See inside a thoroughly renovated west-end rectory

See inside a thoroughly renovated west-end rectory

Andrea Gelinas and her husband, Wayne Alexander, bought their home, a former rectory near Bloor and Dovercourt, in 2013. The place was a disaster: the interior was in need of a thorough gutting and the roof was Swiss cheese. But the price was right, and the property was a 15-minute walk from Roncesvalles, where Andrea planned to open a dental practice.

Despite the home’s dilapidated condition, Andrea and Wayne felt it was important to preserve what they could. They decided to retain the cozy, enclosed Victorian parlours at the front of the house, along with some of the original mouldings and plaster.

They renovated in stages over the next four years, moving their mattresses from room to room as they finished each section. The project gained a new sense of urgency in 2017. Just as Andrea was finally opening her dental practice, they found out they were having a baby.

“I was seven months pregnant and I thought, I’m going to run out of time,” Andrea says. After a frantic burst of activity, they applied the finishing touches just days before their son, Nico, was born in March 2018.

The interior is bright, with modern furniture, vibrant colours, metal trim and boldly patterned upholstery and wallpaper. Andrea personally sourced the custom cabinets, tabletops and fixtures. “All the woodwork in the house I sanded myself,” she says. “Which is not ideal for a dentist who’s used to working in millimetres. I’d be working and working, then I’d stand up and there would be like a single foot done.”

The living room has a custom-made salmon couch, green chairs from Elte and a leather chaise from Restoration Hardware. “Nothing is neutral about this house,” Andrea says. “I can’t have a beige couch. I’m sick of grey and beige, grey and beige”:


This piece is titled Mr Blue. It’s by New York artist Alex Itin:


The banana leaf wallpaper is Martinique by C. W. Stockwell:


Andrea’s collection of art, accumulated during her travels to Africa and around the world, hangs alongside family photos on the staircase wall:


Andrea wanted to keep clutter in the master bedroom to a minimum, so much of the room’s storage space is hidden in cabinets under the attic stairs:


The painting above the mantel is by Toronto-based artist Gordon Shadrach. Wayne picked it out. The room is painted in Farrow and Ball’s Hague Blue, with a gloss finish on the ceiling. The herringbone floors are white oak:


Bold stripes liven up the master bedroom’s ensuite bathroom. The countertops are marble and the fixtures are brushed bronze:


The attic is a storage space for clothing and a play area for Nico:


The wallpaper in Nico’s nursery is by Cole and Son. The crib is from Ella and Elliott: