Council approves Property Tax Hike

Calgary homeowners will see their property tax bills rise 3.8 per cent for 2018 after council widely passed the increase Thursday.


A typical residential property assessed at $480,000 will see a tax increase of $57 in the coming year, according to city figures.


The effective property tax hike is the result of a 0.9 per cent hike for 2018, plus a deferred hike of 2.9 per cent from last year.


The 2017 tax increase was offset by a rebate offered to all property owners in recognition of difficult economic conditions at the time.


City councillors voted 10-3 in favour of the tax increase Thursday.


Property tax bills are to be mailed at the end of May.


The Pros, Cons and Future of Tiny Houses

A “tiny house” search online will bring up a myriad of enthusiastic bloggers showing off their unconventional home and describing their transition to the tiny house lifestyle. Images, articles and TV series focusing on innovatively designed and furnished interiors that creatively maximise space have heightened interest in the merits of living small at some stage in life.

Why Go Tiny?

Many advocates see tiny house living as a return to a simpler way of life less focused on material possessions.

Tiny house construction involves less raw materials and waste, which is attractive to those who want to make lower impact environmental choices. It is also significantly cheaper, typically ranging from $20,000 to $45,000. Lower costs and less maintenance mean more time and money for tiny homeowners to enjoy life. Enthusiasts also point to the increased mobility that a home on wheels allows for.

The interior of Harmony House, which is fully winterized.

The Downsides to Downsizing

Tiny house living features a degree of uncertainty that may not be for everyone. Tiny homes on wheels fall into a legal grey area that can make finding a place to legally park them a major challenge.

Uncertainty about sustainability, code, zoning and certification issues limit the investment potential of tiny houses. Connections to local services such as water, hydro and internet may not always be available. Finally, lack of private space or room for children to play are factors that have led some tiny house dwellers to abandon the lifestyle.

The Future of Living Small

Perhaps the biggest impact of the tiny house movement will be that it has helped to legitimise and even glamourise living in small spaces. It has helped to separate the image of small homes from that of shantytowns and shack living. This has contributed to an increasing willingness from municipalities to review dwelling size mandates and consider alternative sources of affordable housing.


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Climb 1,204 steps up Calgary's tallest skyscraper for Earth Day

Forget the elevator.


Climb for Wilderness is back in Calgary, an event encouraging participants to summit the 1,204 stairs leading up The Bow building – the tallest skyscraper in the city.


So large, in fact, that you must have glimpsed it looming above the rest of Calgary. The Bow sits at an astounding 236 metres, has 57 floors, and is a full 45 metres taller than the iconic Calgary Tower.

The climb takes place the day before Earth Day on Saturday, April 21, and is open for all ages to register.

While there is no registration fee, participants hoping to make the 1,204 step trek will need to fundraise at least $75 to be allowed to make the climb. That number drops to $40 for people aged 15 and under.


More funds will need to be raised if you’d like to make the climb multiple times, and the specific amounts can be found at the Climb for Wilderness website.


The money raised for the 2018 event will be going towards protecting Alberta’s freshwater fish population through the Alberta Wilderness Association.


Registration is currently open, and will continue right up until the day of the event. A registration desk will be there at The Bow at 8 am for procrastinators, and the climb will run from 8:30 to 11:30 am.

There will be celebratory t-shirts available for all those who complete the climb and make it to the 54th floor.

So… think you’ve got what it takes?

Climb for Wilderness 2018

When: Saturday, April 21, 2018

Time: Registration desk opens at 8 am, Climb is from 8:30 to 11:30 am

Where: The Bow – 500 Centre Street S, Calgary

Registration: Online, at least $75 in fundraising for adults, $40 for kids 15 and under.



Each new year delivers an exciting array of interior design trends to be incorporated into the home. Whether it be home accessoriesor a particular interior style, there’s always a selection of trends that can be enjoyed by everyone.

In December, Pantone sets an annual president with its colour of the year, and with 2018’s choice of Ultra Violet, it’s looking to be a year of experimentation, colour and thinking outside the box.

At The LuxPad, we like to be ahead of the trends within the interior design world, so we can give you an insight into how you can freshen up your interiors in the year ahead. With this in mind, we have spoken to 29 interior experts to get an idea of their interior design trend predictions for 2018.

Though many trends come and go, don’t be surprised if you spot a few interior styles that have been carried over from 2017.

From flamboyant wallpapers to patterned ceiling decor, we have created a roundup of 2018’s interior design trends from those in the know.









VIPP Loft, Copenhagen. Photography: Jean-francois Jaussaud

Greenery has been a rising trend for a while now, with more and more people filling their homes with foliage in a bid to counteract our increasingly urban lives, but I think 2018 is going to be the year it really comes of age. And I’m not just talking about houseplants; I see our need to reconnect with nature spilling over into everything from wallpaper prints to fabric patterns, as well as smaller home accessories such as ceramics and tableware. Green upholstery is also set to become a key trend, particularly plush velvet in eye-catching shades of forest green, pine and emerald. Even the normally muted Scandinavian brands have been steadily adding these hues to their collections for 2018.

Move over downpipe and navy, and enter sage. Recently shared images to Pinterest show sage booming in popularity, as people adopt it as a ‘new neutral’ colour for their bedrooms. 

Even moodier teamed with matt black accents, why not save time and use less paint? Try out the half and half painting trick! It gives you the benefit of bold colour without overwhelming your space.


Kelly Hoppen for Chesney’s

Black is back! In truth, I don’t think it ever went away but I have a feeling that this year it will make a comeback in all its sleek, dark stylishness and will be paired with metals to add a touch of glamour. Black is not a colour to dominate an interiors scheme – or else the result will make the inhabitants feel as if they are living in space, however when used on accessories, patterns and supporting acts of furniture, the result can make a real statement.

I think that black will be used in interiors to add sparkle and allure and will be used boldly as talking points in design schemes. The Pinter Fire Surround designed by Kelly Hoppen is a key example with its granite frame being enveloped by shiny polished brass with a black granite hearth and deep black panels.


Arighi Bianchi

It’s all about bringing the outdoors in for S/S 2018, the sage green colour palette is simply gorgeous and bang-on-trend. Team painted walls with patterned foliage, botanical print on classic upholstery and natural stone flooring.

Complete this look with Arighi Bianchi’s Fairfax range, available in store now, it’s perfect for this season, and will add that fresh Spring vibe to your home.


Jessica Zoob

I think 2018 will see a celebration of beautiful gentle and unusual colour combinations and an exploration of textures.

There may be tiny flashes of jewel colours but essentially, I feel softness and intricacy will be an exciting new direction for a special year ahead. 

2018 will bring kitchens that break the rules! Unconventional. Custom. Forward thinking. Functional. Stylish. Decor-wise, expect to see patterned and textured backsplashes that wow. Colour-wise, forget white cabinets unless you’re pairing it with another colour – soft pink, crisp cobalt, emerald green and even rich violet. Kitchens are getting a much-needed design overhaul. Time to start thinking outside the kitchen box!

Space Matters Interior Design Trends 2018

Space Matters

The 2018 interiors will celebrate maximalism and the eclectic style. Dark, moody colours with understated drama will take centre stage. Grey, beige and ‘greige’ will give their place to dark blues, gold, bronze, sumptuous greens, terracotta and ochre yellows. Tactile natural materials such as rich velvets will team up with geometric patterned or chintz floral soft furnishings, and larger than life botanical or arty wallpapers. Curtains and cushions will be embellished with tassels, fringes and pompoms. Walls will exhibit a multitude of art displays, surfaces will feature a plethora of objects d’art and the antique brown furniture will see a comeback, sitting happily next to mid-century pieces.



Get ready to introduce lavender into your home if you want to be on-trend this year. That’s right, Pantone announced last month that the colour that oozes individuality and spirituality will be the shade of 2018.

Expect to see this flooded across home decor magazines and set designs as everybody embraces mauve, lilacs and plum tones. This luxurious colour represents wealth, creativity, wisdom, peace, ambition, pride, power, independence and so much more. Sounds like 2018 is starting on the right foot.



Grey is a wonderful, sophisticated colour, constructed of various shades and undertones. It is not only a wonderful companion to other neutral shades, it also has the power to balance out, bold accent colours. Expect to see grey carpets paired with colourful walls and furniture this year.

Accent shades have the ability to change the whole narrative of a neutral scheme. The world is your oyster when it comes to peppering your scheme with brighter shades. Grey creates a calming backdrop for any pop of colour, adding texture and introducing natural, tactile materials to your scheme will add interest and break up any colour blocks. The addition of a fabulous pattern can bring together an array of colours.

Soft, powdery shades ranging from blush pink through burnt orange teamed with accents of exposed wood, represent the fresh palette on my 2018 wish-list. These mellow hues are your new neutrals if you can’t face another shade of grey. Embracing the beauty and bounty of nature, use apricot, dusky rose and (whisper it) terracotta shades – but in their modern, chalky manifestations. The attraction of these latest grown-up pastels is their ability to work well with the existing furniture in our homes. Brass, marble and especially natural wood, enhance these peach, paprika and iced coffee tones to bring a sense of nature to our homes in an increasingly crazy world.


Sweet Pea and Willow

There are so many wonderful things happening on the interiors front at the moment. The most obvious trends such as pink and gold have had such a strong hold on us for the last two years and we believe it will stay around for a while longer – you may even find it heading towards a more peachy-pink. Gold and brass look to stay strong especially in lighting and accessories.

Flamingos may fade out while peacocks and other bright and beautiful birds may steal their spotlight. Although the Pantone colour of the year is Ultra Violet, we think people have warmed more to the Dulux colour of the year, Heartwood, and we will be seeing this creeping into interior design palettes everywhere.


Sasha Bikoff. Photography Genevieve Garruppo.

During the last few years, white-washed, clean spaces were considered the trend, but in 2018, the minimalist look is on its way out and the new coveted look is opulence and maximalism. More really is more, especially when it comes to colour. Bright kitchen cabinetry is a great way to add vibrancy in a different way than just bringing in colourful furniture.

I also like to use powder room statement fixtures on faucets—P.E. Guerin’s mermaid and panther are my favourites. Lastly, dark marble adds a glamorous and slightly moody element to a space.


Eichholtz at The House of Design Ltd.

Inspired by the launch of Gucci’s first restaurant in Florence, The Gucci Garden, the trend we adore has to be the bottle green colour scheme, most evident in the wealth of luscious fabrics on display, including velvet and silks. Paring this colour with gold creates an opulent art deco ambience, perfect for the luxury home.

This lush emerald green looks striking against other on-trend interior pieces, such as dark wood furniture. Although we saw this tropical-inspired trend arrive towards the end 2017 its legacy still firmly remains and is undoubtedly one of the must-have colours for your home in 2018.




Mandalas: These stunning Buddhist designs have been creeping into clothes shops for the past couple of years, but they’re only just appearing in interiors stores. Although the well-travelled may well have already got mandalas of their own, other homemakers are getting on board with what may well become 2018’s biggest interior trend. Hang them on the wall, accessorise your sofa with bright cushions or – if you’re brave – have them embedded into your floor for an incredible focal piece.

At the end of 2017, statement ceilings started making an appearance and we feel that this will continue throughout the next year – we are already big fans of it! The ‘fifth wall’ is no longer an area of the room that we want to ignore and tone down. Instead, we are seeing bolder designs which can be achieved by using printed or textured wallpaper, striking paint colours, exposed beams and detailed plaster or timber mouldings.


Christina Haire

Chintz for president! Chintz is back. Full disclosure: mine never left, albeit used more as an accent, with textured linens, velvets and silks. I’m doing the same for clients, velvet or linen sofas bejewelled with blowsy cabbage rose chintz pillows. Or on a chair. Or more…

2018 will see a new trend coming straight out of the 70s. We have already got used to decorating with tiles, bold patterns, unusual shades and vintage furniture, but this year we will go for even more pronounced graphics in ceramics, in a combination of colours that we considered dull – if not ugly – before like brown and orange or mint green and grey.

Vintage 70s inspired pottery will be proudly displayed and new versions of 70s designed tiles will make our floors much more interesting and eye-catching (pictured above, Bisazza).


Interior Styles


Modern Vintage has always been a popular design style but we’ve seen an increased interest in this design trend. In this age of recycling, customers like the idea of shopping for vintage items such as lighting and furniture. These customers are wanting to take the best design styles of their eras and merge them with modern living. Those people that were born and grew up in the late 50’s, 60’s and 70’s have now paid off their mortgages etc and have taken over as those with the most disposable income. They have been calling to find wall decor that will complement their designs and help bring their vision together.


Chameleon Designs

I think something people will begin to do more of this year is ensuring fit and finish is accurate within all interior design.

No more buying furniture that is not to scale with the room. A large armchair next to a small sofa, a tiny piece of artwork above a large sprawling corner sofa or a bedside table that is higher than the mattress may make the room look off.

Make sure that the pieces you choose fit the room but also fit with the other pieces around it. This will create a cohesive effect throughout the space.

Boho Style is the 2018 interiors trend which isn’t a trend – or at least not a new one. It has been around for centuries and continues to hold a special place in many hearts and homes.

From top UK interior designers to intrepid and stylish hunter-gatherers, there is a renewed focus on designs from North Africa, India, South America and Malaysia. What better way to start the New Year than with the promise of inviting colours, textures and patterns. Not only that, but there are some newly published Boho interiors books and holiday ideas too.


Barclay Interiors

Golden-age Glamour is Barclay Interiors stand-out trend for 2018. Jewel-toned fabrics with tropical foliage or Art Deco motifs are in abundance this season, and inspiration comes from the early to mid-twentieth century. This uber-chic look is back with a vengeance and is fully-embraced at BI HQ, where sumptuous velvet cushions in peacock blue and emerald green adorn a sassy black and white striped chaise, and a glossy dark wood cocktail cabinet reflects the glow from an Art Deco inspired chandelier in warm mixed metals and glass. All that’s missing is an Ocean Liner and Kate and Leo, and our heart for this top trend will go on.



Pantone Colour Institute says,“We are living in a time that requires inventiveness and imagination” and I’m excited and inspired to see more and more demand for creative, bold and dramatic interiors in 2018. Think deep blues and purples which reflect Pantone’s Colour of 2018 – ultraviolet. Add a dramatic single piece of furniture that makes a real wow statement akin to art. Mix in some luxe fabrics like velvets and silks, the richness and warmth of wood and then balance out with some neutral tones and the coolness of metal. For extra magic, sprinkle with elegant, clean layers of lighting.


Materials and Textures



Mixing finishes gives a more thoughtfully created look and a harmonious feel. It’s seen in larger commercial applications like bars and restaurants. We see the mixing of textures in nature as foamy waves wash over smoother fine sand or a knurled twisted trunk that’s shrouded by layers of symmetrical delicate leaves. Look to layer bare iron, natural and painted woods and stone with touches of gold and brass (yes both are going to be big this year). Mix different woods – old, new, hardwoods, softwoods, painted and natural, light and dark woods. Go eclectic and use reclaimed and salvaged, mix eras and styles and don’t let any theme or style dominate. The secret to success will be mixing the materials in a clever way.

I predict that the trend for wicker and cane will continue in 2018, not just in lighting but also furniture. No longer a material to be confined to Granny’s conservatory, wicker offers another texture to bring in to the home. More rustic styles can add warmth to minimalistic styling but it doesn’t have to be rustic, I have seen some beautiful refined pieces too. It is also a material that works well alone or in multiples as seen here.


Source: Posterlounge

The new year is indeed going to be brilliant, for metals are again a trend to reckon with. Lamps and accessories in copper are yesterday’s news so, in 2018, silver will take over as the new trend material adding a cool and elegant charm to the world of interior decor. Candlesticks, lamps or picture frames with a silvery look create a sense of timeless chic, especially in combination with rich fabrics or other metallic nuances, such as gold – catching the eye ever so subtly with a bold composition of shimmering elements.




Diego Correa

Wallpaper has always been present in interiors from Georgian times and during the Victorian period when they had a big impact in the decoration of English homes. In recent years, wallpapers have been used predominantly on feature walls as an accent or for reinforcing a focal point. 

I think 2018 will be more adventurous in using wallpapers for the whole of the room in domestic environments. The latest techniques in printed vinyl are allowing the making of beautiful, good quality, well-detailed wallpapers. The presence of textures like linens is a very attractive option. I also believe that darker colours will be used more, with confidence and assertiveness, as the image above illustrates.


Natalia Barbour

After suffering years of neglect and a bad reputation for being “old-fashioned”, wallpaper is back on the interior design scene with a vengeance. It is now used not only to add depth to the decor, but to create an all-new visual perspective and infuse interiors with moods and feelings. Wall coverings are taking on a role as works of art.

Refined organic textures from Phillip Jeffries, unexpected use of natural materials like shells or veneer by Maya Romanoff are just a couple of examples. On our recent project we employed a hand-painted silk wallcovering by Fromental to bring a grand hallway of an old manor house to this day and age, whilst paying respect to its notable age.


Jen Pen Creative Studio

Something that is going to be even more in trend, I feel, is the use of wallpaper. From botanical garden or the simplest stripes on the wall. It’s a great way to add texture and design to your wall, or even ceiling.

With the wallpaper trend going on, the use of custom-made furniture is also something I see growing on very well now. People tend to be more careful about what kind of material they would like in their space, like using reclaimed wood instead or going the recycled way and giving things a second life in their home or offices. At the same time, it’s a great way to support your local designers and furniture makers who make the custom-made furniture.



We believe 2018 will be the year of wallpaper. Last year saw a resurgence in the popularity of both highly coloured and patterned tiles and flooring in general. It now seems as though that trend is coming to our walls and that we are feeling brave enough to paper all four walls, rather than just the previously popular feature wall.

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