So Canadian, eh? : Brian Gluckstein

It is such an honour to have one of Canada's top design gurus visiting the blog this week!

An internationally recognized designer, Brian not only contributes regularly as a guest expert on Cityline TV, has had his designs published in numerous publications but has had great success with the launch of GlucksteinHome. GlucksteinHome can be found in The Bay and Home Outfitters across Canada, a brilliant endeavour to bring affordable yet tasteful and classic decor by Brian to the average Canadian. Can't afford Brian to come in and design your home? Well you have have pieces designed by him at fabulous price points! Most recently Brian has partnered with Benjamin Moore to create custom colour palettes to coordinate with the Gluckstein Home line.

Please welcome....

He is...

Brian captures the essence of timeless and classic design. Truly a master in creating luxurious interiors dripping with elegance.

Here is a bathroom Brian designed, one of my all time favourite bathrooms!

Can you imagine bathing in this room?
When you read the interview you will see why this is "so" Brian!

Here are a few images from their Spring and Summer 2012 Patio Collection!

Tell us a bit about yourself? What is your background? Has design been something you have always been drawn to?

I was drawn to design and architecture even as a young child.  I was always sketching floor plans and building houses out of Lego. I really believe Lego is the best toy and every child should have it. Later, I studied at Ryerson and graduated from their interior design program.

Have you always had a career in design?

I've always worked in design. I've never worked in another profession. Even while I went to school, I worked for another designer.

You are a well-known designer, not only nationally but internationally as well, whose work is featured in print and on television. How did you get your big "break"? How did you get to where you are today?

I don't think I really had one big break. I feel  like my business grew organically through my relationships with my clients. I was fortunate enough to be recommended to some serious art collectors and a few people with great style early in my career. Those recommendations perpetuated that circle of clients and my business continually developed.

Your company, GlucksteinHome, has created fresh, unique and a hugely popular soft furnishings, accessories and furniture line. Where do you find inspiration for your designs?

I typically draw inspiration from fashion. I read all the fashion magazines and go to the shows and constantly tear images from magazines. I;m also inspired by antique furniture and textiles, whether 18th century or mid century, and I love going to antique shows and markets.

Our GlucksteinHome product line is designed with a collections approach to reflect our customer's personal style. So I'm also inspired by those lifestyles which range from traditional to sleek to cosmopolitan to glamorous.

What trends do you see being strong this year in homes, furniture and accessories?

We're going to see the integration of antique pieces- furniture and accessories. We'll create homes that don't look sterile but have personality that reflects the owner and draws on other cultures.

What hopes and dreams do you have for your company?

On the interior design side, I hope to continue to get inspiring projects both commercially and residentially.

On the product design side, we'll continue to launch new products, expand our categories and partner with great manufacturers - like our current partners including Benjamin Moore, Sealy and Remington Homes - and bring our product to an international market. We recently launched the line at Lord & Taylor Home in the US. We've also brought GlucksteinHome brand to various social media sites including Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest and we hope to build strong relationships with our customers and the design community. We're excited about the conversations we can have there.

How would you describe your design style?


How do you start the design process? What inspired the direction your design will take?

For interior design, I look at the client's lifestyle and the architecture of the project and interpret it.

For product design, I'll sometimes start with a textile or an antique piece. I always consider the five lifestyle collections we design under and then I create something unique to reflect each style whether it's modern, contemporary, casual, transitional or traditional. This really reflects the diversity of our customers.

What advice can you give homeowners to bring a bit of splash into their homes without a lot of cash?

For high impact with a low investment, I always recommend paint, accessories and art. You can add a great splash of colour to update the look of your space without changing the central pieces.

What design faux pas you wish could be abolished?

I'm not fond of spaces that are over thought and try too hard. Or interiors that have too many patters in one space. I like calm, meditative, beautiful spaces with several interesting focal points.

What are some tips you can share with aspiring designers to help get their work noticed, to hone their skills?

Work for the best. New designers will just learn so much when they have a great mentor. Getting published can also get an aspiring designer notices- whether it's through their own blog, traditional print media or television.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I like to spend time at my home in Palm Beach. I also love to read in the bath.

You and your staff read blogs, and you even have one! What are some of your favourite reads? What tips do you have for design bloggers to get their blog noticed?

I'm obsessed with my iPhone camera and shoot anything that doesn't move. I use my Tumblr blog {} to share some of my favourite images - whether it's a peek at a client's home or something inspiring from an antique fair.

Blogs allow designers to share what's happening in our world and I don't think we have enough opportunities to do that. I love blogs that have a specific point of view- it makes it a good reference and gives readers a reason to come back to it.

What are your views on the role Canadian design plays on the world stage? Do you feel that Canadians have a unique sense of style, the way we design and decorate our homes? If so, what do you think sets us apart?

I think Canadian designers are very sophisticated and there is a European flavour to Canadians. I think we produce some of the best fashion, design and architecture and interiors in the world and are now being recognized as such. It is truly a great time for Canadian design.

Brian I am so incredibly honoured that you visited this week. As a long time fan of yours, I was thrilled to have had the opportunity to interview you! I love what you have accomplished in your career and look forward to seeing more amazing interiors and products designed by you!

XO Barbara


  1. I love Brian's sophisticated and timeless style. I wonder if he's ever dropped a book in the bathtub? I know I have! I really enjoyed your interview, must have been such a thrill!

  2. Wow, nice Barb! Brian has been a favourite for years. Just like with Tommy Smythe I get the impression that he's approachable and down to earth despite his fame and fortune:)

  3. I met Brian at the Canadian Design Blogger meetup this past January. Such an approachable and warm guy. His design style is "timeless" for sure. Nice interview. Must have been a thrill.

  4. Great interview Barb! I do love Brian's style and he is an amazing Canadian icon! Angie xo

  5. I'm thrilled to see Brian's work showcased here today. His answers are very thoughtful, and perfectly reflect his professionalism and authenticity. Brian's design style is beyond "Timeless". His spaces are always classic and elegant, filled with beautiful texture, fantastic artwork and stunning sightlines. For me, Brian Gluckstein IS Canadian Design!
    Thank you so much for sharing this interview with us, Barbara!
    ~ Wendi @ Classic Chic Home ~

  6. Brian is my favourite designer. Elegant, timeless, Canadian design.

  7. I love telling Americans that Brian is Canadian. They of course, have herd of him and are often surprised that he is from Canada...he's a source of pride for us here. I saw him live at on Cityline once and was so thrilled.

  8. Amazing interview! Brian is my favorite designer and his work is, in my mind, the epitome of beautiful Canadian design. So in that way, what a perfect addition to this awesome Canadian series, thank you Barbara! I adore Brian's 'timeless' style and he has influenced me greatly. So many of his rooms are in my dream home file!! And there is no bathroom like a 'Gluckstein bathroom,' the separate sinks and sculptural center tubs he is known for are TRULY my dream. Love this one, thank you Barbara and Brian!!
    Nancy xo

  9. Oh what a great interview. I have loved Brian's work for many many years. His classic timeless style is perfection. I had the pleasure of meeting him in person at IDS 2012 and he is just as charming in person as he is on Cityline. Great, great interview Barbara!

  10. Timeless indeed! I love Brian's work and design...what a great interview Barbara!

  11. Amazing!! Brian is such a talented designer. That bathroom is pure luxury and so is every other space he has done. Great interview Barb!

  12. I am a huge fan of Brian's work. I was also first introduced to his work on City Line years ago. His attention to detail is incredible and his designs are truly timless.

  13. Congrats Barbara! I'm a huge fan of Brian Gluckstein .....that first image is one I have had in my inspiration binder for years! What a great interview. And his design is truly timeless.

  14. Brian's work is timeless for sure and I love the fact that he likes to read in the bath, Ha! It's amazing where lego can take a person in their career. As always Barbara, great interview!

  15. Thanks for another incredible interview. It's always such a privilege to learn a little bit more about our design greats, and Brian is definitely one of them. Love that he isn't fond of too many patterns in one space. That definitely speaks to his 'timeless' designs.

  16. What an amazing opportunity Barbara! Congrats.
    Loved learning more about Brian. I've grown up watching him on CityLine and think he's such a great example of the talent present in Canada. xo


Let's chat...