The bright side

5 min read


Becoming increasingly confident with her flair for creating colourful homes, Amelia Harvey has given a dated annex a vibrant new look


A fresh green colour on the door frames encourages the eye out to the garden beyond

LIVING AREA To soften the flagstone floor, Amelia found a large colourful rug, while eye-catching artwork creates a focal point. Rug, Benuta. Print, Adam Ellis Studio. Woodburner, Charnwood. Lamps, Pooky

Amelia Harvey never tires of seeing her visitors’ astonished expressions when they first set foot in her multicoloured Cotswold home. ‘From the outside, it looks fairly unassuming, but that is certainly not the case inside,’ she smiles. ‘Behind the subtle green front door, there’s ariot of colour and pattern; it’s quite the surprise.’

This jewel-toned gem is ahuge departure from the neutral Scandi-style house in London where Amelia was living four years ago. When lockdown struck, the entrepreneur reassessed her life and snapped up two handsome Grade II-listed cottages and their annex, located in the peaceful village of Shipton-under-Wychwood in Oxfordshire. Between June and December 2020, Amelia embarked on awhirlwind renovation journey.

Splitting her time between her home in London and the Cotswolds, she oversaw the transformation of the cottages, one of which was featured in the March 2023 issue of Country Homes &Interiors.

‘I spent alot of time living in the annex while managing the projects and became au fait with its layout,’ says Amelia. Built 35 years ago, the Cotswold stone outbuilding originally comprised agarage, office and log storeroom at the front, plus a kitchen, living room, two bedrooms and bathroom. ‘I felt the layout of the annex could be improved,’ she continues. ‘So while my builders, Karl Moore Construction, were renovating the cottages, they did exploratory work here and discovered that several voids behind plasterboard could be utilised in abetter way.

Keen to maximise the bijou building’s potential, Amelia contacted RRA Architects in Cheltenham for advice on rejigging the layout. Ideas included moving the staircase by ametre, relocating the downstairs shower room, and removing doors to create an openplan kitchen/dining/living area, plus asnug and utility room. ‘For upstairs, the architects suggested moving walls and doors to gain abathroom and main bedroom en suite, plus athird bedroom,’ Amelia adds.

Having recently enlivened the two historic cottages with arich palette of colours, Amelia couldn’t wait to put her stamp on the annex. ‘Injecting the cottages with predominantly green, pink, blue and ochre hues instantly brought both properties to life,’ she says. ‘I felt emboldened by these projects, and ready to go all out with the annex’s transformation.’

Inspired by interior designe

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