Cowieswells is a derelict farm south of Stonehaven in NE Scotland. We were lucky enough to acquire the place in August 2010 when we were moving back to the UK from Norway and looking for something to match or even better our previous, fjord-side home. The farm house and steading (barns) command an impressive and exposed cliff top location with fantastic views across the North Sea. The buildings were constructed from sandstone in a traditional style and our goal in rebuilding it is to be sympathetic to the original design whilst creating a much larger house which is modern, efficient and maximizes the unique views.

Since we bought the place we have spent over a year working with architects, planners and generally doing stuff that doesn't make for interesting reading. This blog picks up the renovation process in late 2011 when work outside got started. Over the coming months it will be updated every week or so with pictures, movies and the odd bit of text. Like Grand Designs but without the suave sarcasm of Kevin McCloud.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

We are in! Mission (almost) Complete

Things have been super busy over the last couple of weeks but on the 26th April 2013 we moved into Cowieswells. Finally!

We bought the place in August 2010, we fixed the Steading (barns) between Sept 2011 and Jan 2012 and we started work on the main house in March 2012. Work was due to be completed in September 2012 and due to various reasons the project ran over by 6 months. I have watched enough Grand Designs to realise that this is fairly normal. Now we are in and despite the delays we are really pleased with the quality of the work done by the builders (Peterkin Homes), they have been great people to work with, excellent workmanship, really friendly and very flexible. We have also been very happy with our architects at Alan Forbes who designed us an excellent space to bring up our rapidly expanding family (this is starting to sound a bit like an Oscar acceptance speak here, so I shall quickly change tack...).

Very happy to be in and very much enjoying having space and light. Small children mean that we are often up early and drinking a cup of tea while watching the light on the water as the sunrises over the sea is the reason we wanted to live here. The house is great and once I work out how to use the heating and we get the sound/audio visual/lighting system finished it will all be very hi-tec.

There is still stuff to do, especially finishing the garden, and there will be more posts to follow as we get settled. There are also timelapse movies to compile and a photo anthology to sort out. In the meantime here are a few pics from moving in day.
This view best captures everything we have tried to do in one photo. 
Kitchen breakfast bar and fire 

OMG - lots of space!

Staircase and stonewall bringing together the old and the new 

Living room with a fine view eastward out to sea.

Utility room. Raised washer and drier so I don't have to bend to do the washing - part of getting old!

One of my favourite spots in the house

Big bath in main bathroom - the girls love it! 

The bothy, almost ready for guests 

Another view of the bothy.