Mjolk guest cottage!

September 3rd, 2012

This is officially the last weekend of the summer, and we’re currently sitting on our deck after a large pancake breakfast sipping on some coffee. I’ve been asked a bunch of times how the cottage renovation has been, and when we were going to be posting some more photos.

We’ve been holding off sharing it because we let Remodelista have the exclusive to the story. Since there will inevitably be some readers who don’t follow Remodelista, or simply missed the article we wanted to do our own post about it as a nice farewell to the summer.

Of course, I have the feeling we are in store for some beautiful weather in September, we can already feel the cool breeze coming off of Georgian Bay.


I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but the whole inspiration for this cottage was the “Finnish summer home”. There is a large Finnish and Estonian community in Ontario, in fact we have the highest amount of Finns outside of Finland. We liked the idea of bringing back the cottage to it’s original state with natural pine floors, and simple practical furniture. We wanted the pieces we chose to furnish the cottage with to feel as if they had always been there.

Now taking a second to study this photo, you can begin to appreciate what adding a layer of plaster did for the white fireplace. When it was simply painted stone it just didn’t look right. We also added an iron hook and a Japanese palm broom and dustpan to break up all of the white.


The Swedish sconces look just like tree branches.


A pair of Aalto shelves with some Japanese iron sculptures, an old laminated wood architecture model, a milk bottle terrarium, a birch bark box to hold matches, and a brass Wirkkala-esque candle holder.


For the dining room, we settled on a table, bench, and chair set by Ilmari Tapiovaara.


We even picked up a stool for additional seating, or to be used next to the fireplace to stoke the fire.



I think it pairs really well next to the vintage Aalto bar cabinet.


Stacked rocks.


The stool in the foreground is an early 1930s/40s Aalto stool we found at Machine Age Modern in Leslieville. The sofa is a blue Hiroshima sofa by Naoto Fukasawa with beech wood legs.

The sofa choice was inspired by Aalto’s blue sofa we saw in his home in Helsinki.


Aalto also used these Zebra pillows on that blue sofa in his home, so we order a couple for ourselves directly from Artek.


All of the bedding is colourful striped sheets and pillowcases from Marimekko. In all of the bedrooms we have small Aalto luggage benches.



The second guest bedroom with wood blinds from Bamboo Bazaar.


Both of the wall lights are paper and wood lights by Miguel Mila. We’ve started to carry his lighting in our shop, I just haven’t had the time to update our website yet!


The final bedroom actually fits 2 twin beds, both with lime green striped bedding.


An Aalto bench as coffee table, and the beehive pendant light.


Finally the best room in the house. Furnished with two beautiful Alvar Aalto daybeds upholstered in Aalto’s Sienna pattern.


I can’t believe the summer is almost over, but we’re really looking forward to the fall. We’re getting a bit anxious to travel, so hopefully we can line up a trip or two before the end of the year.

Filed under: Cottage Reno,Mjölk | 29 comments