Debbie Travis'
House to Home
newspaper columns

Read about Debbie’s exciting discoveries — today’s stylemakers, iconic products for the home, and irresistible decorating tips and trends. Debbie gathers news of great design from around the world and shows you how easy it is to bring your favourite looks home.

House to Home appears weekly in newspapers across North America. Produced by Debbie Travis and Barbara Dingle, the column is syndicated by Torstar in Canada and King Features/Hearst in the United States.

July 7, 2019

Light up the night

When I was renovating our centuries-old farmhouse in Italy, there was so much to do and so many bylaws to follow I was at first overwhelmed. As the rebuilding and decorating of the interiors neared completion the exterior spaces demanded my attention. The entranceway had to be exciting. My dreams of sharing this piece of heaven with family and guests had become a reality.


June 30, 2019

Outdoor style

Dear Debbie;

I am an amateur seamstress and decorator and enjoy making my own upholstery and fabric pieces. We have a backyard for the first time and I want to “furnish” the patio with style. What do you recommend that can withstand lots of sun and the occasional rain? Colour is my passion.
— MaryLynn

Dear MaryLynn;


June 23, 2019

Creating contrast

There are many paths you can take when decorating a room. It often starts with the furniture that you have on hand and walls that have been painted by the latest tenant or owner. When it’s time to put your personal stamp on your surroundings what direction is best followed to get that extra pizzazz, that fuller picture of a home that beckons you?


June 16, 2019

Up style DIY

Dear Debbie;

We have some dressers and bookcases that we bought when first married. They were inexpensive and served their purpose at the time. We don’t want to throw them away and hope you have some ideas on how to change them up. Thank you.
— Bev and Ron

Dear Bev and Ron;


June 9, 2019

Feature fences

Spring cleaning doesn’t stop with sorting out the closets and washing down the windows. It is time to start looking outside again. Time to make a plan to rejuvenate your property on the other side of the door. What are your views from the back or front patio? Does your home’s exterior have an attractive and welcome sense of well-being?


May 26, 2019

Light and luxurious

Dear Debbie;

I’ve always wanted an all-white room but kids made it impractical. Now they have grown up it’s my turn. Have you any tips on how to make this special room work?
— Dianna

Dear Dianna;

Planning a monotone room is an adventure. There’s lots to think about and you should take your time selecting the major features.


May 19, 2019

Walls to write about

Dear Debbie;

We would like to put a writable surface on one of the walls in our child’s bedroom. We’ve heard about a laminate that works. Would that be better than the chalkboard paint? Thanks for your help.
— Miranda

Dear Miranda;

Children do love to be able to write on walls and if they understand that they can only write on the designated space that has a special writing surface it’s a fun way to go.


May 12, 2019

The future is here

There is nothing quite like the wild experience of a visit to Salone del Mobile in Milan.  If you relish in the latest in modern design, or decorating is your thing, or your home is the center of your life, then a trip to the Mecca of all things visually delicious is a bucket-list must. But beware — this trade show is not for the faint of heart. 


May 5, 2019

A Brush With Metal

Dear Debbie;

My partner and I like the look of metal and see that it is very popular lately. What about painting it on walls? Would it be too heavy? We’ve seen metallic wallpapers but would prefer to paint. What would you suggest? Thanks.
— Bernard

Dear Bernard;

This sounds like a truly creative project.


April 28, 2019

Inspired by the best

Decorating your home is a personal journey. For some people, the idea of choosing a paint colour or a piece of furniture, a bedspread pattern or a floor covering does not come easily. In fact, it can be a painful, even frightening, challenge.  But our home environment is so important to how we feel, how we relax, how we work,