hello!neighbor-murray & sian

This month's edition of Hello! Neighbour brings us into the home of Murray and Sian. I have to say that one of the lovely benefits of doing this post is that I am getting to know the people in my neighbourhood! There is something about being in someone's home that tells you so much about them. Murray and Sian's place is no exception. Their home is like a book waiting to be unravelled. I found myself wanting to know the story behind every object, book and artwork in their home. Sian kindly obliged me and by the end of the tour (a few hours later!) I really felt like I knew her a little bit better. Enjoy the tour!

Names

Occupation

Journalist & Photographer

How long have you lived in your home?

2 1/2 years

Any animals, kids?

1 child, another one arriving in a few weeks.

What is your favorite room?

The den/family room

What is your favorite object/thing/moment in your home?

The lovely light from our southern exposure; the huge old cherry tree in the back yard; the vintage photo of a Peruvian giant from Sian's uncle in South America.

Martin Chamby

What are your future plans for the home?

To move into the whole thing. Right now we live in the top two floors and have a tenant on the first.

Anything you would change?

I'm not sure we would have used marble in the bathroom. It's beautiful and we love it, but it's high maintenance.

Best thing about living in Parkdale?

Our location. We love what Roncesvalles has to offer for day to day, family living....but it’s nice to not be too far removed from something a bit more urban on the Queen West/Parkdale strip.

What original feature(s) of your home will you never get rid of?

There wasn't much left when we moved in -- it had been gutted and made into 2 apartments decades before. So when it came time to do the porch -- which, when we moved in, was an enclosed box of nasty brown aluminum and glass -- we asked an architect friend to sketch whatever came to mind. It was very non-traditional, but we thought it worked with the building's disjointed history, so we went with it. Inside, we reconditioned the upper 3-bedroom apartment for our own use, and will do the same downstairs at some point. We embraced the fact that it wasn't at all precious -- no fussy Victorian details here; it was a big brick box -- so it was a blank slate to create our own blend of old and new.

All photographs by Kristin Sjaarda for The Marion House book.

Thanks Murray and Sian!