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We gave our Tudor cottage the restoration it deserved

Caroline and Paul Craven invested everything in their dream home, but it took some time to make it perfect

Photos Mackenzie

Caroline and Paul Craven sold everything they owned – including their cars and much of their furniture – in order to buy their perfect home. ‘And then it turned out to be not quite so perfect,’ says Caroline. ‘We’d had a full buildings survey done but it was alarming how many problems turned up once we’d moved in with our children’. This was nearly four years ago when Sam was less than a year old.

Their new home was a four-bedroom Tudor cottage in Wootton Wawen, Warwickshire, standing in just under an acre of garden, ideal for their three children and two dogs. ‘It’s called Travellers Rest and the original cottage dates back to 1588,’ says Caroline. ‘It’s the oldest house and only remaining thatch in the village. Long ago it would have provided food and drink to wayfarers and maybe even a bed for the night.’

The Windsor chairs came from various places such as the local charity shops. The chandelier was from Bhs. Paul painted them in Earthborn Straw clay paint

‘We wanted a project and we thought we had one in that the house was a dated yet traditional black and white timber framed cottage, with a grade II listing and a thatched roof!’ says Caroline. ‘In fact the first time we saw the house, we almost dismissed it as the kitchen was too small. But then we thought we’d take a leap of faith, so we went for it, and had our offer accepted the same day.’

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About Your Home Magazine

Your Home delivers great value, easy to understand, inspiration for home decorating and improvements for every room in the house, in a contemporary and upbeat magazine. Refreshing editorial brings out the decorator in everyone, inspiring confidence and trust by showing how to make the most of their space.