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Friends and Neighbours, part 2

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Part 2: The Urban Farmhouse

Owners: Stephanie Domet, author/broadcaster, and Kevan Corbett, musician

Compromise equals style success with this energetic couple, whose kitchen is well known to many musicians and writers who have filled their home with song and words.

Kevan likes minimalism and mid-century design from the 1950s. Stephanie loves mid-century too, but the 1850s, and is a self-professed collector who haunts Agricola antique shops. But both ascribe to the same design philosophy: "What do we have, what can we find, what can we use that isn't some shitty thing from Home Depot,'" laughs Stephanie.

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Stephanie moved into her house in August 2001. This kitchen was a bedroom and a bathroom. They ripped down walls and put down a pine plank floor (1). Time spent at Maritime Demolition was rewarded with the discovery of a cast-iron sink (2). Holes punched out on either side of the living room-facing fireplace provide space for passing "drinks, food, conversation, music and the like," says Kevan. Cupboards were gleefully ripped out and replaced with salvaged wood shelves. Ikea kitchen carts (3), used as an island, blend seamlessly. A Lee Valley workbench fits snugly atop a low-riding pastry table, providing more workspace beside the stove, while a hoosier flour cabinet (4)---a sweet deal purchased on St. Margarets Bay Road---provides more storage space for dry goods.

Drawn to shapes and colours, Stephanie's collection of eggcups is organized in an open wooden shelf, originally constructed by her father for cassette tapes. Glass cake trays (5) and a stack of precious reproduction milky-green Jadite plates (6) sit prettily on a corner cabinet (7), which Kevan purchased from the set of the Alicia Silverstone movie, Candles on Bay Street, for Stephanie's birthday.

Although conventional real estate thinking is that you add bathrooms, not take them away, Domet looks around the warm kitchen and says: "I wasn't thinking about resale, I was thinking about living in it."

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