Houseporn’s Top 5 Posts Of 2019

Welcome to 2020, and a new decade of possibilities!

We always like to start a New Year by reflecting on the last, and by celebrating the most popular posts of 2019. As the purveyor of Houseporn.ca, a proud Canadian, a realtor in Toronto, and a guy with a healthy obsession on all aspects of shelter, I am delighted this website - now entering its eighth year - continues to offer a unique point of view showcasing Canadian Architecture, Landscape, Design, Products and Real Estate - along with the homegrown talent who create it. After all, although the number of internet sites dedicated to shelter is substantial, those which are specific to Canada are not.  So, while Houseporn.ca may be niche, I believe it has relevance showcasing the vernacular of Canadians shelter and its contents.

Most of the posts here are researched and written by current or recent graduates of studies related to the shelter disciplines. I'd like to express my heartfelt thanks to each of the writers who have crafted content for the site. They are what makes this site especially rewarding for me, bringing their own ideas of domesticity to the site while showcasing some pretty terrific Canadiana I might have otherwise missed.

With gratitude, here are their Top 5 most popular 2019 contributions.

And, dear readers, thank you for visiting Houseporn.ca!

 


 

 

 

#1 The Half House In Toronto, Ontario

Researched and Written by Kara Scerri, Graduate from York University and Sheridan College, Ontario

Sitting on St. Patrick Street in the heart of Toronto, Ontario is the suitably named “Half House”. Located near the intersection of Queen St. West and University Ave, this residence is an interesting little piece of history and has even been mentioned on Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. 

Toronto’s Half House was constructed around the late 19th century on what is now St Patrick Street. A Victorian row house it was part of a row of houses which were numbered 52 ½, 54 ½, 56, 58, 60. When the time came to tear the buildings down, only 54 ½ remained.

Continue this post in full here.

 

 

 

#2  A Contemporary Muskoka Boathouse By AKB Architects

Researched and Written by Kara Scerri, Graduate from York University and Sheridan College, Ontario

This contemporary clean-lined pavilion boathouse received the 2018 Canadian Woods Council Award. Comprising 2,300-square-feet, this boathouse is located on a small island in Muskoka. Surrounded by a lush landscape of deciduous trees and an expanse of water, this peaceful private getaway features an oversized dock that can accommodate a multitude of uses at once. Congratulations to AKB architects - also known as Atelier Kastelic Buffy - who is a well-respected Toronto firm founded in 2004 by Robert Kastelic and Kelly Buffey. Blending their clients' requirements with the natural setting of the project, this Muskoka Boathouse showcases the uniqueness of their design program.

Continue this post in full here.

 

 

#3 Tiny Houses May Face Big Challenges In Canadian Climate

Researched and Written by Tanya Ayala Sejean, a student in the PR & Communications Management Diploma program at McGill University.

These days, everywhere I look I see an article, a TV show, or even a YouTube channel on tiny houses. Well, this should come to no surprise because tiny houses are all the buzz! Although they come in various shapes and sizes, the size is typically based on its capacity to be moved on a trailer with ease, so it can't be too wide, too tall, or too heavy. As a result, they're typically under 400 square feet, which for many is considered a tight squeeze.

Owning a tiny house in Canada also presents the challenge of ensuring its constructed to be comfortable in our Canadian winters, which vary in temperature depending on where you're located. Perhaps that's why Tiny Houses are so popular in British Columbia, the province with the mildest climate. Most of Canada, from the Atlantic to the Prairies, deals with four seasons that bring temperatures from sweltering 30 degrees Celsius to bone-chilling minus 30 degrees Celsius.

Continue this post in full here.

 

 

#4  Home On The Lake Of A Thousand Colours By BLDG Workshop, BC

Researched and Written by Sarah Wright, freelance writer and design enthusiast.

It's the pure enjoyment of all seasons, and the breathtaking transitions between them, that resonates with those that call Canada home. So, Nathan Buhler, founder of BLDG Workshop, transformed a dark, clunky home on Kalamalka Lake (loving named The Lake Of A Thousand Colours) into an architectural celebration of nature. 

The challenge for Buhler became creating a sustainably-minded house that was both cost-effective and a homage to its natural environs. Often homeowners speak of all the bright, shiny, state-of-the-art sustainability features they've thoughtfully designed into their new homes while brushing past the reality that the easiest decision towards sustainable practice is working with existing architecture rather than demolishing and starting from the ground up.

Continue this post in full here.

 

 

#5 Sustainable Products By Studio50 In Paris, Ontario

Researched and Written by Mikhail Shchupak-Katsman, Undergraduate Environmental Design, OCAD University

Officially launched in 2013 in Paris, Ontario, Studio50 was the brainchild of husband and wife team Steve and Kim Prokopowich. Though the design firm is formally only a few years old, the principals and ethos of its design style have been evolving and growing together with Steve & Kim over the past 15 years. 

Studio50 is not only a beautiful household brand made with exquisite craft, but in my opinion, it's also a heart-warming testament to the husband and wife team who designed their home's interior together, one furniture piece at a time. Their Platform collection, for instance, is a favourite of mine; it's one of their many works presenting traditional forms of furniture in a new light, that’s not only aesthetically beautiful but also materially-sustainable.

Continue this post in full here.

 


 

Since 2013, I've invited Canadian Students or recent graduates from coast to coast who have pursued further education in the fields of Architecture, Landscape, Interior Design, Industrial Design, or Canadian History of Art & Architecture (and other disciplines which include a focus on Housing and Home and/or Journalism) to join the Houseporn Paid Internship Program. As part of this program, students are given the opportunity to research and write stories about our country's shelter industry, while I provide support, constructive criticism, and guidance throughout the process. I can't tell you how rewarding it is to watch students hone their craft while building a portfolio of written work which reflects both their passion of Canadian housing and their ability to be wordsmiths!

I continue to be inspired daily by the voracious minds that share my love of houseporn, many who will undoubtedly contribute to a new generation of Canada's vernacular!

 

~ Posted by Steven Fudge, the purveyor of houseporn.ca and proprietor of Urbaneer.com, a division of Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage.

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Posted In: Canada

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