Oct 06 2013

My Adventure at the Toronto Fall Home Show 2013

Twice a year, the CNE grounds get descended upon and overthrown for four days with home owners, home buyers, renters and HGTV celebrity groupies for their Home Show. I was very lucky to receive free passes (via Twitter) from Melissa Davis; one half of the fabulously talented Catherine + Davis interior design brand. It\’s a great venue for inspiration to anyone with a home, and I always enjoy seeing the latest innovations in home products and construction materials. This year, I went alone. No sad face warranted – Drew and Jonathan Silver (The Property Brothers) were my motivation for attending…and apparently for many others too.
Who are The Property Brothers? The dynamic duo comprised of twin brothers – one a realtor, one a licensed contractor – on a TV show that matches home buyers with their Dream Home. The catch? Their dream must be born and built out of the muddled mess of a home they pick up that actually IS within their budget. We can all have caviar dreams, however most of us are on a beer budget. (Mine is a Mike\’s Hard Lemonade budget, because I hate the taste of beer, but the premise is the same.) These two are the kind of people I like to be around in life. They don\’t only see what is in front of them; they see the possibilities. With a strong foundation, you can build anything. Being brothers, you sometimes get to see their sibling squabbles and sibling rivalries that so many of us can relate to in life. Always you are guaranteed to see their brilliance in construction and design, and fantastic senses of humour.


For their segment, the Main Stage area was crammed full of spectators: seated in chairs; bums crammed tightly onto open floor space; standing; balancing on display stands – and they kept on coming during the hour-long talk. The video (which I couldn\’t see from my vantage) highlighted some of the homes they\’ve done and were sprinkled with shocking transformation photos as well as their trademark humour at each other\’s expense. Fun time.

Best part of my visit – I got to TOUCH both of them. *swoon* Must remember to tell my Beloved that I love him since my FanGirl mode kicked in hard. Had a huge temptation to steal Jonathan. His work is fantastic, and my home needs it!

Innovation of Note

Sadly, during this visit, I didn\’t find a product that was new, exciting, or pushed the margins of the imagination. Kind of disappointing. Maybe I just missed it. The most \”neatO\” thing I saw was a display that looked like it was a hologram, but it was just video uplighted onto a clear plastic cut-out display. Didn\’t take a picture to help better explain; besides the holographic water display on the TV show Bones is 90% more impressive.

Favourite Display

Although there were many areas set-up, the most creative in my opinion was the Unhinged Challenge shown in partnership with Habitat for Humanity\’s ReStore. Challengers used reclaimed doors as the base for various product pieces. One was a coffee table with a backgammon board painted on top, using the moulding as the board\’s confinements.
Another was a cabinet created by using four doors, with built-in wine rack and storage drawer. Many incorporated beautiful graphic art painted on the doors, to be either hung from a wall as individual art pieces or used as a real door. Impressive work completed by talented, imaginative people. One piece will be voted as the \”winner\” but I feel there is not just one – each piece is a winner for reviving something that would otherwise be sitting in a landfill underneath used diapers.

The Crappy Part I Experienced

After watching The Property Brothers (well, listening since I only saw glimpses off in the distance) I happened to walk past a Bank of Montreal BMO Nesbitt Burns exhibit booth. On the display stand was one bottle of both Glenfiddich and Jack Daniels Black Label. Here\’s how that encounter went (paraphrased since I didn\’t record it unfortunately):

Me: (smiling face) Are you providing drinks for the visitors today? (laugh)
Him: (serious face) Only if you have at least half a million dollars in investments.
Me: (serious face) Seriously?
Him: These represent the finer things in life. (points to man walking past – felt like he knew him since he raised his voice a little more) Does he look like he has half a million in investments?
Me: Sure; he looks fiscally responsible.
Him: Exactly.
Me: Riiight. (walked away)

So, for the record, two things.

One: I have those same bottles of Glenfiddich and Jack Daniels in my house asshole. It doesn\’t cost that much for the bottles you displayed. Put a Macallan on display if you want to impress me.

Two: It might have been a coincidence, but the fact that you pointed to a white-haired, balding, Caucasian man in his late fifties, makes me think that you felt a young-looking vagina, of mixed colour, walking around without a penis for an escort, must be ass-poor and probably a drunk since she spotted the booze.

From my experience with their representative, BMO isn\’t going to get any new customers with that kind of treatment, especially at a show that brings in many people, of many financial statuses, that may not be obvious.

And my Jacks at home tasted delicious, thank you very much.


In Conclusion

*ha ha* Always wanted to actually USE that phrase in something I wrote. But seriously, in conclusion, if you are looking for some home inspiration, or very decent pricing for home products, building materials or renovation services, spend the time and visit a Home Show in your area. There is a wealth of information amongst all the booths and exhibit stages, even though you have to waddle through a sea of people to get to it all.

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1 comment

    • Cathy Canton on 6 December, 2013 at 11:18 am
    • Reply

    All I can say about the BMO rep- why would you have booze displayed, and does the term people skills not enter into the hiring process??? Bet there are lots of ass-poor looking V’s that are at the top of the “try and get their business” list. You might want to check with corporate LOL I will be thinking of you BMO man each time I review my investments with my tall (ok some grey) handsome so not 50 yet man and say to him “yes dear I am happy to invest anywhere as long as it is not with Bank of Montreal BMC Nesbitt Burns” – Because I’m richer than YOU think!

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