Friday, October 11, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

A little fall entry style, inspired by white pumpkins and red wellies...

Styling and Photo by Chanele Cote

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Gull Cottage Grand Reveal

Over the winter I designed and decorated a fabulous cottage renovation in the Haliburton area. The cottage has undergone a huge transformation including the master bedroom / ensuite bathroom,  a full basement addition, and an outdoor / sunroom addition. Initially the Master Bedroom was small and shared the main floor guest bathroom.

A few weeks ago we added the finishing touches and were able to photograph the transformation! Enjoy:

The Plans:

The Elevations:

Client Requests:
  • Merge Sunroom and Bedroom to create Master Bedroom / Ensuite Bathroom
  • Freshen space and maintain cottage charm
  • Reuse all entry doors and closet doors to save investment
  • Maintain all existing window positions to reduce costs and issues with matching original siding
*A few changes were made during the construction phase to the built-in bookcase, which became a hidden television unit for the adjoining living room. The bathroom mirrors and shelving options were also altered during the final stages.

Before & After:
The original space was dated, dark, and consumed by wood panelling. With the addition of a new Outdoor/Sunroom on the other side of the cottage; the original sunroom was barely used and offered a great opportunity to expand the bedroom.

The overall space:

The Lounge:
Upon entering the room through the original french doors, a set of low cozy lounge chairs and rustic table allow the clients to enjoy their morning coffee and read a book without blocking the amazing view.

The Bedroom:
The focal wall is clad with wood panels from the original sunroom ceiling and compliment the new painted panel ceiling. Wood paddles from Mountain Equipment Co-op were sanded and painted for above the bed. Crisp hotel style bedding is paired with deep blue and toile pillows for a fresh coastal vibe.

The Bathroom:
Using the original bedroom door we were able to re-use it as a pocket-door to the bathroom to save space and costs. The new window and a frameless glass shower add additional light to the space.  The rustic style vanity with cream marble top and matching mirrors were purchased from Restoration Hardware. A vintage oil painting of the clients' family cottage hangs on the wall above the toilet. 

Custom Storage:
My favourite part of the bathroom is the bonus toiletry storage and hidden hamper behind the shower wall. 

 Living Room Storage:
The original bedroom door was converted into a hidden television and games storage. This bonus space was left after the new placement of the bed on the reverse wall. The television pulls out for viewing and the doors slide back into the unit. The lower unit houses all the family board games for convenient access.

Overall, the clients were really happy with the transformation and spend a lot more time relaxing in the lounge with a morning coffee and a good book. Their favourite part of the space is waking up each morning with a view of the lake and surrounding trees! The space is now much fresher and feels apart of the outdoors.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Sketchy Client Consultations

I've just discovered a great drawing app for the iPad that I'll be using for client consultations from now on. The app "Paper" by FiftyThree is basically a digital notebook for quickly sketching ideas, erasing mistakes, and emailing directly. The app's basic (and fully functional features) are free and the additional pencils / colours can be purchased.

Samples of features include:

Amazing sample works of art on the app:

You can have separate journals for different projects: 

I used the iPad along with a stylus (I bought from the Dollarama for $2)

Here are some sample floor plan concepts for my client's home that I was able to quickly/easily sketch out and email to myself to test out the app. The process was soooooooooo simple and fun that I got carried away and began sketching everything!

Hence my numerous samples: 

Clark Residence - Master Bedroom

Clark Residence -Ensuite Bathroom

Clark Residence - Living Room Built-In Storage

Clark Residence - Kitchen Pass-Through to Dining Room

*Note: these are VERY ROUGH sketches eek ... but very fun to do .

* My review : loveee love loveeeeee the app and want to explore the other pencil/colour features

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Starting Fresh

Given the arrival of 2013 and in the spirit of creating resolutions, I have decided to focus on my goal of falling back in love with Blogging. When I initially began blogging I was intimidated, concerned with perfection, and it quickly felt like a chore.... I continue daily blog reading behind the scenes and find myself always learning about so many wonderful products, companies, and design inspiration. It almost seems greedy to gain such insightful information and provide none of my own experiences in return.

I'm back with a new style of blogging; complete with less fuss, pressure or routine.

Every so often I am asked about my "hobbies" - which don't stray far from my career:
  • Travel & Photography: exploring diverse lifestyles, landscapes, and food - with a camera in hand
  • Outdoor Exploration: Spending time at the cottage, outdoor sports, and wandering
  • And of Course... Antique/Vintage Sourcing - searching for one-of-a-kind furniture and decor
Luckily for me (and the rest of the design obsessed) - Online "Garage Sales" like Craigslist and Kijiji fuel my addiction for fairly priced, unique finds. I've also stumbled upon a great local (Toronto) blog called Take This Sofa that scours the sites for weekly finds and of course Bijou and Boheme who always seems to score the most fabulous treasures for her home or clients.

Recently I've noticed Habitat for Humanity on board with some great pieces:
( Find detailed information for these items HERE )

Score fun, vibrant, and versatile pieces like these.... 

Diamond Veneer Round Dining Table | Coffee Table 
Originally from Elte - Some veneer damage / character but could be repaired
$65 or $125

Classic Cobalt Blue Armchair | Sofa
Promptly remove armrest covers and or paint frame - electric!
$175 or $195

Mad Men-esque Emerald Cocktail Chair

Carved Solid Wood Cabinet
Great for storage and shallow depth - would likely paint

7' Contemporary Sofa
Clean lines - would replace accent pillows 
(Matching love seat also in store)

Abandoned Solid Wood Desk for Adoption
Looking for a good home, new hardware and appreciation for sweet drawer liners

Handsome Woven Armoire
Inquire to store for details

*All Photos via


Also announcing the First Toronto ReStore DIY Upcycle Challenge
From January 21 - February 8, 2013

  1. Each entry will automatically be entered to win a CIL Paint Package
  2. Top 5 Finalists will win National Home Show Tickets
  3. Final winner prize to be determined; includes bragging rights


I'll leave you with photos from my personal experience volunteering for Habitat for Humanity - it was a great week filled with inspiration, education, and enlightenment!

The only photo I captured of myself, adorned with a hard hat & plaid shirt