A Georgian Bay condo renovation

living room with a view

R+D exclusive: Q&A with interior designer, Jane Lockhart, on the details behind her latest project on the shores of Georgian Bay

How did neutral tones and hits of black contribute to the home’s overall aesthetic?

The homeowners knew they wanted a bright, light space that didn’t compete with the best art possible — nature and the many changing faces of Georgian Bay. Light walls give way to the view easily, while bleached hardwood is beachy casual. Black was the chosen accent colour, given that the homeowner already had some black items and loved the contemporary feel and the energy produced by the high contrast in the space. All pieces are tone-on-tone white, cream, ivory or grey with a large punch of black, for striking results.

What inspired the choice of specific artwork?

This piece of art had a natural flavour and pattern with an earthy range of colours that the homeowners loved. They saw this as a feature they wanted to capture on the wall, visible from all areas of the kitchen and main lounge. Its timeless content and lit structure offer an interesting but not distracting focal point, especially when competing with such a significant view.

Why did you choose quartzite for the kitchen countertop?

The beautiful quartzite material has a wonderful vein through it – it’s a striking contrast! It’s also a tough material, and with a leathered top and a lightly chiselled edge, it offers a contemporary but tactile surface. I felt it was important to include a natural material in the home to represent the natural environment beyond the condo.

How does the built-in bench in the dining room provide style and function?

Anything built-in ultimately provides better storage, as you can cover every square inch of space. By adding the bench at the window in the dining area, we took full advantage of the spectacular views, making it feel as though you are directly on the water. This added location also eliminates the extra space furniture takes up for circulation. Benches are comfortable and lush, as they are soft and enveloping, allowing more people to sit here when entertaining in a casual way. By moving the table toward the window, the kitchen, and specifically the island, became larger with more coveted storage.

Why did you opt for millwork over closets in the bedrooms?

Millwork is significantly more attractive than drywall and standard closet doors, particularly when this is what you see when you first enter the primary bedroom. In addition, millwork takes up less space, and in a tighter hallway such as this, the doors don’t swing or block the passage, as millwork doors are narrow and light. Also, storage is more precise, and lighting can be added where needed, making it easier to find things.

What was the inspiration behind the bunk bed design in the guest bedroom?

The homeowner regularly entertains guests and wanted to make sure every single square inch of the home would be used. Lighting at each stair of the bunk beds clearly illuminates the individual drawers. The drawers also allow for clothing storage, so we didn’t need to add a dresser, providing more room for sleeping. Adding the two single beds plus a queen bed and a desk gives the family the option to use this room as their own suite.

What challenges did you face on this project?

Managing storage within certain areas of the unit was challenging, as the walls were fixed. The homeowner was very creative when thinking about maximizing the space. We worked together to ensure the kitchen and island were packed with as much storage and function as possible. The homeowner instructed me to design the whole condo, including the furnace room. This service room had shelves added, hidden doors, and hooks wherever possible to create extra coat and toiletry storage.

Find Jane at janelockhart.com

Photos by Larry Arnal

Sara Duck
Sara Duck

With over 15 years' experience as a magazine editor, writer and content creator, Sara brings her passion for design and decor to our pages each issue. @bysaraduck

118 articles