Project by TMS Architects
Architect: Shannon Alther, AIA, principal
Location: Stratham, New Hampshire, USA
Photography: Rob Karosis
The homeowners of this unique home and barn had lived in the area for years and were thinking seriously about downsizing it. Apparently all they really needed in a new location was access to the internet and an airport. However, the more they thought about leaving the area, the pull of family was hard to ignore so they came up with an ingenious solution instead of leaving the family home.
Homeowners had a concept and a rough floor plan
Since the main house, built in 1709, was attached to a large barn that had been constructed in 1805, they decided to rent out the main house to their son and turn a portion of the barn into their living quarters. The homeowners had a concept and a rough floor plan but wanted to make sure that it was (1) a sound idea and (2) that it be engineered and designed properly. Initially the wife sold the idea to her husband by convincing him all they really needed to do was to “add a wall.” The project was a bit more complicated than that but the result is a wonderful example of creativity, sustainability and re-purposing.
The new renovation maintained the door that originally connected the barn to the house but also created a new main entry, marked by French doors, for the homeowners which is actually located inside the barn. The majority of the barn’s interior is constructed from re-purposed materials and decorated with collections and memorabilia important to the homeowners.
Majority of the barn’s interior is constructed from re-purposed materials
All of the wood floors are made from reclaimed wood, Victorian tin panels were salvaged from a nearby building site and the slate used on the kitchen floor was mined in Pennsylvania to match the slate used in the farmhouse.
A quote, written on a blackboard near the barn kitchen, beautifully sums up the philosophy of this renovation. “Sometimes good things fall apart so that better things can fall together.” – Marilyn Monroe