GREAT SPACE: Creative couple seeks to retain ’80s vibe while modernizing the look

This article first appeared in the Interiors 2015 issue of Ottawa Magazine.

For more photos of this project visit our Facebook page.


Photo by  Joel Bedford
Photo by Joel Bedford

Certain classic design eras provide continuing inspiration for home-owners and creators — think mid-century modern or Arts and Crafts. But how often do an architect and a designer get the chance to revisit the decade of showy excess known as the 1980s? Not often, says Serina Fraser of Clear Designs, who admits to being thrown for a loop when architect Jane Thompson put her in touch with a young couple wanting advice on modernizing their new buy — a 1980s-era house in New Edinburgh.

“They wanted to renovate and redecorate to preserve the vibe. I was thinking, ‘You want gold plumbing fixtures? What’s happening to my career?’ ” Fraser says with a laugh. Then she took a deep breath and thought about how much fun the project could be. The process began with a visual storyboard of the good and the bad of the decade — clothes, fashion, furniture, and wallpaper. “We took the cool colours and finishes and discarded the big puffiness of the era.” (more…)