Guilding Lights

Tatiana Di Giacinto and Dina D’Antonio, the forces behind LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS, met nine years ago at an event and they immediately clicked.

Tatiana Di Giacinto and Dina D’Antonio, the forces behind LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS, met nine years ago at an event and they immediately clicked. Here, they share their design backgrounds, their process and what inspires them as designers, friends and partners in business.

Their backgrounds
“My appetite for design and need to create beautiful spaces is overwhelming,” Tatiana Di Giacinto, the director of design and development and principal designer at LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS, says honestly. Her interests and obsession for planning, design and decor is inherent. As a young girl, she carefully observed her own environment, and recognized the power of feeling comfortable in her own surroundings. “Things always had to be just so, with everything perfectly positioned,” she remembers. With her extensive professional background in various avenues of design for more than 30 years — including interiors, residential design, land development and landscape architecture — LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS became her outlet. The company de- signs, builds, renovates, decorates and stages.

Dina D’Antonio, the company’s operations coordinator, studied psychology and has a knack for reading people — she says she loves understanding what makes us tick. She has

a strong grasp of how interiors come together, from the architecture of a space to the furniture and soft finishings that fill it. Colour palettes, material choices and finishes came naturally to her. “My passion for interior de- sign developed in my early childhood through the lens of my mother,” she says. As she got older, her capabilities and skills were put to the test when she completely transformed a family rental property, turning it from a rundown home into a beautiful space.

Imagine two driven women working together, collecting their thoughts over a coffee, with ideas whirling around. Akin to an architect’s masterpiece that begins on the back of a napkin, discussions were sparked and their vision came to fruition in the very same way. A coffee-stained napkin ignited the genesis of LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS. Their story is one that came together, thanks to their deep-seated appetite for design, home improvement and the residential market. What started out as a home-staging business, the pair redirected their sights and flourished into a full-blown design entity. They were ever so thoughtful about choosing the name LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS. “It fully describes the impact on a space, to lighten the house but more so to perform like a ‘guiding light’ to bring you back home,” says Di Giacinto.

Inspirations and style
“Ralph Lauren once said he looked at fashion in a very specific way. He described his visions as if he was designing for life like it was a movie — he took a cinematic approach to his work. He would imagine a scene, a stage and a setting, and design for fashion lines to evoke those feelings,” says Di Giacinto.

When they design, Di Giacinto and D’An- tonio look at each home similar to a stage. “It’s a theatre for the family in which their lives are played out and the movie is their life,” D’An-tonio says proudly. They produce the vision of the home. The dream. The perfect abode. “The homes we create are products of our clients’ wants, needs and desires. Their home needs to speak to them, fill their hearts with joy, satis- faction and hit the design mark every time,” Di Giacinto says. “Everyone wants a space, to lighten the house but more so to perform like a ‘guiding light’ to bring you back home.”

Their process
When you reach out to LIGHT HOUSE DE- SIGNS, they will engage in an information- seeking conversation to get a better under- standing of the scale and magnitude of your project. They help clients navigate their expectations and timelines. “Establishing a trusting

and honest, transparent and relaxed relation- ship with our clients is paramount. Knowing what is important to them is priority, as they will live and function in the home every day. You don’t realize the significance of a properly developed space, from space planning, room volumes and proportions, to colour, textiles and details, until you are living in the space,” says D’Antonio.

Once they have a clear and defined scope
of work, proposals are generated and detailed vision boards start the planning and dream- ing process. Once these overall visions are clarified with more focus, design drawings can commence with a solid vision of the end goal. “This is where we ensure the client sees the value in engaging a designer to wade through the limitations and restrictions of a project while establishing and opening new doors for outstanding design opportunities along the way,” Di Giacinto adds.

LIGHT HOUSE DESIGNS is always grow- ing and innovating, searching for the means to better serve their clients. They are always formulating ways to provide a service for those who may be in need of design support, from what may be simple design guidance, staging and decor support to an entire lifestyle overhaul with a full renovation or new build of their home. “The truth is that people don’t realize the magnitude or influence a renewed space can have on their sense of comfort in their home, cottage or office until its final completion,” D’Antonio explains.

Exciting projects
The dynamic duo is currently working on several projects at varying levels of completion, but they are super excited about a new build in Aurora, Ont. “It’s a stunning project infused with an undeniably elegant French-country vibe. We are over the moon about this one. We just can’t wait to see the house evolve at every level. It’s a sensational feeling,” Di Giacinto says.

The pair also have a virtual store filled with thoughtfully curated pieces you can shop via their website, Their goal is to open a bricks-and-mortar store where shoppers can grab a coffee and peruse all the stunning pieces in person.