Checkerboard Art in Charming Century Cottage


See the creative update to this country charmer within walking distance to downtown Guelph.

OUR HOMES Wellington County Orangeville Caledon Spring 2018A version of this article originally appeared in the Spring 2018 issue of  OUR HOMES Wellington County, Orangeville, Caledon, p.94. Find local businesses in our Wellington directory.

When a century stone cottage in downtown Guelph came up for sale a few years ago, realtor Cathy Dodd and her husband Antony were ready. The couple had always dreamed of a century cottage, and since their children had grown and left the nest, the move to a smaller home was finally practical. The home feels like a cottage in the country with its 75-by-110-foot lot grown with stately mature trees.
In the study hangs a large map of the world with dozens of push pins marking the countries the couple have visited. The cottage is filled with treasures from their travels, including the colourful carpets throughout the house from Turkey and North and South India. 
After the Dodds woke up to a snow drift in their front hallway shortly after they moved in, Greg Hartmann of Hartmann Windows & Doors replaced the front-door system. The original door is a feature in the backyard garden now, along with its transom. Windows in the cottage were replaced by Bavarian Window Works in keeping with the period style.
The eclectic kitchen has seen the most changes. The team from Paragon Kitchens spent time with the couple learning about their love of antiques and impeccable sense of style, Antony’s passion for cooking and Cathy’s effervescent personality and panache for entertaining. 
They removed an awkward half door as well as layers of drywall from the rear kitchen to reveal the rubble stone walls. The stone contrasts with the new black, modern cabinetry. Compact, built-in appliances were supplied by AMG Studios, including a Thermador stainless steel stove, Gaggeneau fridge and a Bosch dishwasher.The Dodds later added their antique chopping block, a favourite piece of Antony’s from the previous home, as a freestanding island. A live-edge bar top sits on top of the counter to provide separation between the kitchen and the dining room and provides warmth to the space. The Dodds found pendant light fixtures for above the bar to blend with the existing ones over the dining table. 
Paragon also transformed the bathroom's 1980s pink tiles. Now it has clean lines and is bright and airy. The design repeats black cabinetry, and is accented with black-and-white-patterned floor tile from Bigelow Flooring Inc. A linen closet was built into the space and an acrylic tub was removed to make way for a glass shower.