Barmy About Barns

What is it about barn conversions that I like? Well I recon you can’t go wrong with acres of wood, glass and light. They can of course turn out very wrong. When you try to squeeze a normal house-like space into a barn it doesn’t work. But for those who are prepared to re-think ‘house’ and indeed, space, they can be magnificent. Here are a few I like.

Wow, what a confident space. I love how it stares you straight in the face! The slit windows and giant door look more like a fort. The curved grey roof is a worthy feature.

Grey brcik and galvanised arched roof barn conversion

I love a beam, provided I am not going to hit my head (unlikely, 5ft 2 and 3/4s), or if they are ‘lets pretend’. These wooden wonders look just perfect against the crisp white walls and exposed brick.

Two chairs facing a wood burning stove

The oak frame here is happily highlighted by the sage green walls.

wooden interior with fresh county colours

Located in rural Switzerland, this home makes good use of contrasting textures and horizontal lines.

Lovely wooden vertical lines on this barn conversion

Another view inside another beautiful home. The infinite tiles and bricks are the perfect backdrop for some hugable topiary.

Beautiful converted barn with green formal landscaping

I like how open this space is, and the combination of wood, brick and black metal. An enviable island too!

Modern kitchen with wooden beams and exposed brick

Sometimes it is nice to retreat into a dark interior, I love the cut-out window of this bedroom up in the eaves.

Dark wooden interior with giant angled window

Moments of joy in architecture – this barn-shaped wooden frame links the two floors with striking grace.

Moments of joy in architecture

A bespoke kitchen that brings a balance of curves into an olde worlde space.

Wooden beams, range and bespoke kitchen

We end on a more rustic note, calming symmetry, and a view that goes on and on!

Rustic barn conversion

A Lick of Paint

Painting furniture can cover a multitude of sins. In fact it can be additive, but I think everything in moderation. From chalky blues to geometric hues, painted furniture is here to stay. Here are a few that have captured my gaze this week…

This is where it started, once I clapped eyes on this elegant offering I wanted more. A powder blue sets off the ribs on this little cabinet, flanked by an Eames chair, what more could you want?

Autumn interior with blue painted sideboard

I like the mix with this chest of draws, a wooden front is framed by a chalky blue. The triangular design really catches your attention.

Triangles painted on the side of a wooden cabinet

So simple and so lovely, a kids wardrobe with cascading circles in vibrant orange and blue.

Cascading dots painted on an orange and blue wardrobe

A perfectly chalky chest of draws in ombre shades of pastel pink and and smokey grey.

Pastel pink and grey painted ombre chest of draws

In a bold acid yellow and black illustration, this piece of furniture makes me want to just get out a marker pen and start doodling.

Acid yellow painted piece of funrinure with cool illustration

Or perhaps go for a colour in the kitchen – a rich aubergine covered in, well, just look at that counter top! Undulating well-worn wood bolted on creates the perfect contrast.

Wooden kitchen with purple painted cupboards and huge wooden top

Romantic pink painted draws double as a bed side table. I love the brassy handles paired with the retro radio and lamp.

Pink painted bed side table with brass handles

Neat and tidy, charcoal grey is framed in white with rounded wooden legs in this mid century style cabinet.

charcoal grey, white and wood mid century style cabinet

Van Gogh inspired wardrobe in brilliant blue capturing the majesty of the magnolia tree.

Japanese style magnolia painted blue wardrobe

Love the geometric pattern on this painted chest of draws. The miss-matched handles just add to the cool.

orange, blue, pink, mustard, geometric triangle painted draws

If your taste is little more simple, this white painted cupboard is beautiful with its contrasting black fittings.

White painted wooden wardrobe

The giant blooms painted on this chest of draws really catches the eye. The colours pick out the features of the room beyond.

White and gold flowers painted on a black chest of draws

You could always start small, a gold dipped chair is just really satisfying. Though I would keep the main chair bare wood and dip the top in copper paint, now thats an idea…

Purple and gold chair

What Do I Do With All Those Books?

So it isn’t Spring, but I am yearning for a sort out. One thing I have in abundance is books, and so many still unread. Rather than passing some of them on (I do very much believe in sharing what I have) I would like to store them in a better way than they are currently – which is everywhere!

Like many people my house is small, but if you can get creative there really is no end to how you can display these windows to another world. I am a dangerous combination of eclectic and sentimental. I have books where I just like the cover, books that have been recommended, books I read as a child and books that just smell and feel plain great.

I have compiled some rather tempting home libraries that help me feel justified in keeping my growing hord, see what you think…

Lets start with the dream – if you could you know you would, my childhood self would just adore a tree-filled library.

Tree lined dark living room with book shelves

The hidden room – I love the colour of these shelves, the perfect backdrop to all those vibrant spines.

Secret library door in a bookcase

If space is tight then I love the idea of shelves-come seats, and with a view like this I might be torn for where to look, out the window or the pages of my book.

Sea view and a space to read a good book

Over the years I have wondered around many an English country house with libraries worthy of a novel. This room is elegant, well proportioned and the books look old enough to have seen a thing or two.

Traditional sitting room with ancient books

Now this is a room my mum would covet, she is most definitely a colour coordinator. She loves ordering items by colour of the room – yellow for the yellow room etc. These white shelves house a rainbow that is really pleasing to the eye. The furniture is fun too!

Rainbow coloured books in white shelves

I am always wooed by green, and this little reading nook just looks so inviting.

Bookshelves form a little alcove to read in

For some calming white I do like these shelves. It would be guess work what book to pick but I love the varying horizontals of the pages.

The many shades of white - books around a door

Or alternatively, for a little space, these shelves work perfectly tuck away under the stairs. They create a calming piece of personal space.

Bookshelves and seat under the stairs

Granted there are very little books in these shelves but I love the indulgence of the rich dark colours. Painting the inside of your shelves can add another layer to the room. The darkness makes me want to curl up with a book and say goodbye world, just for a little while.

Rich dark interior with fireplace, chair and shelves

Everything is better in the round, ask Shakespeare. Though this wood is a little too orange for me, but painted in a powder blue or and chalky white this space would sing. You can see the craftsmanship and detail, a truly lovely space.

Round room with library and balcony

Such a well balanced space. The orange and blue work so well together, bold but in my book, beautiful.

Blue panneled walls with built in bookshelves

 

I Am Seeing Triangles

Everywhere I look triangles are apparent. From textiles to skirts, windows to playing blocks. So I thought I would compile a few triangular structures that celebrate this fashionable shape in all its beauty. Even a humble shed is elevated when a triangle is involved (quite literally actually). See what you think..

I love how the brutality of nature has created something quite unique. This house is in an exposed spot, and as such this tree has flourished behind the shelter of a pink pointy house. A verdant green triangle can be seen in season!

Triangle tree grows sheltered by a pink house

This roof is so pleasing, the angles stretch and reach for shelter. A welcome shade beneath a clearing in the canopy of trees.

Modernist triangle roof

There is an adorable quality topiary. Part of me feels anti such order in nature, I love the wild and whimsical English country garden. However, there is something captivating and strokable about geometric shapes brought into the garden by clipped hedges. I love the contrast in colours here too.

Cone shaped topiary in a formal English garden

This cottage has charm in abundance. The large thatched roof hugs the white washed home. It cuts an engaging shape and sits happily in its environment.

Thatched and white washed cob house

In quite a different landscape, and conjuring images of Seventies cocktails as apposed to home brew, is this Palm Springs home. The shape works wonderfully with the rugged mountains behind.

1970s home with a shape that echoes the mountains

Talk about rickety, this diddy, triangular cabin comes straight from a fairytale.

Triangular cabin in the woods

Well this is just plain awesome. The bamboo construction looks like a giant wigwam, I would just love to spend some time in this space.

Amazing woodland structure made with bamboo

This mountain lodge is really rather smart, the Norwegian architects have designed the sloping roof so you can ski over it!

This angular building nestled in the snow has been designed to have people ski on the roof

Simple is often best. This little escape would be ideal to delve into a novel and leave the world behind.

Black wooden triangular cabin ideal summer house or reading nook

For your urban triangle fix, this Italian hotel embraces the shape in repetition. The orange wood is all the more striking against the tiny grey tile.

Triangle windows in a hotel roof.

I cant’t even get my head around these triangles, they are quite arresting, certainly intriguing. Built in Copenhagen, the jutting out triangles are actually balconies.

Copenhagen flats with jutting out triangluar balconies

If the triangles above are a little over-baring, then the below triangles are harmonious. A graceful structure that feels like it is growing before our eyes.

Triangles wrap around old building

Such elegance and beautiful – shadow patterns with rounded triangles one after the other.

Black and white triangular tunel photographed

Can this be considered a triangle? Perhaps not, but what a window! I don’t know how you would keep the cobwebs at bay, but seriously wow.

Giant window in a triangle shape in a woodland retreat

No doubt I’ll need to add to this post at some point in the future, triangles are so captivating. With corners expanding our minds, I think we feel quite at home amongst these geometric shapes.

An Occasional Table

This little piece of furniture has me at the title! It sounds so casual and yet so desirable. Occasional tables conjuring up images of the nesting dark wooden four legged pieces that sat quietly in the corner of my Grandparent’s house.

Be rest assured, there are many variations available that don’t have to fit this mould. This type of table is all about flexibility. These days our homes are open plan, our kids run free and our gatherings are casual – an occasional table allows flexible living for the stylish home. Lets take a look…

An original 1950s circular table has hidden storage for ease. Simple and practical – pure Mid Century style.

round occasional table

Take the traditional nest and go ombre – the greyscale look updates a classic.

Grey stacked tables

For elegance and convenience I love these marbled topped and black metal framed occasional tables, very on tend.

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For something a little different, how about metal mesh nest tables?

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Marble again but this time in the round. I love the unique patterns and colours – instant class.

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Something about these ombre tables makes me think of toadstools!

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Overlapping transparencies add interest with these irregular shaped tables.

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What space saving genius – A mirror and table all in one, great for the space-challenged home.

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This table has to be one of the best I have seen. The separate elements are sculpture-like in day glow yellow, white and black. Together a succinct cube is formed.

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For a natural nod I love these two tables that become one fashioned in honest wood.

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Elegant gold frames these glass tables, the semicircle shape is actually quite handy.

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And finally – super space saving and visually satisfying – this wooden nest of tables slide perfectly inside one another and would fit comfortably in most homes.

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As ever, just click on the pictures to find the link and if you have any comments, thoughts or anything else just let me know!

Modern Showers to Inspire

The bathing ritual in the morning has become something of an art. You can step into a shower seamlessly from your bathroom -feel like you are standing in a monsoon, a waterfall or a massage – and be ready to face the day.

I like the current trend for large glass boxes that rise out of the floor so elegantly, like a piece of art. I have collated together a few showers that have caught my eye, they have me sizing up my little space and thinking bring on the rainforest.

 

A minimal shower has a real feel of calm. A delicate plant softens the tiles. I can see this working well in a modern or traditional home.

Elegant built in shower

Well this is pretty perfect! Even the plant pot adds to the angular sparse space. The wood softens the look and I love the steps and projecting tub.

Perfect modern bathroom

A more modest space, I like how the shape of the roof has maximised the tiny room. The little window helps to bring in the light – hopefully the neighbours aren’t to close by!

Showers for small spaces

I think I am drawn to this shower because of that beautiful shade of sea blue. The glassy tiles give a watery feel, if this was part of my morning routine I could not help but smile.

Pale blue tiled shower

What an incredibly classy shower. My eye is drawn to the black framed glass, I love the touch of the bath-overlap. Very chic.

Black framed glass shower with marble backdrop

Such understated charm, I love the wood and white – a real good use of space.

Contemporary shower built in the eaves

Here the wood continues throughout the floor and over the side of this bathroom. I also love the radiator that wraps around. Wood brings a warmth and Scandinavian feel that I think can make shower rooms more welcoming. A welcoming bathroom is just what I need – it takes a  lot to get me out of bed in the morning!

Wooden floored shower

Grass Roofs

Grass roofs – I’m not necessarily thinking hobbit houses – contemporary sleek lines are being softened by a green glow of grass. This is of course nothing new but I have collected together a few examples which wear it well.

The attraction for me is the idea of sunbathing on a grassy summit and taking in the elevated view. Going up on a roof always seems a little naughty and exciting – or maybe thats just me.

Green roofs are truly ‘green’, great for controlling water run-off, they reduce sound reflection and transmission, and lower heating costs – and good for the local wildlife!

Some of these grass roofs help the buildings merge into the backgrounds – but other building are just made to stand out.

 

I love how this summerhouse becomes part of the hill side.

Glass, wood and stone grass roofed home

Just like the hills behind, the grass engulfs these traditional buildings. Contrasted with the dark wood and white windows these look like happy homes from middle-earth.

Hidden houses with grass roofs

Bellow is a giant building that is the San Francisco science museum and I think it looks quite stroke-able with its living roof and walls. The massive glass panels reflect the trees and provide a glimpse of a reflected sky.

Living walls and roof on this modern building

A grass roof works just as well on a tiny garden hideaway. Perfectly blended into its scenery, this green roof is a happy edition to the glass and wooden garden room.

Beautifully camouflaged grass topped hut

From the urban environment to the isolated wilds – these hidden huts are totally at one with their surroundings, and what surroundings!

Grass roof houses in idyllic location

This curved roof covered in grass looks so inviting – I want to run up it!

Curved grass roof like a ramp

Of course if you want the neat green glow you need to mow your roof – quite a sight I can imagine. But I like this wilder roof with speckles of blue blowing in the breeze. I think I would plant something sweet smelling so in the warmer evenings the aroma would linger.

Long grass roofed building

This is a building of two sides – view it from one and it looks open and welcoming, from the other – all huddled, green and enclosed.  Eco friendly and very, very green.

 

 

Grass wrapped housegrass covered structure

I love how drenched in grass this home is. It looks so laden with vegetation that the house might sink under its weight! A calming sea of green.

Courtyard house covered in grass

Would you consider a grass roofed house? I think our wooden graphic design studio would look rather fetching topped off in green!