Welcome back to A Story of Home, our interiors inspiration series that shares some of our favourite inspiring Instagram homes and the stories that made them.
This week I'm sharing not only one of my favourite homes but one of the loveliest ladies I've met through these crazy little squares in Insta land, @bealcah_uige_bothy aka the lovely Joanna.
Joanna's stylish darkly decorated home is filled with monochrome, natural materials, pattern & print. It's one of the most unique homes I've discovered on Instagram. So pop on the kettle, settled down with a cuppa and lets escape up to the Scottish Highlands.
House Bio: Tell us who you are and who lives in your house
Joanna MacLeod. Wife to Allan and mum to Lexy and Lachlann. We have one pet sheep called Lamakins!
How long have you lived here and what type of property is it?
We bought our traditional croft house in 2002 The house is 105 years old and was derelict and unlived in for many years before we bought it so was uninhabitable.
Did you fall in love with your home instantly? What was the one feature that sealed the deal for you?
The location, yes! And we were thrilled to have the opportunity to convert and extend this traditional building and to make our family home. Many people build their own homes in Skye as there is so much land here but we always really wanted a traditional house and a project – which we are still working on!
The setting is without a doubt the best things about our home with stunning uninterrupted panoramic views of the Trotternish ridge from the The Old Man of Storr to the Quirang. These beautiful mountains are famous worldwide and have been the setting for many Hollywood blockbusters including Stardust, MacBeth, BFG. We have also had Harry Styles and Kanye West shot their music video's 1 mile from the house!
Had you mentally redecorated before moving in or did your scheme come together over a period of time?
The first thing I knew was the original stone wall was going to be a feature of my kitchen!
My style has evolved since we bought and converted the croft house 15 years ago. I always wanted to keep it as traditional as possible and everything was very neutral but now I’d describe it more as dark and bohemian with a mix of animal skins/prints and wicker. Not to mention my ever growing collection of weaves and plants! I love a good vintage find, especially my vintage green leather chesterfield. I will always remain respectful of the traditional features of the house which I absolutely love and will always work with that.
Where do you seek your inspiration?
Magazines, Instagram and Pinterest but I love vintage treasures and I have lots of bargains from local selling pages. I have picked up some amazing bargains locally, some great mid century pieces (including my £20 vintage Macintosh sideboard!). I try to shop small where I can and love supporting small businesses where you can find unique pieces. I am a big fan of Instagram shops.
What was the first job in your home you tackled?
We kept what we could from the original house which was 3 old stone walls! The rest had to be removed and then rebuilt out the front so the change was significant!
We’ve kept the original house as traditional as possible and the view of the back of the house is very much how the original house would have looked with small windows and not much light which makes it really cosy. We extended out and up at the front with lots of glass to make the most of the spectacular views we have.
Were there any surprises during the revamp/renovation?
We couldn't salvage as much as we wanted but we were able to work round that with our wonderful architect.
What do you think has been the most successful area of your interior?
Obviously I would do it all differently now! but we added an extension giving us an extra bedroom and en suite which was our second room to be painted dark and I've never looked back! It is our little haven.
Are there any failures in your design/DIY that you care to admit to?
I'd have had it more open plan downstairs and I never got the kitchen I wanted all those years ago!
Which is your favourite room?
A hideaway off the living room which is dark and serene and I've created a bohemian environment for me to chill in with my magazines!
Do you have a favourite object in your home?
The stove is a great focal point in the living room and we all love sitting round it as a family.
Any golden nuggets of advice to share to anyone undertaking their own revamp/renovation, did you learn any lessons?
Just to take your time. I made so many mistakes with furniture and decoration that I feel I wouldn't have if I'd been a bit more patient. Don't follow the crowd. Do what you love and want. And remember mistakes can always be corrected!
Do you have anywhere in your home that doesn’t make it onto Instagram?
My son's bedroom has been work in progress for 2 years!!
What’s the next project you have planned?
I’m always changing things and have so much more I want to do although these changes are mainly aesthetic. I’ve wanted to revamp the kitchen for many years and I'm finally doing that later this year!
Do you run a business?
I do run my own business – a bothy which is a cosy and luxury self catering which we let out to the growing number of people visiting Skye. I’m very fortunate that this allows me to work from home and still be around for all our kids’ needs. The bothy is also another creative outlet for me where I get to try out alternative interior design, a bit different to our home!
Thank you Joanna for sharing your home stories with us. I adore Joanna's style, the dark decor, the layers of texture and pattern, all the monochrome and plants.
Joanna has created not only a stylish home but a wonderful Airbnb holiday home with incredible views - definitely on my list of places to stay. To follow more of Joanna's home stories you can find her on Instagram at @bealach_uige_bothy and if you are tempted to escape up to the beautiful Isle of Skye check out the bothy HERE
Hope you've enjoyed our little jaunt up to the Scottish Highlands this week. More home stories coming soon
Bye for now