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Digital Subscriptions > Your Home Magazine > July 2017 > We brought period features from the past into our future

We brought period features from the past into our future

Claudia and Stephen used ornate detail to bring a grand French style to their Cotswold home

When Claudia and Stephen Wilson moved into their Cotswold home, made up of two stone cottages with parts dating back to Tudor times, they were charmed by its inglenook fireplaces, ancient floorboards and elm beams. The only drawback to all of its wonderful history was that the rooms were dark with low ceilings, dated décor and a layout that lacked organisation. The couple needed more room and a better flow to the space to accommodate their children and grandchildren when they visited and, with a lot of experience in renovating houses, they knew just how to build on their country home. Two extensions later, one creating a large drawing room and the other a two-storey kitchen diner with a master bedroom and en suite above, and Orchard Cottage has been promoted to Orchard House.

Shaker-style units in French Grey by Sambourne Kitchens, silestone worktops from Granite Planet, and white tiles from Topps Tiles all create a light and bright kitchen, with oatmeal linen-blend curtain fabric from Fabric Mills and leather bar stools, another eBay find, blending in perfectly

They took great care to protect their home’s historical past throughout the six-month project, even taking time to reinstate some of the original features that had been altered over the years. ‘Planning permission for the extensions came through easily,’ remembers Claudia. ‘But the real difficulty was right at the start when we replaced the ugly 1950s concrete blocks at the front of the house. They were at first-floor level above the original stone and first we had to source enough Cotswold stone to match the size and colour of the original so that it would blend in seamlessly. Then we had a nerve-wracking time while removing the blocks because we had to prop up the roof so the front didn’t collapse! Happily the front of the house now looks just as it would have done originally when it was built hundreds of years ago.’

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Hoorah! Summer is here and if, like me, the sunshine makes you want to spend as much time as you can outdoors, then I know you’re going to enjoy this issue. To begin with we’ve got some gorgeous creative projects on page 60 to give your garden the ‘wow’ factor. The cat planter is my favourite, it’s so cute! Meanwhile, on page 66, we show you how to make raised beds for your garden – perfect if you’ve always wanted to grow your own fruit and veg. For many of us, summertime makes us think of beds and borders brimming with colourful flowers, but there’s another important element that you should spend time getting right and that’s the foliage. Turn to page 114 for our guide to which leafy plants will give your garden year-round interest. But, of course, gardening isn’t all about planting and pruning, you should always make time to enjoy your hard work. So why not treat yourself to one of our favourite new garden furniture designs on page 44? Talking of new designs, we’ve gone all contemporary on our kitchen and bathroom pages this issue, from glossy kitchens (p.55) to super sleek suites (p.48), you’re sure to find a look you love. Meanwhile, if you’re thinking of updating your bedroom, look no further than this month’s makeovers (p.24), and if you’re trying to choose a new colour for your next decorating scheme then why not try this season’s hottest shade – Denim Drift? On page 36 we’ve got some great colour scheming ideas to make this gorgeous shade of blue work in any home. Finally, make sure you take a peek at our recipe pages this month, as we’ve got some delicious ways to cool down with frozen desserts and ice lollies (p.100).