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.

September 29, 2019

Mirror images

Mirrors play a powerful role in interior design. Their practicality for checking out how you look may be the most familiar benefit. Hard to imagine applying makeup and fixing up bedhead without the bathroom mirror. That dressing room mirror reveals how successful you are with your colour choices and accent pieces. Your reflection reveals how others see you. And that reflective quality is what makes mirrors so brilliant.


September 22, 2019

Painterly visions

Dear Debbie;

Are soft pink and blue just for kids’ rooms? I am painting my kitchen wall and like the feeling of pink to go with my dark blue cabinets, but are these baby colours? I’m not sure how to proceed.
— Veronica

Dear Veronica;

Pink is a marvelous colour with shades that range from the softest pink hue to the vibrancy of corals and candies.


September 15, 2019

Superbly accessible

Second to the kitchen, the bathroom is the busiest room in the house. With daily demands and tight schedules, it is important to have it organized to optimize space and utility. If you are renovating a bathroom, research what’s new and designed to make your life easier before you start. Quality products and the best choices for your lifestyle will vastly improve your mood each morning and evening.


September 8, 2019

Line it up

Dear Debbie;

I am a fan of stripes as becomes obvious if anyone looks in my closet. Wearing them is one thing, but is it too much to decorate a wall when the space is quite small?
— Cynthia

Dear Cynthia;

It’s a great idea to indulge in your passion for stripes as a decorative element in your home.


September 1, 2019

Kids underfoot

Dear Debbie;

Would you recommend painting a nursery floor? We like the idea of adding some fun colour/s but don’t want an area rug. A bare floor is easy to crawl and play on. There is a builder’s laminate floor in the room now that is warn and has some (ink) stains.
— Martha

Dear Martha;


August 25, 2019

Board-and-batten style

Dear Debbie;

We are designing a home along a modern architectural aesthetic but are situated in a neighbourhood that has more traditional brick and stone houses. What would you suggest as an exterior cladding that would help to connect these two styles?
— Andrew

Dear Andrew;

I am pleased to hear that you are mindful of your new home fitting into the existing neighbourhood.


August 18, 2019

Sea breeze decor

When your favourite sight is watching waves roll in along a sandy beach and you enjoy listening to the music of the water and the soaring birdsongs, and breathing in the sweet, salty sea air, a home along the coast is your bliss. Life by the water has its own special aura, colours and textures, and homes situated in this sublime environment share a love for these nautical elements.


August 11, 2019

Moving out

Dear Debbie;

My niece and nephew are both heading out to college and I’d like to give them each a gift that will help them set up. They’ll be renting part of a house with two other students. Thanks for your ideas.
— Aunt Martha

Dear Aunt Martha;

Teens are always hungry so why not focus on kitchen stuff.


August 4, 2019

Take a step back

It is a puzzling truth that sometimes we need to take a few steps backward in order to move forward. We are experiencing just that today as we endeavor to undo the damage that an extreme overload of plastic products has created. At this point it is difficult to imagine life without plastic bags, containers, toys, furniture … the list is endless.


July 28, 2019


Dear Debbie;

I was debating with a friend what was an ‘extra’ piece of furniture she couldn’t do without. We agreed that a bed, a table and a light were givens. As I have an entire room lined with bookshelves, that was my choice. What would you choose?
— Anna

Dear Anna;