Big News: Signed a Lease

Besides my first year at university which I spent living in campus residence, I have lived in the same house since I was born. It has been a blessing which has allowed me to save money, avoid student debt, and not have to worry too much about daily tasks such as cooking and grocery shopping.

Pursuing my dream career in the big city, however, means big changes. I've been on the hunt for some affordable housing in Toronto close to my design school for the fall. Recognizing that my own apartment was not realistic financially, I settled on student housing. All I wanted was my own washroom. 

I may have gone slightly over my planned monthly budget (oopsy), but I've found the perfect room!
The room is 12' by 19'. Lots of room for all of my design ideas!
This picture doesn't do it justice, but this is my extra large WALK IN CLOSET, maybe big enough for my very own dressing room.
Here is the huge shower in my private washroom!
And my big soaker tub! I love bubble baths after a long day.

I can't paint the walls or change any of the fixed elements, but I think it's a good blank and neutral canvas to create a space that is completely me. Stay tuned each day this week where I discuss my design ideas for the different areas of the room!
Tiffany Leigh
ps. I feel so grown up! Ah! Tell me about YOUR first rental.
All photos sent to me by my future landlord. Better quality pics to come when I move in and redecorate.


Favourite Furniture Fridays: Michaela Noelle Designs

Hello to The Designer Lifestyle readers! I'm Michaela and I share my life as an interior design student and lover of all things lavender and pretty over at Michaela Noelle Designs. I'm thrilled to be over here today showing off one of my favorite pieces of furniture.

At the beginning of last school year, I moved into a new house with some friends in Seattle.  Turns out that the room I would be living in is really the dining room of the house, so I had a serious transformation on my hands! I decided to try not to buy any furniture from "standard" superstores {target, ikea, etc} and instead, hunt for the perfect furniture at flea markets and consignment shops. I found my dresser at a local Seattle consignment store and took it home, only to stare it at for a few days blankly. It needed something. New knobs were a must- but it was calling for something else to make it really sparkle.

My love for chevron is very apparent if you pop over to my blog, so I decided to take my favorite pattern and paint it on my dresser. After a few hours of measuring, taping, painting, touching up and adding knobs, here's my favorite dresser:
While some may feel chevron is overdone or trendy, I beg to differ and happen to think it will be here for a long while! It's one of the earliest patterns to be created, and just adds a touch of zig-zag to the ever-classic stripe. Have I convinced you yet?! :)

Thank you, Tiffany, for having me here today!

Michaela is one of my fave bloggers! She is so down to earth, and talented (clearly!). Please give her some love! Thanks so much for sharing girl!
If you have a piece of furniture that you'd like to share, please e-mail me at thedesignerlifestyle@gmail.com
xo Tiffany leigh


Coral Jeans

Like many of my fellow bloggers, I've been loving the colored denim trend. I couldn't decide which color I wanted, until I stumbled across the perfect coral pair at Aritzia. Unfortunately, they were over $200. On trends, I refuse to spend alot of money because you never know how long they will be around. Luckily for me, Garage had a nearly identical pair for only $40. You can bet I snapped those up. Here's how I plan on styling my new pants:

Coral Spring
Have you jumped aboard this trend? What color would you choose?
Tiffany Leigh


Reader Question: Vintage on a Budget

Recently, Maris from rushsweetly messaged me the following question:
"Hello there! :) I'm moving into an apartment this August and I have a budding fascination with all things vintage. I've considered purchasing a simple yet feminine white lace duvet and using temporary wallpaper as an accent wall in my bedroom. Do you have any other ideas that I could use that would satisfy my vintage craving without breaking the bank? Thanks!"

I love her ideas of the lace duvet and wall covering! After checking out her tumblr, I got the impression that she is after romantic, antiqued vintage. Here are my other ideas for an affordable vintage bedroom:

1) A Wrought Iron Bedframe
This style of bedframe adds immediate vintage charm. When I was looking for one like this, many of the true antique frames came in 3/4 sizing, which is tricky (and expensive) for custom mattress and sheets.
Luckily for us, IKEA has an affordable option ($99)that has the same look:

 2) Vintage Dishware
Hit up your local antique store to find some beautiful dishware on the cheap! Of course, some patterns can be extremely pricey, but you can mix and match inexpensive individual plates, bowls and teacups. Place these on your dresser to hold pretty baubles.
3) Botanical or Floral Prints

Etsy is a great place to check for vintage prints, and this calendar by rifle paper co. reminds me so much of the image above.
Because 2012 is almost half over, the calendar is half price! Only $14. All of the images are beautiful and can be cut out and framed.

4) Vintage Fashion on Display  
Surely your love of vintage extends to your wardrobe. Why not display some of your favourite pieces? You can do this on a clothing rack, the back of the door, or even hanging on the wall!
Hit up flea markets, thrift stores, and antique shops for unique vintage finds that speak to your own personal style. A good mirror, some beaded hand bags, a side chair, a night stand, etc.
My last tip is to mix in a few modern pieces so the room doesn't feel too dated.

I hope this helps! I'm sure your new place will turn out beautiful, and I expect some pictures when you are all settled in!
Tiffany Leigh
ps. Do YOU have a design dilemma? E-mail me at thedesignerlifestyle@gmail.com and I will help you out! :)


Dream House Alphabet: D

D is for... Dressing Room
In all honesty, I doubt I will ever have a room in my house dedicated exclusively to fashion. A large walk in closet, perhaps, but a whole room? Keep dreaming bud. And dream I shall, because these rooms are too good not to be included in this series.
How good are these two example? They both include lovely seating, and a glam chandelier. I love Mai's use of framing shopping bags in the second photo. So chic!
xox Tiffany
ps. What's your Dream House 'D'?


Favourite Furniture Friday: Landi from The Lifestyle Guide

Happy Friday, everyone! I'm Landi from The Lifestyle Guide & I'm thrilled to be here at The Designer Lifestyle to post about my favorite piece of furniture. When I moved back to Texas this past December, I had to buy a lot of furniture because I rented the furniture where I had been living. I tried to be as money conscious as possible because I knew that the bigger things (a couch, a bed, TV, etc.) were probably going to cost the most. In a little town called North Richland Hills about 25-30 minutes away, I was told about this amazing shabby chic/vintage furniture store called Golighty's Antiques. We drove out there and scored majorly. I found this dresser and hutch (shown below) that was refinished by a local women and bought it for $280. What a steal! It fits perfectly in my room, & I love it. I also like that it has the mirror because then I didn't have to worry about finding another mirror for my room {besides my full length one}. I apologize for you being able to see my pup lying on my bed in the mirror ;)
Although the drawers are a little stiff {and there's one that refuses to stay on track}, I love the vintage knobs and the color that it was refinished with.
I also enjoy being able to display odds and ends on the tiny shelves of the hutch. It adds character to the piece & also let's me add my personality to it as well! {Again, a photo of Harlie ha ha}
Thanks again to Tiffany for inviting me to guest post for her -- she's such a doll! Hope you guys enjoyed learning about my favorite piece of furniture... and that you'll stop by The Lifestyle Guide to hear more from me! Have a wonderful weekend, friends!
xoxo Landi
 Thanks so much to Landi for participating in the series! You all need to check out her blog asap, it's fabulous and she is so sweet! If you would like to be featured in this series, please e-mail me at thedesignerlifestyle@gmail.com.
-Tiffany Leigh 


I Spy

I spy with my little eye something that is gorgeous.
Audrey Hepburn, obvi, but I'm talking about the magnifying glass!
I found it at HomeSense for only $9.99. I fell in love with the lucite handle and the golden accents. I noticed a small scratch on the lens, and got a couple dollars off. Good detective work (get it?).

It reminded me of some of my favourite vignettes that have been floating around the blogosphere lately, including this one from The Every Girl.

via The Every Girl
via The Every Girl
And this one which I've posted a couple of times already:
A perfectly lovely little accessory.
Tiffany Leigh


Kiss my Brass Deer

Lately I've been noticing beautiful brass animals in all sorts of decor, but my fave has always been the deer...

via Emily Henderson
(Spot them up there? ^ Looking all glam on the white shelf)
After seeing these images for a few weeks, I had a sudden flashback of a brass deer that we used to have in our home a long time ago. I asked my mom if we still had it kicking around.
And guess what?!

We did! 
Meet Fawn. Walking around with her nose up all snobby and posh. She's completely adorable, completely in need of a serious polish and, most importantly, COMPLETELY MINE (thanks Mom!). I love it when a non-plan comes together. Don't you wanna just give her a big smooch!? 
I'm going to try the lemon and salt technique to shine her up.

Let me know if you have any other suggestions, or any brass pets of your own.
Tiffany Leigh
ps. Thank you all for your congratulations yesterday! You are the best!


Pull up a chair...er..sofa!

Well guys, I did it! Officially graduated... Pretty pumped to have an English degree under my belt. Also pumped that I can now resume more regular blogging about my NEXT degree, interior design. Yeah, I'm a professional student, embrace it.

Today I'm bringing you some beautiful images of sofa type seating in the dining room.
via Simple Dwellings
Is it awkward to shimmy into these seats? Do we care? I don't think I care. Too lovely. I think it also adds some extra functionality to the dining area, like curling up to read a book...with wine please, it's time to celebrate!
Tiffany Leigh


Favourite Furniture Fridays Revamp

I've decided that Favourite Furniture Fridays could use a little revamp. Sure it's fun to drool over iconic investment pieces together like we have been for the past few months, but I thought it might be MORE fun to feature the favourite furniture pieces OWNED by some of our favourite design bloggers.

I'll get the ball rolling.
I'll admit, I don't own much furniture because I'm still living at home to save money. Even if I owned a full houseload though, this dresser would still rank near the top for me. It needs to be refinished...badly, the top is scratched up and the varnish is foggy in many places.
Despite these imperfections, it's solid, with dove tailed drawers, and it has a gorgeous shape. Also, its  got the cutest little wooden caster feet, and an adorable keyhole on the top drawer. I added some pretty crystal knobs for sparkle. Most importantly, it's a beautiful antique that I got out of my grandmother's basement. Sentimental value goes a long way with me.
If you'd like to have your fave featured, please e-mail me at thedesignerlifestyle@gmail.com
Tiffany Leigh



I'm so honoured to have discovered that Landi from The Lifestyle Guide has awarded me with the Liebster Blog Award. I started my blog a few months ago to document my journey in interior design, and it is such a delight to know that others appreciate what I'm putting out there. Thanks so much to Landi and all of my followers for making the blogging process so amazing!
The Liebster is an award given to up and coming blogs, having less than 200 followers. The word "Liebster" is of german origin, meaning "Beloved, Dearest, or Favorite". 

Now it's my turn to pass this award on to five lovely blogs! It was tricky to narrow it down, believe me. I wish I could give it to everyone I follow, for you are all beloved to me.
 1) ^ Nicole is so sweet and runs a fabulous blog about great date ideas, style, design and other goodness.
2)^ Charmaine has some serious great taste in design, just wait until you see her current renovations! Also, she knows how to hunt down some great finds on Craigslist.  
 3) ^ Holly is such a genuinely nice person, and her blog is dedicated to her multi-layered love of fashion, design and food.

4) ^ Laura Dro is a talented artist, and her blog is chalked full of amazing giveaways! I even won a beautiful print of hers that I'll be showing off soon!
  5) ^ Laura is an interior designer and her blog is loaded with inspirational design images!

Congratulations ladies! Pass along the love :)
Tiffany Leigh


In One Week...

In one week, a lot will be changing in my life. For starters, I will have an undergrad degree in English under my belt. That feels amazing. Also amazing? I will no longer be in a long distance relationship.

My wonderful boyfriend goes to school in Halifax, almost 2000 km away. To drive to see him, it would take 19 hours. It's far. But on Wednesday, he comes home...For good.

I can't even begin to express how happy I am. I have not seen him in seven weeks. Sometimes its lonely, sometimes its hard, but it is always worth it. Long distance has taught me so much about communication and appreciation, but after almost two years of this, I'm so excited and ready to have him home. 

When I move to Toronto in the fall for interior design school, we will have a small amount of distance between us again, but nothing like what we've been doing.
I know it's not an interior design post, and I know I'm supposed to be studying, but this news is too great not to share.
xox Tiffany Leigh


Exams = Messy Desk

Exam time always means a messy desk. It usually is much more glamorous than this, but I posted these images in the hopes that you all will bear with the lack of posts for the next week. I'm in finals. My final week of finals of my final year of University. CRAZY. Almost graduated. I'll try to make some time for blogging though!
Tiffany Leigh