When Friendship Gets Down to Business

What do you get when you pair home owners who are in the construction business with a talented designer who just happen to be friends? An incredible home renovation, that is beautiful, functional, and filled with love.

Paula Coffey, owner of The Plumber’s Wife in Arthur Ontario, is well known throughout the area for her design expertise, and appealing decorative style. Not to mention her beautiful retail storefront and showroom, with plenty of design options for your entire home.

The kitchen is a stunner designed and installed by the team at Homestead Woodworks. “We drew the inspiration for both style and colour, along with accessories from a tea towel the client bought from our store,” explains Paula. Utilizing this palette as inspiration, the space was designed to be elegant, while maintaining the charm of a well-appointed farmhouse. While the homeowners, Mark and Tracey Reaman, knew the design and layout elements they wanted for their remodel, they called Paula in to review the plans and ensure that traffic flow, furniture placement, lighting and bathroom layouts worked with their vision before the framing began!

Speaking of the family room, which adjoins the kitchen to complete a beautiful open space, Mark and Tracey used the ship lap from their former house to accent the stone fireplace, an idea that is carried through to other spaces in the home. There are also beautiful windows, and a sliding door off of the family room out to a deck for the family’s outdoor entertaining needs. Functional, and aesthetically pleasing as you look out over farmland and nature.

As part of the remodel, the homeowners built an addition on to the back of the home, which provides garage space, and leads you into a cleverly designed mudroom and powder room. Once again, the room has been designed to be functional for their busy family, as well as interesting from a decor and finishing’s perspective. The “washing station” for dirty hands is my personal favourite. It looks like something straight from my grandparent’s farmhouse.

Now leading into the main entryway from the mudroom is the lovely powder room, to which Paula has once again added her personal touch. The classic pedestal sink and toilet by Kohler were sourced from “The Plumber’s Wife,” while the mirror and pendant lights, sourced by the homeowner, help make this small space functional and beautiful all at the same time.

The hallway where the family greets their guests is quite grand, with the vaulted ceilings that take your eyes up the staircase to the second floor, and a beautiful feature wall made from brick. The wall leading up to the second floor adjacent to the stairway is also finished in the same ship lap that was used in the family room, giving some additional interest to an otherwise small space. The vintage window, built directly into the wall allows you to see through the wall into the family room, providing an airy feel, and a clever refurbishment that is a piece of this family’s history.


It is important to note the flooring throughout the main floor is reclaimed wood from century old barns and buildings that have been dismantled. This reclaimed wood flooring has kerf saw marks, aged knots and checks, as well as the irregular spaced nail holes and markings from past hardware. All of these features are further accentuated with rich colours, shaded edges and tracking marks created from burrowing insects on some types of wood. Simply gorgeous!

This main floor is also finished off with a dining area, and a quaint laundry room, which Paula and the homeowners have designed and decorated perfectly. Much like this entire renovation I might add.

The second floor has 3 bedrooms to accommodate the homeowners and their family, which includes a showstopper of a bathroom, upstairs laundry facilities, and a large master bedroom, complete with his and hers closets separated by a cozy gas fireplace.

Going back to the second-floor bathroom for a moment … simply divine. “The homeowner had come in to my store and fell in love with this bath tub” explains Paula. “She knew immediately that this was the exact choice she wanted in her home”. The tub is styled from the original Victorian slipper bath and made of Volcanic Limestone™ composite. The faucets chosen are a classic style which complement the wall-mount cast iron double sink! The customer chose to install a steam shower in their beautiful tiled shower courtesy of Cover-Ups Tile and Flooring complete with an essential oil infuser and duel function digital shower system!

From the knowledgeable homeowners, to Paula and her team as well as the products and finishes from “The Plumber’s Wife”, this was a project everyone had fun bringing to life!

Written by: Kelli M. Maddocks | Photography: Cory Bruyea

Author: LivingSpaces

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