Houzz Tour: A Full Redesign Brings a Converted Barn Up to Date
Precious period features are complemented by calm colours, cool design and contemporary pieces in this Cotswolds barn
Now, a palette of neutral tones delivers a fresh backdrop and softens the appearance of those gnarly old beams, while stylish furniture and lighting brings this barn into the 21st century. Most dramatic of all, though, is the addition of a modern glass staircase, which has boldly transformed the living room from dark and gloomy into bright and beautiful.
Who lives here? A couple with grown-up children
Location Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire
Property A converted barn
Size Three bedrooms and three bathrooms
Project year Late 2021 to mid-2022
Interior designers Megane Leeding and Kirsty Jephcott of Ivywell Interiors
Photos by William Goddard Photography
“The owners were relocating from London,” Kirsty says. “They loved the garden and wanted a rural life, so a converted barn was perfect.”
For much of the project, they were overseas or in London and not on site, but good communication and the latest technology meant this wasn’t a problem. “We use Houzz Pro and have for more than two years,” Megane says. “We use the 3D Floor Plan the most, which is great to quickly put together initial room concepts, and the walk-through feature [where homeowners can get a real feel of the proposed scheme] allows us to capture specific details we want to draw attention to.”
Work then began in November and completed in June 2022. “It all went smoothly,” Kirsty says, “which is a lot down to the builders being lovely. They were very can-do and solutions-focused.”
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The stairs are glass, too. “We did toy with the idea of making the mezzanine floor glass as well,” she says. “In the end, painting the ceiling underneath lightened the space, so it didn’t feel necessary.”
This is the largest room in the barn and was designed for when family and friends get together. “When it’s just the two owners at home, they use the snug off the kitchen,” Kirsty says.
There’s a projector hidden in the ceiling – which drops down to create a home cinema – a small seating area near the window and a piano on the mezzanine. “It’s a multifunctional space and we zoned it to reflect that,” Kirsty says.
The sofa was made bespoke.
Internal glazing divides the utility room from the kitchen, just seen to the left.
Kitchen cabinets, Howdens. Splashback tiles, Mandarin Stone. Pendant lights, Där Lighting.
Megane and Kirsty sourced all the furniture. “The people who bought the owners’ London flat also bought all their furniture,” Kirsty says, “so we were starting from scratch here and didn’t have to fit in existing pieces.”
Pendant lights, Där Lighting.
The designers sourced a sideboard and shelving to suit, and then had the chairs made. Some of the beams and the wall behind the art are painted a soft grey to lighten the space. “We had originally planned a dark colour on that wall, but together with the red art it was too intense,” Megane says.
Hayes chandelier, West Elm.
Wallpaper, Caselio. Lights, West Elm.
“The shower can get a bit lost in a room like this, so we went for beautiful big tiles here,” Megane says. “They’re quite shiny, so you might not want them across all the walls, but it’s nice to have that reflective finish here as everything else is more matt.”
All tiles, Mandarin Stone.
The communal spaces in the house feature mostly neutral tones. “But we thought, this is quite a small space, let’s have fun with colour in here,” Megane says. “You notice the edges of the room a lot less with dark shades, so it works well here.”
An almost terracotta on the walls is anchored by a strong blue on the skirting boards and doors. Both beds were made to order to suit the space, teamed with oversized lamps and a large mirror to make it look bigger.
Walls painted in Ashes Of Roses; woodwork painted in Juniper Ash, both Little Greene. Lamps, Där Lighting. Cushions, Casamance. Blind fabric, Camengo.
Tiles, Mandarin Stone.
What do you like most about this barn conversion? Share your thoughts in the Comments.