Since Neil and I moved into our new place (seven months ago), we’ve basically been living in a glorified storage locker. Mishmash hodgepodge furniture arrangement, no art on the walls, still a few boxes kicking around, and many many things that still have no home.
We’ve been holding off a long, LONG time on buying new furniture since we knew we’d want to make sure it was just right for the condo we had under construction (deposit put down a little over two years ago). Both of us still have much of the furniture we acquired in university (or shortly thereafter), purchased based on price and utility, rather than aesthetics and function. Furniture purchasing default, thy name is IKEA. When we moved in together, our furniture strategy was “let’s look at the duplicates, and keep whichever piece sucks least.”
And despite being HGTV junkies, we really had no idea how to purchase furniture for aesthetics and function, other than having a camera crew and hunky carpenter show up with a truck-full of MDF for three days of mayhem.
Outside, that, all we were comfortable doing without serious help was heading to a furniture showroom, purchasing every piece in a mock set-up, and have a living room that looked like a furniture showroom. Also not really the aesthetic we were looking for.
So you can imagine that I was super excited to stumble upon the fine folks at Good Space.
A full-service interior design firm in Gastown, they’ve also developed the Good Space Plan, to make great design accessible to the rest of us.
Instead of having a design company in to put together a plan, and immediately spend a bucketload of money on the recommended paint, renos, furniture and accessories in one, fell, budget-busting swoop, the Good Space plan hands over their expertise in one tidy binder, and lets you do the rest at your own pace.
After a thorough consultation process we were given a floor plan, furniture suggestions, fabric swatches and source info for all of the furnishings and accessories, along with a list of recommended stores and contractors. It’s now up to us to obtain all the pieces and put them together.
But I think my favourite part of the plan is the fact that along with the suggestions, we have just enough information to be dangerous, and can really go wild and make this plan ours.
For example, they didn’t just say “go get couch X,” they said “go get couch X or Y, or look for these manufacturing traits in any other couch, and make sure it’s built within these dimensions, in a similar fabric texture/colour, and place it thusly in the room relation to the rest of your furniture.”
In fact, knowing how much of this plan we really wanted to work on ourselves, and being very good judges of the amount and type of guidance we’d need, Good Space gave us instructions for many things to just go out and find (vintage pieces, artwork, funky lighting, accessories) that will work with some of the core pieces they recommended.
Nothing comes from the same place, everything is designed to compliment everything else, rather than coordinate and be all furniture showroom matchy-matchy. With the added bonus of all FITTING in our small space, working with our budget, being functional for our needs and pet friendly!
We’ve just started executing on the first few steps of the plan as they work for us, so I’ll try to post pictures of how the process goes. First up is having organizers installed in our storage voids so we actually have places to put things, other than in a stack in the spare room.
I really can not say enough good things about Good Space. I know the Good Space Plan has really taken off lately, and with that in addition to their full-service design work, they’re wicked busy lately – but if you’re interested in getting beyond the IKEA catalogue or the La-Z-Boy showroom for decor, they’re worth checking out, and DEFINITELY worth the wait.