Sarah Colgan discovered the house of her dreams by chance and lovingly reinvented it into a perfect family home in the heart of Somerset. A chance encounter and a passion for restoring period properties sparked Sarah and her husband to reinvent a dated farmhouse into their perfect family home.
|Picture postcard 19th Century Somerset farmhouse|
Sarah and her husband carried out major renovation works on their farmhouse in Somerset. They redesigned the layout to include a new main entrance, built a new porch, hallway, kitchen, snug, 3 bathrooms and cloakroom.
|Somerset Photography by Jo Sheldrake|
|A 'Purfect' playground for Jess|
It was purely by chance, whilst exploring the local countryside that Sarah spotted a farmhouse in the distance, nestled within a wooded valley. ' I knew instantly we had found a hidden gem,' recalls Sarah,' I remember mentioning how i'd love to live there.' It was some months later, whilst browsing online, that Sarah noticed the house was for sale. Seizing the opportunity, they made an offer and it wasn't long before the whole family moved in during the autumn of 2014.
The converted farmhouse sits within a magical rolling landscape with over two acres of gardens and far reaching views across the Somerset levels. Although picturesque on the outside, the properties decor was dated. Over the years the farmhouse had been extended into adjacent farm outbuildings, part of which were used as a B&B. Having successfully renovated their previous homes, Sarah decided to live in the new house for 6 months before making any changes.
|The new entrance and porch with its sweeping steps has transformed the south elevation of the house.|
With planning applications approved, work began in the spring. Sarah meticulously managed the entire project, enjoying gathering ideas from magazines to create mood boards to work from. The first task was to replace the old asbestos cement and clay Roman roof tiles. However, no sooner had the roofing and asbestos contractors started, work came to a halt for 6 weeks when bats were found in the attic. 'The last thing I wanted to hear was how excited the conservationist was identifying several protected species. The roof had to be adapted for roosting bats. The recommendations included an access gap and special felt which hadn't been factored into the original plans or budget,' recalls Sarah.
The plumbing and electrics needed urgent attention and involved major work and manpower. The heating system was some 30 years old, inefficient and continuously running, so a significant part of the budget was spent installing a new system. 'It was disruptive and we often had 6 plumbers on site, ripping out metres of old copper pipe,' recalls Sarah.' Finally, after 2 weeks of chaos and 23 radiators were in place and the family could at last enjoy a warm home.
|'I love the effect of a dark floor as it anchors the furniture and design of the room,' says Sarah, 'and balances beautifully the simple natural edged seagrass rug boucle from Clifton Design Flooring.|
The next stage of the renovation was to redesign a new kitchen in a different room of the house. The original kitchen was in a small north facing room which was cold and dark. Sarah felt this room would work better as an office.
Once again Sarah's choice of colour, textures and furniture blend together perfectly to create a stylish, calm and beautiful new room. The natural hand finished rug bought from Roger Oates compliments the grey stone floor.
|The central island unit is balanced by the rise and fall pendant light from The French House.|
|'I love finding simple statement pieces of furniture old and new that are not only practical and stylish but help bring everything together.'|