I think that any of us who grew up with Peter Rabbit harbor a secret desire to live in the English countryside. For one London family, this dream became a reality with a 200-year-old farm on the coast of Devon.
When Ben and Sarah Lambert first visited Upcott Farm in 2005, they were so enchanted by the derelict buildings and bucolic landscape they decided then and there to buy it.
The first few years in the country were spent fixing up the main house, replanting the kitchen garden, converting "the Piggery" into an office, and restoring the antique apple press. More recently, the couple completed renovations on the Lamb and Calfsheds, converting these old barns into modern, country retreats where visitors can live out their Beatrix Potter fantasies, at least for a night or two.
Above: One of the couple's daughters contemplates some hens by the original pathways made from local beach stones. Sarah, a professional gardener, did all the plantings on the grounds.
Above: Channeling Beatrix Potter, the storybook exterior of Upcott Farm.
Above: A mix of modern and vintage-style elements make for an updated country feel in the Calfshed kitchen (sleeps four) ;£600 to £1,250 a week, or £86 a night.
Above: Keeping it simple, Ben and Sarah employed white walls, limited materials, and an open plan to create a serene, contemporary space that is still in keeping with the original barns. Pictured here is the light and airy dining area of the Lambshed (sleeps six) from £800 to £1,600 a week, or £114 a night.
Above: Throughout the two cottages, specially cut timbers, fashioned by local craftsmen, and newly poured concrete floors with radiant heating reflect the original beams and flooring of the old barns.
Above: In the Calfshed living area, a wood stove and dark cushions on the built-in couch create a cozy area for curling up on misty English days.
Above: Upstairs in the Calfshed hall, skylights highlight warm wood of both antique and modern vintages.
Above: Lofted ceilings and rustic details create a barn-like feel in the bedrooms.
Above: Simple furniture and a limited palette create a unified look throughout the two cottages.
Above: The bathrooms feature new beadboard doors.
Above: A lane to get lost down: a verdant, dirt road leads to the farm.
For more pictures of the garden and grounds at Upcott Farm, see designskool.
N.B. Looking for more inspiration? See 3082 images of White Country Cottages in our Gallery of rooms and spaces.