Interior: Boho beach house
The 1,100-square-foot cottage met all of her criteria: close to Toronto, near her mom’s house, swimmable water and a cottagey feel ‒ beach cottage, that is. Think sun, sand and style ‒ way more Malibu than Muskoka.
Her inspiration came from a Vanity Fair spread she’d seen years ago of actor Dennis Hopper’s Malibu home. The vibe was 1970s surfer/boho chic and Teresa couldn’t wait to interpret the look in her own beach style cottage. It would be a departure from her Toronto home and the Hollywood-glam-meets- shabby-chic-meets-Parisian-flair of her Châtelet store. “In the city, I have greys, pale blues and greens – there isn’t the same riot of colour I have in the cottage,” she says. “I wanted the place to be fun and lively because it’s a weekend home.”
The cottage is perched above Long Beach, a public beach on Lake Erie, cozily sandwiched among other similar traditional family cottages. But homeowner Teresa Wiwchar doesn’t mind the accessible setting – she loves watching families set up for a day in the sun and seeing Jet Skis whiz by.
The deck takes on a classic motel-chic look with the addition of a trio of Solair chairs in a green and blue colour scheme.
Teresa’s daughter Macy (right) takes a break from the beach to enjoy a snack on the deck with a friend from a nearby cottage. Patterns from the chic sunroom forge a link between the indoors and out.
Sophisticated touches, such as the classy secondhand chairs reupholstered in a tailored stripe, coupled with black decor accessories, including a sexy chandelier, challenge traditional concepts of cottage decorating, yet the dressed-up style looks right at home beside the original stone fireplace.
Simple black and white frames unite a display of the kids’ creative masterpieces.
The old kitchen “was awful” says Teresa – dark and cramped. The new kitchen interior is its antithesis – breezy, modern, bright and roomy enough for husband Hamid Samad to cook up a storm while entertaining guests at the island.
The family spends a lot of time in the super-casual screened-in sunroom that Teresa coated with white paint. She also painted the picnic table that the previous owners left behind for relaxed summertime dining.
Turquoise and green linens and a graphic lattice pattern continue the cheerful retro vibe in the screened-in porch.
A slammer screen door says summer accessory loud and clear. A turquoise rattan wall-mounted coat rack is perfectly positioned to catch bright-orange beach towels. Vintage jars filled with small stones set a cottage-style mood.
Teresa bought the vintage gilded “bamboo” cottage chair from a picker she knows. “It’s great to be in the trade,” she admits. Whenever she’s looking for a particular piece, it eventually shows up.
Teresa uses a curvy Hollywood-glam vanity from her shop as a writing table. Despite the touches of glamour, the cottage vibe is kept from getting too frou-frou thanks to Teresa’s fun, even audacious use of textiles.
Teresa purchased the seascape artwork from one of her favourite antiques spots in Florida. She fashioned a one-of-a-kind pendant light from an elaborate ceiling medallion found at one of her regular haunts, Captain’s Treasures, and a flea market find chandelier. The bedside table lamps were also secondhand finds spruced up with custom shades – they don’t match, echoing the contrasting window coverings.