It has been a fabulous summer filled with lots of sunshine and extremely warm days. Hence, many days have been spent at the cottage…a place where we have many friends and family visit. It is a small, very old cottage…let’s say vintage… but with many “conveniences” that are appreciated by all who stay! They come for the water, the view and endless laughs. Who can resist the northern Ontario fresh air and these sunsets…

My name is Alana and I am an Associate Decorator with Narrative Interiors in Timmins. My cottage is my favorite place to spend time during our short summers. We tend to do many DIY projects out at the lake and my husband often jokes that I have already started planning the next project as we begin work on the current one.

The word SMALL does not even begin to describe the indoor bathroom we have at the cottage. It is literally 3’ x 5’ and has a shower, pedestal sink, and toilet. We call it the world’s smallest bathroom! With all the company that we get out at the lake we needed to have a space where people can shower and “clean up” away from the kitchen and living space of the main cottage. We decided to turn an old and rough storage shed that is attached to the sleep cabin into a SHOWER SHED.

Before the transformation, it was a space to shove and store a mish mash of everything and housed a second fridge at one point!

Our goal was to maintain the rustic and vintage vibe so we painted the existing wood siding on the one wall in white using an exterior satin enamel and added barnboard to the other walls in a grey wash, purchased at a local hardware store. The plywood ceiling was painted with the same white as the siding and the beams were stained in a dark brown (BEHR Semi-Transparent Padre Brown). Sheet vinyl that looks like 24” x 24” concrete tiles was effortlessly laid over the plywood floor which can be easily maintained throughout the season.

A one-piece fiberglass shower was installed which will withstand the cold winters in an unheated building when not in use.

We hid the unsightly hot water tank but kept easy access to it as well as all the plumbing behind a folding door. Folding doors are not usually on my recommended list of products as they are not the most attractive but in a shed with limited space it turned out to be the best option.

Adding a cabinet and mirror not only fills the space but adds function to the shower shed. Fresh towels and personal products are well stocked for all who visit and stay.

Thinking outside of the box and getting creative with space, especially at the cottage, adds function, value, and style. Are you ready to start your next project?

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If my bunkie could talk it would tell of my secret obsession with cushions and how many times I have changed the cushions over the years.  Cushions are such an easy way to add pattern, contrast and color to refresh any home decor.  My favourite color is red, I’ve always loved the burst of drama it brings to a space, but after 15 years of living with my red Muskoka chairs it was time for a change.  

I decided on something very simple, yet timeless and neutral.  I chose black, Benjamin Moore Black Beauty (2128-10) to be exact! 

I love how the rich warm black door and newly painted chairs add a luxurious feel to the space while making the white trim really pop.  The pattern in the cushions and new sign really stand out and add a lovely charm and elegance to this existing space.  Mixing black and navy has always been one of my favourite looks.  The rules of interior design sometimes include following your heart and I definitely love the end result of mixing these two colors.

I will be staining the deck..stay tuned!

Staining the deck will not only promote a dramatic look by enhancing the natural grain but also bring out the woods rich colors and textures.  In my case, it will really complete the overall look by creating a warm, inviting space and cohesiveness that will tie in the cedar shakes on the bunkie.

In the meantime, I intend on soaking up the sun and enjoying this view!

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Updated: Jun 30, 2020

Summer has arrived! My name is Carrie, I’m an associate decorator with Narrative Interiors in North Bay. I am absolutely loving the Coastal Vibe that is trending this season especially when we consider the extension of our homes into our outdoor spaces. You can easily bring hints of the sea to your front porch by painting your front door in a shade of blue, adding the natural elements of rattan seating, cozy pillows, delightful planters and nautical inspired lighting which when brought together are sure to create a wonderful retreat right on your front porch.

*Links Below

Yes, we may have the tools, the experience and the talent to create a great space but we also look for some of our inspiration perhaps in the same places as you do. This classic front door is from one of our favourite designers Jillian Harris’s beautiful home. She chose Benjamin Moore Athabasca CC- 816 a fun light blue paired with satin nickel hardware although a matte black would have looked equally as stunning.

*Photo Source:

Not sure if it’s the symmetry or the simplicity of this front entrance that makes it so inviting. A perfect navy blue colour such as Hale navy HC-154 would help give a front door a refined and polished statement. Painting this door a light blue would completely change the feel of the space.

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If this door could talk I’m sure it would say put your laptop away, grab a book, a towel and some lemonade and let’s relax. Our Benjamin Moore pick for this door would be Blue Grass CC 640. This colour seems like the perfect combination of sky, water and landscape.

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