10 must-see attractions at 2014's BC Home + Garden Show

10 must-see attractions at 2014's BC Home + Garden Show

The BC Home + Garden Show promises real experts, real advice and real inspiration – and it delivers. No landscaping issue is too small, and no home improvement project is off limits. Four hundred and twenty-five-plus top-notch exhibitors, expert presentations, professional consultants, celebs, fashion and food are all under one roof from Feb. 19 to 23 at BC Place Stadium.

Satisfaction is actually guaranteed, or the cost of admission ($15 per adult) is on the house. As if we had to convince you, here are the top 10 reasons to visit the BC Home + Garden Show.

Expert Advice You Don’t Have To Pay For

Expert Advice You Don’t Have To Pay For

Take your head-scratching design dilemma to the professionals. Interior decorators, landscapers and certified contractors – including horticulture and landscape expert Mark Bolton – will be on hand to offer free, 10-minute consultations in this “Ask an Expert” series. Don’t forget your swatches, magazine clippings and napkin sketches.

HGTV Celeb Factor

HGTV Celeb Factor

The HGTV main stage will be busy with real estate, reno and design hot shots, including Leave it to Bryan star Bryan Baeumler. The Canadian contractor is set to join his wife Sarah on stage for the candid presentation, “All’s Fair in Love and Construction,” and will be meeting and greeting fans at his booth afterwards.

Also hitting the stage will be Mike Jr. and Sherry Holmes to chat “Growing Up Holmes,” designers extraordinaire Janette Ewen and Jef Hancock, as well as BCLiving resident design firm A Good Chick To Know.

High Steaks Competition

High Steaks Competition

Steak may or may not be involved, but that’s half the fun in this all-out cook-off where home chefs craft four courses using mystery ingredients chosen via public vote. Aptly entitled "Chopping Block," challengers with the weakest dishes will be chopped from the competition by a panel of discriminating judges including Canada’s celebrity chef Vikram Vij, 102.7 The Peak radio host Laurie Logan and Urban Fare executive chef Ryan McDonald. After two hours of slicing and dicing, the last chef standing will walk away with a $3,500 flightseeing and dining trip. The heated battle kicks off Saturday Feb. 22 at 2 p.m.

Beer, Entertaining and Cooking Demos

Beer, Entertaining and Cooking Demos

There are 14 reasons to visit the BC Home + Garden Show at this Urban Fare Cooking Stage alone. Feast your eyes upon beer, cuisine and entertaining presentations from the city’s epicurean elite – 14 top chefs in total.

Vij’s executive chef Vikram Vij will take audiences on a tour of modern Indian cuisine Feb. 22; Provence Restuarants’ owner and chef Alessandra Quaglia dishes out tips and tricks for party pleasing aperitifs Feb. 20; and Taryn Wa of Savoury Chef teaches “effortless” Mediterranean entertaining Feb. 19 – to name a very few.

And the brew buffs won’t want to miss "Have Your Beer and Eat It Too" from CRAFT Beer Market chef Cam McGowan. Thirsty attendees will learn the secrets to pairing craft brews with locally produced food, Feb. 21 at 3 p.m.

Shopper’s Delight: Pop-Up Portobello West

Shopper’s Delight: Pop-Up Portobello West

With wares that are fair trade and Canadian made, Portobello West is a must-peruse in this special pop-up edition of the monthly fashion and art market. Established in 2006 and originally London-inspired, this Vancouver institution brings a special selection of top talent to you in a veritable buffet of bling, clothing, food, artwork and more.

The Not-So-Secret Garden

The Not-So-Secret Garden

The 7,000 sq.-ft. of greenery, outdoor furniture, fountains, stone fixtures and flowers isn’t something you’re likely to pass by. An annual favourite, Living Melodies is crafted from the city’s top green thumbs who are on hand to answer questions and take compliments. This year there’s also a new garden on the block, Twinings English Tea Garden, which invites guests to partake in teatime against the backdrop of their expertly imagined oasis.

Green Living Done Right: West Coast Power Smart Home

Green Living Done Right: West Coast Power Smart Home

A source of divine inspiration year after year, the West Coast Power Smart Home doesn’t disappoint and this time it’s more expansively green than ever. Here you’ll find all the latest trends in West Coast design and modern home décor, as well as BC Hydro staff to share key tips and tricks to keep a house sustainable and eco-friendly. Green inside and out, the ambitious landscaping is taken care of by Rob Spytz Designs and the eco-chic comforts are courtesy of Friendly Decorator, Christine Friend. Try to keep drooling to a minimum.

Better Gnomes & Gardens

Better Gnomes & Gardens

No you’re not seeing things. One lawn gnome and 16 challengers make for the BC Home + Garden Show’s most novel attraction. The world-renowned and notoriously uppity Chelsea Flower Show in the U.K. lifted a century-long ban on these garden guards in 2013. To pay homage, Vancouver’s celebs are tasked with transforming a plain Jane gnome into a “whimsical treasure.” Citytv’s Dawn Chubai, Love It or List It Vancouver’s Todd Talbot and even Global BC’s Steve Darling are taking part. Equal parts eye candy and comic relief.

Pro Tips For Home DIY

Pro Tips For Home DIY

Oftentimes the difference between DIY you keep and DIY you give away is a little expert advice. DIY Done Right has Habitat For Humanity Greater Vancouver experts demonstrating upcycling projects featuring materials from their Vancouver ReStores. ReStore, a.k.a. home improvement heaven, is home to countless donated building materials and home décor items sold at fabulously discounted rates. Everything from doorknobs to kitchen sinks are here and ripe for repurposing – let Habitat for Humanity’s team show you how.

Front-Row Seats, Sips and Snacks

Front-Row Seats, Sips and Snacks

Location, location, location. Strategically adjacent to all the action on the HGTV Main Stage, the BCLiving Magazine Lounge occupies the show’s prime real estate. Come here to decompress in a space meticulously styled by local design firm favourite A Good Chick To Know while you soak up oodles of presentations and expertise. A vino in one hand and BCLiving Magazine in the other – if you start here, you may never leave.

Be sure to check out the full list of exhibitors and schedule of attractions at bchomeandgardenshow.com.

*We'd like to apologize for an error that ran in our February issue incorrectly stating that Jillian Harris will be speaking at this year's BC Home + Garden Show. Visit the BC Home + Garden Show's website for a list of 2014's celebrity guest speakers.