Advice on barn conversions from Tom Howley and Maria Speake
Having first planned to create a new, eco-friendly building, the barn’s owners Sue and David Mansfield were encouraged by planners to apply for permission to transform it and make the most of the original features.
This spacious, south-facing room originally had a flat roof and was previously used as a garage. Taking advantage of the double-height ceilings, the couple fitted a mezzanine supported by exposed steel joists. ‘The floor is covered with solid oak boards, but the beams are made from scaffolding planks that our builder had used,’ explains Mrs Mansfield. ‘i liked them so much that i asked him to make a feature out of them.’
The couple commissioned Tom Howley to design and fit the kitchen. ‘We were looking for a design with traditional elements, but which would also sit well in this setting,’ she says. The Hartford collection, based on Shaker-style cabinetry, was painted in the company’s signature nightshade, a colour that complements the industrial look of the space.
Low-level cabinetry allows the texture of the brick to stand out and lend warmth; the Mansfields chose a Silestone work surface in Yukon, a near white, to create a vibrant contrast. ‘The space works well because it’s focused on the functionality as well as the aesthetic,’ says Mr Howley. ‘it’s not overcrowded with cabinetry and the appliances are kept hidden, which is great for open-plan living.’
Further industrial touches are introduced through the black over-island pendant lights from Culinary Concepts (01252 852305; www.culinaryconcepts. co.uk) and the smooth, concrete-tile flooring by Solus (0121–753 6399; www.solustilestudio.com). Arabella Youens Tom Howley (0161–848 1200; www.tomhowley.co.uk)