Be inspired by this cosy country property in Surrey

Be inspired by this cosy country cottage in Surrey, chosen by 25 Beautiful Homes. For more house tours and decorating ideas

Carpenter's cottage built in 1853 and extended in the 1980s. It features a hall, living room, kitchen-diner, utility room, cloakroom, art studio, bedroom/study, three bedrooms (two en suite) and a bathroom. Tucked away in a corner of leafy Surrey, the property is a little gem. Set in woodland, its red-brick exterior and rather chaotic roofline have a Hansel and Gretel-like charm. The owners certainly had their work cut out as the cottage was in need of a big rethink. The back door was about six paces from the front  door; the old kitchen was small and at the wrong end of the house and the windows were tiny, which made the room dark. Meanwhile, upstairs a large bathroom and airing cupboard took up an inordinate amount of space and on the ground floor next to the garage there was a third bedroom with a dilapidated en suite. Together with dated pine woodwork and peeling plaster on every wall, the overall picture was far from cheerful.

1/11 Exterior

house with windows and door

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

2/11 Hallway

hallway with wooden furniture flooring and antique umbrella stand

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Made from reclaimed wood, this bench has a handy storage space underneath for shoes, while an antique umbrella stand looks at home in this laid-back hallway. The owners have kept the space neutral and understated to create a calm and collected first impression on entering the house.

Similar wood flooring

3/11 Landing

hallway with blue painted units and console table

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

The owner's impressive collection of antique pieces furnishes the rest of the house. Some of the most interesting items are homemade, such as the handsome console table on the landing. The owner made the door frame and console table from reclaimed oak for a vintage look that is fit for a cosy home with character. An antique vase gives the scheme an Oriental flavour, while a dresser filled with stainless-steel and ceramic crockery adds to the country charm.

Similar console table

4/11 Living room

living room with brick fireplace

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

The exposed brick wall in the living room forms an eye-catching backdrop for Oriental-style pieces and antique furniture, creating a unique look.The brick-effect enhances the rural, lived-in feel. Don't let the alcoves go to waste. The owners have built a few bespoke shelves into an unused space, then piled them with books, pictures and quirky curios.

Darlings of Chelsea

5/11 Kitchen

blue painted kitchen with tiled splashback and kitchen aga

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

The kitchen was relocated to the centre of the house where downstairs en suite was and French windows were added to help draw in more light. Bespoke cabinets were painted to match the Aga, creating a fresh, seamless look. The owners installed underfloor heating, but found that their Aga keeps the room warm enough without it.

Little Greene
Similar Aga
Aga Shop Cobham

6/11 Dining room

dining room with french windows

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

The distressed painted table and chairs tie in with the home's rustic farmhouse feel. New French windows allow easy access to the garden, which stretches to just over an acre. Oak beams were installed above each one to introduce a rough, artisan feel. The owner ensured that the wood fitted in the oldest part of the house was distressed more than those in the modern end.

Table and chairs
Nicky Cornell
Floor tiles
Topps Tiles

7/10 Home office

home office with wooden desk

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Create a stylish home office with traditional furniture, such as this antique bureau. One signature piece like this can create a home office instantly - even if it's only in a corner of your living room. Vintage wall plates give the room a homely feel, in keeping with the rest of the house.

Similar antique bureau
I & JL Brown Antiques

8/11 Utility room and art studio

utility room and craft room with wooden cabinetry

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

The garage was converted into a utility room and art studio. One of the hottest trends in home design is the use of natural wood accents and textures. This studio channels a relaxed feel, mixing different woods and natural materials for a country vibe with an urban edge. Don't be discouraged when sourcing salvaged wood - even when damaged, wood can often be restored to its former glory.

Similar wood flooring

9/11 Main bedroom

blue and white country bedroom with cream painted wardrobes

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

In the main bedroom the owners have paired pale blue walls and flooring with cream painted wardrobes for a calm and serene feeling. Pretty toile bedlinen has been turned into curtains and hung in the wardrobe for a restful country look.

Pemberley collection at Sanderson

10/11 Bathroom

Neutral traditional bathroom with cream colored stone tiles

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Scale down fittings to maximise the space in a small bathroom. Many companies offer space-saving ranges, while some offer a wide choice of size options across their collections. A shorter-than-standard bath was required to fit across the rear wall. Cream coloured stone tiles adorn both the walls and floor for a cohesive look.

Bathrooms at Source
John Lewis 

11/11 Children’s room

children bedroom with bedlinen peg rail and shelving unit

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Perfect for a sleepover or when the grandchildren stay over, this child's bedroom is fun and playful. The bold red flooring is a daring alternative to traditional neutral colours. Use multi-purpose furniture if you're short on space. A peg rail and shelving unit in one is simple and easy to install.

Similar bedlinen
Marks & Spencer

Heather Young

Heather Young has been Ideal Home’s Editor since late 2020, and Editor-In-Chief since 2023. She is an interiors journalist and editor who’s been working for some of the UK’s leading interiors magazines for over 20 years, both in-house and as a freelancer.