Saturday, January 29, 2011

Sarah Richardson's Rooms at the Interior Design Show 2011

I mentioned in yesterday's post that one of the highlights of the Interior Design Show in Toronto was seeing the Sibling Revelry rooms that Sarah Richardson and Tommy Smythe decorated with Sarah's brother Theo Richardson.  The rooms were fabulous, warm, inviting, and filled with so many take-away ideas.

The idea behind the design project was that siblings would collaborate on decorating rooms.  Theo is a co-founder of the New York City furniture design company Rich Brilliant Willing and the rooms were designed using many of his products along with Sarah's warm inviting design style.

When I went through the rooms I was impressed with Sarah's use of:
  • bold primary colours - a different one in each room
  • balancing bold colours with white (the white panelled walls in each room was the perfect foil for the strong colours)
  • mixing traditional elements with more modern industrial pieces (many of them Theo's)
  • mixing pieces from high and low price points


I loved the red Summerhill subway station photograph,

 the mix of vintage chairs all painted glossy red (some of them cost $10 according to Tommy),

 the display of dishes and candlesticks in this gorgeous metal cabinet,

 the bandanas tied with a simple knot and used as serviettes,

 the mix of fabrics, including this cheery polka-dot on the end chairs,

the ribbed green glass pendant lights designed by Theo,

and the shaker inspired dining chair beside the cabinet designed by Theo.


I loved the mix of IKEA drapes with other blue and white pieces,

the bold polar bear painting,

 the metal bar cart ready for action with blue patterned glasses on top and some crazy animals on the shelf below,

 the modern simple wall clocks designed by Theo,

 the amazing wooden wall hanging (would this not be a great DIY idea),

 the beautiful blue fabric on the inspiration board,

and the fantastic collection of fabrics on the cushions.


I loved the chaise's chevron side panel and the wood side table designed by Theo,

the mix of fabrics in the cushions on the chaise (and the purse, of course),

the mix of gold-toned metals and yellow accessories on the dresser,

the metal dresser with a vintage suitcase underneath,

  the wooden overhead light designed by Theo,

 the fanciful yellow polka-dotted headboard,

the gorgeous orange and yellow pillows on the bed,

the side table designed by Theo, and the Audubon bird prints framed in yellow on the wall.

I loved seeing Sarah, Tommy, and Theo's designs up close and personal and especially loved that there were lots of ideas we can use in our own homes.  I really liked all three rooms a lot, but would have to say that the red dining room was my favourite.  What about you - what's your favourite?


  1. Lots to see! No wonder you had a great time.

  2. great pictures. I don't think anyone does an abundance of pattern like Sarah.

    Glad you enjoyed.

  3. Great photos of the 3 rooms. Even though I don't like red and would never use it in my home, the red room really stands out as a bright room, with the different chairs all linked together by the colour and all the accessories.

  4. I have red in every room of my house and I love it, but this red dining room comes across as a bit chaotic. I love the ideas they used, but there was just a bit too much going on in there. The BLUE room, on the other hand, is definitely my favorite. I could SOOO sit there and feel really productive.

    P.S. I don't understand her recent fascination with rough T-111 siding on interior walls. Rustic is okay, but not splintery shed siding, for Pete's sake.

  5. WOW! I like all three rooms, Grace. I think I like the dining room best, but red is my favorite color. I liked the upholstered host/hostess chairs A LOT! I LOVE the pendant lights over the table. Very Pretty. The panelling reminds me of my family's lake cabin that was built during the fifties. It is rough and looks just like the paneling Sarah used in her rooms. I also like her fabric choices. A lot. What I don't particularly care for are the industrial-looking furniture pieces, and I am seeing them EVERYWHERE! I do not like it, and I don't think it is pretty. At all. I want to see a return to pretty!

    Thanks so much for posting your pictures. This is a great post!

    Ricki Jill

  6. sarah is my design hero. seriously! i love her work.

    i must say this isn't my favorite of her work, but definatly picked up a couple ideas.

    thanks for sharing!

  7. Hi Grace...I am a new blogger but have been a fan of Sarah Richardson since her Room Service days. Every new phase of her career is amazing to me. In my next life I want to be her! What an amazing experience for you. I love your blog and especially your blog name. A take on Jane Austen?
    My blog is If you ever have a spare minute could you take a look? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

  8. Wow, such eye candy. Thanks for sharing.

  9. I loved all the punch of colour! So nice to see during these winter months.
    The yellow headboard is really neat!

  10. I really love the blue room, and all the metal pieces in each room. But what I like about all of the rooms is that they're FUN!

  11. Man, you are so lucky! I would love to meet Sarah and Tommy! Thank you for sharing! They are a talented bunch!

  12. Wow, how did you manage to get people-free pictures (with the exception of Tommy, of course!) All three rooms were packed with people on Thursday night - I didn't get any pics of the blue room, and missed a lot of the details you pointed out in all three rooms.

    I love the polar bear artwork in the study and the chairs with the multiple fabrics in the dining room. I think the DR is my favourite room out of the three.

    Too bad we didn't see each other at the show. Maybe next year!

  13. Grace, Thanks for coming by my new blog and for your kind comments.

    I love all of your pictures in this post. I love how Sarah and Tommy decorate using beautiful fabrics and colors. It had to be a treat that Tommy was there. :)

    Have a great day!

  14. I love the style of Sarah Richardson. I am so envious you got to go to this. Was Candace Olsen there too?

  15. I love the the red diningroom too but must say I loved the blue Ikea curtains also, something to love in every room. Thanks for stopping by, I so appreciate it♥

  16. I love the red chairs....I love it all

  17. What awesome inspiration! I'm now following!

  18. Getting caught up on your blog Grace and LOVING the photos from the design show! How exciting to be able to see such great design and to get so much wonderful inspiration all in one place! Thanks for taking me along for the ride!

    Kat :)

  19. I think I like the yellow room best. So fresh and exciting!

  20. My favorite would have to be the red chairs! I love that idea and wouldn't have thought of it myself . . . I'm always sticking to "safe" neutrals, but this post certainly opened my eyes up to more splashes of color!

  21. I like the red room...but really anything Sarah Richardson is a fav. and you got to see Tommy for real!!! Thanks for commenting on my Thursday in Motion pictures. The motocross pic were taken in Aug in Med Hat....but you are right that Alberta is very snow covered !!
    Thanks for stopping by :)

  22. So much inspiration here! Sometimes I feel jaded with design design design, but not with this!

  23. This is really great! I love red designs and have plans changing my living room mo tiff to all red. I have some world and travel clocks collection (just bought them online) and I believe they all fit to.