The owner of this converted barn is a co-founder of a cocktail bar, a consultant for Harvey Nichols and an interior designer. She lives in a 19th century Grade II-listed barn with three bedrooms that is part of the family farm.
The owner decided to convert the barn in 1989. It took two years and was a family home until her son went to boarding school and she moved to London because of work. She then continued to use it as a weekend retreat. ‘It was my little haven and I would come back as often as I could.’
In 2012, the owner decided to renovate. She was inspired by the rustic look of a spa she had worked on that had distressed panelling, exposed stonework and industrial lighting. ‘I wanted to introduce that warmth and homeliness into the barn,’ she says. In addition, she was spurred on because planning permission to extend the barn and an outbuilding was about to run out.
First, she extended the barn by adding a garden room at one end. ‘I decided to install bi-fold glass doors on two sides so I could sit and enjoy the beautiful views,’ she says. To continue the light and airy feel and make the most of the building’s vaulted ceilings, she removed beams and ceilings from other parts of the property. Many of the beams were made into panels for the walls and shutters for the windows.
By recycling materials and introducing unusual reclamation yard finds, the owner has created a stunning home with a distinctive and stylish interior.
An instant industrial vibe was created in the kitchen when the owner had to clad the original structural beams with steel for support. She emphasised this with an eyecatching feature wall covered with reclaimed Parisian tin ceiling tiles. To soften the look, classic Shaker-style units were repainted and given new handles. A vintage edge is provided by the bar stools, which were rescued from a hair salon.
Floor-to-ceiling windows fill the open-plan dining room with light. The table and chairs, which were made from elm and oak from the farm, provide the perfect place for entertaining. Storage is provided by the large dresser, which was given a new lease of life with a coat of blue grey paint. The owner has added a warmth with a rug from a Turkish bazaar.
The owner was keen to add a burst of colour in the garden room to make a statement. ‘I wanted it to be punchy and to bring it to life as the rest of the house is quite muted,’ she says. ‘I bought vintage French day beds and had them re-upholstered using a mix of bright pink, red and purple linen, adding toning cushions made from vintage rugs.’ Shelves with sliding doors create an ingenious divider between the rooms and blend beautifully with the beamed ceiling.
The owner found an image of an open Provencal barn that provided the inspiration for her renovation. The elegant living room epitomises that look with huge windows and French-inspired furniture. French vintage flour sack upholstery and a sheepskin rug add texture while reclaimed elm from the farm has been used to create a pannelled feature wall. A large floor lamp made from copper and wood adds a touch of industrial chic.
The study is the ultimate in reclaimed chic. The owner had the worktop of the desk clad in copper – and found a stylish copper phone to complete the look. The filing cabinet is made from leftover scrap wood with copper pipe handles and corrugated tin panels set on barn door-style sliding hinges. A rustic wooden chair on wheels finishes off the look beautifully.
Desk and chair
One World Trading Company
The light and airy guest bedroom has a rustic French theme. Wooden floorboards have been transformed into shutters and given a pretty, distressed finish with a coat of duck egg paint. The owner has used toning plank-effect wallpaper to continue the reclaimed wood theme. A French-style bed forms an elegant centrepiece, which is enhanced with vintage flour sack cushions.
Rockett St George
The owner has created an amazing feature wall with reclaimed floorboards and used old beams from the kitchen to create the window shutters, giving the scheme a log cabin feel. ‘I adore wood,’ she says. ‘People call me a wood fanatic.’ A cane bedhead adds a dash of French chic, while a faux fur throw and sack valance big up the rustic feel.
Graham and Green
Copper tones, dark wood furniture and a leather bed harmonise with the wooden beams and panelling made from sawn oak beams to create a cosy scheme. The owner has introduced a colourful silk throw for a pop of colour. A blanket box positioned neatly at the bottom of the bed provides ample space for storing bedlinen.
The White Company
The owner opted for a period feel in the bathroom with an elegant roll top bath creating a classic country look and traditional tongue and groove panelling, painted in a soothing shade of grey, adding depth. To keep the look light, the wall above the panelling was painted white and a collection of vintage-style mirrors have been positioned so as to reflect the daylight back into the room.
Manor House grey paint
Farrow & Ball