The homeowners of a historic farmhouse and barn in Stratham, New Hampshire, who were seriously considering downsizing, initially thought that all they really needed in a new home was internet access and proximity to the airport. But, when push came to shove, they found that they also preferred to stay close to family, if possible.
They could have the best of both worlds if they could inhabit a portion of the 1805 barn that was attached the main house, which was constructed in 1709, and rent the main house to their son. All they really needed to do “was add a wall,” mused the wife.
They approached TMS Architects to verify that the plan was sound and that it could be properly engineered and designed. And, while the historic renovation would prove to be a bit more complicated than simply “adding a wall,” TMS Architects believed it to be a clever solution and an endeavor “of creativity, sustainability and repurposing.”
The crux of the project was to bring modern technology, like wireless lighting control and radiant flooring, into the agrarian structure, without letting go of the history and feel of the original barn.
To that end, TMS Architects was more than successful at carving out an authentic living space for the couple. While the door connecting the barn to the main house was kept intact, the firm created a new main entry via French doors situated within the barn. Floors were crafted from reclaimed wood; Victorian tin panels, salvaged from a nearby building site, were utilized; and the slate of the kitchen floor, mined in Pennsylvania, was chosen to mimic that of the main farmhouse.
The majority of the barn’s interior was “constructed from repurposed materials,” shares the firm, and decorated with vintage treasures and memorabilia with meaning to the homeowners.
With its exposed beams and curiosities around every corner, the new barn home has charm to spare as well as a coziness that, given its heritage, might have eluded a less talented team.
Photos courtesy of TMS Architects