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Real Homes: Grade II Listed Barn Conversion

This project was certainly a labour of love for our clients, starting from scratch to create a multifunctional family space for cosy living and entertaining.

The Brief

We were approached by a family who’d taken on the challenge of renovating a Grade II listed barn in Little Baddow, Essex. They wanted a kitchen that could be a hub for the family; stylish, with state-of-the-art appliances yet with a traditional character that would reflect the period of their property.

Open Plan Kitchen Design

The property needed a complete renovation, but we could see it had massive potential.

Mr and Mrs Reeves.

The couple envisioned an open plan kitchen design with room for large-scale dining and a living area for relaxation. After years of swooning over kitchens in our Brentwood showroom, they finally met with one of our talented designers to formulate a design. The couple were enamoured with our Hartford collection, a timeless shaker style design with a modern twist, precisely what the couple were looking for.

Kitchen Layout

The barn’s layout definitely has the ‘wow’ factor with an exposed brick wall, chimney breast, extra-height windows and mezzanine walkways floating above that add considerably to the kitchen’s open feel. A small-scale kitchen wasn’t going to be an option, so every design element inside the room needed to be of the right scale and well balanced.

Open Plan Kitchen Design

Symmetry and balance is a tenet of shaker design, so this level of consideration chimed well with the kitchen style selected.

Senior Designer, Tamsin Reed.

Design Details

The cabinetry, hand-painted in a soft, heritage grey style, was meticulously made-to-measure, each piece commissioned in accordance with the client’s personal storage needs. The kitchen’s sleek storage solutions tuck away everyday items, keeping them discreetly to hand while maximising living space.

The chimney provided the central focus, and we increased the height of it so that it was higher than the wall units on either side, which celebrated the double-height nature of the room.

To break up the open space in the kitchen area, the family selected an island with a contrasting colour to add visual depth and interest. An integrated sink and clever bespoke storage mean drinks and food can be prepared without missing a moment of conversation, and the cleverly concealed wine cooler keeps drinks close to hand when entertaining.

Finishing Touches

Instead of closing in the space with too many wall units, we created a window seat that doubles as practical storage. The window seat is finished in our beautiful muted grey, drawing attention to the stunning feature window. Architectural features such as this window can’t be moved or concealed, and you wouldn’t want to do that either, but instead of seeing it as a challenge, our designer saw an opportunity to celebrate a unique element and to create something special and unique to that property.

The couple selected a stunning Silestone Lyra quartz worktop and backsplash in Lyra. This coordinated beautifully with neutral limestone flooring, the statement island painted in Dewberry and cabinetry painted in our exclusive paint colour, Thistle.

Discover how a bespoke Tom Howley kitchen can transform how you live and entertain in your home by requesting our free brochure today.