Peek at the underground living room of this Calgarian designer

Getting headache of how to decorate your underground living room? Calgarian Desinger Deirdre Kelly shows you how to transform your undergound living room into a cozy, modern and fresh space.


Peek at the underground living room of this Calgarian designer

The Globe and Mail



Three years ago, Calgary-based interior decorator Alykhan Velji settled into a 1959 Chinook Park split-level with his partner, PR consultant Jason Krell, who helped with the subsequent renovations.

Velji has lived in Calgary since 1988, when he emigrated from his native Tanzania with his parents. His favourite room in his current home is the living room, unusually located on the lower level. Thanks to a series of well-placed windows, it is filled with natural light, making it feel airy despite being partly below ground.

“This is where we spend most of our time,” says the 33-year-old design expert for HGTV and Citytv. “It feels warm and inviting, crisp and modern: a room filled with a mix of high and low style – much like my wardrobe.”

The carpet

“The carpet is my own design from my Afera Collection of rugs. It is based on a motif found in Islamic architecture. I find these motifs so graphic and modern.”

The couch

“The grey custom-made sofa is from the 4Living modern-home-furnishings store in downtown Calgary. It is upholstered in a fabulous grey microfibre that makes a great statement, grounds the room and is durable. It is a versatile piece that is comfortable enough to curl up in to watch movies, but is also appropriate to seat many people at one of our parties.”

The cushions

“These cushions are all about the mix. The grey ones in the front are custom-made with a gorgeous embroidered linen from Crown Wallpaper and Fabrics; the ones tucked next to them are from HomeSense.”

The tea set

“I purchased this on a trip to Japan. I love surrounding myself with items that have history and mean something to me.”

The coffee-table books

“Here are some of my favourites that I’ve collected over the years: a book all about men’s style, a bio on the great Alexander McQueen and one on my favourite style icon, the American interior designer Iris Apfel. All inspire me and make me smile every time I look inside them.”

The chairs

“These were a fabulous bargain find at HomeSense. I loved the lines of the chairs, with the open wood arms, linen upholstery and midcentury sensibility.”


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Eric Tiftikci

Eric Tiftikci

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CENTURY 21 Leading Edge Realty Inc., Brokerage*
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