Hello Dear Reader:

It has been a really long time since I’ve written anything in this online journal. It’s something I’d like to get back to and now that moving, fixing up our house and starting our retail business Wallace River Revival is well underway I think I can get back to some little fun things like writing.

You may not know that In October of 2021, my family and I moved to Wallace, Nova Scotia.  We live on the north coast (or north shore as people call it here) of Nova Scotia, directly across the Northumberland Strait from P.E.I.  We bought a 100 year old farmhouse that is almost triple the size of our old home.  The setting here is rustic and romantic but the house needed A LOT of work.

The house has a classic looking farmhouse front door that is situated front and centre.  I was envisioning a foyer but there is just a practical hallway going to the back of the house, with stairs on the left and a living room on the right.

The side door has a large entry and serves as the welcoming area of the home.  The room is rectangular and then opens in to a L-shape.  This is where the main kitchen area is located.  I’d like to share the before pictures, which I will caption for you along with a description and a few details of what we did when we first moved in.

This picture shows the back door. There was no way I was having the washer & dryer in my kitchen so they got moved to the basement laundry room directly below. The next photo is a 180 from this spot.

If you spun around from the photo above, this would be the back of the house. There were doorways for days when we got here. First door on the left is the bathroom, next doorway is the Back Kitchen and the next is to the Dining Room.

We were thrilled with the blank slate but scratched our heads on how we were going to lay out this room.  Our sister-in-law came up with a phenomenal solution of closing off the bathroom door and moving it to the wall between the bathroom and Back Kitchen.  As seen in the following photo.

We were able to build a custom kitchen out of items we brought with us.

I will pause here to add more backstory.  Never ones to shy from a challenge, we purchased a 52 foot shipping container and filled it with all our stuff and sent it across the country from Ontario.  Along with beds, clothes and such there was some cool old stuff that helped us create a unicorn of a home, as you can see from most of the photos.  Later (August 2022), we turned the shipping container into our retail store – that’s another unicorn!  More on that in an upcoming article.

The green wooden cabinet above used to be my old gardening shed, now it houses our pots & pans and canned goods.  It’s hard to see from this photo but between the stove and fridge is a metal piece on wheels that used to be in a mechanical shop.  We filled it with frying pans and baking sheets.  Dave made all the lighting: the big black one swings out if we need it to and used to be a vintage street light.  Our pot rack is an old meat scale.  The island is a super old work bench we bought for $30.  Dave reimagined the stools, by attaching old school desks as seats and chair backs for support.

Where to next?  I’ll show you the entry way.  It took us some time to figure out what we wanted In this area.  We didn’t want to go with a traditional mud room set up.  We also couldn’t find a piece of furniture we liked to serve our needs.  After many months, we did this…

We got a set of lockers that just happened to match our spice rack on the left.  Dave made a bench that is charming for under the window and I added a super-sized rectangular jute rug right in front of the lockers.  We each have a designated locker and lots of space for guests.

Directly across, is even more storage (for the vacuum, mixing bowls, shopping bags and dog food and all the other ‘stuff’ that needs a place).  Dave cleaned up his Father’s old work bench.  Elbow grease and some mineral wax polished up this piece of furniture, it has an old soul.  We love that it gets to live a new life in our home.

We added some vintage portraits or ‘Found Relatives’ and a light that Dave made from an old store scale. He made to mercury glass window and we put our Bluetooth Speaker in a vintage Bakelite radio.

Directly across, Dave built a set of three open shelves from old barn beam.  The wood came from a very dear and old friend and holds deep meaning for us.  This is the place I get to have fun with as I change it with the seasons.  This post is becoming a very long winded way for me to show you how I just decorated for Winter.  But first, let me show you the Before (from Spring 2023).

Strictly No Elephants

My style is to mix old and new treasures together. I take things I truly love and try to tie them together by a common feature (yellow florals), or stoneware. I love adding prints and plants too (my staple ingredients).

Decorating takes me a really long time.  It took over six months to gather, create, and decorate this area again for Winter (below).

To save my sanity, and those around me, I’ve found that decorating for the seasons helps me get creative and stay focused.  I use only what I love, not what is trendy or popular.

I get inspiration mostly from nature, Pinterest, design shows and thrifting trips.  I try to push myself to follow my passion but can easily get confused if I try too hard.  For example:  I love old and chippy.  Anything sepia melts my heart, but I also, am passionate about colour.

Each time I decorate I try to experiment a bit more than the old version of me would.  Striking a feeling is what I’m going for every time.

I’ve been decorating with vintage finds for a long time now.  As many times as I deconstruct and then reconstruct a shelf, a wall, or a room, or most recently a life in a new place I see similar patterns.  I am also learning so many new things in business, but there are repeating patterns here too!  I’m looking forward to sharing vintage trips, research, and decor inspiration with you in the upcoming year.

With it now being the end of this story and so close to the Holiday Season, I’d like to extend the very best to you and yours.  If you are looking for Peace & Joy, I hope you find so much that it extends well in to 2024.

I will see you soon.