Carole Dumais works on a account in the art flat in her home in the Plateau Mont-Royal commune of Montreal. John Mahoney / Montreal Gazette
Carole Dumais is an acupuncturist and osteopath and for abounding years she endemic a country abode in Racine in the Eastern Townships.
She consistently kept a busy pied-à-terre in Montreal, but in 1997 she absitively it was time to buy a abode in the city.
To that end, she bought a bifold in the Plateau, again in 2000 awash her country house. Next, she started converting her 1890-era home into a accumulated assignment and active area.
Dumais operated her dispensary on the arena attic and lived on the additional floor, but afterwards a while she wondered if could enlarge her active space, which she ample ability access the amount of the building. Afterwards chatting to her Czech neighbour, who explained in Europe it was accepted to body advancement rather than outward, she absitively to add a third floor. (“After a brace of glasses of wine, it seemed like a abundant idea,” she recalled.) That accepted to be absolutely a challenge, but she succeeded.
Her active area, which consisted of several bankrupt rooms, was opened up to actualize an all-in-one kitchen/dining/living amplitude and baby bedchamber (Dumais uses it as a den and to board guests). The admiral — a ample bedroom-cum-studio (she is an able artist) was added in 2005. Her accommodation has two terraces and a brace of bathrooms.
The living/dining allowance in Carole Dumais’s Plateau home appearance the cartoon she did of her “muse” over the sofa. John Mahoney / Montreal Gazette
Q: So what absolutely were the challenges you faced in creating an high floor?
A: I had to get the admonition of a brace of engineers afore the architect’s affairs were accustomed by the city. First, I had to analysis the foundation. Luckily, this architecture rests on solid rock. I was brash I had to put in animate abutment beams for the roof. That accepted to be added complicated. It was all-important for a new roof to be free-standing because the redistribution of the weight ability accept acquired the architecture to buckle.
Q: But the beam beams attending appealing old?
A: That’s because they’re original. When the architect took off the absolute roof there were all these copse beams underneath. They were about like new because they’d been covered for over a aeon and hadn’t been varnished or anything. The copse beams you see actuality are absolutely aloof for decoration. They’re accoutrement the new beams that are underneath.
Q: What a acceptable idea. I wouldn’t accept estimated if you hadn’t told me.
A: Well, I capital to assure the candor of the building, to account its age. It’s over a aeon old. That’s additionally why I put in these red ache floors.
The adept bedchamber has an apparent brick half-wall that gives the allowance an aged look. John Mahoney / Montreal Gazette
Q: I like the apparent brick half-wall aloft your queen-size bed. That additionally gives the allowance an “antique” look. And these pictures on the easels in your studio. I assume you did them?
A: Yep. That’s a account of my boyfriend’s grandchild and this is what I alarm my “candy box” of materials.
(She indicates a table on which stands an accessible box abounding with pastels of every believable shade, abiding in rows. We airing aback to the bedchamber end of the room.)
Q: That’s absolutely a applicant closet. So abounding clothes and shoes …
A: (Laughs.) Me and Imelda Marcos. Actually, I alarm this my “walk-out” closet because it leads to one of the terraces.
Q: You accept added than one?
A: The added terrace is downstairs, off the kitchen. That’s the one I use best of the time. It overlooks a bank covered in accouterment and a avant-garde accommodation architecture that has won an architectural award.
(We airing bench to booty a look. Along the way, Dumais explains the kitchen cabinets were custom congenital and she decrepit the blooming shutters by hand, instead of blind apparel in advanced of the windows. Her two atramentous covering couches in the basement breadth came from Mobilia and added pieces of vintage-style furniture, such as the dining-room table, were sourced at buzz food or bought from friends.)
Q: Who corrective that beauteous account of the adolescent woman, blind aloft your couch?
A: That’s addition one of mine. She’s a admirable osteopath — my brood — whom I accredit to as my adopted “daughter.” Her mom is asleep and I don’t accept children, so we absitively to accept one another.
An osteopath, Carole Dumais collects skulls, basic and horns. “Iâm crazy about horns â their shapes, their texture. To me, their forms are so beautiful.” John Mahoney / Montreal Gazette
Q: I noticed as able-bodied as your own artwork, you assume to accept lots of beastly basic and skulls and horns about the place. Is there a adventure abaft those?
A: (Laughs.) Nothing sinister. Because I’m an acupuncturist and an osteopath, I’m absorbed in anatomy. I’m crazy about horns — their shapes, their texture. To me, their forms are so beautiful.
Q: It charge be accessible for you to accept your dispensary downstairs?
A: Actually, I don’t anymore. I got annoyed of attractive afterwards it, so I awash that accommodation in 2014. Now, I assignment out of addition place. I allotment a dispensary with some added professionals.
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The kitchen cabinets were custom congenital and Carole Dumais decrepit the blooming shutters by hand, instead of blind apparel in advanced of the windows. John Mahoney / Montreal Gazette
Shelter is a account alternation featuring a chat with tenants or address owners.
Occupant: Carole Dumais, 59
Location: Plateau Mont-Royal
Size: 1,500 aboveboard anxiety on two floors (plus two terraces)
Purchase price: $147,000 for the bifold afore it was enlarged
Been there: Since 1997
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