It’s a cocktail affair at the CHI Grand Re-Opening Industry Night

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To celebrate the recent renovations that we did to our fabulous design showroom in Ottawa, we decided to have a little party with our partners from the Ottawa Housing & Design Industry!! It turned out to be an amazing night with excellent food and music as guests mingled and schmoozed with friends and partners alike.

Here is just a taste of how the evening transpired:

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The stage was set. Lights, Food, Drinks. And we were in action…The CHI Showroom was
dressed to the nines for this auspicious night.

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CHI also had a silent auction which featured sponsors from Hot899, Miele, Strokes of Genius Painting, and a host of
other hotels & spa’s. All proceeds were donated to the Habitat for Humanity National Capital Region.

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Industry Guests from all over Ottawa had made an appearance

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CHI Sales & Marketing Director sharing a laugh with Penny Southam from Southam Design

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CHI Director of Operations Tyler Dren delivers his speech in introducing the CHI Team to the
Industry. Tyler highlighted that much of the success that CHI has enjoyed is down it’s most valuable asset, it’s employees.

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Now how can’t you have a party without a BIG CAKE!

Congratulations to the Directors of Custom Home Interiors. What was once
an idea from a business competition, is now an 8000 sq. ft reality.

On behalf at everyone at Custom Home Interiors, we would like to thank everyone who attended and made this event night to remember.

Thank You!

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Custom Home Interiors Wins 2010 Ottawa Citizen Peoples Choice Award for Housing Design!

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The Greater Ottawa Home Builders Association Housing Design Awards are essentially the Oscars for the Home & Design industry in Ottawa. This is the event where Home Builders, Architects, Designers and Industry Partners get to showcase their best work and wow the who’s who of Ottawa.

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Custom Home Interiors was eligible for one of the most coveted and prestigious awards of the evening, the Ottawa Citizen Peoples Choice Award.  This is where the people of Ottawa have a chance to voice their opinion on who they think had the best design project, and while according to the judges, it was a close call, CHI won!

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Custom Home Interiors Team Members (From left to right) Sean Howard, Tyler Dren, Michaela Shirley, Andrew Emmans, Suzy Kendrick & Tim Das

“Winning the Ottawa Citizen Peoples Choice Award is an absolute honour for CHI.  We are very proud of our team and our work and will ensure that our clients and potential clients will continue to see this from us. We will always strive to be the best we can be for the people.”  – Andrew Emmans, Director of Sales & Marketing

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Custom Home Interiors Directors Tyler Dren (left) & Andrew Emmans at 2010 GOHBA Housing Design Awards

The Housing and Design Awards features 41 categories that range from custom kitchens & bathrooms, builder homes, condos, green initiatives, renovator of the year and more.

Custom Home Interiors submission fell under the Open Category as well as the Ottawa Citizen Peoples Choice Award. The Open Category allows GOHBA members to showcase a housing project, custom home or renovations anywhere in North America.  Our submission was for a home that we had renovated and outfitted in Caledon, Ontario with furniture and décor that defined the home owners personality.  Our presentation board featured all the designs and inspirations that went toward bringing this home from concept to reality which beat out some tough competition to land itself a place in the finals amongst 3 other companies.

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CHI Director of Sales & Marketing Andrew Emmans presents an award at 2010 Housing Design Awards

On behalf of the entire Custom Home Interiors team, we’d like to thank the people of Ottawa for selecting CHI as your premiere choice for home outfitting and design in the nations capital.

By Suzy Kendrick & Tim Das

suzy@customhomeinteriors.ca
timothy@customhomeinteriors.ca

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De-Decorating Your Home: Setting the Stage for Success!

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You have heard of it. Friends have told you about it. But you still remain skeptical about the very application of it!  It’s Home Staging!

DID YOU KNOW? Research shows that a staged home will not only sell faster, but for more money.

“Home staging is preparing a home for the real estate market by making all necessary repairs and creating a neutral environment that anyone can visualize living in”.  – HGTV

One of the most important things to remember when thinking about staging is – Staging is NOT decorating.  It is the exact opposite of decorating (or de-decorating as I like to call it).  A professional stager will come into your home with an objective eye and inform you what appeals to the current market.  If you’re still living in the space, they will make suggestions as to what needs to be removed from the room and what pictures need to come down.

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Property Stylist and CEO of Capital Home Staging and Design, Kristy Morrison, is an expert in helping her clients get their homes ready to go on the market.  Kristy shared some pretty interesting facts with me:

  • 90% of buyers can NOT envision the potential of the space
  • 86% of buyers are willing to spend a little more money on a home that is “move in ready”
  • Staged homes sell 50% faster and typically for 6-30% MORE money!

Which living room would you rather be in?

Before

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After

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So, what does home staging and Custom Home Interiors have in common?  This is for all you stagers, real estate agents and home owners looking to put their place on the market…

Custom Home Interiors is developing a Home Staging Program!

The best part is, we are going to have tonnes of items for RENT!  What do you need to finish off the living room?  Artwork?  Table Lamps?  You don’t need to go and buy those things.  Just use ours until your home is sold!  We have rows upon rows of accessories, walls full of artwork and even some fibreboard furniture… more about that really cool product in my next blog post.

From the very basics where you’re staging a home and need an artificial plant or a bar height table, we will guide you through every step of the process and ensure that your home looks it’s best for a sale.

By Mandalyn Goodall

Mandalyn@customhomeinteriors.ca

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GOHBA Recognizes CHI for Exceptional Customer Service & Marketing!

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Outstanding customer service is what Custom Home Interiors is all about.  So, being recognized for this by our industry peers is one of the best compliments we could get!

Every year the Greater Ottawa Home Builders Association holds awards ceremonies to acknowledge their industry partners who stand out in terms of sales, marketing and customer service.  This year, CHI was at the forefront of award recipients.
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At the GOHBA Sammy Awards on Wednesday, September 8th at the Centurion Conference & Event Centre, CHI took away 3 trophies.

CHI Director of Sales & Marketing Andrew Emmans was the first to receive his award from the judging panel for Best Industry Partner Representative.

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Andrew Emmans, CHI Director of Sales & Marketing

“We’ve been members of GOHBA for the past 3 years and have been trying to get as involved as possible, so to win an award like this is an absolute honour.  CHI will strive to go above and beyond this expectation for years to come,” says Emmans.

Andrew barely had a chance to sit down before he was called up to the stage twice more.  CHI was presented the awards for Best Industry Partner Print Ad and Best Industry Partner Brochure.

“These achievements are a team effort,” he says.  “Everyone at CHI is involved with our marketing and certainly we need to point out Timothy Das for his work with our marketing initiatives.  These materials reflect exactly what CHI is providing to our customers.  We look at our marketing  materials as our CV  so it’s important that it sets a bar for what our clients can expect when they walk into Custom Home Interiors.”

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Timothy Das, CHI Sales & Marketing Co-Ordinator

The GOHBA Customer Service Awards were the next night at the Sala San Marco Banquet Hall and we we’re ready to recognize our customer service superstars!

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Our 2010 Customer Service Superstars! (Left to right) Andrew Emmans, Amy Carter, CHI Sales & Design Representative and Kiersten Lowden, CHI Sales & Corporate Services Representative

Three CHI family members were in the running for the GOHBA Customer Service Awards and it was Amy Carter who placed as the 2nd runner up in the Trade/Supplier category.

“I feel honoured and appreciated,” Carter says.  “I’m so pleased that my customers are happy and that I was acknowledged for it.  To me, customer service is about building relationships.  It’s not just about selling.  Being friendly and taking time to get to know my clients so that I can meet their needs and wants is key.”

Congratulations team!

By Suzy Kendrick

Commercial Sales Representative

Custom Commercial Interiors

suzy@customhomeinteriors.ca

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Uncover the Fabric That Will Re-Define Your Space

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When looking at the four blank walls in an un-defined space, it can be difficult and somewhat frustrating to imagine what the finished product will look like.  Getting started on a new project can be a tedious task.  However, with the right inspiration, you can make that blank canvas into your own personal masterpiece in no time.

A simple way to select a colour scheme for a room in your home is to start with a fabric you love!  A patterned textile will showcase colours that complement each other.   Once the appropriate fabric and colour are chosen, the rest is easy.  Use the fabric’s colour and style as a base style for the rest of the space.

Belle Maison’s Julie Thigpen (www.bellemaison23.com) put together a “Décor Inspiration Vignette” that I absolutely love.  The inspiration behind her     design came from the Amy Butler fabric (Nigella Twill Water Lotus Forest) at the top left.

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Resources: 1) Fabric Amy Butler Nigella Twill Water Lotus Forest – $14.98/yd; 2) Devon Mirror – $149; 3) Santee Sioux Pillow – $54; 4) Gold Festival Pillow – $128; 5) Jasper Table Lamp – $535; 6) Cinchwaist Iron/Glass Table (Arteriors Home); 7)Savoir Chair in Sangria Fabric – $899; 8) Jacqui White Chest – $1,525

In terms of some tips and key points to keep in mind, remember the following:

  • When dealing with large furniture pieces such as the sofa, they are best upholstered in light, muted tones.
  • Select a neutral hue from the palette of colours and punch it up with a bold colour on an accent chair with throw pillows in a selected patterned fabric.
  • Another neutral hue in the fabric is often great for wall colour.  Whether it’s rich or muted, this colour will translate well into a large area as it is neutral and will showcase unique items in the room.
  • A classic chair can be brought to life using a bold colour from the fabric, such as hot pink or peacock blue just as Belle Maison did.

Don’t be afraid to be creative and experiment!  Colour and pattern will bring other elements of the space to life.  Mix and match to create a room that defines you and expresses your personality. Discover the hidden potential your space has to offer, based on one simple fabric!

By Kiersten Lowden
Custom Home Interiors

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Calling all Design Professionals!!!!!

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Everyone has dreams, goals and ambitions. Certain dreams and ambitions might involve starting up a business or finally doing the thing that you love most. BUT! You are inexperienced, scared and unsure where to turn to?

Well now there is an answer………

When Kimberley Seldon held her Business of Design seminar at Custom Home Interiors in Ottawa, a common issue that arose among designers was that there was no actual place to go for help when it came to dealing with business issues and practices related to the design industry. Especially if you are just starting out and do not have the budget to hire a business coach.

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As a result, Ottawa based designer, Donna Hargrove of DH Designs, decided to start the Ottawa Design Network Group (ODNG) and mold it into a community of designers, decorators and students. The sole purpose of this group is simple. Share information and support each other in developing their design business and create an open forum where design professionals can express their concerns and find common solutions to the issues that they face on a daily basis.

The motto of the Ottawa Design Network Group is 80% Business / 20% Design

The ODNG held it’s first session at the Custom Home Interiors showroom and the attendance exceeded our expectations. Over 25 designers from all over Ottawa and its surrounding areas showed up with the right attitude and zeal to share and collaborate with their peers on design and business issues!

If you were unable to make it for the first session, the ODNG group has decided to meet once every 6 weeks at the Custom Home Interiors showroom.

Next meeting has been scheduled for:

Thursday June 24th 2010
6:30pm
CHI Boardroom 1

If you are a design professional and reside in the Ottawa region, and are looking for a place to connect and collaborate with other designers, please click on the link below to register for the next session!

http://bit.ly/cbyYTx

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Learning About Quality: Dutch Quality Stone @ CHI

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As the newest member of the CHI team, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to learn about all the fantastic products CHI features in the showroom.  One really great thing I love about the items we carry are the interesting back stories or company histories that accompany many of them.  Dutch Quality Stone is one of those products.
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Started as a family company in Ohio 20 years ago, Dutch Quality Stone prides itself on the fact that 85% of the people they employ to manufacture the product are Amish.  (Interesting Fact:  The world’s largest Amish Community lives in Wayne County, Ohio.)  Company Representative Bill Archibald says this is because the Amish are extremely fussy about their work; quality and consistency being their primary concerns.

“In our corner of the world, people believe in doing things right.”  www.dutchqualitystone.com

Curiosity got the better of me and I wanted to know about the Amish way of life.  I discovered that Amish children start learning trades as early as Grade 8.  No wonder they have a reputation for hard work and fine craftsmanship!  For your own education, check this video out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1ALGtEpbfU

Wondering how these manufactured stone veneers are made?  Basically, it goes a little something like this.  The stones come from a quarry where, I like to think, they are selected based on their individuality and “specialness”.  They’re brought in and a latex mould is made.  Then, the veneer is made using a combination of concrete and fired shale.  (Shale means broken down pieces of stone.)  From there, they are painted and have many different colour combinations depending on the layout you select.

“Dutch Quality Stone has been at the forefront of advanced stone replication for over a decade, perfecting the process of recreating incredibly vivid stone products.”  www.dutchqualitystone.com

At CHI, we specifically showcase “The Trillium Collection” which represents the best of what the company has to offer.  These stone styles and colours have been specifically selected for the discerning Canadian Homeowner.  Sample boards are available for designers to use as well.  These are my two favourite styles:

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Prestige Weather Ledge

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Natural Blend Ledgestone

Whether for the exterior or interior of your home, stone feature walls or store fronts, this products adds such beautiful character.  At significantly less than the cost of natural stone, accompanied by its 50 year warranty, it’s a great product to consider for your home or commercial space.  Come visit us in the showroom and check it out for yourself!  And make sure you say hi to me as well when you’re here, I’m looking forward to meeting you all!

-Suzy Kendrick

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25 lights to turn off before you go to bed….One Button to do it.

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Ever had one of those nights where you just wanted to get to bed? But you had a million different things to turn off and it just felt as if you didn’t care that the energy bill was going to run up because you left everything on???

Well, there is a solution. The answer lies in the form of “Control 4 Home Automation“. Play the video below and discover how you can make your life, a heck of a lot easier!

What are the benefits of Home Automation?

1. Entertainment

Impress our guests or simply enjoy the comfort of having a fully integrated home theatre where you can experience the feel of a movie theatre in your own home.

2. Safety & Security

Going beyond the call of duty of traditional alarm systems, a control 4 security system will enable all indoor lighting, in the event of a robbery. In addition, occupants will also be warned in the event of a gas-leak or water -leak.

3. A convenient lifestyle

Control almost every electrical device with a single touch-pad or remote control. Enjoy the possibilities of having mutli-zone audio, where different types of music can be played in different areas of the home.

4. Energy Efficiency

Lighting levels and temperature is also an integral feature of Control 4. Lighting and temperature can be adjusted automatically, based on room occupancy and the weather.

Discover a world of possibilities with Control 4 Home Automation system. Contact a Custom Home Interiors representative at 613-248-1244 for more information or visit or www.control4.com

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