A timeless residential design solution

kitchen with eat-in island

Cynthia Soda is an impressive interior designer. I had the pleasure of interviewing her for interior design school at Ryerson when she was just finishing high school. I knew back then she would become successful. I have watched her grow over the years and enjoy following her creative design solutions on social media. During this time, she managed to balance her design and construction business with a fulsome home life – wife and mother of four children.

Cindy, tell me about this beautiful home. This was a project in the Scarborough Bluffs area and I was inspired by the surrounding ravine and view to the outdoors. It originally began as a partial renovation, but quickly evolved into a full-scale renovation and decor project.

Q. How did you choose the materials and finishes for this beautiful kitchen? I wanted to ensure we produced a timeless solution. Brass was making a comeback and I loved how it contrasted with the black and white elements. It is not overpowering and provides visual interest. The tile pattern behind the range is exciting, yet the overall kitchen is peaceful. The black window frames beckon you to look outside.

Q. What inspired the décor elements in the spaces? The client had an old chair and I had suggested re-upholstering in an animal print and adding a matching ottoman. This really set the tone for the entire space. Mixing traditional elements in a modern way was the basis for the design throughout the home. The client was receptive to our ideas and let us add some elegance with a little bit of edge to their space.

Q. I see you used my favourite flooring: herringbone. Can you tell me why you chose this? A herringbone floor is also a timeless addition to any space. Throughout history, herringbone has been used in many ways, including as a paving pattern in the Roman Empire. It adds visual variety and provides a classic solution. We used a lot of tone-ontone patterns in this home. This adds to the overall restful effect, but yet is visually stimulating.

Q. Cindy, I believe one of the greatest strengths about this home is its 'livability'. Do you agree? As a designer, I tune into the client and their desires, but bring my expertise to elevate their taste while focusing on the functionality of the home. I believe this is what makes a successful residential interior designer. The spaces are interesting, timeless, easy to maintain and yes, definitely, livable.

Q. I know this is one of your first projects as Soda Pop Design, but it remains one of my favourites. How did it change your life? Since this project, I helped my late-father build Soda Pop construction to support our projects. We needed a solution that provided high-quality construction for our homes and was also reliable. After his passing in October 2021, we continued this dream in his honour and are currently renovating a heritage home to use as our Soda Pop headquarters. As a design and construction business, we continue to raise the ante on the service we provide to our clients.

Samantha Sannella
Samantha Sannella
"SAMANTHA SANNELLA, BFA ID, M ARCH, is a designer, educator and principal at Urban Retreat Homes. She is an expert in the field of design and construction and is a columnist for several HOMES Publishing Group publications."
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