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Self Build & Design Magazine Feature

Studio Hooton’s Oxfordshire farmhouse project features in this month’s Self Build & Design magazine.

Colour, character and fun

Designed for a young family, the interior of this new traditional-style home is bright, colourful and quirky.

A new build home on the site of a demolished older building in Oxfordshire has been sensitively designed to fit into the village vernacular, using natural local materials and combining classic interiors with an airy, spacious and contemporary element ideally suited to family life.

With instruction to introduce fun, colour and character into the home, interior designer Emma Hooton of Studio Hooton has captured styles reminiscent of classic boutique hotels in the main part of the house and mater bedroom, while in the kitchen and family areas the tones are lighter and minimal but also more playful.

German company Bulthaup supplied the white and grey kitchen units, with a utility and boot room off it. A wide bank of glazing slides back to reveal the contemporary open-plan kitchen/dining/living area, which is separated with a central contemporary staircase. This uses crisp, clean lines and leads up to a mezzanine containing a study overlooking the dining area. Beneath the staircase the TV is inset, with two lit recesses adding visual interest to the white walls.

A log-burner sites in the corner of this open, double-height space, which has grey-washed wide-board oak flooring complementing the exposed natural stone walls.

“The feel of this whole area was to be more minimal, with colour accents, iconic furniture and comfortable family spaces,” explains interior designer Emma Hooton. “The brief for the lounge, on the other hand, was for a more classic, adult-only refuge, for entertaining friends and cosy winter evenings.”

This room features wall paint from Little Greene, and sumptuous fabric on elegant furniture from the likes of Andrew Martin and Eichholtz Lighting was also carefully considered here, combining a chandelier, spotlights, table lamps and floor lamps.

The main bedroom and en suite were inspired by a boutique hotel room featuring dark linen wallpapers to create a calm and moody space with an accent in the orange velvet armchair. The three children’s room all hand fun wallpapers and blinds, with furniture that can change with them as they grow. They have been designed to incorporate plenty of play space on the floor, although a playroom downstairs provides a means to keep toys in one place.

The WC on the ground floor is on the most stylised rooms as well as being the most complicated to design, as Emma explains. “One of the most challenging aspects was the smallest room in the house, the downstairs loo. Getting the layout working around plumbing and site drainage changes was complex.” This has striking blue tiles and quirky cyclist wallpaper from Cole and Son, with deep blue walls and a weathered flagstone floor. These colouring schemes are similar in the classic hallway, the flagstone floor creating a country house feel.


In Detail

  • Kitchen – Bulthap:
  • Flooring – Havwoods:
  • Kitchen rug and various furniture – West Elm:
  • Sofa –
  • Paint – Little Greene: and Dulux:
  • Hall rug – Roger Oates:
  • Hall pendant – Original BTC:
  • Lounge carpet – Jacaranda:
  • Lounge sofas – Andrew Martin:
  • Armchairs – Eichholtz:
  • Zinc coffee table – French Connection:
  • Drum chandelier – Heathfield & Co:
  • Floor lamps – Eichholtz:
  • Bedroom linen wallpaper – Stereo:
  • Owl and cyclist wallpaper – Cole & Son:
  • Tiles in WC – Tiles of Stow:
  • Curtains and fabric – Casamance: and Samuel & Sons:


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