Her favourite memory of her mother is learning “how to make the mountains.” And now, Violaine Corbin is making mountains and memories every Christmas for anyone who wishes to take in her amazing outdoor display.
“Every year my mother would teach me another technique. And now my displays keep getting bigger every year,” said Corbin with a laugh. “It’s so funny to see the people parked outside staring at my house.”
It’s easy to see why people are flocking to 5408 Chief Lake Road. The yard is a winter wonderland – decked out with huge snowmen, lights hung from every possible structure, and a large manger complete with the shinning star of Bethlehem. But the festive theme doesn’t stop there – Corbin’s abode is the picture perfect holiday home. With over 1,300 lights strung over banners, silk and velvet bows hung from doorknobs, garland twirling up the wide staircase and a tree right out of a magazine – this home would make Martha Stewart proud.
“I just love it,” Corbin said scanning her home. “It just doesn’t feel like Christmas without all of this.”
Corbin’s been collecting festive decorations for years now, some of them passed on from her mother. She’s got boxes full of the colourful bows and lights. “There’s no room left in my basement for anything else,” she said.
So how long does it take to transform her home into a real life holiday heaven? “It’s a two-day process for the tree,” she said. “And it’s a week long process for the entire house. It’s definitely a project.”
While the inside of the home is Corbin’s personal mission, she hires a trusted decorator for the scenes outside. “Stewart and I get together every year and figure out the outside decorations,” she said. “Last year with all the wind Santa kept falling from the roof. I would get phone calls asking ‘is Santa back up there yet?'”
Corbin loves the fact that she may in some small way be spreading Christmas joy with her holiday home. “I think it makes them happy,” she said. “And that makes me happy.”
As for the Quebec born decorator she says she comes by the festive spirit and talented decorating honestly. With her mother teaching her how to make the mountains of cotton look “just right,” Corbin’s display under the pine is just as impressive as the tree itself. “Sure it’s hard work,” she admits. “But without all of this – it just wouldn’t be Christmas.”