Inside the Interior
22 September 2017

Inside the Interior – Country Classic with a Contemporary Twist


This month, Inside the Interior takes a look at how you can make the classic more contemporary. This month, Northern Woman editor Catriona Doherty speaks to Brian and Gillian Hall about how they have struck a balance between modern stylings and traditions in their stunning country dwelling.

Gillian and Brian Hall (who hails from a farming background) had their hearts set on building a ‘classic farmhouse with a modern twist’; a concept that has been perfectly encapsulated in the design of their home, and in the décor touches which have been so carefully selected.

Gillian, who describes her décor style as ‘classic and contemporary’ takes us on a tour of her Newtownabbey home, starting with the kitchen. “I have a four year old and a two year old, and I wanted an open plan kitchen and living area so that I could see the kids play and do their homework, while I’m in the kitchen,” she explains.

“Throughout the house the walls are painted white. I like to let the accessories do the talking; it means if I were to redecorate I could simply change the accessories to add a pop of colour. I think a home should evolve over time as you live in it.”

Gillian clearly has a keen eye for detail, and we love how the home features an eclectic mix of upcycled furniture that has been lovingly revamped, coupled with designer details, and rustic touches such as the wicker basket by the stove and hand-knitted throws – it just works.

Modern Meets Traditional

Inside the Interior Kitchen
Photography by Brian Thompson

“My husband lived on the farm all of his life, we built here to be close to it. As our house faces the road, we added a wing for privacy – it surrounds the courtyard and children’s play area. We wanted a modern farmhouse house feel, so we went for an exposed beam and an oak wooden floor to add warmth. We have chickens and the kids collect eggs in the mornings for scrambled eggs for breakfast; my daughter loves it!”

These make my house my home

Inside the Interior
Photography by Brian Thompson

“I got these fabric flowers made in the colour scheme of the living room and kitchen, and they go perfect in my Orla Keily Vase in the classic stem print. I sourced a vintage pine dresser from Gumtree and painted it in Joa’s White from Farrow & Ball to match the kitchen units.”

Cosy Country Styling

Inside the Interior Living Room
Photography by Brian Thompson

“I went for a mustard and grey colour scheme in the snug area. The Parker Knoll chair was my mums, it had been sitting in her garage for 15 years before I had it recovered. The second Parker Knoll was sourced from Gumtree and I had it recovered too. I opted for an ‘old man’ check fabric as I like timeless classics. My friend’s mother knitted the throw.”

“I found a beautiful designer wallpaper for the good room which was £90 a roll. I brought it to a wallpaper shop in Belfast and they were able to match it; the wallpaper they had was identical and was only £30 a roll.”

Inside the Interior
Photography by Brian Thompson


“For the downstairs toilet, I wanted something fun and quirky, and went for Mr Fox wallpaper from Scion. The guest bedroom is also Orla Kiely inspired and the clock is from TK Maxx. The set is from Emma Bridgewater – I’m a fan of hers. The guest bedroom is also Orla Kiely inspired and the clock is from TK Maxx.”

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