The Lake Cottage

A real house of mirrors


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It looks like something out of a fairy tale, but this two-story A-frame cottage is quite real.

Located in a pine and birch forest along the Kawartha Lakes in Ontario, the cabin is cloaked in blackened vertical cedar siding and a glossy metal roof. The form is inviting, as are all the other whimsical details inside and out.

A deep cut in the roof and façade creates a protected patio, and there’s a cordwood terrace floor to ground the mirrored ceiling and walls. Inside, a modern fireplace with clever wood storage—and lines that mimic the house’s shape—dominates the living area.   

The architects carved the staircase from a single tree trunk, topping it with tile slabs to reach the loft above. That attic is a wonky space with sloping walls and well-placed skylights and windows. Blue fish-scale shingles cover the interior wall. 

Back down on solid ground, the dining room connects to the outside through black-framed floor-to-ceiling windows. A child’s drawing of trees is keenly outlined in the glass panes to mimic the forest outside.

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