Tuesday, 15 October 2019

UNBELIEVABLE Exterior Transformations

There is a whole host of companies, such as the fabulous Back To Front Exteriors, that work the most unbelievable magic on 1970s houses. These are some of the most incredible Before and After shots I've had the pleasure of seeing: a total visual feast for the eyes (and heart!). Read on and see what I mean....


Aren't they amazing? I found myself scrolling back and forth, back and forth so many times that I think I have RSI!! 

This kind of transformation certainly doesn't come cheap - that's a LOT of building work - but, oh, the rewards are enormous!

More exterior remodelling:

Careful consideration is needed before deciding to improve a home in this way. Many seventies houses are part of large estates, with near-identical houses in row after row. A transformation of this kind is best left to one-offs....the kind of road where there is a whole plethora of different kinds of architecture.

Exterior remodel:

That's where this kind of sorcery can really weave its enchantment to the greatest effect. If you're the lucky owner of such a house then the world really is your oyster....

Take Care Till Next Time,
Sarah


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Monday, 7 October 2019

Perfect Painted Modern Country Exteriors....

Last post covered some general rules for helping you find the finest paint colours for your Cotswold Stone house. Today, I'm focusing further, for those of you who are still in a quandary, on my absolute favorites: soft putties and gentle greens and blues.

Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors

Take the example of the painted front doors below. Two very different homes: one a classic Cotswold Country getaway, which, to be honest, would take a bin-bag to make it look bad....but the other? Well, imagine that house without the painted brickwork and perhaps with a thick, sticky coat of old orange wood varnish and you'll see what magical wonders a coat of paint can bring...

Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors


Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors

The paints shown in this post form a perfect blend of muted tones, inspired by nature, which call to mind the relaxed feeling of the Cotswolds, no matter where in the world you live.

Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors

Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors

These colours work just as well when combined with painted render, or, indeed, the smart mellow yellow of London-stock bricks.

Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors

Perfect Painted Modern Country Front Doors

Gentle greys, soft putties and cheerful blue-greens will give you, your families and your visitors the warmest of welcomes.

Take Care Until Next Time,
Sarahx

Images via here

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Thursday, 26 September 2019

How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint

Choosing the right front door colour for your home is not a matter of simply succumbing to the latest fashions. I want you to have a house frontage that makes your heart skip a beat every time you return from a long day at work, and that means putting aside other people's ideas of what's on-trend and focusing on what makes you happy.

Front Door Painted In Little Greene Lead Over ON Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

This is easier said than done with the myriad of paint shades available but that shouldn't make you feel despondent. I'm here to help ensure that the colour you end up with is one you really love. With that in mind, here are some questions to set you on the way to your perfect front door.

Are you drawn to warm or cool colours?
Don't restrict yourself to colours that are typically linked to 'hot' or 'cold' climates. Every colour can have cooler or warmer undertones, (or, for that matter, be thoroughly neutral).

For example, here is a picture of a front door painted in Little Greene's Celestial Blue. Although blue is traditionally thought of as a cool colour, this particular shade is warm and lively.

Front Door Painted In Little Greene Celestial Blue Over on Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

Conversely, see how this front door below leans towards the cooler end of the red spectrum, with its blueish undertones. Try Farrow and Ball's Brinjal for a similar look.

Front Door Painted In Farrow And Ball Brinjal Over On Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

Do you want your front door to stand out or to blend in? 
If you're stuck with a not-so-pretty look then pick out a colour which blends in with your exterior walls so that there is no stark contrast between the different surfaces.

This essentially means that the eye can move seamlessly over the front of your house, without noticing specific details, but taking it in as a whole. Try Paint and Paper Library's Estuary for the toning look below.

Front Door Painted In Paint And Paper Library Estuary Over On Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

Or is your front door particularly lovely? If so, make the most of it by picking a brighter shade. For a smart, bright red, perfect against pale walls, choose Farrow and Ball's Blazer.

Front Door Painted In Farrow And Ball Blazer Over On Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

How often do you plan to repaint?
This is time to be frank with yourself. If the answer is infrequently then I would definitely advise choosing a classic colour that won't date, such as Dulux Gloss Black, which is hard-wearing and timeless. You'd certainly be in good company...

Number 10 Downing Street Front Door Painted In Dulux Black Gloss Over On Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

However, if you're happy to redecorate often then why not choose something a little more daring? I love it that these owners have created a look they adore by picked out Little Greene's Eau De Nil and Little Greene's Garden. 

Front Door Painted In Little Greene Eau De Nil and Little Greene GardenOver On Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

My last paint-picking question for you is this:

When looking at other people's front doors, which are the houses that make you want to stop and stare?
Search out beautifully decorated houses that are built from similar materials to yours, and, if possible, face the same direction, as paint can look surprisingly different depending on the quality of light it receives.

Be brave! Knock and ask the owners which paint they have used....though it's always worth trying a sample size out before committing to a full tin.

LOTS of sample pots on Modern Country Style: How To Pick The Perfect Front Door Paint!

Of course, I am well aware that these questions overly simplify the whole angst of picking the perfect paint for your front door but I hope they have given you a good starting point, as well as an idea. 

For a more personal discussion, feel free to contact me personally, for the front door colour of your dreams.

Take Care Until Next Time,
Sarahx


Images via Farrow and Ball, Little Greene, Farrow and Ball, London Door, Interior Domain Designs, Maison Classique, Welsh Heritage, Sanderson

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Thursday, 12 September 2019

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses

One of the questions that I'm most frequently asked by local clients is for help choosing the best front door paint colours for their Cotswold stone houses. The classic, warm but muted honey tones of Cotswold Stone need careful consideration to bring out their very best. So, let's cut to the chase, and pick out the very best Top Ten Modern Country front door paint colours for Cotswold Stone houses, perfect for those of you who are all of a fluster with your sample pots...

1. Farrow And Ball Ball Green

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Farrow and Ball Ball Greeen

2. Farrow and Ball French Gray

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Farrow and Ball French Gray

3. Farrow and Ball Lichen

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Farrow and Ball Lichen

4. Farrow and Ball Bone

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Farrow and Ball Bone

5. Farrow and Ball Old White

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Farrow and Ball Old White

6. Dulux Lizard

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Dulux Lizard

7. Little Greene French Grey

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Little Greene French Grey
  
8 Little Greene Mid Lead

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Littlle Greene Mid Lead
  
9. Farrow and Ball Pigeon

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Farrow and Ball Pigeon

10. Dulux Heritage Stone Green

The Top Ten Front Door Paint Colours For Cotswold Stone Houses Dulux Stone Green

The paint colours listed here will all look absolutely fantastic on Cotswold Stone front doors: their perfect blend of muted tones, inspired by nature, perfectly call to mind the relaxed but sophisticated Country feel of the Cotswolds.....BUT please do take into account the direction that your home faces. What do I mean by that? Ah, well that would be spoiling the next post!!

Take Care Till Next Time,
Sarahx

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Friday, 30 August 2019

Swedish Country Style Dining Ideas...

On this lovely summer's day, can you imagine this being your al fresco-type dining space? Whiling away the hours, devouring delicious meals and being distracted by the driftwood grey of the ceiling; the sunlight streaming in makes it an easy journey in my imagination.


 In my mind, it's over-looking the most divine Modern Country garden, tumbling roses, and smartly clipped topiary. I'm having a moment for taupe-y grey gingham: small touches here and there make me smile.

Take Care Until Next Time,
Sarahx

Image via Susanne Kings

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Thursday, 11 July 2019

A Budget Modern Country Makeover

Before I start on our gorgeous new building work reveal, I thought we'd step back in time and look at our last kitchen, where the basics where in place for a Modern Country Style shakeup...

I get endless questions about this, so why don't you come on over, sit down and let me make you a drink of something delicious, whilst we have a recap...


 Modern Country Style is all about taking the very best of 
Traditional Country's warmth and comfort, 
and combining with a muted, pared-back Modern look. 
Want to know what I mean?
Where better to demonstrate that than in the heart of the home: 
the kitchen?

Here's the hideous before from when we looked round. 
It was like being in a giant egg yolk. 
Harsh but fair.


When we first viewed our house, the kitchen was one of the rooms that I knew would be high on our priority list to change. I thought I hated everything about it until I realised that underneath the lurid colours and dated decor was actually quite a nice kitchen, waiting to be unearthed.


We decided to keep the beech wood worktops and the cream Shaker units but everything else HAD TO GO.

I was astonished how lovely the worktops looked once we'd finished. They changed dramatically from reflecting the walls in a very orange way to having a lovely mellow golden warmth.


We used Farrow and Ball Blue Gray 
and Farrow and Ball White Tie on the walls. 
Have you used Farrow and Ball paints? 
To. Die. For. 
Yes, they're more expensive but the 
Modern Country colours are worth every last penny. 



 I chose cherry red accents, to perk up the soft grays. 


I love simple blocks of muted colours, 
highlighted by the crisp, sharp contrast of white glossy woodwork. 



We had the boiler moved upstairs, which created a space that was just
perfect for a bit of open shelf action. 


The shelves let me display things that I love to have around me. 
{So I can do a spot of ogling any time I please.}


We don't have a table and chairs in our kitchen, so, in the dining room next door, I've used a paler version of the Blue Gray to bring unity to the two spaces. 


I can never get enough of the Modern Country look 
and its delicious yet delicate use of winter seascape colours. 


If Modern Country is a look you love too, 
then stick around and have a good snoop at the tabs at the top....


Take care until next time,
Sarahxx

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Friday, 21 June 2019

Farrow and Ball Kitchen Cabinet Colours

One question that I am constantly asked by you lovely lot is which paint colours to use on your kitchen cabinets. And, more specifically, which Farrow and Ball paint colours.

I thought I'd show you first-hand, as it were, by taking 10 super-popular kitchens (for good reason, these really are design classics) and showing you the best possible matches from the Farrow and Ball range.

Here are my favourite 10 Farrow and Ball Kitchen Cabinet Colours....with links where possible to my Paint Colour Case Studies.


Farrow and Ball Blue Gray kitchen

I've spoken extensively about this gorgeous colour here on one of my Paint Colour Case Studies. Farrow and Ball Blue Gray is one of the most changeable colours I know. It can shift from this gently bleached grey to a really powerful sea green, depending on the light in the room. And it'll always be one of my favourites.



Farrow and Ball Pigeon kitchen

The picture above is actually painted in two shades: Farrow and Ball Shaded White (top cabinets) and Farrow and Ball Pigeon. This is more of a recent trend and one that I really love. Top cabinets can make a room look heavy and overbearing if they are too dark so painting them, for example, in the same colour as the walls can help them to recede into the background.



Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball Old White

This gorgeous kitchen was recently shared by Mark Wilkinson, my all-time favourite kitchen designers. The island is Farrow and Ball London Clay, a gorgeous earthy brown with sultry bruised undertones. And the main units are Farrow and Ball Old White, which is a warm stony green.



Modern Country Kitchen with Aga Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball French Gray

I love the way Farrow and Ball French Gray can veer to the blue, the green or the grey. Slippy slidey colours, that's what I love. Different lighting? Different colour! Different time of day? Different colour! Just make sure that you love all the different variations before you commit.



Modern Country Kitchen with Aga painted in Farrow and Ball Cornforth White

You really can't go wrong with this gorgeous combination. Try Farrow and Ball Cornforth White on the upper cabinets and Farrow and Ball Plummet on the base cabinets. Perfect for all lovers of grey kitchens! Set it off with cream accessories and you have yourself a stunning Modern Country kitchen.


Farrow and Ball Railings

Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball Railings

For those of you who like things a little darker, a little moodier, take a look at Farrow and Ball Railings. It's the deepest darkest charcoal grey you can imagine. But definitely not black. And it has the teensiest hint of the night sky.


Farrow and Ball Shaded White

Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball Shaded White

Shaded White is another paint colour from Farrow and Ball that veers around hugely. In some lights, it'll be perceived as a beautiful sludgy cream, in others a gently greyed green and in others a rather disappointing beige. I feel another case study coming up!!



Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball Hardwick White

Now this beauty is a serious contender for our new kitchen. We already have Farrow and Ball Hardwick White on the walls in our family room but I just LOVE it as a Modern Country kitchen cabinet colour. Perfectly understated but with enough character to stand out from a crowd of greys; Hardwick White is a keeper!



Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball Downpipe

I'm not mad keen on going to the dark side but, if I were to venture forth, this is the way I'd want to take it. Moody and handsome, that's how I like it {insert hilarious men joke here}. Farrow and Ball Down Pipe is most certainly deep and dark but the clever way that it retains its uncertain teal undertones means that it's never overbearing or dull.


Farrow and Ball Slipper Satin


Kitchen painted in Farrow and Ball Slipper Satin

Let's finish with a classic cream - with a Farrow and Ball twist. Slipper Satin is a gorgeous soft ivory. Not too warm but certainly not cold. It's classic, timeless and perfectly Modern Country!

Kitchens, kitchens.....and paint colours to die for. Was there ever a more perfect combination!!!?

Have a wonderful day...the sun is shining here in the Cotswolds!

Sarahxx


Imaes via Farrow and Ball, ChesterMorris Kitchens, Mark Wilkinson, Plain English, unknown, unknown, unknown, unknown, De Vol, Farrow and Ball

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