Room makeover con­test win­ner


NOW Magazine - Toronto Living - - Front Page - By Meaghan Clark

In any the­atri­cal show, stage de­sign and props set the tone for the great per­for­mances to un­fold. The new room cre­ated in ac­tor David Cormi­can’s bach­e­lor apart­ment for NOW Mag­a­zine’s Room Makeover aims for pure drama in the best pos­si­ble sense of the word. Start­ing with a fresh coat of paint cour­tesy of Colour Your World, the room went from drab pri­son green to warm, soft denim blue. Stylist Kari Measham kept in mind this artist’s wish for a cool blue space. She chose a shade that wasn’t the least bit baby­ish and would fit into her over­all vi­sion of a sleek “man pad.” Paint­ing the room (and a good clean­ing be­fore­hand) in­stantly made the place feel new, as if Mr. Clean him­self had stopped by to work his magic. (Judg­ing from the abun­dance of Fe­breeze and other Proc­ter & Gam­ble prod­ucts on his shelves, Cormi­can ei­ther re­ally likes a clean-smelling apart­ment or re­cently did a com­mer­cial for them. (We’re guess­ing the lat­ter.) What ini­tially drew Measham to choose Cormi­can’s place was the crazy 1970s brown-and-yel­low linoleum that screamed for a change. While lay­ing down new floor­ing proved too costly and time-con­sum­ing, an ex­tra-large sisal car­pet left over from a re­cent film shoot solved the prob­lem. On a new neu­tral back­ground, the fur­ni­ture in­stead of the tired old floor takes cen­tre stage. A mod­ern black sofa with chrome legs from Casa Life now an­chors the “living room” sec­tion of the space, op­po­site two dark grey vel­vet-and-chrome chairs that Measham brought from her store, Winkel. Cormi­can can now of­fer a seat to more than one guest at a time. Orig­i­nally, the room lacked ta­ble space as well as seat­ing. Although the chest freezer did dou­ble duty as an iron­ing board, there was no other sur­face in the living on which to rest a drink, bowl, mag­a­zine or pair of feet. A dark wood-and-glass cof­fee ta­ble and com­pact glass-and-hrome side ta­ble, both from Casa Life, now of­fer plenty of op­tions for Cormi­can and com­pany.

Round­ing out the ma­jor fur­nish­ings are a wood-and-glass room divider placed close to the bed to cre­ate a vis­ual “bed­room wall,” and a much larger desk painted a bright burnt or­ange that gives the space a bit of a wow fac­tor. Repo­si­tioned pa­per lamps, a glass shelf on the ra­di­a­tor and a few in­ter­est­ing ac­ces­sories dress the room and make it wor­thy of a great per­for­mance. It isn’t just the myr­iad show tunes on his iPod that gives away his pro­fes­sion. Cormi­can has sev­eral good pho­tos of Robert Di Niro and Al Pa­cino, though they were placed hap­haz­ardly. Measham cre­ated a new pic­ture us­ing three of Cormi­can’s favourite movie posters framed in an old glass win­dow. She was able to snag a few other in­ter­est­ing art pieces, again from old film shoots, that mys­te­ri­ously com­ple­ment both the colour and tone of the new room.

Fi­nally, hang­ing neu­tral cur­tains over the closet (the first thing you see when you en­ter the apart­ment) cre­ated the cheap­est but most dra­matic change of all. Now you no longer have to stare at laun­dry and freshly ironed shirts – a re­ally good thing.

This makeover could not have been so well ex­e­cuted with­out the gen­er­ous help of friends and stylists Wa­heeda Har­ris, Bernie MacNeil, Deb Burgess and Teresa Jenk­ins. Again, my thanks to Colour Your World, Casa Life, Winkel and Kari Measham. Con­grat­u­la­tions to David Cormi­can and the other NOW read­ers who sub­mit­ted their pho­tos and sto­ries. Look for an­other great makeover op­por­tu­nity in 2006.

Meaghan Clark is a Toronto-based free­lance writer who writes about de­sign and re­tail ini­tia­tives and spends far too much time re­search­ing Euro­pean shel­ter mag­a­zines.



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