Category Archives: Stuff we love

The perfect art for your condo

Let’s face it, it’s really hard to find and commit to great art pieces for condos and other spaces. Luckily, we stumbled upon local artist Sandra Di Leo whose pieces are perfect for your home. We met up with Sandra recently at her Toronto studio to scope out her work.

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Apps we love for condo living: getting inspired

Whether you’re just moving into a new place, doing a reno or you just can’t get enough home decor eye candy, here are some apps to get you inspired any time.

Houzz Interior Design Ideas

If you’re already addicted to the Houzz website like we are, this app is a must. The Houzz Interior Design Ideas app is dubbed the “Wikipedia of interior and exterior design” by CNN – need we say more? It’s a great way to browse, save, curate and organize thousands of pictures and products to make your very own virtual design reference book. There’s also a forum where you can get answers to your queries from other who are just as design-obsessed as you are.

houzz app

 

Paint Tester Pro

See it on Houzz, then try it out in your own home. Gone are the days of spending hours searching for swatches and then putting the little piece of paper against your wall, trying to picture how your kitchen will look bathed in yellow. This app allows you to seamlessly test any colour you want in any room. Just take some pictures and start colouring your world.

paint tester

 

SnapShop Showroom

You’ve picked your room colours, and you have a general idea of what furniture you want – now take window shopping to the next level with augmented reality that lets you see what furniture will look in your own home. The SnapShop Showroom app allows you to picture exactly what that day bed would look like in your den without the commitment. Their catalogue includes many of the brands you’re probably looking for anyway and it’s growing all the time.

snapshop

9 things that rock about moving

moving

You heard right. While exciting, moving is generally a giant inconvenience involving grubby clothes, chipped fingernails and lots of takeout. But there are also some great things that come out of the whole ordeal. With residents starting to move into minto775, we thought we’d share some of our favourites.

1. Purging
That vase you got as a wedding gift that you could never bring yourself to get rid of? Now’s your chance! Who knows, maybe it just got “lost” in the move. By the way, if you have boxes you never unpacked after the last time you moved, don’t give into the temptation to peek inside. It’s already packed and ready for Goodwill. Lightening up always feels good. Even the packrats of the world will admit it after finally taking the plunge.

2. Finding things you thought you lost
Over time, things find their way into the darkest recesses of closets and drawers. Finding them is win-win; if you find something good, it gets a more prominent place in your new home. If not, more purging!

3. Discovering a new hood
From coffee shops to brunch spots to parks to shops for last minute gifts, finding the gems in your new neighbourhood can be tons of fun.

4. An excuse to go to restaurants
What? All the dishes are packed away and with the move only a few days away it’s not worth restocking the fridge. You could order a pizza, or you could try something from Toronto Life’s best new restaurants list.

5. Getting new stuff
The less stuff you have to move the better (see #1). This can mean putting some of your worse-for-wear possessions on Craigslist and upgrading to something that’s higher quality and helps you achieve the look you’re going for in your new home. Somewhere there is a house full of university students who will be thrilled to continue trashing your old couch.

6. The end of a long day
Whether you hire professional movers or enlist your loyal family & friends, moving makes for a long day. No question. When you’re fuelling up at the diner at 7:00 AM it’s hard to imagine that after all that preparation and stress it will all be over soon. So when that last box crosses the threshold and lands with a thump, you know you’ve made it. A beer never tasted so good.

7. Meeting the neighbours
It seems like you often hear about neighbours in the context of complaints. But despite the potential for conflict, neighbours are actually one of life’s special relationships. Impromptu dinner parties, borrowed cups of sugar and casual chats on the balcony are just the beginning. It could be the start of a lifelong friendship. So what are you waiting for? Go knock on the door and say hello!

8. Making it yours
Whether you’re moving into an old house or a brand new condo, there are tons of ways to make your new place your own, and a few apps to help you out along the way. Your home is your little corner of the world and each little project will make you fall in love with it all over again.

9. New beginnings
Eventually the novelty wears off, but the first few times you come home to a new place seem to feel special. Keep that feeling alive by continuing to discover your neighbourhood as it evolves, forging relationships with your neighbours and having fun with your new place by decorating and redecorating whenever you feel like it.

Apps we love for condo living: colour us happy

A new condo with its clean lines and neutral palette is the perfect backdrop for colourful furniture, accessories and art. We saw some amazing options at the Interior Design Show at the end of January. There are also a plethora of apps out there to help you work with colour and we’ve chosen a few to feature here. Make good use of that retina display and try one of these apps that will make you feel like a kid opening a new box of crayons.

Palettes

Palettes lets you easily grab colours from any image or import and export from Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator. You can also share your palettes via email and store them on iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox and more to access them any time. The pro version has tons of options for colours modes and sharing your palettes. Using this app is also a great way to learn about different types of palettes and how to put them together and use them.

palettes all

 

ColorSnap

This app by Sherwin-Williams lets you grab colours from the real world and, of course, match them to Sherwin-Williams paint swatches. The app will suggest matching and complimentary colours to turn one moment of inspiration into a colour scheme for an entire room, or your whole home. You don’t have to buy Sherwin-Williams paint to find this app useful.

sherwin williams

 

ColorShift

This one is really just for fun, but it’s an interesting way to find out how you perceive colour. The idea is to move the coloured bars up and down until they are in order.

color shift all

 

Apps we love for condo living: getting around

This is the second post of our new series covering mobile apps that are perfectly suited to the condo lifestyle. It goes without saying that we’re big fans of all things condo living. Today we wanted to give a shout out to one of the coolest ways of getting from point A to point B. The company behind this app is even offering one of our readers a $20 credit to try the service.

Hailo 

Taking cabs has been a hallmark of urban living, but have you noticed that while technology has impacted almost every aspect of life the cab “experience” has remained relatively untouched? You either hail one down on the street or you call and wait ten to twenty minutes, assuming the dispatcher heard your address correctly. Hailo has done away with the dispatcher. You order the cab online through the app and it uses GPS to find the closest cab to your location. Even on new year’s eve, we’ve never waited more than two or three minutes with Hailo.

Your account is connected to your credit card so upon arrival at your destination, you don’t even have to take out your wallet. There are other nice features like notifications when your ride is one minute away and the ability to call your driver with the press of a button.

As a bonus, the team behind the app seems to be made up of some pretty awesome people. They offered us $20 in credit to give away to one of our readers. Just comment below with where you would go with Hailo and the most creative answer given by Wednesday, March 13 will win. We also recommend following @HailoToronto on Twitter.

Apps we love for condo living: setting up

If discovering a new app (or one that’s just new to you) makes you giddy, you’re not alone. Your phone has been more than just a phone for a while now and there’s no sign of a slowdown. In this new series, we’re going on the hunt for apps that compliment condo living. It’s all about keeping things fast, fun and clutter-free.

Our first picks will be helpful before you even move in. This is the new way to set up you new pad just the way you like it.

iHandy Carpenter

Measure twice, drill once. For $1.99, you get five essential measuring tools that won’t take up any closet space. Even if you’re doing something as basic as hanging art, this app will serve you well. It includes a plumb bob (for verifying the verticality of lines or walls), a surface level, a bubble level bar, a protractor and a ruler that can be swiped left and right to measure things much longer than your iPhone.

 

Photo Measure

This one may have been designed with major renovations in mind, but why not measure your whole home before heading off to Ikea? Some thoughtful features include the ability to zoom in for detailed measurements, add comments and toggle between imperial and metric. You can also export your images with measurements to PDF for printing and sharing.

We think this one is a must have for planning out a pre-construction condo, hint, hint.