another drawback is that this type usually slows the flow of water. Under Sink. This water filter type is great for filtering a lot of water without cluttering the countertop or sink faucet area. Because it is hidden, it does not offend the eye of the aesthetically concerned homeowner It is economical because the replacement filters usually last months longer than most faucet-mounted filters. There are a few disadvantages though: these filters are more expensive, they take up cabinet space and are much harder to install – therefore, you can hardly perform it as a do-it-yourself project – you will need a plumber to attach it to into an existing water pipe. Refrigerator. Some of the newer refrigerator models provide filters with a combination of water purification methods and produce tasty water. Besides, they are convenient and also offer the advantage of producing ice cubes. Whole House. This kind is the most convenient because the filter is installed directly into the main water line. They filter all the water in the house, including in the kitchen and bathrooms, removing bad odors and taste. The disadvantage is that this type of filter is the most expensive and requires professional installation. On the other hand, the filters are only changed every 3 to 7 years, compared to every 6 to 12 months for the other types of water filters.


August 2013



Celebrate Culture Ÿ learn about different Countries from around the World

enjoy our multiCultural Community Ÿ try international foods make Crafts from different PlaCes Ÿ Visit animals from faraWay lands exPerienCe entertainment you haVe neVer seen before Ÿ disCoVer neW sPorts

Sunday, August 25 • 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Richmond Green Park • 1300 Elgin Mills Road East Supporting PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and the York Centre for Children, Youth and Families PRESENTING




Friends of the Event

Armour Heights Developments ● Duke of Richmond Developments ● Leslie Elgin Developments Inc ● Mady Development and High Street Properties ● Royal LePage Your Community Realty ● Signature Communities The Miller Group ● Sheraton Parkway Toronto North Hotel ● Venetian Group


Aspen Ridge Homes ● Brattys LLP ● Coldwell Banker The Real Estate Centre ● Enbridge Gas Distribution Inc.● Fieldgate Land Development Limited ● Garden Homes ● History Hill Group J. Kreiner Real Estate Ltd./Heidi Kreiner-Ley, President ● Krobar Construction LTD ● Kylemore Communities ● Liberty Development Corporation ● Lindenvale Homes Inc./Steven Ley, President ● Mattamy Homes Gates of Humber Ridge ● Mon Sheong Foundation ● Moore Mclean Insurance Group Ltd. ● North Star Homes Inc. ● Richmond Hill Retirement Residence ● Rosehaven Homes ● Rotary Club of Richmond Hill Royal Pines Homes ● The Vogue Development Group Inc. ● Trinity Development Group Inc. ● 583753 Ontario Limited


How to Avoid Common Mistakes Measure Carefully Do not forget to measure your room before shopping for a sofa – make sure it will fit in as well as that it will pass every place along the delivery route, including the elevator, hallways, and stairs.

The Matter of Scale Furniture looks different in a showroom. A sofa that looks small and compact in the showroom may look too big in the intended room and vice versa.

Attention to the Colour Scheme The colour of a furniture piece looks different when it’s in the showroom. Bring it home – and you may find it too garish and overwhelming. It will irritate you instead of serving as a relaxation spot. Therefore think your colour scheme through taking into consideration the lighting in the room, colour combinations, etc.

Misuse Take into consideration such factor as small children, house pets, snacking on the sofa in front of the TV, the frequency of such oc-

currences, and the frequency of the sofa use in general. Is your sofa just a design element that is not used often but only has a decorative function? What function does a coffee table have? A beautiful one, with intricate decorations, will not stay beautiful for long if you use it regularly as an ottoman to put your feet up.

Test It Test the furniture you are buying before paying for it. Sit in the armchair the same way you would at home: with your legs in it, reclining, etc., or lie down on the sofa. Check out all the doors and drawers, open and close them to make sure they slide in and out smoothly. Even a smallest hitch that you have noticed but dismissed as of no importance may become a huge irritant once you start using this piece of furniture at home.

you will have to take into consideration the requests of those who will also use this furniture.

Accept Offers of Help Salespeople who greet you at the threshold of the showroom may be annoyingly persistent but it doesn’t mean that you have to dismiss their help. Walk around, look, test, and decide what may interest you – and then call the salesperson to assist you in learning more about the piece in question. This, often fuller and clearer, information will help you make the best decision.

The Price

Too Many Advisers

When shopping for furniture, avoid paying for the piece right away only because you are tired and want to get it over with as soon as possible. There are many ways to save money. Do not feel embarrassed to ask about multiple buy or other types of discounts as well as upcoming sales.

Avoid going shopping for furniture with a group of friends or the whole family because the variety of opinions will drive you crazy. The second best option is going shopping with just one person but better still, go all by yourself. Of course, in any case

On the other hand, try to avoid the seller’s offer of deferred payments because in the long run it will cost you more. Only use a credit buy if money is not an object and all you need is the convenience of payment.


August 2013



Free estimates Shingles Flat roofs Skylights Aluminum & Siding Soffit Eavestroughs Cedar Wood Copper

Cell: (647) 892 7400, (416) 247 5695

Furniture Upholstery

Upholstery for home furniture, marines and automotive Alex’s Interior and Upholstery Custom made

(647) 403-7766 (416) 661-7766 Alex





August 2013



RELAX & EASE ACHING MUSCLES with regular massages!

Enjoy a facial with an EXPERT Skin Therapist and get a BONUS Heavenly Hand Therapy! We’ll exfoliate to reveal your soft skin, soothe with hot towels and massage using a rich moisturizer!! * Introductory offer valid for first-time visit only. Not valid for gift cards. Massage and facial sessions include a full 50-minute hands-on service and additional time for consultation and dressing.

REGISTERED MASSAGE | FACIALS | WAXING 11 Disera Drive, Thornhill L4J 0A7 (Bathurst/Centre facing Walmart)


7 days a week Weekdays to 10pm Same day appointments

All About Home magazine (August 2013)  
All About Home magazine (August 2013)  

All About Home magazine (August 2013)