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.

May 10, 2020

On the shelf

Dear Debbie;

We are big readers and our bookshelves are overflowing. We are taking this down time to edit the piles and would like to create a more visually attractive display. Where would you start? Thanks.
— Robert

Dear Robert;

I am sure you are finding it difficult to decide what to keep,


May 3, 2020

Happy House

Forget about trends, forget about the latest, greatest colours to paint your rooms. Instead, think about what would make you happier. And give this job to your home. This is the beginning of a journey that designer and author Rebecca West takes us on in her book Happy Starts at Home, Change Your Space, Transform Your Life.


April 26, 2020


Dear Debbie;

I have lived very simply for years as a student and am now finally finished. Yes, lots of student loans to pay off, but I want to start to invest in some furnishings that are more permanent and have style. I like minimal, hate clutter and am a nature buff. Suggestions?
— Bronwen

Dear Bronwen;


April 19, 2020

Silver service

The allure of silver has led the way in many decorative styles. Traditionally, the elegant gleam of a dining table set with sterling silverware and candelabras sets an undeniably rich tone. And even the simplest entrée gains mouthwatering appeal when presented on a silver platter. The dazzle of silver decorative finishes from jewelry to lamps flourishes in art deco style,


April 12, 2020

Capturing colour

Dear Debbie;

I don’t have a lot of money to spend on art but do love to take photographs of my garden and the budding cherry blossom trees in our back yard. How would you suggest framing them? I’m not interested in those cheap black plastic frames. Thanks for your ideas.
— Penny

Dear Penny;


April 5, 2020

Smooth as silk

Step by steps

Plaster walls are no longer common in today’s homes due to the rise in cost of building materials and labour. If you live in a home built before 1940 you will most likely have plaster walls and they have many good features. You might notice that older homes are quieter than new builds. That’s because plaster walls are thicker and help with soundproofing.


March 29, 2020

Make It a Feature

Dear Debbie;

In a corner of my condo is a cement pole, part of the condo building structure. I’ve painted it the same colour as the walls, but it needs more interest. I have no artistic ability, but I was thinking of stenciling. However, I cannot find ones large enough to do the job. Any ideas would be appreciated.


March 22, 2020

Always In Style

Dear Debbie;

I’d like to try a paint effect for the walls in our living room, but I am concerned that it will become out of date and be difficult to cover up. I have heard you joking about sponging, which I did in our nursery years ago. Actually it still looks good, but the colours are all wrong now.


March 15, 2020

Go Graffiti

Dear Debbie;

My teenage kids want to decorate the basement, which is their hangout, and do not want any input from me. We gave them a small budget to cover the cost of paint and a few necessities such as oversized cushions. I remember you did a graffiti wall on one of your television shows and would love to show them that I can be fun.


March 8, 2020

The Quick Fix

“Wow, you look great,” exclaims a friend you haven’t seen for a while. “What have you done? Lost weight, joined a gym, got a new boyfriend?” she continues looking you up and down. Trying not to feel insulted, as these revelations seem to indicate that I wasn’t looking so good the last time we met, I reply that I’m not doing anything special but … I did get my hair cut.