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Old mill house gets a modern makeover

The grassy, rolling hills of Dingwall, Scotland make a picture-perfect setting for this old-made-new stone and wood house by Rural Design. The firm is dedicated to “a progressive yet sensitive rural architecture,” hence their name. The architects incorporated the existing walls of a rundown old mill, adding a historic element to this contemporary redesign. A single-level gable-roofed volume on a smaller scale joins with a two-storey tower structure overlooking the countryside. But you don’t have to look far to get that countrified feeling. Weathered stone walls and wood interiors evoke a warm, welcoming feeling.

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The original, oddly shaped openings in the stone wall have an authenticity that takes you back to days gone by – a striking contrast against the modern new additions.

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The hilltop placement of the home puts it at eye level with leafy trees and blue sky, with the stepped, south-facing garden flowing downhill.

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The L-shaped structure maximizes external walls and views. Tucked in the crook between the tower and lower-level living area, a landscaped courtyard becomes the focus of the outdoors and the main-floor interiors alike, visible through floor-to-ceiling sliding glass walls. While from the tower, distant views of the landscape stretch as far as the eye can see.

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The manicured garden becomes a focal point for the main living areas, which are tucked behind floor-to-ceiling glass walls that invite nature in. The countryside flair of the wood and stone facade also makes its way inside, where stone walls, wood-framed windows and exposed wood beams overhead lend this house a farmhouse feel.

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A stone-flanked doorway leads into a charming dining area – the perfect setting for family-style meals, lively company and spirited conversations.

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The soaring vaulted ceiling and modern white walls are warmed up with this wonderfully rustic exposed wood framing and stairway.

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Looking down from the top of the stairs, you can really appreciate the architectural details of this home, with views through main-level living areas, and across to another staircase at the other side of the house. The soaring ceilings and a largely open-concept layout let natural light flood every corner, and enhance the home’s awesome sense of space.

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Upstairs, the home’s contemporary edge is left behind and a more rustic style dominates, with warm wood floors and glass walls lines with wood boards from the outside.
Though this home is quite spacious, measuring approximately 3,800 sq. ft., it still maintains a warm, intimate feeling that you might expect from a farmhouse. Check out the floor plans:

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This design was recognized for its design with a Royal Incorporation of British Architects Award 2012, the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland Award 2012, the Saltire Housing Design Award 2012 and was shortlisted for the Doolan Prize 2012.
Rural Design
via Contemporist
photo credit: Andrew Lee

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