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Advice: Our designers fix your ugly rooms

Have an ugly room and don't know how to fix it? Our experts are here to help. We'll reveal one room each day this week.

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“I’m looking for a reception area that is more in keeping with innovative dental practices of the clinic - Dr. Adam Pite STYLE: Firstly, remove all the wallpaper and select a neutral base colour to work off of. Consider removing the carpet and replacing it with laminate floors, which is a cost effective option and reconfigure the reception desk by elimination the angles and creating a “wrap” which extends to the floor. And update the artwork, hanging the new pieces lower to work better with the height of the room. STORAGE: Behind the reception desk, install a built-in storage system that would conceal the exposed filing system and create a functional featured design element. LIGHTING: Exchange the florescent lights with halogens and introduce hanging pendant lights for a warmer ambience. Also, replacing the current furniture with more modern pieces will also lighten the overall feeling of the space. - Del Terrelonge, owner and designer, Rhed Design Studio

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"With one key living space for our growing family - we'd like a room that strikes a balance. Currently the baby toys are winning!" - Katharine Preston SEATING: Instead of having two different types of accent chairs, keep only one. If you need additional seating for guests, graphic stools are an option, without the bulk. STORAGE: Replace the coffee table with something lower, ideally an ottoman with storage where you could tuck the toys away quickly. Maximize the beautiful brick wall by mounting a storage system with open and closed spaces. Great for hiding the toys as well. STYLE: Add warmth and depth to the room with an area carpet. Not only does it bring the elements together, but the toys become less intrusive on it. And take advantage of that great window by hanging floor-to-ceiling rippled-fold curtains that will elongate the space and add a touch of sophistication. - Thien and My Ta Trung, owner/designers, Periphere

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“Our basement resembles a bar from 1975. Wood paneling and rough wood trimmed with a dated bar along one wall. Please help!” - Wilma Jackson SPACE: If you’re prepared to live with the paneling, consider painting it a warm white to give the space a more contemporary feel and save some money. For ideal lighting, replace the ceiling and install pot-lights on a dimmer to add warmth to a basement space. STYLE: Update the furniture with some modular seating, like a sectional sofa - enough for the whole family or a few guests. Then add some blankets and throw pillows, and create a comfortable space for watching movies in. And a great bold patterned area rug will help to bring some colour to the existing floors. - Nicole Tarasick, textile designer

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“We have a large bedroom full of mismatched furniture, poor lighting, old colour scheme and a lack of space. Help!” - Adrian Blake STYLE: Start by taking all the colour tones back to basics. Use a soft greyed white and paint the window frame and the walls the same colour. Adjust the lighting by removing the overhead light and replace it with a swing-arm reading light for a more contemporary feel. STORAGE: Get rid of anything in the space that is not essential, remove all of the dresers and replace with a cabinet inside the closet for storage. Lighten the impact of the books by stacking the larger books beside the bed to use as a bedside table. SLEEP: To lighten the room’s overall feel, replace the bed frame with a simple metal frame that requires a matress and no box spring. Cover the bed in crisp clean sheets and a duvet a 4 pillows covered in single colours like white or light grey. - Maureen Welton, creative director, 18Karat

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