Elana Safronsky, Managing Editor
Thursday, June 28, 2012 3:46 PM EDT
Who: Yvonne, co-owner of gourmet chocolate shop, Bruce County Nut and Fudge Co., her husband Dave, who is in sales, and their two kids, a three year old girl and 6 month old boy.
David & Yvonne
What: A 3000 sq ft post-and-beam home custom built in 1972, in which a large, main floor kitchen uniquely joins two A-frame structures. There are three bedrooms in one A-frame (two on main and one on the upper level), and two bedrooms in the other -- the master bedroom, and their daughter's room, along with the master ensuite.
Dining room detail with stools by Kevin Levair from Levair’s Woodworking; staircase to upper floor
Where: The home is situated on three lush acres in Ontario country, only 50 minutes from the city of Toronto. Despite the home's private setting deep within a treed property, all major conveniences are only a few minutes away, affording the family the best of both worlds.
Why: Yvonne and Dave's home underlines the possibility of a third choice in the urban-suburban idea of real estate, and shows a stylish and refreshing lifestyle choice for those of us looking to buy.
HGTV.ca: How did you come to live in this home?
Yvonne: We looked at a lot of rural homes. With Dave being a country boy and me being a city girl, this home spoke to both of us. We were also looking for a home that needed some TLC, where Dave could use his amazing handy skills and I could be imaginative and creative with style and design.
HGTV.ca: How much TLC went into this home to bring it to its current state?
Yvonne: When we purchased it, it was in a sad state, but Dave and I could see it had good bones, clean lines and interesting details.
The home felt very disjointed -- the two A-frame structures were used separately and there was no feeling of connectivity between one side of the home and the other. This was a great opportunity in our minds and we knew that if we could design the main floor (especially the kitchen) well enough, we could bring the two sides together to feel more like one fluid space. Along with designing a brand new kitchen, we renovated the bathrooms, installed new flooring throughout, and much more to mention.
Family room: live-cut walnut coffee table made by Dave.
Yvonne: When we bought the house it felt like a cottage -- pine floors, wood paneling and a wood stove (which was the only form of heat!). It was our mission to make the house feel like a home.
Master bedroom: head board was bought at a garage sale in St. Jacobs for $25.
Yvonne: The master bedroom was one of the major challenges because it was really undersized compared to the rest of the home. We extended the loft-like master bedroom to create a larger space and made a more cozy design and layout. It is now our private retreat and we love it!
HGTV.ca: Floor choice?
Yvonne: When it came to flooring it was an easy decision. With all the exposed cedar and douglas fir in the structure of the home we wanted wood flooring with contrast. We also wanted a floor that would steer us away from a cottage feel.
HGTV.ca: Tell us more about the kitchen -- it's amazing!
Yvonne: Dave and I have a large family who are always over. We wanted a space that we could all fit comfortably. I love that I can be in the kitchen cooking and still feel a part of things while family and friends are nestled by the fire place. We especially love the stainless steel island -- durability, easy maintenance and style!
Yvonne: Dave added a barn door [not pictured] from the kitchen to the dining room. I love that I can close the door and not have to look at a dirty kitchen while enjoying a meal.
Wood burning stove; sitting area
HGTV.ca: How do you find living in such an airy, open space? Any issues with privacy? What about the bedroom that overlooks a part of the main floor?
Yvonne: One of the reasons that we loved the house was for its high vaulted ceilings and openness (even though the previous design didn’t capitalize on it).
Guest room balcony; guest bedroom
Yvonne: We created the upstairs bedroom and office/sitting area to provide a private space for guests. The same barn door from the kitchen to the dining room, when closed, provides separation from one side of the house to the next. It almost feels like two homes when you want it to.
HGTV.ca: Did you work with a designer?
Yvonne: No – just a lot of HGTV!
Family room details: customized credenza found on Kijiji; family room chair
HGTV.ca: What is your design style?
Yvonne: We live in the country so the rustic elements come natural to the home. I am a city girl at heart and that’s why I try to add modern details. We love hitting up antique markets such as Aberfoyle Antique Market or Keady Market, in Ontario. I also love to tour the local garage sales for interesting finds.
Dining room: original painting by Montreal artist (left); pulleys and barnboard made by Yvonne and Dave (right)
HGTV.ca: Where did you get most of your furniture?
Yvonne: All over! Our teak credenza was actually part of a wall unit I found on Kijiji. I was looking for something that would fit the extremely long wall in our family room. The wall unit came in three sections, floor to ceiling. We had it divided and a custom marble top made for it for the bottom section. It is the perfect piece for the room.
• Our head board was bought at a garage sale in St. Jacobs for $25.
• Dave made our live-cut walnut coffee table that is in our family room as well as the live-cut cherry bench in the guest bedroom.
• We have also bought pieces from Canadian artisans at craft shows such as our stools in the dining room. They were made by Kevin Levair from Levair’s Woodworking.
• Our harvest table in the dining room was found and restored by my father-in-law.
• Some accessories around the house were bought at HomeSense. Dave thinks I work there, I’m there so often!
HGTV.ca: Tell us about the wall decor -- so unique!
Yvonne: Some of the art on the wall Dave and I made. We were tired of staring at blank walls. In the dining room we fastened pulleys to barn board to fill the wall. I had bought the pulleys years ago at Keady Market and was waiting to use them. I think the look suits the house. A lot of what you see was purchased at markets or made by us, but our favorite art investment was the piece hanging in the dining room by a Montreal artist.
HGTV.ca: Favourite room in the house? Why?
Yvonne: My favorite room in the house is our master bedroom. It has so many windows and the trees in our backyard make it feel like a tree house.
HGTV.ca: What's next for you?
Yvonne: Well, currently, we have our house for sale! We are looking for another unique rural home closer to family. It’s going to be hard to leave this house, now that we've been able to turn it into exactly what we wanted from a home -- there is not one thing I would change!