How I Met my Cabin

I have just spent far too much time reading
so all I can do is join in – what an inspired idea AnNicole!

I had moved very reluctantly from England to California (am I losing you already?) and hated renting. Demolition and rebuilding has been a big part of my life since my husband gave me a sledgehammer as a gift when we bought our first house, years ago.

So I started looking, here where houses are made of particleboard and seemed to me as insubstantial and individual as marshmallows – the endless granite kitchens only emphasised that! I imagined post-Apocolypse hillsides littered only with slabs of polished stone…

Marin is expensive, but one evening I found an affordable listing on, with a photo of a dirty blue fence and termite-eaten entrance – not a hint it was on the water, but I vaguely recognised the area. We drove over and checked it out, peering through the fence, and viewed it the next day.

Entrance four feet away from the road, leading straight into the living room – what that did to my British sense of privacy! Obvious termite damage in the porch. The third bedroom was accessed through the laundry, which really made our son feel cherished. Grubby condo carpet, awful greasy kitchen, hideous, rotting bathroom, popcorn ceilings, fake Masonite boarding in odd places – but the setting! And the views – from a deck only four foot wide…

The upside was that no-one else wanted it. So we haggled, and we won.

My sledgehammer has been busy, and so have we. Most of all I love this neighbourhood, a point surrounded by water, with a funky little enclave of old duck-hunting shacks (that’s us!) as its starting point.

The whole focus of the house is the water, and it prompted me to learn about nautical flags, then I started to sew them, in linen because I am a linen freak – love the texture, the way it blows in the breeze, its strength and provenance. Even my teatowels are monogrammed linen! I made curtains, pillows, then bedlinens, other people wanted them too and suddenly my business was born – and All from falling in love with a house! links to Maya’s lovely article on my cabin, so see the photos there.

About Tricia Rose

Not distracted by shiny objects.
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8 Responses to How I Met my Cabin

  1. Sarita says:

    WOW! I just looked at the article about your cabin. So so beautiful! And what a talent you have!
    -Sarah Marie aka Miss Mud

  2. A-M says:

    OMgoodness, what a spot. I LOVE your blog header.. it says everything! You have immense talent! Do you ship to Australia? Say yes, please! A-M xx

  3. fairmaiden says:

    I am so thankful I found you from Maya's blog. I am not too far from you…I live on the edge of the country in the suburbs of our Capitol City. I love San Rafael…we have gone on holiday, there believe it or not…stayed at the Embassy Suites…thats how much we like it. You are very very lucky to have found your cabin because YES it is a very expensive area.

  4. Tricia Rose says:

    At least I was coming from England where property is also expensive. I still wonder how the realtor could have omitted mentioning it was on the water!

  5. Nita {ModVintageLife} says:

    The picture of you sewing outside by the water cracks me up! Then I clicked on your business links an wow…love the pillows and the bed linens. I'd love to live by the water. Your house does sit in a special spot.

  6. shopgirl says:

    Hi Tricia, thanks for your lovely compliment on my blog. It's incredibly sweet of you. This post is so fascinating. Your home by the water seems like kismet. It's simply amazing how life turns out, isn't it?

    I do understand you about the differences in building materials in N.A. and Europe. I lived in the UK for a few years and I noticed that houses were built to last a very long time there.

    I look forward to reading more. I am now following you.


    Rambles with Reese

  7. Deer Baby says:

    Really really interesting and quite pertinent to me too. We found our little hideaway because we saw a railway carriage on a property programme, phoned up but it was under offer but they said they had another similar. And it was in a terrible state but we loved it at first sight!

    Yours sounds and looks perfect.

  8. Struggler says:

    Fascinating story and how bizarre (but lucky for you) that the water view was not mentioned.
    The only thing which enabled us to buy a home in the San Francisco area was because I'd owned a small flat in London, where prices were even more insane. Like you, I've had to get over the front-door-into-living-room issue but had never considered that the most durable thing we own is the kitchen countertop! Sad but very funny :)

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