PROJECT BY JAAM ARCHITECTS
A sense of history pervades this wonderful period Warwickshire farmhouse, dating from the 18th century, but the renovation of it was a true labour of love. Bought as the out-of-town bolthole of a family from London, it needed a complete renovation. ‘It was a warren of small rooms but we created a more open plan feel,’ says James Millar, architect and director at JAAM Architects who was commissioned to work on the project. ‘The clients wanted to hold on to the character. They’re city people but they wanted to capture the country farmhouse sensibility and maintain the country feel.’
The extensive work included taking the walls back to brick, replacing the roof, stripping and sandblasting the beams and refurbishing them, installing new floors and windows, building new internal walls, and replacing the plumbing and electrics.
The clients chose stone for the floor because they wanted the look of traditional flagstones. ‘There were some original period flagstones uncovered in one of the rooms and one of the fireplaces in the entrance hall has original flagstones in the hearth,’ says James. Vieux Bourgogne Limestone by Artisans of Devizes was chosen because it was the closest match to the original flagstones and came in a bespoke sizing option, which was perfect for the project. In addition, the client sourced a reclaimed French fireplace for the sitting room that the flooring complements beautifully, evoking a French farmhouse feel.
The limestone flooring was used throughout most of the ground floor, unifying all the separate spaces and providing cohesion.
The entrance hallway has an Imposing original red brick fireplace and the original flagstones can be found in the hearth here. The hall continues and opens up into a seating area with a restored inglenook fireplace and bespoke shelving, which is used as a room divider, complete with two pocket doors. The neutral muted palette works perfectly with the serene tones of the limestone.
Through the pocket doors is the sitting room with the reclaimed French fireplace as its focal point. Complementing the tones of the fireplace and the limestone flooring, a striking Lewis & Wood hieroglyphic patterned wallpaper adorns the walls.
The Vieux Bourgogne Limestone works beautifully in the kitchen where the cabinets, a mix of modern and more period style, were designed by JAAM. The island with its reeded glass drawer fronts is made from walnut and ties in with the feel and warmth of the beams, while clean, boarded Scandinavian-style cabinets line the walls. The original brick fireplace was sandblasted and the client’s must-have, an Aga, was installed.
The dining room, called the Piggery, was completely rebuilt, creating a wow factor space. The walls were very badly bowed and the timbers completely rotten so it was demolished and rebuilt to look exactly the same. Originally it had three floors and the ceiling heights were very low but the decision was made to remove the floors and create a room with a vaulted ceiling. Full height gable glazing was added creating a light and bright space. The striking patterning of Vieux Bourgogne Limestone enhances the dramatic aesthetic.
The versatility of Vieux Bourgogne can be seen in the downstairs cloakroom, with its exuberant feel, where it is the perfect foil for the handpainted folkloric wallpaper by Mind the Gap.
For the more hardworking, utilitarian spaces of the utility and pantry, Marlborough Terracotta Brick flooring by Artisans of Devizes was laid. A radicchio red sink cabinet injects extra warmth.
Marlborough was also used in the annexe. The space is a brick building so the flooring brings the outside in and complements the barn feel of the space. The annexe’s sitting room is colourful, with fun geometric wallpaper chosen to tone with the brick floor and extra pops of colour injected with furniture.
In the kitchen, the Marlborough flooring injects a rustic feel that complements the chalky blue Shaker cabinetry and pink walls for a contemporary take on the farmhouse look.