As you approach architect and interior designer Darcie Watson’s house in downtown Toronto, you can immediately see why she had to have it. The 1905 home is grand, gorgeous, and on an enviable tree-lined street — a timeless beauty. When she found the Edwardian house 10 years ago, it was a nine-bedroom bed-and-breakfast that looked worse for wear, but Darcie knew she could save it. “I honestly walked in here and felt that this house needed someone to help it,” she says. Having worked with acclaimed architect and designer S. Russell Groves in New York on luxury residences and retail shops, Darcie has the eye for detail needed for such a major overhaul. She now works with Toronto architect-artist Philip Beesley and runs her own design firm, Areacode.
Darcie divided the building into three sizable units: rental apartments on the basement and main levels, and her own home on the second and third floors. “The hardest part was how to integrate the traditional and modern in a way that didn’t look garish or contrived,” she says. Click through to see the result of her painstaking transformation.