ROOM TO ROAM
Country Homes & Interiors|February 2022
Swapping city life for a rural idyll, Melissa Hutley transformed a dated property into a laid-back family home
EMMA J PAGE

Exterior

The farmhouse, built in the 1930s, is surrounded by gardens and woodland, with fragrant nepeta lining the path leading to the front door

Hallway

A collection of hats, a vintage card table and storage basket add character. Front door painted in Studio Green, Farrow & Ball

AT HOME WITH

Owners Interior designer Melissa Hutley lives here with her husband Oli, who works in property, and their children aged six, four and two, plus cat Miskers

House A three-bedroom farmhouse in Surrey, built-in the1930s, with a barn-frame extension added in 2011.

Most people move from city to country to upsize, but for Melissa Hutley, it took some clever reconfiguring to make this Surrey farmhouse work as hard as the family’s previous London home. Its interiors were no larger in square footage, but an extensive garden, an airy double-height living area, a potting shed-cum-office and uninterrupted rural views easily sealed the deal.

Fortunately, Melissa, an interior designer who founded Hutley & Humm with colleague Charlie Humm in 2013, had plenty of tricks up her sleeve. ‘The house had a lot of advantages, even though its bedrooms were pretty compact compared to our last home,’ she says. Downstairs, a recent barn-framed extension had created a generous living space. ‘We could instantly visualise the children running around, the French doors open on warmer days and, in the winter, the fire lit and a giant Christmas tree reaching the beams. I knew that we could make the space work efficiently.’

OPTING FOR DARK BLUE CABINETRY, AND ADDING AN ISLAND, HELPED TO ANCHOR THE SPACIOUS KITCHEN

Kitchen Melissa painted the window frames a co-ordinating dark tone to complement the cabinetry, while a bamboo blind softens the look. Windows in Railings, Farrow & Ball. Bamboo chik blind, Opium

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