Excerpt from the Introduction of West Coast North
Every time I sat down to write this book, I had to clean my whole house first. In my office, I built a new desk with drawers for filing away clutter, installed shelves and peg boards, hung artwork I love, and pruned every distraction until my home environment no longer kept me from work but propelled me into it. Such is the magic of a space that works for you.
Interior design is everywhere in our day-to-day lives, both public and private. It makes up the architecture for our experiences and interactions, which are supported, organized, encouraged, interrupted, eased, or stifled by the interior design. How a space is laid out as you move through it, the cool stone countertop you touch as you sidle up to the bar, the resting spot your feet find at the base of the chair—these were all choices selected for your benefit.
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When I first started writing about interior design more than a decade ago, I became obsessed with learning how interior designers create happy spaces for people and their families, hoping I could capture a piece of it for myself. If I could just see exactly what they did, learn how they tackled a problem or added interest to a lacklustre interior, I could apply that to my own home and dramatically change it (and my life) for the better. And I don’t think I’m alone: so many of us are driven to surround ourselves with beautiful, functional design that speaks to us individually, for our happiness and mental health. With West Coast North I wanted to bring all of those spaces, all of that interior design inspiration, knowledge, and experience, together in one place and into one ultimate collection.
As West Coast designers create interiors that work for their clients, design becomes a reflection of the people who live here. It’s a tangible record of our civilization and values on a micro scale. Even the most ferociously modern cliffside home has an interior furnished with the rugged materials and unfussy décor that support our beloved West Coast Casual lifestyles. These are homes designed for spills and muddy dogs, hosting parties and storing hiking gear—homes that tell our personal stories and house our loved ones and all the memories of the lives we have lived together. And our restaurants, coffee shops, salons, neighbourhood cocktail lounge and breweries—these are the escapes that can offer the enriching interior design we don’t find at home.
Many a talented studio is creating these spaces. West Coast North profiles them and the exciting interior design, both public and private, in which they bridge who and where we are, in Canada’s Pacific Northwest.
Excerpted from the introduction of West Coast North: Interiors Designed for Living. Copyright © 2022 by Julia Dilworth. Excerpted with permission from Figure 1 Publishing. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.