Step into Anna Argiropoulos’s Toronto abode and you’ll mistake it for a cheerful Parisian pied-à-terre. Fittingly, the lifestyle photographer and blogger behind Anna With Love was moved to pursue photography after travelling to the City of Light. Her 1,500-square-foot condo (which she shares with her husband and young son) is filled with pieces that inspire her, from gorgeous travel prints she snapped to rainbow-bright keepsakes. Anna also incorporated her own photography studio and office nook into the unit, amounting to a work-from-home space bound to set all decor hearts aflutter. After all, the home is inspired by the most romantic city in the world. Here’s an inside look.
“I’ve always loved the look of black and white, which is very Parisian,” says Anna of her home’s palette. The neutral scheme allows the vibrant artwork to jump off the walls, from the colourful row-house piece hanging above the fireplace to the dreamy shot of Santorini on the side wall (find the prints here and here).
Whimsical, worldly accents reflect Anna’s love of travel and affinity for Paris in particular. A few strategically placed brass objets add warmth and sparkle to the bookcase display.
The crafty photographer jazzed up her bookcase by painting mini succulent planters in happy neon shades. “Everything in our home has to serve a dual purpose,” says Anna. “Not only do the pieces add to our home and suit our lifestyle, but they’re things I can use as props for my photo shoots.”
Inspired by Parisian blues with traditional and soft elements, the home’s sitting area exudes an elegant and cozy feel. The gallery wall above features enough travel photography to give even the most seasoned jet-setter a serious case of wanderlust. “I really wanted a space that felt like it could be a studio with more of a homey vibe,” says Anna. “I think my clients like shooting here because it feels really comfortable and laid back.”
The problem with owning a print shop? Having too many gorgeous photographs to choose from. Instead of nailing images to her wall, Anna leans her current favourites on the ledges above her sofa, switching up the display every few months. “I find myself gazing at this wall all the time,” she says. “I definitely have the most fun with it.”
“People are often surprised to learn that ninety per cent of our furniture is from IKEA,” says Anna, noting that she scored these white coffee tables for $5 each. An elegant vignette of pretty hardcovers, gold keepsakes and macaroons (because, Paris) give the tables a more curated and classic look.
Being surrounded by pretty pieces helps Anna channel her creativity when working from home. “As much as you can, only surround yourself with things that inspire you,” she says. “Even if it’s just a pretty filing folder – there’s no need to buy an ugly brown one when you can buy a stylish one!”
While the open shelving units feature much to take in, they’re styled to perfection. “Sharing the space with our little one and all his toys makes the condo feel so much smaller than it once did. So it’s been fun coming up with new storage ideas,” says Anna.
Who says baubles and blush should be reserved for a dressing room? Anna keeps statement jewellery and cosmetics on top of the shelving unit for a dash of glitz and glamour. Plus, she’ll be at the ready for any impromptu photo shoots.
“I have so many magazines, so finding unique ways to store them makes it look more like decor rather than an afterthought,” says Anna. She recommends piling glossies in pleasing stacks and placing a prop on top. And when the stacks get too high? Purge. “Go through your belongings every month to see what no longer serves a purpose.”
From colourful tape dispensers and pencil holders to patterned pastel filing folders and notebooks, Anna’s apartment is evidence that there is in fact a stylish version of everything. “I like to be savvy with my furniture and then splurge a bit on accessories and other accents I really love,” she says.
Sometimes, it’s the subtleties in a home that stand out most. Inspirational phrases inscribed on tape and a notepad add to the space’s happy-go-lucky vibe.
“If my work area is messy, I can’t function,” says Anna. “When I have a clean desk and I can look out and see my artwork, beautiful coffee table books and magazines, it helps me create what I want.”
Anna With Love
A portrait of Anna, sitting at her desk area. “When you work from home, you need to be organized,” she says. “If you’re like me and are in a loft-style condo, it’s important to carve out a separate space that’s really your own.”
A peek into the photographer’s studio space, where she’ll typically do two to three major photo shoots a month. The print of the pastel pink door can be found on her site, here.
The dining table set belonged to Anna’s husband’s grandmother, which they had sanded and painted white. They also reupholstered the chair cushions to correspond with the other black-and-white striped elements that pepper the home.
Even Anna’s kitchen features winks of Parisian whimsy, from the Eiffle Tower-print apron to the charming monogram mugs spilling with pink roses.
The kitchen’s dramatic black and white palette is uplifted with practical pops of colour, such as the grouping of cookbooks and lemons.
The glossy white subway tile backsplash with black grout lends a bistro feel reminiscent of a charming European brasserie.
Anna’s husband prefers things to be a bit more symmetrical and orderly, which is reflected in their entryway’s nine-grid gallery wall. You can find all her square-sized prints, here!
“My home is me. It’s definitely not modern or minimalist, it’s just what we love,” says the photographer. “It’s a happy place to be.”