This coastal vacation cottage in Nova Scotia was built in 1860. When the owners bought it, they wanted to add modern updates while staying true to the home's classic roots. On the exterior, gray-blue paint and cream trim softens the exterior of the wood-sided cottage.
Walking into the front door for the first time, the homeowners knew they wanted to make this house their own. They stripped decades of stain and paint from the woodwork, and now the beautifully restored pine staircase and natural hardwood floors greet visitors.
The fireplace—restored to its original state—serves as an elegant focal point in the living room and warms up chilly nights. Reproduction iron sconces and carefully recrafted paneling and trim feed the aged aesthetic.
Rich, natural wood dominates the dining room. The antique pine china cabinet, custom-made trestle table, and original flooring—mixed with the moss green wainscoting—create an earthy, rustic aesthetic. White accessories, on the table top and in the china cabinet, open up the room’s dark tones.
The owners merge history and modern amenities in the kitchen, wanting the room to appear as though it evolved over time. Two ways they balance the old and new is by hiding high-tech appliances in the center island and facing the refrigerator with caned doors so it appears as a built-in armoire.
Details such as Shaker-style cabinetry, open dish storage, a porcelain farmhouse sink, and period-perfect window reproductions add to the homeowners’ hope for a sensitive restoration.
Antique maps of the area adorn the walls as you climb the staircase. Once upstairs, an alluring window seat—complete with cushy pillows and ample underseat storage—rounds out the upper-level hallway.
A dusty blue covers the vintage-style vanity and painted beaded board in the master bath for a relaxing beach-meets-country vibe. To offset all of the dark blue, the walls, countertops, and accents were kept a crisp white.
The homeowners balance understated hues with exciting pattern throughout the home, including in the guest bedroom, which features another original element: steeply angled walls. The walls offer an off-center mood, which contrasts well with the immaculately decorated space.
One contemporary comfort the owners commissioned was a screen porch. With its high ceiling and exposed rafters, nautical decor, and muted color palette, this open space functions as an airy summer living room.
A traditional outdoor look is easily attainable. The owners placed an inviting arbor and picket fence around the garden to frame the backyard space.