Author: alyssawhite

I am a home designer/interior decorator/design enthusiast. I am on a life long voyage to learn as much as I possibly can.

what is design?

Scandinavian Console Table

This is a question I have thought about many times. Design can be defined as a thought-out plan, drawing or idea to show the look, function or workings of an object before it is created. It is not until we are adults that we can see the thought behind all of the design around us. Design is a noun, a verb, and an entity. This being said, Design can be sophisticated, Design can be a comedian, Design can keep you awake at night or never cross your mind. Design has sex appeal and can make you stop dead in your tracks. It becomes God-like and a path for life.

When Design becomes an obsession it is all you can think about. Ideas spin in your head on a 360 rotation and you cannot stop until every detail is complete. You become encompassed by Design.

For myself, I became enthralled with Design at a young age. Reworking every house, school, restaurant I stepped into. I set out from home the very first chance I had, on this journey to not only find myself but to also find Design: I knew it was out there, and I had to be with it.

Every opportunity that has presented itself to me I have taken; Design as an entity would take me where ever I needed to go. I have completed more in 5 years than I ever thought possible. The commitment I made to Design was the easiest decision I have made, Design’s commitment to me is something that I cherish.

Looking through the eyes of a designer at a world filled with thought is the most incredible way to walk down the street. The passion grows more and more every day to a point where you can feel it at the front of your head, right above your eyes; this pressure that is not enough to be a nuisance, but there enough to be a reminder. A reminder to what you wake up for every day and go to bed thinking about every night.

Until next time.


scandinavian design

I’m often asked: “What is your favorite style?” Well…until recently I haven’t been able to answer.
In a world of endless possibilities [and trust me, they are endless!], it is easy to become overwhelmed with all of the options to every conceivable style.
So…this being said…I have found myself turning to the Scandinavian style. There is something about the elegant workmanship, the strong contrasts, natural woods and layering of beautiful photographs and paintings that make me feel refreshed and inspired.
So here, everyone, be inspired.

Dining Room 1

Living Room 2

Living Room 3

Living Room 1

winter windows

I work at an amazing furniture store in downtown Halifax: Attica Furnishings. This business has been a lifelong obsession for me, and since working there I have learned so much and have been given many opportunities to do my own thing and really pursue my goals.

One night about a year ago, I had a dream that I  had created an exquisite window display for a special sale at work. My idea seemed to be right out of a photo shoot. It was sexy, it was stylish, it has raw edges and gave me goosebumps. A few days later I threw the idea off of one of the owners and they went with it! I took the lead and contacted one of my most favorite companies, G.Romano Inc. We chatted about the idea of having a sale on Special Order items…now I have to add that this had never been done before in the history of Attica!

February it would be…which means there was not a lot of time to get things done!! My inspiration for the window display came from G.Romano itself (see below). Although we didn’t have this sectional in stock and my colour scheme needed to be a little less spring and a little more winter-time-in-Nova-Scotia.

My space to use was just down the street from Attica in the Roy Building…although now gutted for remodeling, the space was open, didn’t leak and had direct windows on Barrington St. Through many trips of taking down furniture and accessories, we go the space together: including painting old doors from Attica’s basement to give the space some depth and character.

In the featured photo at the top, you will see the Byward sectional, Seville chairs (all from G.Romano) and a remake of a classic Noguchi coffee table.

It has been a year now and it seems like this sale will now be an annual event! Since then I have created a full G.Romano gallery at Attica which I hope will help us promote the very well made Canadian products we bring in.

Until next time,


If you want more info check out the following:

my january new favorite thing

Do you remember when you were a kid, and your parents would have ailments?…Do you also remember thinking “I hope that never happens to me”?

I have a confession to make: I have a sensitive scalp. I believe it is an early form of psoriasis; straight up dry and scaly. It’s times like this when I wish I would have not said “Hope that never happens to me!” It is giving me a sad reality check for what is to come.

The point of all of this scaly-scalp stuff is that I found something amazing on the week-end!

While enjoying a wonderful morning at the Halifax Seaport Market, I stopped by the Osha Mae Soap stand (Located upstairs, everyone should go!) and I remember thinking to myself “hmm…maybe there will be something here for my scalp…”


At the last second before leaving, I spied with my little eye, an amazing Herbal Hair Rinse! I have to state that this thing should come with some sort of Buckley’s Cough Syrup disclosure: It smells awful, but it works! Like a fool I didn’t open the cap to take a sniff, I assumed it would smell as amazing as the other soaps and oils.

After reading the ingredients, I was 1. convinced that this was something out of Harry Potter and 2. the strong aroma made much more sense. The ingredients list includes the following [in order]: comfrey, white willow, horsetail, nettle, southernwood, mugwart, murdock, APPLE CIDER VINEGAR and distilled water.

The good news is that the smell doesn’t stay! It is intense at first, but rinse thoroughly, and by the time your hair is dry, it is hardly noticeable. My new hair routine includes shampooing with an Aveda shampoo for sensitive scalp, using this Herbal Hair Rinse, towel drying and using Moroccan Oil on the damp ends of my hair.

Before my scalp was feeling oily, scaly, it was sore and I felt like I was constantly scratching at it. It has been 3 days of using the Herbal Hair Rinse and it is a night and day difference! My scalp isn’t oily, it isn’t scaly, and my hair is full of volume! I have fine hair, so volume is something that doesn’t come easily.

I am giving Osha Mae a huge 5 out of 5 for this product! I will be returning to their shop the next time I visit the market and will be trying out more of their products!

Please check out their website, they offer handmade products made locally in Nova Scotia.

cavemen did it, so can I!

We all know what time of the year it is…YEP! It’s that dreadful mid-January where the New Years Resolution-ers start falling like fly’s trapped in the car on a hot afternoon.

Myself, I’m still going on strong with the help of my fiance. We decided (on Dec 27th, of all dates) to go PALEO! I know what you might be thinking, “…paleo, really, that’s pretty trendy.” On trend or not, we have seen some amazing all over health results and it has only been 20 days!

In case you are wondering, this is what Wiki says about a Paleo diet: “The paleolithic diet is a nutritional plan based on the presumed diet of Paleolithic humans. It is based on the premise that human genetics have scarcely changed since the dawn of agriculture, which marked the end of the Paleolithic era, around 15,000 years ago, and that modern humans are adapted to the Paleolithic diet.” Basically, you and I are pretty much the same human as who walked around here 15,000 years ago. If their diet was good enough to have them develop all of the technologies which lead to today, I don’t see why it can’t do me some good.

In reality, a non-paleo diet didn’t really start happening until the development of modern day wheat, fast food chains, frozen dinners, and MSG. Before then, we were mostly eating the old “meat and potatoes”.

For me, the Paleo Diet means that I don’t consume any wheat, gluten source, dairy, or processed foods. White potatoes become sweet potatoes, flour becomes almond meal and coconut flour, and bread…falls apart. I’ve been blessed with a spouse who loves to cook, so preparing meals and making extra for lunch has been a simple transition. If you are crunched for time, do what we do: on Sunday, we make a breakfast casserole, and maybe some pulled pork or roast a chicken or even make a soup for breakfast/lunch for the rest of the week. Pack some veggies, mixed (unsalted) nuts, make some kale chips and salsa and you’re pretty much set!

You will feel hungry. Even though you’ve eaten a full sized meal, without wheat you will probably still feel hungry. Seriously try to power through this; drink some tea, have some celery. Think about all you ate today, perhaps you should eat something more substantial. The reality of this is that wheat fills us up, it makes us feel bloated and can expand our stomachs. So even though you’ve eaten a plateful, your stomach isn’t being completely filled like it otherwise would have been. As your tummy shrinks back to regular size, you won’t feel so hungry after a meal. Myself, I probably eat more..but what I’m eating has nutritional value and is simple for my body to process.

So far, I have seen a lot of changes in my body. I would like to state that in no way did I start this diet to loose weight. Only to be more healthy, live a happier lifestyle and see what happens.

1. I sleep so much better! Sleep is deeper, longer and I wake up ready to jump out of bed and get my day started.

2. I have more energy; this is certainly related to more sleep, but healthier foods give us more energy and may not spike our blood sugars as much, so there is no crash.

3. My stomach is flatter. I haven’t added more workouts, in fact, I’m probably doing less. But the change in the shape of my abdomen has become flatter, tighter and doesn’t bulge when I eat.

4. Aches and pains are no longer present. I suffer from sciatica and have some knee and back issues…most of which are irritated from inflammation. Give up the wheat, less chances for inflammation from an outside source. My sciatica and back haven’t bothered me in 18 days and my knees only hurt when I do too many squats.

5. More focus. Probably related to better sleep as well, but I have been able to concentrate more and get more accomplished.

We only have this one body, RIGHT! So be good to it, and it will be good to you.

If you want to know more info from me or want to check out some of the recipe books or nutritional books I’ve been reading, let me know! I love sharing the knowledge I’ve accumulated.

So for now, I’m off to read at my favorite cafe and have some organic, fair-trade BLACK coffee!

Until Next Time,


queen anne project.

Today I would like to share one of my projects that I designed in 2012. It is now in the building process and it is coming to life very well. My inspiration was found in the details and historical beauty of the Queen Anne from the Victorian Era.

The modern floor plan is made up of the following:

3,600 sq. ft. | 2.5 bathrooms | 3 bedrooms | exercise room | attached garage | main floor laundry | separate living and family room | large master suite…with an amazing view of the ocean!

I am very excited to see how this will look when it is finished. I cannot describe the great feeling that comes with seeing something you imagined on paper come to life in front of you.

Cheers to following your dreams!


September 2013

September 2013