Shawnigan Lake – Client Feedback

    September 12, 2011

    Today’s blog has been made easy for me ( I really like getting submissions from my ‘partners in crime’ - as much as I enjoy it, but not being ’forced’ to spend long hours scanning and wordsmithing once in a while is very convenient  – yeay…) – a big THANK YOU to very wonderful clients for their beautiful letter to us!

    I thought it might be great idea to share their sentiments, as they were total newcomers to working with a designer – and of course we are proud to share their praise with our readers….

    The project will get photographed professionally soon, however, at this point I can only add snapshots. In my mind this project was always the sexy, dark and handsome sibling of our very calm and sensual Kitsilano job…





    the sleek curved island with the stainless steel post/ electrical chase


    Hi, Ines,

    When Naz and I first decided to reno our kitchen we called my cabinet maker friend.  He came over with his designer and we chatted for a while.  I guess you know that originally I had intended for a more traditional Greene and Greene style hardwood kitchen.  The conversation we had with them was brief and the designer didn’t actually speak. 

    After they left Naz and I had a conversation about how it had gone with them.  We realized that all we were going to end up with was our same kitchen with new boxes.

    We’ve done a lot of renovations since we bought this house in 1993.  Each one was done as we could afford it and in a rather haphazard fashion.  We didn’t really have a long-term plan as we were never sure how each room was going to be used.  In the first few years we lived here we moved our furniture around so much from room to room that we should have put wheels on it.  The office space was in 3 different spots, the master bedroom in 2, we had a dining room then no dining room, the pinball machines were downstairs then upstairs, we had a piano then no piano and so on.  We went from the original carpet in the kitchen to lino to tile and from carpet throughout the house to hardwood and cork and even some laminate. 

    Anyways, as we realized that we were heading for new boxes in the kitchen we decided that perhaps it was time to do something with more of a plan – something to tie it all together.  That’s when we went googling and looking at portfolios and found you.

    When you first came up we didn’t know what to expect.  We’d never worked with a designer and, frankly, we used to laugh at people who did.  We’d always done our own thing and – for the most part – it always turned out to our satisfaction.  The first thing you did when you came in was admire the view out the window and point out that the spindle handrail made it look a bit like a jail.  We’d been looking at it so long we never really thought about it anymore.  But when you pointed that out we realized that you were right.  You walked around for a while listening and swapping ideas and, despite the fact that you had only agreed to come up for a couple of hours you were here for closer to 3 1/2.  You weren’t watching the clock and you seemed genuinely interested.  After you left Naz and I talked about our meeting and we were both very impressed with you.

    Since then we’ve not been disappointed.  You’ve got a special gift for visualizing spaces and materials.  You’ve also got an obvious passion for what you do.  It’s not often you meet someone who is both good at what they do and obviously loves to do it but you are one of those people.  At every step you’ve taken whatever time and measures it took to make sure that each and every detail was correct – there were no surprises – no ‘gotcha’s.  Where one material ended you made sure that it transitioned into the next appropriately both in size, space, and material.  You communicated with Bert and Jivko behind the scenes to ensure that everything went according to plan and you communicated with us to make sure that we got what we wanted.


    Anyhow, the purpose of this email is to thank you for all your hard work.  Naz and I are very happy with the way things turned out.  The whole ground floor is now one continuous area that we’re proud of.  Honestly when we look in the kitchen from above it’s hard to believe it’s ours – it looks like something out of a magazine.  I don’t think there’s any designer that could have done a better job with this space.

    Thanks, Ines!

    Mark and Naz





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