Photographed by: Daniela Ciuffa Photography

As home owners, my husband and I are forever updating our home.  We did a major renovation to our place ten years ago by way of remodeling our kitchen and bathrooms, updating our floors and windows, and replaced our roof.  Our latest project is to create better storage solutions around the house and decided to incorporate custom cabinets and draws in the hallway closets and below the fireplace.  We’re in the process now of remodeling our home office (I’ll be sure to share my home tour once it’s all complete)  and have decided on wall-to-wall built-in cabinets to maximize our storage space.

My home decor combines elements of classic and mid-century modern pieces with eclectic accents and accessories.  I love re-purposing furniture and mixing old with new to create a “lived-in” french-chic vibe, so naturally, I popped into L’Atelier Home, in Gastown, a few months ago, to meet with my friend and store owner Linda Levy to get some inspiration.  I have to say that every time I walk into her showroom, I feel like I’ve been transported into a chic studio apartment in Paris.  Linda is always re-merchendising and creating vignettes featuring new and vintage items to inspire her clients.  Not gonna lie, I honestly wanted to buy everything in her store, especially the palm-leaf print louis chair, and the turkish rug, and the moroccan pouf…and the list goes on!  Linda is incredibly creative and has a great eye for style.  She’s a straight talker and is great at providing direction when it comes to design and thinking outside the box.  My favorite service offering at  L’Atelier Home is that they will source out vintage furniture for you, or you can bring your own vintage finds in yourself, and they will reupholster and refinish them to suit your needs.  Read more as Linda shares her design philosophy and decor tips…

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

When did you open your boutique and what was your inspiration for it?

I opened the shop four years ago after living overseas for three years. I came back home and really felt it was time to plant myself here and do something I loved, to create and build a space that could be a reflection of myself.  I always had a love of decorating and expressing myself through design especially using vintage treasures that I would  find, repaint, reupholster and give a second life to.  Honestly I just love it when I see a customer’s face once we have made the image in their head come to life in their home!

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, I See Noise, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

What are some essential pieces everyone should consider have in their home?

First off, I’d say a great rug! Using a rug in your living room is so important as it really grounds all your furniture and “finishes” a room.  Secondly, pillows!  I have a bit of a pillow obsession (my Husband can tell you all about that!), but rather than using them all at once you can change them depending on your mood or season, just like your clothes.  And finally, always incorporate something personal like a family heirloom or decorative china.

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Turkish Rug, Moroccan Pouf , Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

What is your design philosphy?

I think your home should be your oasis. Where you recharge, reflect and rest.  After a day of work, your home should be somewhere you are happy to go to.  Fill it with things that are you so make it’s personal.  It’s important to edit from time to time so you only have the things you love.  It should be a personalized space of the things you love to look at , feel, touch and use.  This is especially true these days as many of us are living in smaller spaces so you are literally seeing everything in your home all the time.  These personal expressions in your décor don’t have to be expensive.  It can be a souvenir from your last trip, a vintage treasure you found at the thrift store or the piece of furniture you have saved up for after swooning over it for ages.  As Coco Chanel says “An interior is a reflection of your Soul” and I think this is SO true!

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

On a personal note, what are you five beauty must-haves?

Coconut oil!!! Use that stuff everywhere!! As an eye makeup remover, body cream and hair mask (it also makes a perfect bowl of popcorn)

I never leave the house without Mascara and my Benefit Watts up Highlighter.

Face mist. I am a bit addicted to any type I can get my hands on!

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Vancouver Candle Company, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Vancouver Candle Company, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

What’s your advise on refreshing a space on a budget?

Re-doing vintage pieces, hand me down or thrift store finds!  We can help with this one also. We sell vintage items that we have re-done or we can work on your treasures.  This tends to be more cost effective than buying brand new and you will find this to be a better way to get exactly what you want.  A lot of the older items have great bones and quality; they really last a lifetime.  Again, .pillows!  New pillows can really change the feel of a space.  You don’t even need a new pillow, just the pillow cover so you can swap them out. Edit. Edit. Edit.  Every once in a while I think it is important to take stock of what you are displaying around your home.  Move everything away and then bring in one piece at a time.

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

Thanks so much for your hospitality, Linda.  Your space if gorgeous and your tips are super helpful.  I look forward bringing in my vintage cane chair for a refresh.  Maybe I’ll add on that gorgeous turkish rug and moraccan pouf too!

L'Atelier Home, Gastown, Linda Levy, Nadia Albano, Daniela Ciuffa Photography

L’Atelier Home is located at 452 West Cordova in Vancouver and hours of operation are Monday to Wednesday 11-6. Thursday to Saturday 11- 7 and Sunday 12 – 5.  Don’t miss out on their summer sale!  Furniture and rugs are 15% off and display models in store are up to 50%0ff!