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Country Renovation

Designed by Carole Annett & Tom Carpenter

A longstanding interiors journalist, Carole Annett, is a global expert on what makes a beautiful British home. With the help of her friend and interior designer, Tom Carpenter, she transformed a dark and neglected nineteenth century stable block into a modern country house, contrasting the cottage style of the original building with a bright contemporary extension. In an unspoiled corner of the Surrey countryside, her new home enjoys a tranquil silence broken only by birdsong.

The bathroom is a particular sanctuary; carefully laid out to fit the room’s compact proportions, the Bute bathtub fits perfectly under a window, affording the bather far-reaching views of the surrounding landscapes. The bath’s painted exterior tones seamlessly with the surrounding wood and tiles while a characterful dark finish on the brassware gives punctuations to the room. An open walk-in shower gives a clean look with easy access unobstructed by doors.

“I like the ‘buy once buy well’ philosophy; doing the work properly. The key areas of the house to invest for me are the kitchen and the bathrooms; it was absolutely vital that would be timeless and last a lifetime. I’ve known Drummonds through my work within the industry for a very long time, and it’s a brand I’ve always coveted. I love the whole range; particularly the unlacquered brass and the marble. It has a timelessness. I really wanted the wood detail on the taps; for me, it’s like an old ship.”

The downstairs cloakroom is a favourite room thanks to extravagant details, such as the Soane wallpaper and light fittings, matched with the Drummond’s brassware at the basin and loo. Sensitive to the building’s history, a considered colour scheme gives a distinct identity to each area of the house. Carole concludes, “Even though I’m not an interior designer, it became apparent the more I got into the project how I was drawn to certain colours. And honestly, hand on heart, I couldn’t be happier with the result.”