Congrats to our Olioboard design challenge winners

Big congrats to all the winners of our latest design challenges. Be sure to take a moment to check out all the amazing entries below. If you haven’t entered into one of our design challenges yet, what are you waiting for? They are a great way to explore different styles, colour palettes and products without actually changing the interior of your own home. It’s great for letting your creative side out and just having fun with home decor.

There are four brand new challenges on Olioboard right now so if you haven’t tried it out yet, give it a go. You’ll be surprised at how easy and fun it can be. For those of you who regularly enter the challenges – we can’t wait to see what you come up with next. Happy Olioboarding!

Mad Men 60′s Style Cocktail Den Challenge

Fall Cabin Retreat Design Challenge

Child Fantasy Inspired Bedroom Challenge

Dance Studio Design Challenge

Enter the Lot 26 Studio Sports Fan Design Contest on Olioboard

Just a heads up that we have changed up the voting a little for all contests and challenges. From now on you can vote DAILY for your favourite boards. You can vote for as many boards as you like, but you can only vote once per day for each board, so don’t forget to come back frequently to keep your favourites in the top 25. At the end of this contest a judge from Lot 26 Studio will choose the winning 5 boards out of the top 25 boards voted up by the community.

Get your designs and votes in. We have three weeks to go and great prizes to be won. Good luck to everyone!

Concluding the 7 Days, 7 Bloggers, 7 Moodboards – Coastal Cottage Challenge

We have come to the end of our Coastal Cottage Challenge. I hope everyone has had as much fun with this as I have. It has been a pleasure to collaborate with such talented ladies and to see each one of our unique takes on this sea side style.

For those that have followed along, I hope you were able to gather some great tips on pulling off this look. Here’s a recap on all the fantastic designs and some of my favourite elements from each moodboard.

Day 1: Lynda’s studio design is definitely a space I could lose hours in. I love the wall art made up of a variety of paint swatches. It’s such a different and fun idea for art and is particularly well suited for a studio space. The shelving units on wheels would be ideal for a studio as everything should be easy to move around to accommodate projects of all sizes. I also like the contrast created in the design by the crisp, clean white sofa paired against the more aged and worn pieces.

Day 2: I couldn’t agree more with Lindsay when she said the desk really made the design. It is such a great find. The mix of vintage and modern elements makes this space feel as if it was created over years of carefully collecting the right pieces. My favourite elements would have to be the antiqued white shelf, blue shuttered desk, three leg table lamp and painted blue glass bottle. Beautifully done Lindsay!

Day 3: What I enjoy most about Rhoda’s design is that she didn’t stick with the typical blue-green colour scheme that the Coastal Cottage is known for. Not to say I have anything against this palette (as you can see by my own design), it’s just nice to see a fresh take on the Coastal Cottage style. The bold hits of red liven up the space, while adding nice contrast to the teal accents. The beautiful rug, which I believe was the inspiration for the space, helps tie it all together. If I had to choose a favourite piece, it would be the coffee table. I love it when random items are transformed into functioning furniture. It just makes for a more interesting design, don’t you think?

Day 4: What’s not to love here. The natural materials, glass accents and colour scheme really bring the beach theme to life in this bedroom design. The show-stopping wallpaper is definitely a great choice. The fun, bold pattern helps tie in all the colours in this design for a polished, finished look. Love your work Kristi.

Day 5: The mash up of items in this moodboard is completely what makes the design. Shannon says it best ‘When putting together a dining room, my rule of thumb is, always go for a more eclectic look – one style for the table, different style for the chairs and a mismatch of different textures – jute, wood, fabric, etc.’ I completely agree. When you go with a complete set you lose the element of ‘happy surprises’. Changing up the style of table from your chairs, or incorporating multiple styles of chairs can give your dining set loads of character, and more of a personal touch. Try it yourself and let us know how it worked for you.

Day 6: I said it before and I’ll say it again. Happiness is colour and LOTS of it. Rachel’s design is the perfect example. Here is another case where teal and red go beautifully together. While the design is simple and uncluttered it still packs a punch. The white backdrop allows the bold coloured elements (in a mix of modern and vintage) to set the mood for this summery escape. Oh, and I love the addition of the rain boots. :)

Day 7: My favourite part of my kitchen design is the addition of the window seat. I’m a big fan of bold patterns and great fabrics. More often then not, they are something that gets put aside when designing a kitchen because kitchens are usually more focused on the harder surfaced items. Whether it is a tablecloth, curtains, seat covers or wall dressings, I think there is a place in the kitchen for fabrics and the more you add, the cozier your kitchen will feel. The kitchen is supposed to be the heart of the home. Make it a comfortable one.

That’s it. I hope you enjoyed this challenge. We had a lot of fun creating these designs and we hope this collaboration has helped you in creating your very own sea side escape!

Coastal Cottage Kitchen


Hey everyone, by now you have seen 6 of the Coastal Cottage Challenge Designs. Big thanks to all the lovely ladies that chose to participate. Check in tomorrow at any of the seven participating blogs for a detailed follow up of the challenge.

Today I get to post my design of a coastal cottage kitchen. For any of you that have seen my designs on Olioboard, you know I’m a big fan of turquoise and cool calming colours. If I had my very own sea side escape, this is how I would picture my kitchen.

I am and always will be, a big fan of white cabinets in kitchen spaces. I love the bright, fresh look they provide. The splash of colour on the inside of the glass upper cabinets adds a cozy, personal touch. With loads of white in the space I opted to bring in some nice warm wood tones in the counter top and flooring choices. The worn down look of the floor helps infuse a bit of age and character to the space.

The pendant is definitely one of my favourite pieces. I have used it before in my moodboard designs and I will likely use it again. It’s just such a great match for a cottage, or farmhouse design, both of which are my preferred styles. Anything with a bit of age and character tends to catch my eye.

A little while back we had a challenge on Olioboard to design a kitchen space for one of our members. In that challenge I designed a space with a large window seat. I loved it so much I added one to this design. The fun fabrics and printed pillows in the moodboard are all for that window seat. It just seems like the ideal spot to sit and relax with a cup of coffee while watching the waves against the beach.

The rest of the design was pulled together with great accessories, like the beachy glass bottles, the mason jar plant pots, beautiful ceramics from Heath Ceramics, and the cottage style chairs. Hope you like it. Let me know what you think.

Don’t forget to check in tomorrow at any of the seven blogs for the final wrap up.

7 Days, 7 Bloggers, 7 Moodboards – The Coastal Cottage Challenge


Hey everyone. Starting Monday the 15th we’re collaborating with 6 of our favourite bloggers to bring you the Coastal Cottage Challenge. Each blogger picks a room in the cottage to design and a day of the week to post about it. We’re bringing you seven completely different takes on the Coastal Cottage Style. I can’t wait to see what we all come up with. Follow along to learn great tips and tricks for pulling off this sea side look.

Here’s a look at our blogging schedule:

August 15
Blog: Focal Point
Room: Library/Studio
About Lynda: Lynda has done it all. She’s choreographed and styled fashions shows for Seventeen magazine, shops in Coconut Grove and for clubs in South Beach. She’s done window design, prop construction and styled window displays. She’s an interior designer who can help you on something as small as getting organized to decorating for a season or occasion all the way up to a major renovation. Her experience and passion for interiors make her blog a must for ideas and inspiration.

August 16
Blog: Living With Lindsay
Room: Home Office
About Lindsay: Lindsay, is a DIYer and home decor crafter with a zeal for budget decorating. She’ll see a great item in a store or online and create it at a fraction of the cost. If you’re creative hands are itching for a great project, follow Lindsay. She’ll point you in the right direction and give you all kinds of tips to help you out.

August 17
Blog: Southern Hospitality
Room: Living Room
About Rhoda: Rhoda started her blog back in 2007 on a whim. A lover of old things, vintage and worn objects, her blog is one beautiful image after the next of personal projects and amazing finds. If you’re like Rhoda and love putting in the extra effort to make a house a home, look no further. This blog has you covered.

August 18
Blog: Addicted 2 Decorating
Room: Bedroom
About Kristi: Kristi is a professional interior decorator by day, and a DIY fanatic and slightly obsessed blogger by night. In her blog she shares glimpses into her projects, whether they’re for clients or for her own home. Check out her blog for new interior decorating ideas, decorating tips, helpful articles, stunning photos, and great step by step instructional guides.

August 19
Blog: What’s Up Whimsy
Room: Dining Room
About Shannon: Shannon Fitzpatrick is a lover all things design, whether it’s design in the home or event design . She describes her style as “contemporary whimsy, with a hint of vintage”. What’s Up Whimsy is an extension of those two loves and a place for you to find loads of inspiration.

August 22
Blog: Fresh Home Blog
Room: Patio/Front Porch
About Rachel: FreshHome’s design blog, is a spot where the editors of FreshHome Magazine post their favorite design ideas, products and how-tos. Rachel is the online editor of Fresh Home. She’s always got a great project up her sleeve, whether she is rehabbing a dresser found on Craigslist for less than $20, or painting (and repainting) a room until she’s found the winner out of 80 different shades of blue-gray.

August 23
Blog: Olioboard Blog
Room: Kitchen
About Sheilah: I run a small web design company with my partner creating large scale social sites and web and mobile apps for our clients. Olioboard was our first attempt at creating our very own app. They say you should start with something you love and I LOVE interior design. Olioboard was created to help others (like me) experiment with their interior design side. For everyone who enjoys spending hours browsing home decor stores, dreaming of new bathrooms and kitchens over cars and clothes… Olioboard was made for you. Enjoy!

How to achieve that Coastal Cottage look

Since we are in the middle of holding the Layla Grayce Coastal Cottage Bedroom Design Contest, it seems fitting to do a post on how to acheive this look. I hope you enjoy it.

First thing, don’t feel that bold colours have no place in cottage decor. Yes, more often than not, people use sage, pale blue, yellow, pink, cream and white. It doesn’t mean bold hits of red, black and deep blue don’t belong. On the contrary they can compliment the look. The black in this image actually helps the blue and white pop even more than it would without. Besides, it’s all about what makes you happy and if you like bold colours, add bold colours. You just need to find a way to balance them. That’s the key.

Anything made of glass, drift wood, cork, seagrass etc… will work really well in a coastal cottage design. Natural materials give the space a cozy non pretentious feel. These lamps are perfect as is, but you can also go the extra mile and fill them with beach inspired materials like shells, sand, or maybe even write a little message and stick it in the bottle.

Iron beds… need I say more. I think we can all agree that iron bedframes are a perfect match for coastal decor. If it has a rubbed and tarnished finish, it’s even better. In fact, for
most cottage furniture, the older and more worn it looks, the better. You want pieces that look like they have stood the test of time.

Pastel or floral bedspreads just add to the overall appeal. And if you have a hand me down quilt made by your granny, this is where it belongs.

I know I already talked about glass lamps and filling them with fun things to add to your overall decor but these are the most amazing plants and a great way to display them. For those who haven’t seen these plants before, they are air plants. No soil and they still grow. Don’t be confused by the name ‘air plant’. They still need to be watered. You may have seen them in some decor magazines hanging in glass and porcelain ornaments. These are pretty much the latest craze. Anyway, this is also a cool way to display these fun plants and again the natural element of this design works really with the coastal cottage theme.

White slip covers are one way to instantly achieve that coastal cottage feel and if they are loose and wrinkly on puffy furniture even better. For me, my neat freak attitude would not be able to handle this. Many people love it, but I will always prefer the clean look of a tight back sofa to any slip cover. It’s just the way I am. That said, this definitley will give you the look you are going for.

When considering rugs, be inspired by the beach and pull in a sandy toned sea grass rug. Natural fiber rugs with neutral tones will help compliment the look without fighting for attention.

As much as you can, go to estate sales, garage sales, flea markets and old antique stores to find the the right furniture. You’ll be amazed at what you can find and even more amazed by the prices. Yes, it takes time to go to these places, but it’s worth it.

Cottage furniture is often white, white washed, or painted in pastel colours. Pine furniture is also a staple along with items made from reclaimed wood.

There is nothing more comforting than a warm breeze and sunshine creeping in through an open window, causing white shear curtains to dance around the room. It just gives off an instant feel of relaxation and peace and quiet. You feel like you’re on holiday and the rest of your busy schedule can take a backseat. Grab a book and a coffee and have a quiet moment to yourself.

(images by: abeachcottage, potterybarn, layla grayce)

Design a living room fit for royalty

We are holding a super, fun challenge on Olioboard right now. You, should you choose to accept the challenge, must design a living room fit for royalty. Not just any royal couple, but for the soon to be married Prince William and Kate Middleton. The room should reflect William’s masculine, noble roots and Kate’s youthful take on elegance.

Here’s a look at some of the olioboards entered in the challenge:

Think you would have a different take on it. Show us and enter an olioboard to the challenge. While you’re at it, make sure to vote for your favourites. Good luck to everyone!

The woman cave design challenge

If a man can have a man cave in his home, a woman should have a cave of her own. We asked you what your woman’s cave would look like. Would it be a small, quiet, reading nook or maybe a huge room with walk in closets, a Jacuzzi tub and a masseuse on call. LOL. It was to be whatever your heart desired and you did not disappoint us. Thanks to all who entered the Woman’s Cave Design Challenge. Here’s a look at all the fabulous designs. Big Congrats to Jennifer Duchene, Mayag, and Konstadina for their winning entries.