You’re ready to start the adventure of building and furnishing a custom home, and you couldn’t be more excited. You can already envision your children playing with their friends in a sprawling yet cozy living room. You picture preparing dinner in your future kitchen, gathering friends and family, connecting over drinks, meals, and laughs.
When it comes to building your dream home, your first thought probably isn’t about “what” is in the home. It’s about how you will use it — the lifestyle and memories you will share together.
That’s why it is so important to think about your home furnishings early. I know this seems counterintuitive, but if you’re picturing a game room that attracts all the neighbours kids, you will need to make sure your floor plan can accommodate the furnishings, like an oversized sectional that seats a crowd.
Today, I want to take you through our meticulous 5-step process for furnishing your custom home, beautifully, thoughtfully, and impactfully, from the start of your project to the day you move in…
Step 1: Discovery & Exploration
The furnishing process starts with understanding your style, lifestyle, and how you will use each room — which means asking lots of important questions. Do you plan to take naps in front of your living room window? Do you have regular dinner parties and need to seat 12? (A table for 6 just won’t do!) Do you already own any pieces of furniture that you treasure and want to keep?
We know how to ask the right questions, and we create a safe space for you to share your honest answers. At this time, we will also discuss your style preferences, how you want the space to feel, and any other juicy details that give us a complete picture of your dream home.
Note: Whenever possible, we start our Discovery Phase (and Step 2, the Design Development Phase) before your floor plans are finalized or any construction has started. Using our insights from the discovery process, we will work directly with your architect to fine-tune the home’s footprint for your ideal lifestyle.
Step 2: Furnishing Design Development
This step is mostly behind the scenes, and although you won’t see the magic happening, it is. We begin by mapping out a functional furniture layout — i.e. which types of items will go where — and coordinate with the architect to make sure the floor plans accommodate them. With your approval, of course.
Then, we define the overall aesthetic of the home and each individual room. This is determined by your sense of style, the home’s architecture, and the mood of the space. You might want a dining room to feel cozy and intimate, whereas a family room might be better with a bright, open ambiance.
Once the general direction and floor plan are set and approved by you, we start selecting (or custom designing!) the individual pieces that will go into your home. This takes many, many hours in our studio, sifting through thousands of product options to find the best ones for you. And when we do…
Yes, even kitchens need furnishings!
Step 3: Furnishing Design Presentation
It’s time for your first design reveal! We deliver a fantastic presentation covering all of the furnishings selections we have made for your home, down to the beautiful details like trim, fabric, and accessories. You will be able to see, at a glance, how each room will look, and you will be able to touch samples of products to feel the quality and comfort yourself.
At this time, we also provide you with an investment proposal, including quotes we have collected from our suppliers for each of the items in the design. (Yes, we line-item everything for precise recording and budgeting.) After your approval, we immediately move to procurement.
P.S. You can Download our Home Furnishings Investment Guide to get an idea for typical investment ranges, by room.
Step 4: Furnishing Procurement
Procurement happens right after our presentation, and speed is of the essence to avoid price increases, backorders, and/or discontinued items. Lead times have increased significantly since 2020, and custom items, like a custom rug, can take up to 12 months to be delivered. Most homes also take that long to build, so ordering as soon as possible allows for a timely installation.
During the Procurement Phase, we place precise orders, receive status reports from our vendors, track shipping, receive deliveries, inspect quality (and resolve any issues), and store the pieces until your home is constructed. It’s our goal to have all items procured before construction is complete, that way we can move to…
Step 5: Final Installation
No surprises, this is our absolute favourite step — when all of our design plans finally come together before our eyes! After all of the planning and waiting, the moment is finally here. We will install all of the furnishings we have ordered for you (along with any you currently own), style the space perfectly, and use our white-glove service to transform the house into your home.
Then, you get to come home, pop the champagne, and start this new chapter in your beautiful life!
So, where should you start?
As you begin planning, it’s important to have a general understanding of your overall furnishings investment. This will ensure that you are able to balance funds wisely to get everything you wish for. You can Download our Home Furnishings Investment Guide to get an idea for typical investment ranges, by room.
If you’re looking for a team member, guide, and more inside insights into the process, let’s chat. You can book a discovery call with me here to see if we’re the right team for you.