Grow­ing fam­ily means it’s time to move on from this for­mer barn

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY -

Red Barn, Bedale Price: £195,000 Con­tact: Law­sons Res­i­den­tial tel: 01677 422400 WHEN Janet and Kevin Stevens de­cided they wanted a bet­ter work-life bal­ance, a prop­erty pre­sented them with the per­fect so­lu­tion.

The Red House in Bedale’s pic­turesque mar­ket place gave them the chance to open their own shop, and the de­tached barn be­hind had the po­ten­tial to cre­ate an ideal home.

That was seven years ago and now the Red House is now a suc­cess­ful busi­ness spe­cial­is­ing in quirky vin­tage home­ware while the barn is now a twobed­room home.

What they didn’t fac­tor in to their live-work abode was three young chil­dren, twin girls who have been blessed with a lit­tle brother.

So the stylish con­ver­sion they worked so hard to cre­ate is now too small.

“We love liv­ing here. It’s sec­onds from the back of the shop and it’s very cen­tral but we re­ally need more out­door space for the chil­dren,” says Janet.

Kevin, a for­mer ar­chi­tect and fur­ni­ture de­signer, and Janet, a stylist, used all their skills to ren­o­vate and con­vert the grade two listed barn.

He helped plan the space and came up with a clev­erly thoughtout con­ver­sion that max­imises light and space.

It took eight months to com­plete.

“We were lucky be­cause the shell was solid, we just needed to or­gan­ise the in­ter­nal space,” says Janet.

“It was ob­vi­ous what to do. We wanted to make the most of the space, so we made it into an up­side-down house, which also means that we make the most of the view of the rooftops.”

The two bed­rooms and bath­rooms are down­stairs and the newly-cre­ated first floor in the roof space is a large open plan liv­ing area with a kitchen on one side of the stairs and a sit­ting room on the other.

“Peo­ple think it’s strange when they come through the door and we lead them up­stairs, but when they get up to the first floor they to­tally un­der­stand,” says Janet.

The decor re­flects her flair for in­te­rior de­sign and the cou­ple’s eclec­tic taste that mixes old and new and puts a con­tem­po­rary spin on vin­tage finds.

The orig­i­nal dark beams and roof frame have been painted to make them less op­pres­sive, and there is a bal­cony off the kitchen that acts as an area for grow­ing herbs and flow­ers.

The sit­ting room fea­tures book shelves and large, com­fort­able so­fas cov­ered in throws so the chil­dren, Maddy and Jess and Ned can bounce, play and spill with­out harm.

“We’ve got a re­laxed at­ti­tude. We like the chil­dren to be able to run around and play,” says Janet.

Kevin de­signed the oak stair­case, shut­ters for all the win­dows and the enor­mous oak front door, which was made by a lo­cal join­ery.

The mas­ter bed­room is an oa­sis of calm, while the en-suite is an­other mix of old and new.

The old bath was re­stored and the new Belfast sink fit­ted on a wooden plinth.

An an­tique, wall-mounted cabi­net acts as stor­age. “We like to keep things fairly sim­ple, es­pe­cially in a build­ing like this that has char­ac­ter.

“So we kept the floors and walls neu­tral and added a few state­ment pieces,” says Janet, who favours James White paint from Far­row and Ball for the walls.

The cou­ple ini­tially planned to sell home and shop to­gether but are now keep­ing their busi­ness, which has boomed thanks to the fashion for vin­tage and Kevin’s intrepid stock find­ing.

That’s per­fect for the next owner of the barn, who will no doubt be pop­ping in to the Red House for in­spi­ra­tion.

LIGHT AND SPACE: The barn is an “up­side-down house” with a large liv­ing area up­stairs.

ROOM TO PLAY: Comfy so­fas in the liv­ing room.

WORK/LIFE BAL­ANCE: The Red Barn at Bedale.

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