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MAY 2012 {

T H E U LT I M A T E G U I D E T O D O M E S T I C B L I S S O N T H E N O R T H S H O R E

}

RENOVATE

or rebuild?

INSIDE THIS ISSUE: PHOTO CANSTOCK

THE CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW FEATHERING YOUR EMPTY NEST


B2 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

Thinking INSIDE the box THE house isn’t right. Whether it’s a floor that creaks, a roof that leaks, or walls full of mice that squeak, many homeowners are faced with choosing between tearing their home down and transforming it. “My wife and I have done four remodellings in the last 18 years and it’s amazing what you can do in a transformation,” says Larry Donen, chief brand builder with Wakefield Home Builders. “You might think of it as thinking inside the box.” Donen has guided many homeowners from stucco-sided wartime relics to sleek, modern houses, sometimes through renovations and sometimes by razing and rebuilding their home. While there is a time and place for each, Donen reminds his customers of just how much can be done with a good transformation. “You’d be absolutely amazed how large and well-built a well-designed, flowing, 3,000 square foot home works over a 4,500 to 5,000 square foot home that was maybe designed in the ‘70s or ‘80s, that has no flow,” Donen explains, discussing the conservationist philosophy of the company. “One of the most important initiatives in the green practises is actually trying to convince homeowners today that less can be more.” In certain cases, Donen says a tear-down is unavoidable.

“If there’s mold. . . if there’s rot, if there’s leakage, if there’s cracked foundations,” he says. “There’s no point of cosmetically improving a home if structurally it’s going to have all kinds of problems.”

Drainage can also be a major issue according to Dierolf, a ticketed carpenter who’s been working in construction for 24 years.

Unless the homeowner is interested in wholesale design changes or a massive amount of additional square footage, renovation should usually be examined first according to Ray Dierolf, principle builder for Wakefield Home Builders. “When you go for your design, you go with the intent of keeping the main structure to save costs. So when you design the house, you design around the existing footprint and your additions are really strategically placed so it’s quite simple to add on to it,” Dierolf says. “Whatever you’re leaving of that house, that’s money in the ground.” If the renovations are extensive or if the home is poorly wired and stuffed with asbestos, a tear-down can become the more prudent option, according to Dierolf. “There’s a certain point where the payback doesn’t make any sense,” he says.

“Age matters… the homes that were built in the ’60s are really, really well-built homes.”

“The only thing about when you’re building a brand-new house. . . is that you’re leaving old drainage in place. And being on the North Shore, there’s quite a bit of water, there’s a lot of runoff,” Dierolf says. “You could end up with a brand new house with a really poor drainage system.” Dierolf says he counsels customers to install a modern drainage system as part of any sizable renovation. When the home is in good condition, the scales between renovation and obliteration can be tipped by the home’s street appeal, the portion of land surrounding the house, and the long-term plans of the homeowners, according to Donen. Other times, a homeowner may want to consider just when their house was built.

To judge payback, Dierolf calculates the cost of labour and materials needed for a renovation against the value of the house. “You actually calculate how much of the house is left, you calculate how much it would’ve cost you to build that piece for a new house and the labour to get to that point,” he says.

“Age matters,” Donen says. “Believe it or not, the homes that were built in the ‘60s are really, really well-built homes. The framing for example, and the wood products are of a far superior quality.” However, the use of polyvinyl chloride plastic

in plumbing is a great improvement over copper, which corrodes over time, according to Donen.

“PVC plumbing materials are literally indestructible,” Donen says, adding that electrical systems are also greatly improved.

Over the past 10 years, Donen has overseen about 150 major renovations and tear-downs, and has become attuned to the challenge of integrating a house into its environment. “Some of the most appealing projects are the ones that are somewhat deceiving,” Donen says. “For example many times from a street appeal, you see what appears to be a single bungalow, something that appears to be even less than 2,400 square feet. But of course with our slopes that we tend to have on the North Shore, those bungalows are actually two storey s.” Clients can also save a little cash by emphasizing the outdoors with their newfound extra space, according to Donen. “I come back to our climate. We’re just healthier, we spend more time outdoors and with covered outdoor spaces, you extend that envelope of living space so much farther, yet it costs a fraction of what it would cost to enclose everything.”

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Sunday, May 27, 2012 - athome - B3

While a tear-down is sometimes necessary, Donen says he reminds his customers that it tends to be the more expensive route. “It might look like it’s inexpensive just to bring a bulldozer in and tear everything down. But with our deep-green building practises we would do it in a much more methodical approach,” he says. “We’ll reuse material if we can. We certainly want to make sure we separate materials so that they’re easily disposed of, and there are some materials that are recyclable.” If the foundation and the framing are strong, customers can save a lot of money, according to Donen. “You can save 30 to 35 per cent, and you save it, obviously, by not having to do the building demolition.” Despite the pain in the pocketbook, building a house from the ground up has its advantages, according to Donen. “The home truly is yours. You get to work from the beginning of the project, right from the creation,” he says. – JEREMY SHEPHERD jshepherd@nsnews.com

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B4 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

Behind the scenes:

Chelsea Flower Show North Vancouver’s Ryan Donohoe — currently living in London, U.K. while he completes his M.A. in garden design at the Inchbald School of Design — visits the “Olympics of garden design and floral display,” which took place this week.

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My first visit to Chelsea Flower Show was in 2010. I knew a fellow who was building the The Daily Telegraph’s sponsored garden; I was lucky to get a preview before the show opened to the general public. It was sheer pandemonium. Forklifts zoomed back and forth; plants were being transferred from delivery trucks; contractors managed large crews; cranes lifted trees; and garden designers put the final touches on their masterpieces by actually getting around to planting.

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It takes complete precision and years of experience creating show gardens to make the garden beds look as though they have been growing together “naturally” for years. The rush to beat the clock was to ensure the gardens were complete before the judges declared the designers’ fates on the Monday of the show’s opening. Would they open to 157,000 guests with a bronze, silver, silver-gilt, gold medal . . . or no medal at all? One skilled garden designer would be greeted by Her Majesty the Queen of England, and be crowned with the prestigious Best in Show award. Visitors to the show range from enthusiastic amateurs to nurserymen, designers and educational establishments. It’s a great platform for its visitors to become inspired, gather ideas and share information.

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“When designing for the Chelsea Flower Show you really get to be a part of something special. The build up can be intense and very busy, but the end result is so very rewarding.” Chelsea has recently turned a new page in its history and has a clear focus on sustainability. The cynical among us could argue a show that builds and tears down $100,000-gardens isn’t considerate of the environment at all.

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This year’s Chelsea Flower Show — which closed just yesterday — was a horticultural art show that allowed designers to let their imaginations run wild, all with their own purpose, style and concept. Anything is possible at Chelsea and anything should be expected. It presents the platform for these designers to push the envelope, with innovative ideas and materials that have yet to be seen in a garden before. The hard work is warranted, says designer Andy Sturgeon.

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It all began 99 years ago when the Royal Hospital in Chelsea first made its 11-acre grounds on the banks of the River Thames available for the Royal Horticulture Society to host its Great Spring Show. The show soon attracted the country’s top growers and designers to demonstrate their ability as horticulturalists. From 250 national exhibitors the show now comprises more than 500, who hail from all over the globe. Although it closed during both the first and second World Wars the show’s popularity never diminished. Alongside Royal Ascot, Goodwood and the Cambridge Boat Race, it has become a significant part of the English social season.

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Designers know, though, that their messages will be clear thanks to the publicity the show attracts, therefore many gardens focus on sustainable issues. Most are designed with rainfall catchment systems, use recycled products, drought resistant plants, and some create living towers to attract bees and wild life. For more information the 2012 RHS Chelsea Flower Show, including photo galleries and video, go to rhs.org.uk. Follow Ryan on his blog , The Spirit of Place, at donohoedesign.com.


Sunday, May 27, 2012 - athome - B5

PHOTOS RYAN DONOHOE

Clockwise from top: Writer Ryan Donohoe gets a sneak peak at the Chelsea Flower Show; designer Andy Sturgeon explains his garden design; the gates to winner Cleve West’s garden.

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B6 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

book review Every May, London is the setting for the Chelsea Flower Show — an extravaganza of plants and flowers, and one of the most prestigious gardening events in the world. . The creation of these displays happens in three weeks so there is no doubt that visitors are witnessing a presentation and not a real garden. It is the ideas and imagination that make the show unique. Author Chris Young has done all the hard work for us and from his exploration and interviews we get the chance to see behind the elaborate setups and appreciate the work that goes into them. From these

descriptions comes inspiration for your own permanent creations in your garden. Fantastic water features, striking plant combinations, use of sculpture are just some of the many amazing ways to transform your garden into something spectacular. With plenty of tips from the designers Young provides insight into outdoor living, lighting, sustainability, productive gardens and much more throughout the book. You may not get to attend the show but you can certainly get plenty of great ideas from this colourful presentation.

RD: Who has been the greatest influence in your practice as a garden designer and in what way have they influenced your designs?

BEST GARDEN DESIGN By Chris Young Firefly Books, 224 pages, $29.95

BY TERRY PETERS

Before the Chelsea Flower Show 2012 opened, North Vancouver horticulturist Ryan Donohoe caught up with renowned designer Cleve West. West went on to win Best in Show for the second year running with his Brewin Dolphin Garden.

CW: John Brookes was a strong influence on my early work as he taught me at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Since then I have been drawn to the work of Russell Page, Roberto Burle Marx, Luis Barragan and Mien Ruys. RD: As a designer who has made many appearances at the Chelsea Flower Show, what is it about the show that you find the most exciting? What brings you back year after year and what have been your greatest challenges?

LONSDALE FLOORING

CW: I think the enjoyment is having the freedom to express myself without the constraints you might expect on a real project. I can push the boat out a little at Chelsea (especially when it comes to using sculpture) as, to a certain extent, it’s like theatre. From a business point of view it disrupts real projects during May and takes a lot of time in planning as you only get one chance to get it right.

Est. 1960

This year’s challenge is to create something that, at first glance, looks fairly traditional but has a touch of modernity at the back of the garden to give it a feeling of timelessness. It’s a simple design based on symmetry; symmetry which is challenged in a subtle way to keep it from looking too stuffy. The amount of time, thought and effort that has gone into getting the dynamic right has been an eye- opener. We will also be up against it with the cold wet weather this year. Many of the herbaceous plants are struggling and our beech hedge is showing no sign of coming out to play so it will be an anxious build-up for everyone. RD: It is critical that designers are applying sustainable practices and methods into their designs. How have you tailored your practice in recent years to be more considerate of the environment?

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CW: Tearing up landscapes with bulldozers and making a garden involves quite a bit of disruption to the ecology of a site and we are being made more aware of it these days. I’ve gardened organically for 27 years and have encouraged clients to do the same. Having gardened on an allotment for the last 12 years I almost regret not using glyphosate from the outset, as it would have saved a lot of energy in digging up many cubic metres of bindweed and couch grass. Rainwater is harvested where possible or diverted away from highway drainage systems in front gardens. I’ve always been drawn to reclaimed materials, especially reclaimed stone, as it gives a garden a timeless feel almost immediately however, with the amount of fuel used to obtain such materials it’s still not a completely sustainable way of going about things. I’ve always liked the idea that the gardens I create might be a better place for wildlife after I’ve finished but have seen that wildlife does inhabit some of the least appealing sites so that’s a difficult one to gauge. The most important thing is not to spray chemicals that kill insects. I get alarmed when people talk negatively about insects. It shows their ignorance. Without insects we are doomed. RD: What innovations excite you currently in the world of garden design?

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CW: When garden design was being shaken up in the mid-90s in the UK we tried every type of material we could lay our hands on. Today, where hard landscaping is concerned I’m happiest when using good quality stone, timber and occasionally steel and keeping things as simple as possible. From the planting side I’m interested in the work of James Hitchmough and Nigel Dunnet at Sheffield University and how their research into semi-natural plant communities can create exciting, sustainable, ever-changing landscapes.

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Sunday, May 27, 2012 - athome - B7

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B8 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

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B10 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

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Sunday, May 27, 2012 - athome - B11

Age in place with Would a new ramp, handrails or walk-in shower help you maintain your independence at home? BC Housing’s new Home Adaptations for Independence (HAFI) program helps low-income B.C. seniors and people with disabilities make home modifications that will allow them to continue living at home. Through HAFI, homeowners and landlords with eligible tenants can apply for financial assistance of up to $20,000 for improvements that make their home more accessible and safe. The goal of the program is to enable people who have physical limitations to live at home longer. Types of eligible projects include: ■ Handrails in hallways or stairways, ■ Ramps for ease of access, ■ Easy-to-reach work or storage areas in the kitchen, ■ Lever handles on doors, ■ Walk-in showers with grab bars, and ■ Bathtub grab-bars and seats. The projects must be permanent and fixed to the home, although exceptions can be made for equipment that gives access to an existing

part of the home (e.g. a bath lift). The program will not cover supportive care, portable aids such as walkers, household appliances, emergency repairs to roofs and furnaces, or maintenance work. Launched in January 2012, HAFI is funded by the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia through the Canada-B.C. Affordable Housing Initiative. Through the HAFI program, $15 million in grants or forgivable loans will be distributed to qualifying B.C. residents over the next three years. Eligibility requirements, an application guide and application forms are available at www. bchousing.org/HAFI, by calling BC Housing at 604-646-7055, by emailing hafi@bchousing. org, or visiting any BC Housing office.

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B12 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

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“Both Jace and I are long time North Van residents having gone to both elementary and secondary school here on While they do deal in large volumes for big construction the North Shore,” said Scott. “Jace projects, they also sell in small quantities had done some work with equipment for household use and welcome home out of high school and we ended up owners to visit their location. For us, the most buying a couple small machines and “We do all sizes of jobs,” said Scott. started from there. I had no prior important part of doing “We sell our products by the cubic yard, experience and learned on the job.” but we will sell portions of a yard or business with people Today, Headwater Management smaller quantities. We’ve had people is making sure that employs approximately 30 people and come in asking for a few 5 gallon pails offers services ranging from excavating of sand and we work out an agreeable you receive a quality and trucking to aggregate and topsoil price with the customer. Our yard is product at a fair price, supply. With an extensive fleet of the open from 7 am to 4 pm Monday to latest equipment, Headwater also Friday and 8 am to 3 pm Saturday but with service that is offers demolition, stone slinging, we are often around here till at least 5 far superior to drainage services and snow clearing and sometimes later. If you call ahead to customers throughout the Lower and we’re still here, we would not turn our competitors. Mainland. you away.”

Headwater’s business has continued to grow and in 2011, they opened a topsoil and aggregate supply centre on Harbour Avenue in North Vancouver- one block west of the Lynwood Inn at the corner of Harbour and Barrow. From there they offer top quality topsoil and aggregate products. “The main products we carry are ≤ inch clear crush gravel, 2-6 inch river stone, 1 ∏ inch river stone, 3/4” river stone, birdseye gravel, Sechelt Sand, concrete sand, masonry sand, ≤ inch roadbase, ≤ inch navvy jack, ≤ inch limestone, crusher dust- a very fine crushed product, bark mulch, 3/8 inch composed bark mulch, sand-soil turf blend, garden

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Sunday, May 27, 2012 - athome - B13

A D V E R T I S E M E N T

RENOVATEMySpace What to look for when choosing a Quality Landscape Provider. Chris O’Donohue, owner of The Great Canadian Landscaping Company, believes that what we do at your home, business or development site will set the stage ultimately, for invaluable downtime to socialize with friends and family in a time when people’s lives have become way too busy. Your home is where you live, so why not enjoy the outdoor space as well. Coming home to the smell of a freshly manicured lawn and garden or newly installed landscape, provides an overall sense of peacefulness and the desire to entertain or self reflect without the hassle or stress.

ensure that you check the company’s web site and credentials. You should insist that your project is overseen by a qualified professional such as a Certified Landscape Technician (CLT) or Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist” Chris says. He says another useful method for qualifying a landscape provider is to see if they have a basic structure in place. When you call, does it go straight to a cell phone voicemail or does a live person answer the phone? Do they ask the right questions? Does the company have a Supervisor or General Manager that oversees your property or project? Is there a quality control check in place? Another good quality for a landscape provider is one who is committed to keeping workers in the workplace safe and secure from injury, illness, and disease. You should be sure they have a business license and request a copy of their current Clearance Certificate from Worksafe B.C. and also a copy of their liability Insurance which should be minimum coverage of 2 million dollars.

Coming home to the smell of a freshly manicured lawn and garden or newly installed landscape, provides an overall sense of peacefulness and the desire to entertain or self reflect without the hassle or stress.

According to Chris, “At this time of year we look at the overall state of the lawn and garden to see what could use some attention or improvements. For a larger scale project, we highly recommend starting with a Landscape Design which allows our client to visualize the end result. By going through this process, it also eliminates any potential issues with budget by establishing the goals and objectives. What typically happens at this time of the year is people are excited about the gorgeous spring weather and decide to spearhead their own Lawn and Garden Maintenance Program or renovation project with all good intent. It is not until early June or July that we start receiving frustrated phone calls from spouses providing colourful commentary on what was supposed to happen but did not. The end result in most of these cases is damage control or reworking the wheel at the peak of the landscaping season when landscaping companies are booked up.”

If you are going to hire a Lawn and Garden Maintenance company or plan to do a landscape renovation project,

DESIGN. INSTALL. MAINTAIN.

Chris and his team at The Great Canadian Landscaping Company measure their accomplishments by the positive comments received from their customers when the job is done and by the customers who take the time to tell them when the staff is doing a good job. Over the last few years Great Canadian Landscaping Company has been awarded the following: 2011 North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce’s “Business Person of the Year”

2010 Business in Vancouver’s “40 under 40 Award” 2010 North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce’s “Service Excellence Award”

604.924.5296 Follow us on:

greatcanadianlandscaping.com

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2010

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To find out more about how to get the Great Canadian Landscaping Company working for you call them at 604-924-5296 or visit them online at www.greatcanadianlandscaping.com

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B14 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

An empty nest doesn’t have to mean empty space For parents, experiencing their kids leaving the nest can not only be a momentous event, but it can also be one sometimes tinged with a bit of sadness. After all, your little boy or little girl is all grown up now. However, looking at the bright side, this means you now have one or more rooms that can be turned from a kid’s bedroom into a space you can now enjoy.

the kids have flown the coop, it’s possible to take over their rooms and turn them into something tailored to you and your spouse.

You may have been making due with storing your personal effects into rooms in the house simply because of necessity. But now that

CRAFT CENTRE Many people enjoy making things with their hands, be it painting ceramics or knitting

The following are a few transformations that can take place.

sweaters. A room that is set aside for different types of craft projects can keep work undisturbed and organized. Walls filled with shelves and storage containers alongside bulletin boards will create a utilitarian feel to the room. Have a large task table so you can spread out work and comfortable sitting chairs. Stick with a flooring material that can be cleaned quickly, like tile or wood in the event of spills. SPORTS ROOM Sports enthusiasts may want to set up a room devoted to collections of trophies, collector cards, memorabilia, and any other sports-related items. Add a sofa or recliners in the room as well as a big-screen TV, and this spot can be the perfect place for watching the game undisturbed. HOME OFFICE For those who have been doing bills at the kitchen table or trying to work from home amid the noise of the kitchen or the television in the family room, a home office can be just the solution. If the room is large enough, place two desks face-to-face so it can be a his-and-her work center. Use neutral paint colors so that it will be more of a genderneutral space. PRIVATE BEDROOM Although topics of the bedroom are often kept hush-hush among friends and family, many men and women aspire to one day having their own bedrooms. After time retreating

from the master bedroom because of a spouse snoring or simply because of being on opposite schedules, separate bedrooms enable you to create rooms that cater to you. Put in the amenities you desire and encourage your spouse to revamp the other bedroom according to his or her desires as well. GUEST RETREAT Many times guests are forced to sleep on a pull-out bed or sleeper sofa when staying over at a loved one’s. Having an extra bedroom available can enable friends and family members to stay overnight with comfort and ease now. Decorate the room in neutral colors and invest in comfortable, hotel-quality linens for the utmost in luxury. LIBRARY Some people simply enjoy the ability to curl up with a good book in a quiet space. Turn a vacated bedroom into a cozy nook complete with bookshelves, a plush chair and decorative reading lamp. Fill the rook with favorite books, decorations and a side table to house a cup of tea or coffee. Regardless of how you feel when your children leave home, redecorating empty rooms into new, functional spaces can help add a positive spin to your suddenly empty nest. – (WMS)

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Sunday, May 27, 2012 - athome - B15

DOORMASTER

D O O R A N D G AT E S Y S T E M S

Clopay Garage Door Sale PHOTOS CANSTOCK

An unused bedroom can be transformed into a useful space such as a library or a home office.

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Sale Priced at $27700 (REG RETAIL $605.00) • 9’ x 6’9” Garage Door - Model 4050 • Comes with all track, hardware and torsion springs • Installation not included but available. FOB Burnaby Warehouse While quantities last

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Taste

B16 - athome - Sunday, May 27, 2012

A

of Park & Tilford A celebration of all things local & healthy

Saturday, June 2 • NOON-5PM RICO N LALO

ALL SEASONS

BRADNER FARMS

UDDER GUYS

Frozen Whole Fruit Bars

Portabella Mushrooms

Organic Chicken

Premium Ice Cream

$ 99

$ 99

$

$

4

2

4PK

Made in North Vancouver. Fresh fruit, low calories, high in fibre and no artificial additives. Plant is a nut-free gluten-free facility.

699

2PK

Grown & harvested in Langley. Highest grade of fresh “dense” mushrooms for stronger, longer shelf life.

599

LB

Located in Fraser Valley. Free range chicken raised on feed thats 100% certified organic, free of animal by-products, growth promotants and anti-biotics.

Produced in Duncan, BC. No artificial preservatives or additives, real cream.

YVES

UPRISING BREADS

GONE CRACKERS

CHEF ANN

Veggie Burgers

Grainful Bread

Savoury Crackers

BC Lions TequilaCitrus BBQ Sauce

$ 49

$ 79

$ 99

$ 99

6

3

FAMILY PACK

Produced on Annacis Island. Less calories, less fat, more protein than meat, no cholesterol & preservative-free!

Baked fresh in East Vancouver for over 30 years. No preservatives or artificial anything. Lightly sweetened with honey, molasses or nothing at all. We promise.

4

Started by a Vancouverite. Made from the highest quality of ingredients, while excluding yeast, sugar, and hydrogenated oils. Pairs perfectly with wine.

6

Created by a Vancouverite. Silver tequila, organic locally squeezed citrus, fresh garlic, tomatoes and Japanese soybeans, handcrafted in small batches to ensure quality.

Meet the local growers/creators, taste over 40 samples, learn about new products. SPECIAL PRICES GOOD ONE DAY ONLY - SATURDAY, JUNE 2, 2012. • Enter to WIN • Enter to WIN a $1,000 prizes at over Travel Voucher 40 tasting Two to be given away! stations

JOIN US FOR

Wine and Cheese Tasting Receive 5,000 Save On More Points with the purchase, $35 min., of delicatessen cheese from our delicatessen. (Offer valid all day June 2, 2012)

• Enter to WIN a BC Ferries Vehicle & Driver – One Way Fare (5 to be awarded)

• Receive 20,000 Save On More Points with a minimum $300 purchase in groceries. (Not valid with tobacco, prescription and gift card purchases. Offer valid all day June 2, 2012)

• WIN 50,000 Save On More Points every hour! (Fill out entry form at the Spin the Wheel for Charity and Points Station)

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ENTER TO WIN $

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3


At Home_27May12