Lauren & Dylan’s Historic Split Apartment

updated Apr 30, 2019
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(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)

Name: Lauren and Dylan
Location: Cabbagetown — Toronto, Canada
Size: 900 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years; owned

Lauren, Marketing Director at Spacing Magazine, and Dylan’s home is nestled on a small, tree-lined street in Toronto’s historic Cabbagetown neighborhood, an area known for having the largest collection of designated heritage homes in North America. Lauren, Dylan, and Dylan’s brother Chris have spent the past three years renovating this 1904 Victorian home. They developed a unique setup, with the home split into two units along the vertical. Lauren and Dylan live in the front half of the home, and Chris lives in the back. Each apartment is private and each has its own distinct vibe.

(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)

Lauren and Dylan’s place holds onto heritage elements of the home that were originally in place but “with a modern twist,” as described by Lauren, whereas Chris’ space is modern and completely opened up. The entirety of the house feels like one but acts as two, and the doors are usually open for cross-home mingling.

(Image credit: Dylan)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style:

Dylan: Minimalist.
Lauren: Minimalist-eclectic battle as I have a late/hate relationship with them both.


Dylan: Multi-functional.
Lauren: California and historical charm of the neighborhood with modernism.

Favorite Element:

Dylan: All the sunlight!
Lauren: The staircases!

Biggest Challenge:

Dylan: By far, living through renovations.
Lauren: Creating a space that feels like indoor/outdoor throughout the year particularly in the winter.

What Friends Say:

Dylan: “Your apartment has too many decks” (Note: there are three and four, if you include the front porch.)
Lauren: “Too tidy, yah freaks!”

Biggest Embarrassment:

Lauren: We don’t like blinds so I’m sure that there’s been some unknowing embarrassment.

Proudest DIY:

Dylan: Backyard landscaping.
Lauren: Collecting and framing my Time Magazine covers (making good use of my math skills to hang them!). The outdoor landscaping.

Biggest Indulgence:

Dylan: Our concrete countertops which in the end don’t feel worth it.
Lauren: Buying antiques or gem finds before envisioning a spot for them in your home.

Best Advice:

Dylan: Be organized and pre-plan.
Lauren: Paint goes a long way. Collections—create collections that you love and display them!

Dream Sources:

Dylan: Life itself—anything!
Lauren: European magazines, travel, open houses, and neighborhood night walks to peek into people’s places.



  • Farrow & Ball Rawlings
  • Benjamin Moore White Cloud
  • Benjamin Moore Mountain Air
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Lights: HomeSense
  • Mirror: antique shop
  • Wall tables: salvaged from a closing antique store in Leslieville—we don’t know what they are but we love them!
  • Hooks: The Door Store
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Couch: Craigslist
  • TV stand: made by Dylan
  • Crandenza: St. Lawrence Market
  • Redpath pillow: made by Lauren
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Table: DIY project of salvaged boards handed down within our friend group
  • Chairs: hand-me-down outdoor furniture from parents
  • Baby scale: Antique Spot
  • Carpet: Post and Beam
  • Director’s chair: Salvation Army (in pieces), refurbished by Lauren
  • Fake Eames rocking chair: Queen West
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Chairs: Shelter
  • Stools: Shelter
  • Framed sign: original Honest Ed’s sign
  • Polished concrete countertops: custom
  • Cutting boards: made by a friend
  • Tin containers: Glen Williams Antique Spot
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Sheets: Restoration Hardware
  • Driftwood: from Dylan’s grandfather’s cabin
  • Side tables: street find
  • Lamps: IKEA
  • Shag rug: Guff
  • Pillows: upholstered by Lauren
  • Stained glass: original
  • Dog portrait: A Nerd’s World
  • Head board: traded on Bunz Toronto
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Hooks: Restoration Hardware
  • Ladder: antique
  • Sign: Honest Ed’s
  • Light: used from West Elm
  • Framed portrait: Goodwill
(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)


  • Sewing machine: Lauren’s grandfather
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The top floor of the house includes the dining room, kitchen, and bathroom. (Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)

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Thanks, Lauren & Dylan!