'Colin and Justin's Cabin Pressure' heads to cottage country

Bill Harris, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:30 PM ET

Colin and Justin wonder what kind of stir they're creating in Canadian cottage country.

“I'm sure our poor neighbours think Justin and I are the Kardashians,” Colin said with a laugh.

“We think we've left our fashion sense on the highway. We kind of look like Britney Spears' strange hick-y cousins. But we're nice and cozy.”

Colin McAllister and Justin Ryan are well-known Scottish interior designers who've had several TV shows in Britain and Canada. Their latest project, Colin and Justin's Cabin Pressure, debuts Tuesday, March 18 on the Cottage Life channel.

Through 13 episodes, Colin and Justin purchase a cottage in Muskoka, north of Toronto, and renovate it room by room. Notably, they actually wanted this cottage really to have a cottage, not just as a device for a TV show.

“We wanted it for the same reasons we all want a cottage, to escape the city, somewhere to relax and commune with nature,” Colin said. “And it's a weird thing you Canadians take for granted. You actually have a culture of a lot of people having second homes and families having second homes, which we don't really have in Britain. To be totally honest, it makes a huge difference to the quality of your life.

“(In Britain), Europe is our cottage country. Something that is sadly missing in Canada, we have this lovely culture of budget airlines, where you can fly to Paris for 20 pounds. So people in Britain tend to do that (rather than owning cottages).”

Colin and Justin insist, though, that what you'll see in Cabin Pressure doesn't come across as elitist. They didn't buy a mansion on a big lake. They bought a bit of a fixer-upper on a small lake, where the taxes are more reasonable, and they went in on the purchase with two friends to help with the cost.

“I think some people will be surprised by us in this show,” Justin said. “We are really hands-on, we're real team players and we're really democratic.

“In some of our previous programs we've been portrayed as the boys who kind of run in and out, and then run off screaming. In actual fact, we do loads and loads of the hard work ourselves, and this show really demonstrates it.”

There remain many different kinds of TV shows on Colin and Justin's “want to do” list. Justin suggested maybe some sort of travelogue, driving around Canada and the United States in an old RV. “A little-known fact about me and Colin is that we could take apart a car and rebuild it, both of us, seriously, we're real petrol-heads,” Justin said.

Programming possibilities are popping. But for now, Colin and Justin are focused on fixing up their cottage in Cabin Pressure.

“You know how some people like to have a photograph of a lake as their screen-saver?” Colin asked. “We have a live video link. I can take out my smartphone and go, 'What's happening at the lake?' ”

That's a true sign of commitment, whether you're a Kardashian, one of Britney Spears' strange hick-y cousins, or Colin and Justin.

Bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv
 
 


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