Designer To Watch
Even as a small child Lisa Canning was constantly rearranging her room and creating new dollhouse set ups. Years later, hosting HGTV’s Marriage Under Construction, she helped young married couples on a small budget, make the best of their homes. After her successful stint on HGTV she started Lisa Canning Interiors to help families live beautiful, organized lives through strategic design. Canning specializes in 2-hour consultations, where she leverages her production design for TV experience (where decisions have to happen crazy fast) to help families maximize their homes. Here she reveals where she shops in Toronto and gives us her top gift ideas for the coming holiday season.
At what point did in your life did you come to understand how much the home environment affected your happiness?
I really became aware of the impact design has on your happiness when we underwent our own home renovation. We recently gutted our entire house in exchange for smart small space design strategies—and the impact is incredible. We chose to keep our large family of 5 small kids in a tiny semi detached house in the city. But to do this, we had to maximize every single square inch to ensure we could conquer clutter and live in peace! I have watched my clients go through the transformation that comes when a dysfunctional space becomes beautiful and functional- but to experience it for myself and for my family has been truly amazing.
What are your favorite design stores in Toronto? Is there a specific area you go to shop in the city?
I love the Castlefield Design district for shops like Elte, Union Lighting and Furnishings, and Creekside Tile. I also love Queen West, with shops like CB2, Morba and Urban Barn. Finally, there is a special stretch of Yonge Street between Saint Clair and Bloor that includes lovely spots like Love the Design and L’Atelier.
What are three local spots you love?
Dineen for a lovely coffee break, Momofuko when you’re craving noodles and I am always inspired when I enter a Chapters. It is such a tactile delight to the senses.
What are your five best homeware gift recommendations for the holiday season?
– To spoil someone special in your life you can’t go wrong with a Dyptique candle from Holts.
– When in a rush, grab one of the pre-made mini floral bouquets from Whole Foods. They are affordable and beautiful- flowers are a good gift year round!
– For a unique trinket like a vintage ice bucket or paper weight, visit Kevin at Vintage Fine Objects.
– For the best bang for your buck, HomeSense is an amazing spot for cheese boards and serving platters- a totally perfect hostess gift!
– Finally, photographer Anna With Love has a stunning selection of prints you can order online. Place in a simple white frame and gift to a fellow travel lover!