Journal: 12 February 2019
Wabi-sabi is the celebration of the imperfection. Given the very nature of the cabin – a humble timber-built 1930’s structure – this felt like the most appropriate, sensitive and gentle approach to the interior design.
First we had the practical decision to make; layout, roofing, insulation, windows and doors but when all those decisions had been made, I wanted to add the character and ensure we could blend the old with the new. I love the contrast of the new, symbolised by straight lines and geometry, and the old, perhaps faded, a bit uneven, but with plenty of character.
Labour of love
The painting of the panelling in both bedrooms has been a labour of love. I’ve lost count but I must have painted six or seven coats of white paint but it’s transformed the space from a dark small room to an airy, peaceful sanctuary.
Whilst we had to forgo some of the original features with the renovation we retained much of the original tongue and groove panelling internally. In fact, we revealed much of it which was covered over by past owners. It’s been repainted in the kitchen and I love its uneven nature. It has a real warmth.
I am a mindful shopper – I’ll admit I’ve not always been. I now prefer to weigh up a purchase and ensure it feels aesthetically right for the space. We still have a few elements in the living space to complete the cosy inviting feel I want to create. You can expect to see more in a couple of weeks.
We’ve put our stamp on it.
Rather than include generic Broads images we’ve tried to incorporate our own features – my favourite is the box frames with locally foraged fauna.
Tactility is really important to me and I love Danish furniture, so I fell in love with Habitat’s table and chairs for the dining room. The wood has a rich warm undertone.
We’ve now had two sets of guests and it’s been so exciting to hear how the cabin made them feel. Our vision was to create a beautiful retreat that’s also welcoming through the use of Wabi-sabi principles. If our guests leave and feel refreshed from a stay at the Water Cabin, then as hosts, we feel very privileged to have enhanced their life.
We set out to design a simpler life, and we are getting there…
Watch the renovation.