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Looking back at 2016

Our interim editor on what she's learned in a year of East Coast Living

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It’s hard to believe this is my fourth issue as interim editor of East Coast Living. The year has flown by, and I’ve learned a lot from the writers, homeowners, and tradespeople we featured. As 2017 approaches, I’m looking back at what I learned and how I’m putting it into practice in my own home.

New breweries are popping up across Atlantic Canada, and we featured a handful in our spring and fall issues. By my last count, there were 70-some breweries across our region. That’s exciting news for a local-beer lover like me.

This summer I tried my hand at making beer at home with my partner Liam. The results haven’t always been perfect; a bottle of pumpkin beer exploded in our storage closet, and the tap snapped off our bottle-filling bucket, soaking us and our kitchen with beer. But the experience taught us a lot about the hard work that goes into our favourite beers. We’re going to keep learning, and perhaps next year you’ll see a how-to from me that will inspire your own home brews.

In our summer issue, we shared tips on using chalk paint to refresh your home décor. That piece inspired me look for ways to personalize my own home. I found a battered, antique trunk on Kijiji, refinished it, and turned it into a coffee table. The trunk cost $30, with an additional $40 for stain, brushes, and new clasps and handles. The result is unique, with fresh stain highlighting the weathered wood grain and offers added storage in our small home. Plus, I have the satisfaction of knowing I made it myself.

As with every issue of East Coast Living, the one you hold in your hands is packed with ideas you can use, whether you’re considering a new build, a big renovation, or want to update your well-loved home. The décor section features a primer on shiplap, a wall-treatment trend rising from the south. Our Eating In section offers warming cocktails and spicy Latin recipes to get you through winter, and step-by-step oyster shucking instructions from a champion shucker.

If you missed an issue this year, you’ll find it on our website. In addition to stories from our back issues online, you’ll discover online-exclusive articles covering a variety of topics from hosting a winning wine-tasting party, to adding depth to a room with wallpaper, and tips from our experts you can try at home.

You help us create every issue of East Coast Living. Let us know what you want to see and learn about in 2017, and please share with us your favourite homes, tradespeople, and artisans. Connect with us via Facebook, Twitter, or email our editor Janice Hudson, who is returning to her position in mid January.

Kim Hart Macneill
Twitter: EastCoastLiving
Facebook: East Coast Living Magazine

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