Design & DIY

Are you using the right fastener for the job?

If your cottage has been in the family for a while, there’s likely some old coffee cans or glass jars filled with miscellaneous nails, screws, bolts, and other hardware. But before you dig into them for your next project, it’s important to know the proper fastener for the job that you’re tackling.  Featured Video

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This genius hammock stand is made from a single sheet of plywood

Who doesn’t love a good swing in a hammock? But finding suitably distanced trees in the right location—facing the right direction—is tough. The solution is a hammock stand, and if you elect to buy one, the choices are pretty straightforward: metal stands run about $150 and are consistently rated “flimsy.” More robust (and beautiful) laminated wood … Continued

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Am I handy enough to take over as cottage fix-it person?

When a nasty fall sidelines her father, can writer Andrea Curtis step in to take his place as the family’s handy cottager? The morning had the makings of what is known in my family as a “perfect Georgian Bay day”—bright, clear, a hint of a breeze. My seventy-something dad was on the south side of … Continued

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An ingenious DIY solution to lighting rocky pathways

Solar stake lights are great for gently lighting a pathway—provided they can be stuck in the ground. But the path from my cottage to the water is mostly rock, which is tough going for plastic stakes. My initial solution was to build a tripod support. This worked okay, but on uneven surfaces the lights had … Continued

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