Tuesday, November 10, 2009

At home with Becke

I'm assuming that you're sitting down because that seems like the most conducive position for web surfing and blog viewing, but just in case you're reading this on one of those newfangled iphones or somesuch, don't say I didn't warn you:

This week's house tour is the jam.

I am 100% enamored with Becke's style. As proprietress of The Vintage Cabin, she has a fantastic eye for a clean, almost minimal style peppered with bold vintage statement pieces and a big dose of humor. I'm more than a little jealous of the thrift-store and rummage sale bounty she's hauling in up there in Ontario.

How long have you lived in your home, and why did you choose it?
My husband & I made the move out of the city & into this house a year ago so we could have more space to garden, be creative and enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle. Since we've been here though, it's been nothing but work! It's all very rewarding work, mind you, but the house was in need of an overhaul which is just finally winding down now. When we first saw the house we knew we had to have it. It had a great layout, a large and fully fenced yard for our piglet son, Pierre, tons of historic charm and a 150 year old barn that we can use for our workshop. It's also located a stone's throw away from the shores of Lake Ontario, so we were drawn to the nautical & beachy feel of the house and area.

How would you describe your style and is there anyone/anything that has inspired you?
My style is a mishmash of mid century & vintage with Americana and primitive elements - I know, kinda weird. I have always been in love with mid century decor and it's been my predominant style since I was a teenager. Since we moved into this house however, I have gained a new appreciation for the way many clapboard style modest houses would have looked back in their early days. I like to call it modest minimalism - plank floors, neutrals, only essentials on display - no over-the-top glamour whatsoever. I am trying to work in elements of that while bringing in some mid century style at the same time.

I have to thank my mom for showing me the ins and outs of vintage shopping from a very early age. She was born with an eye for great finds and mentored me along the way. We used to go picking at the dump, in people's garbage, at the Salvation Army (with a coat over my head so no one would recognize me) and various other places. Sometimes I curse her for this 'sickness' but most of the time I'm very thankful.

Has your look evolved over the years? If so, how?

My style has definitely evolved - I'd say it's become more streamlined. My old apartments used to be full from floor to ceiling with oddities - spray painted hanging tires on chains, bed springs as room dividers, a wide assortment of garbage-picked vintage furnishings - but over the years I have filtered out a lot of the junk. I am trying to focus more on classic pieces that I can pair with fly by night kitschy finds I tend to get caught up on. If you invest in the classics, everything else will fit in around them.

What's your favorite part of your home? Your least favorite?

My favorite space in the house has to be the dining room. It's bright, airy and simple and we have some nice views out to our garden from there. The living room is currently my least favorite. It's a very large room, which is great to have, but I haven't quite figured out how to make such a big room work. We have a great fireplace in the middle of the room, but because it's the focal point it dictates the space a little more than I'd like.

What's your next project?

We have a few major projects lined up for the spring. We plan to build a garden shed/greenhouse from scratch, we have to landscape our front yard/drive with salvaged wrought iron fencing and stone and the barn is a constant work in progress. Someday we hope to finish a room inside of it to use as a studio. I may need a hand and back transplant to complete the work, however...

Where are the best places you find treasures for your homes?

I used to garbage pick a lot of my stuff but the garbage rules have changed and you just don't find what you used to. You can't beat thrift stores - small town thrift stores especially. Rummage sales are always fun and usually put on by old ladies, and we all know the old ladies have the BEST stuff. I shop on eBay and Etsy all the time - oh and you can't forget yard sales...and, um, dare I say...Ikea.

Any good backstories on an object in your home or element of your home?

I have always had a fondness for all things strange - especially if it has a strange face. The ugliest and most disturbing thing I own has to be the Wicker Head Lady. I may, or may not, have seen her one night while walking with friends - drunk - on Queen Street in Toronto. I stopped dead in my tracks and yelled out "I WANT HER! I HAVE TO HAVE HER". Then I forgot about her. A month later, my birthday rolled around and guess what I got? Wicker Head Lady! I've had her for about 10 years now and I really do have a deep appreciation for her strangeness.

Some sites where Becke finds inspiration:

These two places looked really interesting to me: Just Jenny and Kimhascats. I also love House of Turquoise - a great selection of all things turquoise.

Thanks so much for sharing your awesome home with us, Becke! We'll see you in whatever shelter magazines are still open soon, I'm sure!

As always, get in touch if you'd like to have your home featured.


The Wife of an Artist said...

Wow, wow, wow! I love it all but am specifically dying over that bedroom. My color preferences are so predictable.

Anonymous said...

Wicker head lady! Great tour and gorgeous home.

susan said...

such a lovely house. I feel the need to start clearing out some of my junk and editing editing editing.

just lovely!

Shannon said...

Very lovely. Thanks for this feature. Still not sure how chez Shan will measure up, but I'm working on it!

erin@designcrisis said...

Wicker head lady is such a supah score!

I love the checker floors, too. Are they painted on?

sashamilena said...

The room that is all white including the floor is fantastic! I have an attic style bedroom like that and it feels cramped at times. Very nice color choice to give the room a more spacious feel.

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