Mrs. Colonial and I are patiently waiting for her makeover to begin.
I’ve really missed writing to you all during this construction delay, so I decided to dust off the blog and clear away the farm goo and send out a happy hello. We are still jumping through hoops and kicking the shoes of those whose feet are dragging, but it is what it is. The good news: progress is slowly being made, AND my enthusiasm for the project remains strong. We have one last hurdle to jump over and then we'll be on our way to renovation/new construction bliss! In the meantime, and despite her dilapidated state, we’re enjoying sharing this lovely lady with friends, and engulfing ourselves in the beautiful nature that abounds.
I think most of you will remember our fundraiser called “Remodeling The Lives of Those in Need in a Home Under Remodel” that took place here on the farm in March. My son, Vaughan, recently gave a heart-felt, compassionate presentation about his experience of working with COTS. After a robust round of applause, COTS presented our family with this engraved stone.
When our renovation project is EVENTUALLY completed, we’re hoping that everyone who attended the fundraiser will come back and join us to plant this stone in the landscape outside our new entertainment space, the “Taj Ma Barn”.
We’re really excited about having this new barn space, so I thought I’d give you a sneak peek of its design. However, before we can raise the barn, we'll need to clear a space, and that means bulldozing this existing caretakers' cottage; a.k.a. shack!
We were told by our home inspector, who was only half joking, that the attic of this unit contained about half of the city's population of termites! There is not much to see in the interior, but if you'd like to take a peek, you can view it HERE.
Okay, now for the fabulous barn!
My first step in deciding on barn design was to find barns that would jumpstart my imagination. The second order of business was to find designs that would aid me in narrowing down the direction I wanted to head. I quickly found barn love!
If the future barn was just mine, and the design was purely up to me, no restrictions, I would look no further than this yellow masterpiece. It grabbed me right away! I love everything about it, and it would coordinate perfectly with Mrs. Colonial and the scheme I have in mind for her.
However, I am lucky to have my awesome husband along with me on this journey, so I have to choose something he would love too.
Sorry, I couldn't help myself. I had to share this one just because it's so amazing. I can just picture this gem with its blast of red up on top of our ridge cozied up to Mrs. Colonial - white farm fence, green acres and all.
Okay, back to reality. Focus Sandy!
This is what I initially envisioned. A typical rustic, wooden barn with front porch, something you would expect to see on a farm. But, that's when I hit myself over the head and reminded myself, there is nothing typical about Rock Haven Farm. Our dream property is located on a premier piece of paradise positioned perfectly, providing prestige and prominence partnered with picturesque views over poisonous snakes and pollywogged lakes. Therefore, typical won't do! To understand what I'm envisioning for the barn, you'll need to see what's in my brain, scary I know, but I promise it won't hurt. So, here's a simple board I put together to show you my ideas for the exterior of the main house, which will affect the look of the barn.
When you visit the farm and drive past Mrs. Colonial wrapped in her elegance and charm, you'll expect to find an equally charming barn!
First up, this lovely white and black Colonial-inspired beauty. Barn Love!!! Perfect choice, sign me up! Not so quick . . .
The Taj Ma Barn will serve many functions: private nightclub, fundraising venue, movie theater, guest quarters, recording studio, and yes, the proverbial "man cave". So, call me crazy, but this barn does not read man cave.
Drum roll please . . .
Ta Da! Awesome People of Blog Land, We Have A Winner!, a.k.a. black goddess. Remember I told you in an earlier post that I have a thing for black? Well, black it will be - the whole barn! It will coordinate beautifully with the main house and it will help to ensure an over-all cohesive look for the farm.
Here is an elevation plan view of what our barn will look like. Even though no one on earth will see it unless they drive up our long driveway, the city felt compelled to hand us height and size restrictions which dictated its final shape and size.
Taj Ma Barn Interior
For the interior of this space, I knew I wanted it to be rustic, yet modern with aged woods juxtaposed with more modern steel elements. This interior will be a departure from the interior of the main house, but I really like that. We, along with our guests, will get TWO different experiences on ONE farm!
Once I saw this space by Wade Design, I knew I had found my design direction. It was love at first sight; oozing with character and warmth through texture and an almost monochromatic, subdued color palette. We'll adopt the use of metal, wood beams, concrete floors, and barn doors. There will also be a lot of wood, but not covering all the walls. I will choose a few guitars from my husband's vast collection to use as art, so our space will have a little bit more color and sparkle.
Let's look at the floor plan.
You will enter the barn through glass doors that will slide back into the structure. Once inside you will enter a center entertainment space with a dance floor and elevated stage at the far end. This space will enjoy a 16 foot high ceiling with exposed ducting and a combination of rustic wood and steel beams. Off to the right, there will be a pool table/dining space with French doors that lead to an outdoor entertaining patio. Back inside, adjacent to the dining space will be a wine bar. On the other side of the main center space are a media room and a space for a driving simulator. At the back wall of this space to the right there will be a sound/recording room that will be enclosed with a garage style glass door. This type of door, besides bringing the "cool" factor to the barn, can be rolled up allowing this space to be used for many other functions. To the left is a barn door leading to . . . a space I can't tell you about right now, in fact two spaces, but I'll share them later when I can.
Currently on the farm, we have many lineal feet of old, dilapidated farm fence.
Some of this fence needs to be removed for site grading and drainage so a portion of it is going to find a new home in one of the rooms in the barn. It will be scraped to remove some of the pealing paint, and a clear coat will be applied to capture and preserve the rustic patina. I’m also going to custom design a very unique wallpaper (hint: it will tell the story of this property and our renovation adventures.) I’m very excited about this feature, and I can’t wait to share it with you when it gets installed toward the end of the project.
I hope you enjoyed your sneak peek of what's to come on the farm. As a kid, I had an old, rustic barn in my repertoire of fun places to play and I’ve kept that love of barns with me throughout my life. The idea that I now have the opportunity to design one and build it from the ground up is very exciting.
Thank you for sticking with me during this looooong delay. I hope summer warmth and fun find their way into every one of your days, and that the beautiful fruits and vegetables from this season’s bounty feed your body and soul! I'll be back soon!