Anabelle, Edward & Fiona's Book-Filled Montreal Nest

Anabelle, Edward & Fiona's Book-Filled Montreal Nest

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Name: Anabelle, Edward and Fifi
Location: Mile End; Montreal, Canada
Size: 900 square feet
Years lived in: 1 1/2 years; Owned

Upon entering Anabelle and Edward's apartment, I immediately noticed the numerous qualities that make this space a quiet, comfortable and very “homey” home. Brick walls, hardwood floors, moldings, wood elements, architectural details, and many books make this condo a place full of charm, character and style. Those shelves in the dining area are just stunning!

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

The architectural detail in the living and dining room is simply lovely and adds character to the open space. The palette is neutral; white walls in every room with raw materials, wood and brick walls throughout the space. This condo is truly "Montreal."

Previous owners renovated the kitchen few years ago. The old (and probably tiny kitchen) was formerly where the current nursery is. The built-in cabinetry is still part of the child's bedroom and even though it might bring some design challenges (where do we put furniture?), it provides additional storage that is so useful with a young kid. The new kitchen is now bigger with easy access and lots of counter space.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: White and Wood

Inspiration: Montreal! This apartment is very typical of Montreal. I always pay attention to how people decorate.

Favorite Element: The living room and, in the summer, the big backyard.

Biggest Challenge: Living in 900 square feet with a young kid requires a lot of organization!

What Friends Say: This is a very “homey” home.

Biggest Embarrassment: Not having any kitchen stools yet. Definitely on my “to do” list. (hello, hay stools!)

Proudest DIY: This is not really a DIY because my Dad made it (not me), but I would say creating a large closet in the master bedroom. That was very much needed and makes a big difference.

Biggest Indulgence: Our shelves. But they are worth every penny.

Best Advice: It’s not because you have a kid that you suddenly need a very large home! Because Montreal is still a fairly affordable city, people have tendency to look for larger spaces as soon they have a kid. I do believe that you can manage raising a little one in a compact space. It just takes a lot of organization – and good cupboards.

Dream Sources: Obviously, any decoration magazine is an inspiration… Even the IKEA catalogue. I just love looking at it, and I enjoy real estate ads as well. In Montreal, I love Lake Jane.

Otherwise, I recently visited an apartment in Montreal’s Habitat 67 and that was very nice too: I love open spaces and how intelligent the space is. I went in Westmount Square (Mies van der Rohe’s only building in Montreal) for a story and fell in love with an apartment there too! They have amazing views from the city.

Coming from a small town in rural France, I have always been attracted to older places that have “cache,” but I do feel more and more attracted to mid-century architecture and especially big open spaces. I fell in love with townhouses in Lafayette Park — I visited some of them during a trip in Detroit and they left me with a big impression. Those windows! On a modern note, in Montreal, I do love what la Shed Architecture does.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Resources of Note:


  • Sico. White in every room, except the bathroom and the living room.


  • Lamp: Lampi-Lampa. One of my husband’s first gifts. I do love this lamp, all made in Montreal, from kitchen utensils.
  • Coach: Ikea (this old model has had a long life and we should probably change it soon)
  • Table: By Montreal’s Mitz Takahashi (we are big fans of him. Mitz is very talented and a real wood nerd)
  • Carpet: Handmade in Morocco! One of our dear friends live in Morocco. He brought us this amazing carpet, as well as the leather “pouf”.
  • Chair: This chair is inspired by Starck’s Ghost. We bought in Montreal. A useless treat for our daughter, I guess.


  • Table: Vintage. Friends of us moved to Europe and left this table with us. I like its rustic cachet but I think we would replace it for something more “léger”.
  • Chairs: They come from Poland, and we bought them from a coffee nearby when it shuts its doors (unfortunately). I love their bistro style.
  • Shelves: Mitz made them for us. I do love being surrended by books, although my husband and I had different perspectives on how to organize the books. As a French person, I would go by color (Gallimard being great at making full white covers). My husband preferred to organize them by letter. We finally did it half-half.


  • Countertop: By Mitz.
  • Lamp: Amazingly enough, I found it at Target and I am kind of in love with it.
  • Mini-Stool: Ikea. Just the best thing ever: it is everything at once.


  • Bed: Ikea
  • Chest of drawers: Vintage
  • Side Tables: Those are, in fact, the same chairs. We still have to find the perfect side tables.
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Thanks Anabelle, Edward and Fifi!

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