Founder and principal designer of the award-winning ACM Designs Andria Cowan Molyneaux is excited about the future now that she is in her new 1000-square-foot space at the corner of Industrial Road and County Road 21 (opposite corner of Country Rose Garden Centre)./DARREN LUM Staff

$4500 prize pack for winner of #HelluvaHut makeover contest

By Darren Lum

Published Jan. 9 2018

Driving out of Haliburton you’ll notice a recently renovated building at the intersection of Industrial Park Road and County Road 21.

It’s where a dream is being realized by award-winning ACM Designs founder and principal designer Andria Cowan Molyneaux who has moved from her Highland Street location measuring close to 400 square feet to the space at 5167 County Road 21 measuring 1000 square feet.

ACM Designs employs three staff members and provides design services for cottage home and commercial spaces. They moved in to their new space in August.

Cowan Molyneaux said this new location has high traffic exposure and also fulfills the company’s objectives by providing service to everyone regardless of physical ability.

“I feel all environments should be able to receive and support people irrespective of their abilities whether it’s a working situation or you’re visiting. We certainly design to support users of all abilities but the other part is I just think it is terrible people can’t access because they can’t get in the front door” she said.

The former police officer said work on the leased building (formerly Leftovers and Antiques and Neat Stuff) will continue this spring and summer with work on the exterior to make it fully accessible and to include beautification. Part of the long-term plan is to add an accessible washroom.

None of this would have been possible she said without local partners such as the Haliburton County Development Corporation and local demand for design services.

Clients are welcome to arrange an appointment to see Cowan Molyneaux and her staff.

The location will provide opportunities for training workshops as ACM Designs is a member of the Haliburton County Home Builders Association. It also showcases what ACM Designs can offer clients using technological interface applications to get to see paint chips feel and see upholstery samples and flooring and premium products from Cambria and appliance manufacturer Wolf.

In addition to the new location Cowan Molyneaux has also been excited to work on the #HelluvaHut Ice Fishing Hut Makeover contest. This includes a hut makeover by ACM Designs and Hodgkinson Enterprises valued at $3700 new ice fishing equipment from Outdoors Plus valued at $300 a loaded Boshkung Brewing Co. cooler valued at $200 and lunch and fish education valued at $300 from Yours Outdoors owner Barrie Martin formerly of Ministry of Natural Resources.

Share a photo of your ice hut for the chance to win. Photos can be posted at or on Facebook or Instagram with two tags: ACM Designs and #helluvahut. The contest closes before midnight on Jan. 16. A winner will be announced the next day. See for more details.

Sharing the corner lot space with ACM Designs is Hodgskinson Enterprises Inc. operator and owner Kevin Hodgkinson who loves to ice fish and believes it is a great winter activity for everyone.

“It’s a great family activity to do and it’s something you can do for not a whole bunch of money to be honest with you. It’s great to be out there and be in the outdoors. Living in Haliburton County that’s what it’s about right?” he said.

Hodgkinson an avid ice fisher for much of his life is excited about the contest and will be taking the hut to complete the makeover between Jan. 22 and 26. The unveiling of the winning hut will be on Jan. 27 at the Hardwater Festival which is an inclusive event with activities such as broom-ball kick sledding a snowshoe race and opportunities to learn about winter survival in an effort to celebrate winter in the Highlands. It is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Jan. 27 at the West Guilford Recreation Centre and at Abbey Gardens.

Although he has made ice huts before this will be his first attempt in making one over.

He hopes this contest will also raise awareness of fishing in the area.

Cowan Molyneaux who said she has learned more about ice fishing during this process appreciates the engagement on social media. She estimated they’ve received upwards of 20000 engagements. There is a hope this contest will make people rethink the concept of an ice hut.

Cowan Molyneaux appreciated the response from women reinforcing the idea that ice fishing is for everyone: women men and families.

“It’s just a cool kind of contest. Who doesn’t want a chest full of Boshkung beer right? I think what’s the best part of this contest is that it’s going to be shared with the community at large at the Hardwater Festival. It’s great way for local businesses to participate in local activities that are really about being in this community” she said.

Request a consultation at ACM Designs by calling toll free: 1-844-414-LAKE. You can find out more about the Hardware Festival at .