October 13, 2017

Fall Home Show: High? Low? Who knows?

Designer Jamie Banfield is an expert at combining luxe and bargain items to create stylish spaces, as he does here and on the previous page. In Double Take, he furnishes living and dining areas with decor items of different costs, and home show guests have to decide: High or low?

Jamie Banfield’s Double Take looks at what’s worth the splurge—and what isn’t

By Lucy Hyslop

Designer Jamie Banfield

The gauntlet has been thrown down: Think you can spot a lavish design over a cash-conscious one?
Through two vignettes—and two different budgets—designer Jamie Banfield will put you to the splurge-or-penny-pinching test at the Vancouver Fall Home Show.
He will cleverly furnish the so-called Double Take dining and living room spaces with lighting, tables, chairs, area rugs and art from various tiers of style and cost, though sometimes the same brand names. The flooring, for instance, will be from the same supplier, but installed in a slightly less expensive way. The spaces will share similar styles on the walls, except one will be a cheaper DIY version.
“Both of them will look stunning and it will be hard to identify which one costs more,” says the principal designer of Port Moody-based Jamie Banfield Design, which has won Best of Houzz 2015, 2016 and 2017 for customer service.
The whole project taps into the importance of working out what people want in a design and which pieces mean the most.
“It’s worth analyzing a space and coming up with solutions to help people save money on certain aspects,” says Banfield, who has garnered a strong following at the home show over the past few years with his energy-saving creations for the BC Hydro Power Smart House and the Ultimate Upcycle Challenge.
If you want to keep a sofa for 50 years, for instance, he suggests investing more money into it. “It’s about looking at your budget and seeing what you can accomplish. We like to splurge on quality more than anything,” he says. “If you know you’re going to go through eight different sofas with your kids, then we can get a little bit more funky and cheaper. You really don’t have to spend crazy money.”
Similarly a less-expensive HomeSense rug may work better than one where you are fretting about dirty marks. If you can paint well yourself, rather than paying a professional, then go for it, he adds. “Painting’s a good way to bring impact on a small amount of money.”
With plenty of options to check out in his newly choreographed spaces including recycled pieces, he believes showgoers will have “multiple talking points on both spaces and can play off them both.”
Double Take will be a feature for the duration of the Vancouver Fall Home Show; Jamie Banfield will appear on the Urban Barn Main Stage (presented by Vancouver Sun) at 2 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 27.

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