A view of the dining room area in Claudia de Veaux’s Victoria Avenue home. Don Denton photography

A view of the dining room area in Claudia de Veaux’s Victoria Avenue home. Don Denton photography

Home Sweet Home for Technical Writer

A peaceful sanctuary in South Oak Bay

  • Sep. 14, 2018 11:25 a.m.

-Story by Devon McKenzie

Story courtesy of Boulevard Magazine, a Black Press Media publication

Like Boulevard Magazine on Facebook and follow them on Instagram

Tucked away on a quiet street in the heart of South Oak Bay is Claudia de Veaux’s sanctuary — a 2,500-square-foot home built in 2012 with three bedrooms and three bathrooms.

But for Claudia, it’s more than just a home; it’s where she can breathe deeply, think clearly and take time for herself. Because when she’s not in Victoria, she’s in the thick of the tech industry in the Silicon Valley.

As a technical writer, Claudia spends weeks at a time away from home, so when she does get to come back to Oak Bay, she’s exactly where she wants to be.

“I grew up in Seattle, so I always loved the Pacific Northwest,” explains Claudia. “My sister moved here and married a Canadian and eventually, I decided I wanted to be here too, so I made a five-year plan to move here and I did it. Really, it was one of the only times I’ve actually had a concrete plan,” she says, laughing.

After moving to Victoria in 2001, Claudia bought a home on Beach Drive but eventually sold that property and moved to Saanich.

“It was central, I guess, but I always found myself back in Oak Bay — especially at the beach,” she explains. “Whether it was walking the dog, or just enjoying a walk alone, it was just where I wanted to be and so, the hunt was on.”

A quiet corner in in the home. Don Denton photography

After an entire year of looking, Claudia bought her Victoria Avenue home in 2016 and has been happily adding to the blank canvas a new home acquisition provides since then.

“I just love this house,” she says, motioning around the spacious and bright open concept living/dining/kitchen area, which is at the rear of the house overlooking a private, manicured back yard and standalone garage.

“My favourite part is all the wall space and natural light which is absolutely perfect for my art,” she adds.

Coming from an artistic family — many of her paintings are by her father and sister — the home offers ample wall room for the display of art in various forms. Along with her art collection, Claudia has a striking collection of vintage glass insulators which line the window sills through the kitchen. The natural backlighting makes the insulators sparkle and shows off each piece’s unique attributes.

“Collecting those, it’s addictive,” laughs Claudia. “I’m not usually big into the decorating aspect of a home, but with this house I’ve really been enjoying it.”

Another quirky feature in the kitchen is her collection of android figurines, a nod to her professional background, which she has cleverly displayed in the built-in wine rack in the kitchen.

“I don’t drink so it turned out to be the perfect use for that space,” she says, smiling.

Robot like figurines in the kitchen. Don Denton photography

Moving through the main floor, Claudia’s office is located near the front of her house. Aiming to travel less and find a better work/life balance, she wanted the perfect place to be able to work from home uninterrupted. A custom desk, which she had built to spec for her needs, fills the far and back wall of the room and a full, almost floor-to-ceiling window allows for plenty of natural light.

“I have no trouble working from home,” she says. “I find it very satisfying to be able to work from here when I can and having a beautiful office does help.”

Also at the anterior of the house, near the front door, is the staircase to the second floor. Stepped windows on the front of the house bathe the stairwell in natural light, which is accented with paper-look globe light fixtures that Claudia picked out herself. Again, more art dons the walls through the hall upstairs, which goes off at an angle. It’s a feature Claudia noticed right away.

“It just adds that little aspect of the unexpected, rather than just having a straight line to the back of the house,” she says.

Off the hall to the right and left are two guest bedrooms, which are vital as Claudia’s children and family love to come visit, as well as the guest bathroom. Ahead, at the end of the hall, is the ample, airy master bedroom and en suite bath which overlook neighbouring yards filled with mature trees.

“I love the view out back,” Claudia explains, adding that the whole bedroom has a very serene and tidy feel to it. “I almost feel like I’m walking into a room at a Four Seasons in the city, which is a pretty nice thing to be able to feel every time you come into your bedroom.”

A view of the master bedroom. Don Denton photography

It’s been just over two years since she moved in and Claudia says she couldn’t be happier.

“I always wanted a pretty house. Not necessarily cozy, but pretty, and that’s exactly what I’ve been able to create here. For me, this house is all about the art; I look at it and enjoy it every single day that I’m here,” she says.

“I moved here to get out of the rat race, I had some political motivations too, but either way, I was very driven to do it. Victoria is home now and I’m always happy when I come home.”

In a world where things are moving faster than ever and many things are in a constant state of flux, Claudia feels grounded in her Oak Bay oasis.

“I guess you could say Canada brings clarity,” she says, laughing.

Claudia de Veaux looks over part of her glass insulator collection. Don Denton photography

DecorDesignhomeHome decorHouseInterior decoratingoak bayReal estateRelocatevancouverisland

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A dose of COVID-19 vaccine is prepared at a vaccination clinic in Montreal’s Olympic Stadium on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
39 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health region

The total number of cases in the region since the pandemic began is now at 7,334

A rainbow shining on Kelowna General Hospital on May 12, 2020 International Nurses Day. (Steve Wensley - Prime Light Media)
New COVID cases trending down in Interior Health

24 new cases reported Thursday, Feb. 25, death at Kelowna General Hospital

(File Photo)
Crash causes delays on Coquihalla southbound, travel advisory issued

A vehicle incident between Merrit and Hope has caused major delays heading south

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)
30 new COVID-19 cases, five more deaths in Interior Health

This brings the total number of cases to 7,271 since testing began

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Kara Sorensen, diagnosed with lung cancer in July, says it’s important for people to view her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick. (Photo courtesy of Karen Sorensen)
B.C. woman must seek treatment overseas for inoperable lung cancer

Fundraising page launched on Karen Sorensen’s behalf, with a goal of $250,000

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents bill to delay B.C.’s budget as late as April 30, and allow further spending before that, B.C. legislature, Dec. 8, 2020. (Hansard TV)
How big is B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit? We’ll find out April 20

More borrowing expected as pandemic enters second year

The first of 11 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft's have arrived in Abbotsford. Conair Group Inc. will soon transform them into firefighting airtankers. (Submitted)
Abbotsford’s Conair begins airtanker transformation

Aerial firefighting company creating Q400AT airtanker in advance of local forest fire season

The Canada Revenue Agency says there were 32 tax fraud convictions across the country between April 2019 and March 2020. (Pixabay)
Vancouver man sentenced to 29 months, fined $645K for tax evasion, forgery

Michael Sholz reportedly forged documents to support ineligible tax credits linked to homeownership

Most Read