Posts Categorized inspiring decor

What do our Clients have in Common?

Like us, our clients share a passion for great design that is tailored to to suit their lives, quality craftsmanship, timeless aesthetic, and an eagerness to work with designers and builders whose skill and attention to detail are unparalleled.

At henhouse, we continue to work with wonderful clients and we are so proud  to build quality furniture and kitchens for them that becomes part of their lives and will be enjoyed for many years to come.

Since closing our retail storefront this February, we have been busy designing, building and installing four kitchens in and around the Halifax area and creating at least a dozen custom furniture pieces. We have thoroughly enjoyed having more time to focus on each project and we look forward to this new phase of henhouse.

Inspiration Photo

Inspiration photo for a kitchen we just finished up in Bedford.

The photo above is the inspiration for a kitchen that we recently  finished in Bedford. Our clients were  inspired by this showroom kitchen in the UK and wanted to create a similar vibe in their oceanfront home here in Bedford, NS. When they came to us with their vision, we were more than happy to bring it to life, but with our own spin of course!

Demo Time!

Before: demo time!

Henhouse Photos- Oct2

After: Provence meets the Maritimes!

Before the demolition took place (pictured above) we got to work on the design. To capture the aesthetic in the inspiration photo, we played up the idea of a house in Provence and designed a large free standing armoire, an over scaled range hood with rough-hewn corbels, and chose colours in soft blue and yellow. We decided to hand finish the armoire and corbels with layers of paints and stains to achieve the warmth and elegance that is found in the grand homes in France.

Tucked in: the oversized island discreetly contains a microwave. Panelling over the dishwasher face hides it from view.

Tucked away: the oversized island discreetly contains a microwave, and panelling over the dishwasher face hides it from view.

The fridge is contained in a panty-like surround, while the pull-out freezer drawers are cleverly installed beneath the countertop next to it and concealed with panelling.

The fridge is contained in a pantry-like surround, while the pull out freezer drawers are cleverly installed beneath the countertop next to it and concealed with panelling.

We wanted the gorgeous La Cornue range to be the focal point of the kitchen, so we decided to conceal all of the other appliances. We did this by covering the dishwasher, pull out freezer drawers, and fridge behind panels and the microwave drawer sits on the end of the island tucked out of view.

The statement armoire provides storage and a beverage centre and adds to the grand over scaled aesthetic.

The statement armoire provides storage and serves as a beverage centre.

Undertaking a renovation or new home construction can be an overwhelming task. Having trustworthy professionals, who really care about your project from start to finish is truly the key to success. Henhouse can help you create a kitchen that will be beautiful, functional, and durable. Here’s a little bit more about our approach:

From start to finish

At henhouse, we pride ourselves in being there for our clients through every step of the process. We are on hand to help right from that initial stage of figuring out the possibilities for your space, and planning for optimal functionality, right up to the final stages where all the little details come together to make the space something spectacular!

Long-lasting quality and long-lasting soul

We also pride ourselves in our quality materials and tried and true techniques. We hand-build everything using solid wood and plywood, and finish everything by hand and use and low VOC paints and stains. Every detail is important to us, like using soft-closing glides and dovetailed joinery, and choosing the cutting edge, top quality fixtures to complete the look.


If you are already working with a contractor or an architect, we are happy to work alongside them to bring our design skills, experience and unique aesthetic to your project. Henhouse’s designer, Sappho Griffin has worked collaboratively with clients, contractors and architects, tackling each of her projects individually and whole-heartedly. Her approach assures that the final product will be top quality and suit her client’s design needs and aesthetic vision.

Get in touch

Want to get started on your dream kitchen? Contact Sappho at to set up a consultation!


So many objects that we experience in our daily lives have been mass produced by machines or people on assembly lines in far away countries. These methods of production allow for items to be widely available for low prices- and who doesn’t like a good deal?!  However, what we gain in our pocket books we sacrifice in our souls. This sounds extreme, but consider it!  By filling up our surroundings with things we don’t value, things that are made by machines, we are missing that sacred experience that fills us with wonder and appreciation and a sense of connection. We are missing the connection to the individual whose time was spent making something for practical use or for decoration. These hand-crafted objects are not perfect, or glossy, or inexpensive. These objects are rich in spirit- they show the soul and the story of the person who made it. We are missing this simple connection to the human hand. (more…)

A Fresh Start

Happy New Year friends! We hope you enjoyed the holidays! The hens were glad to spend some time with family and friends over the last couple of weeks. We’re glad to be back in the shop now, and we want to thank all of you who supported our business in 2012. It really means so much to us when you choose to shop at henhouse. We could go on about that topic, but we have some exciting things to show off here!

Last year we were lucky enough to complete not one, not two, but FIVE custom kitchens for five lovely families! It was hard work but we did it, and we’re so pleased with the results! We hope our customers are equally pleased, and we wish them many years of happy times spent in their kitchens!

Take a look at some of the work we completed in 2012!

Kitchen #1:

The owners of this historic north-end Halifax home purchased it with big plans in mind! They recognized the unique character of the home, but it needed many updates! They contacted us to help with their outdated kitchen, and we got right to work. Together, we came up with a design and layout that would maximize space, work with the existing character, and take advantage of the garden views. We reoriented the kitchen to face the garden with a u-shaped layout, closed off the back door, and added three new large windows.

Now with the sink facing the views and the back door moved to the side of the kitchen, it is a pleasure to wash the dishes! We kept the original closed off pantry but added some nice butcher block surfaces and some shelving to maximize storage.

The finishes in this kitchen are so warm and welcoming. To maximizes visual space we chose a butter yellow for the uppers, blending it in with the new wall colour and a blue/grey for the lower cabinets which anchor the space. Sage quartz counters look sleek and clean. Good lighting is important in a kitchen where a blend of task and accent lights can create just the right atmosphere. The display area over the sink and windows is lit and is the perfect spot for the homeowners to display their collection of beautiful ceramics.

Kitchen #2:

We are in love with this one! This sleek, contemporary kitchen is just stunning. It’s the perfect balance of warm and cool. This was a complete transformation from a builder’s box kitchen that had poor storage and terrible layout. We re-imagined this space to suit our European clients’ tastes and needs.

To enlarge the space,  a bathroom and a side wall were taken out and  new windows were added over and next to the prep sink. The island, which houses a cook top and boasts a unique circular butcher’s block, is positioned in the centre of the space. Now the kitchen has two distinct zones: one for cooking and one for clean up.

The finishes are wonderful with a crisp painted white against a custom stained birch to match the new walnut flooring. This is a kitchen built for maximum efficiency and beauty!

Kitchen #3


This kitchen was made for a newly built house in Halifax. Simple stream lined cabinetry mixed in with accents of rough-hewn stained birch on the extra large pantry, island and open shelving, give the right mix for the hip couple who own this wonderful space. Magnetic chalkboard panels on the pantry doors and side of the fridge are a fun accent just waiting to be filled with notes and lists for family members. We love the mix of “old” and new in this space which makes for a relaxed atmosphere.

Fun custom details like the pot filler above the stove, the rustic open shelving, and the bead board add so much character and warmth. A spice drawer next to the stove is so handy, while pull-out shelving takes advantage of awkward corners. 

As you can see, each kitchen is as unique as the customers who we design and build them for. It’s always a unique experience with each client, and that’s what makes our job so fun!

We are passionate about our kitchens, and we look forward to creating more. Do you dream of having a henhouse kitchen of your very own? Get in touch with us!



Henhouse Holiday Gift Guide!

The holiday season is well underway! We hope you are enjoying this fun time of year as much as we are. The store is absolutely filled to the brim with beautiful things. We have so many pretty ornaments, and holiday decor items this year. We also have many wonderful and unique gift items for everyone!

We put together a gift guide to give you all some inspiration. Take a look!

For the holiday hostess with the mostess:

The Original Spaghetti Scrub $10.95: Clean up the eco-friendly way! Made from corn cobs, lasts for ages, never smells!

Cotton/linen tea towel $11.95: So durable and absorbent, beautiful and practical!

Ceramic mixing bowl $37.50: We love this multi-use bowl. Use it for mixing and pouring batters, or serve snacks!
Season’s greetings $3.95-$5.95: Don’t forget the card! We have a great selection of holiday cards at the shop.

For your pet or pet lovin’ pal: 

Waggin’ Tails Dog Treats $6.50: Lovingly made by hand in Nova Scotia, your pet will devour these all-natural treats!
Felt ornaments $5.25-$14.25: We have the sweetest selection of these! Cats with scarves, pups with bones, and more!
Eco-wise hemp catnip mouse $7.25: The hemp mouse is durable, the catnip is potent! Made in Newfoundland!
Catnip Stinky $4.25: Yeeeow! Sure, catnip smells funky, but it’s worth hours of fun!

For the art collector:

6″x6″ encaustic on wood $115.00:  By local artist Lynn Rotin. The deep blues and rusty colours are stunning in this beeswax encaustic.
10″x10″ encaustic on wood $185.00: Bowls are a subject matter that has interested Lynn for years. “Simple in form, yet so fundamental, its invention changed the lives of ancient people” -Lynn Rotin

For the natural beauty:

Hemp soap $5.95: All natural, and made by hand in Saskatchewan! These soaps smell fantastic and have a beautiful frothy lather!
Rosebud Salve $8.50: This miracle salve cures chapped lips, hang nails, dry hands and more. Available in Original, Mocha Rose, Minted Rose, Eucalyptus Mint, and Strawberry.
Rocky Mountain Foot Butter $14.95: A wonder for dry feet, cracked heels, and brittle nails.
Natural bristle nail brush $3.95: Banish grubby fingers!
Cosmetic sea sponge $4.25: Wipe away the day with this natural, gentle exfoliator.
Hemp wash cloth $10.95: Hand knit in the US, from super durable hemp.
Vintage milk glass dish $25.00: Versatile and classic, use it as a soap dish, or to hold a sea sponge.

For the Green Thumb: 

Vintage McCoy Planter $35.00: It’s all in the details! Beautiful planters add something special to any decor.
Lynn Rotin Mini $35.00: Lynn’s mini oil paintings are so bright and cheery! Add a teeny pop of colour to just the right spot.

For those who hibernate: 

Dream Designs Hemp Ramie Duvet Cover $253.00-$313.00 & Hemp Ramie Pillow Cases $60.50-$65.95: Sweet dreams are made of Dream Designs linens. Hemp Ramie linens are extremely durable, all natural, and made by hand in B.C.

Dream Designs Lavender Dryer Bag $12.50: Stuffed with calming lavender flowers to lightly scent laundry. Lasts for 40 loads!

For the cook:

Swaine St. Woodworking cutting boards $70.00-$250.00, Rosemary Lemon Cutting Board Oil $16: Stunning cutting boards and charcuterie boards made by hand in Halifax. Prolong the life of cutting boards or other wood products with Swaine St. Rosemary Lemon Cutting Board Oil.

“Harvest Bounty” by Karen Phinney $285.00: Original acrylic painting by local artist Karen Phinney. Beautiful bold colours. The subject matter provides food for thought!

For the home decorator: 

“Weekend Retreat” $52.00: A beautiful full-colour book, filled to the brim with casual/rustic decor inspiration for the home.
Vintage buoy $20.00: A touch of nautical is fun and so stylish!
Twig Balls $3.25-$6.75: Spherical shapes are always an unexpected element. These can be used year round in table centrepieces, floral arrangements, or simply grouped together on a shelf!
Pinecone stem $11.25: We have some wonderfully realistic stems in the shop. Perfect for bringing some green in for the winter!

For the light hearted: 

Pheylonian Beeswax Candles $1.35-$41.95: Wonderful all-natural candles made in Canada. These candles burn clean and purify the air.
Silver hobnail lanterns $32.75-$42.75: A touch of sparkle for a festive feeling!

For the kids: 

“Room for Children” $55.00: Photos of dream rooms created just for children fill this wonderful full-colour book!
Nesting Dolls $31.50: A classic wooden puzzle toy for wee ones.
Sock Monkey $24.95: Hand made in Londonderry, N.S., each sock monkey has it’s own character! We love these!

For Mom:

Sari Throw $185.00: Made from vintage saris and hand stitched in India, these 100% cotton throws are warm and stylish!
Vintage McCoy Planters $25.00-$65.00: McCoy planters are so full of character and charm.

For the Entertainer:

Boxed Cards $18.75: Spread the cheer with our hilarious line of cards from Bethany Lowe: “Roasted nuts soaked in booze?sounds like Christmas at our house!”
La Rochere wine glasses $10.50: Sturdy machine glass made in France. Great for wine or water.
Wine Sock Monkey $14.95: Made by hand, these wine sock monkeys are a great way to present anything bottled! Slip in some wine or olive oil and voila!

Happy holidays!