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Elle Decoration UK January 2015

Emrahus VD Robin Berkhuizen och hans vackra hem är med i senaste numret av brittiska Elle Decoration. Läs och inspireras!

Barn stormer

The rebuilding of an original stable block made roomfor this modern, inventive home created by Swedish sustainable-living expert Robin Berkhuizen.

This timber-framed barn in Landskrona, a seaside town in the Swedish county of Skane, is home to Robin Berkhuizen, his wife Katarina and their two daughters, Lia (six) and Lo (three). The building has stood in this spot since the 1800s, neighboured only by a small church and a cluster of about 30 houses. Despite its history and traditional facade, the property is essentially a new-build. Robin, chief executive of Emrahus, a company that specialises in sustainable construction, initially bought it as an investment project to renovate and sell on.
“I ripped everything out and started again, rebuilding the house from inside the timber structure. I should have knocked it down, but the place has such charm that my heart ruled my head,” he says.
“Halfway through the renovation, we decided to make it our home.”
The family bought the house in 2010, but didn’t move in until 2013. “My ego held up the project,” admits Robin. “I wanted to design everything myself. We took down the old stables piece by piece, made a CAD drawing that was an exact replica and then rebuilt.”
The completed conversion consists of two floors spread over 170 square metres. There’s also a separate guesthouse with an en-suite bathroom that offers another 20 square metres of living space and an outdoor hot tub with a Turkish hammam. “It’s an incredible experience to bathe under the stars,” says Robin.
The main heat source in the barn is the double-sided fireplace. It sits underneath the staircase and is a focal point in both the living room and the kitchen. “It turns the staircase into one huge radiator,” says Robin. “We can light a fire in the evening and find that the treads are still warm when we walk downstairs in the morning.”
Robin has added ingenious details such as this throughout the interior. In the living room, he has built the television directly into the wall and in the kitchen he has designed a pop-up bar, modifying a hydraulic TV lift that rises from the worktop. His own artwork decorates the home, along with pieces by his family and by British artist Ian Berry. “I like
the industrial look but Katarina prefers country style. The house is a mixture of our tastes,” says Robin. The polished concrete floors, however, are a practical choice. “With two crazy young daughters running around the place, we needed to use a robust material,” he says.
Upstairs, the main bedroom stands under a six-foot-high ceiling, framed by double windows that are set into an exposed wall of reclaimed bricks. Robin and Katarina both have their own dressing rooms, where copper piping is used as clothing rails. The family bathroom has an individual look, too. “I wanted to create something different, so I used patterned tiles in a patchwork above the bath,” says Robin. “Much of the furniture consists of second-hand pieces that I’ve spray-painted black. I like to reuse stuff. It’s the details that make the design of this house so special.”

I love this house because of the bathroom. I designed much of it myself and its so relaxing and luxurious.
My favourite memory here is of my oldest daughter standing in her boots knee-deep is soil when we were renovating the barn.
My home says that I am creative.
My most precious item is the Bertazzoni range cooker in the kitchen. It’s a beautiful piece of kit and great when cooking for guests.
My best piece of style advice is to personalise and reuse whenever possible.

The buildings surrounds a central courtyard with a large apple tree at its centre.

The barn’s windows are all triple-glazed replicas of the originals.

The extractor hood is from Ikea, but has been clad in copper.

A pair of Arka chairs by Yngve Ekström from Stolab sit beside a concrete coffee table that Robin made. The paintings are both by British artist Ian Berry.

This is the house’s main head source and creates a glass-fronted focal point in both the living space and the kitchen/dining room. The staircase above it is constructed from recycled fencing.

The bedroom in this annexe has a glazed wall through which you can see the logs for the fire piled up outside.

Second-hand furniture is spray-painted black in the bathroom.

Recycled patterned tiles used in a patchwork design serve as a feature wall above the freestanding bath. Robin has also created a separate double shower area situated behind the curtains.

The main bedroom is a double-height space boasting six-foot-high beamed ceilings and a reclaimed brick wall.

Copper pipes are used as rails for hanging clothes.


Words: Jackie Daly
Photography: Daniella Witte/House of pictures
Production: Sofie Börjesson

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