cdn home & country | national mag gold award

One of the highlights of my life and career was winning a National Magazine Gold Award for this cabin story!  It was a very special project because not only was it was shot in my beloved Nova Scotia but my whole family was a part of it as well.  My brother David built this cabin when he was a teenager to have a place to hang out with friends.  But, in recent years, it had fallen into decline and one day while walking by, the idea hit me to do a renovation.  David was kind enough to allow us to refurbish it to make a painting retreat for my mother.  I pitched the idea to Canadian Home & Country magazine and they accepted.

I am an extremely sentimental person & each piece placed in this cabin has a memory attached.  The door is from my grandmother’s farmhouse and it is painted my favorite color – turquoise.  Some dishes are from dear family and friends & the pretty little stove is from my cousin Janine’s old farmhouse.  The peonies are from the farmer’s market and the lupins came from my parent’s property. My Dad & I built the little stone path from the shale found on his property and my mom helped me to plant the flower boxes.  It really was a labour of love for my whole family . . .

Hope you enjoy story!  I have included a couple of before photos at the end so you can see where we started!

Photographer:  Stacey Van Berkel
Art Director: Josephine Woertman
Stylist: Ann Marie Favot
Styling Assistant:  Leigh Elliott


Even before this “before” photo, my brother David and my parents had to first rip out all the yucky paneling and insulation to strip the cabin down to the bare bones.  Many mice and squirrels had been enjoying the cabin but we needed to clean it up to start the transformation!

My Dad and I put in another window at the back to let more light in and then we had the whole cabin sprayed with paint – it was a whole new place with light and a blank canvas to create on. . .