Jewellery designer Grainne Morton and husband Ian Sutherland removed an internal wall to create an ideal space for cooking and entertaining
As an award-winning jewellery designer specialising in contemporary pieces made with antique buttons, found objects, ephemera and antique cabochons, Grainne Morton undoubtedly has an artistic eye. So it may not surprise you to know that her Edinburgh home is as original and expressive as her jewellery, filled with an eclectic collection of antique and vintage finds. ‘My parents own an antique shop and I grew up visiting antique fairs with them, and that’s how I got hooked,’ says Grainne.
So when Grainne and husband, Ian Sutherland, who works in education, bought their Edwardian home to share with sons Tait, now 12, and Otto, 10, plus two guinea pigs, sure enough they chose the house for its wealth of characterful and original features, including window shutters, elegant cornice work, even the original servants’ bells. ‘For a while, I used the dining room as my workshop, but we began to feel that we were wasting its potential,’ explains Grainne. ‘With its original tall, glazed doors out to the garden, the room was filled with natural light, while the kitchen alongside was dark and small.’
Grainne and Ian decided to demolish the dividing wall between the dining room and kitchen to create one room with a much more spacious feel, moving Grainne’s workshop to an adjacent utility room in the process. ‘By creating an open-plan room for cooking, eating and entertaining, we instantly made a much more family friendly space with room for everyone to do their own thing, but still be together,’ she says.
‘We wanted an ‘unfitted’ look for the kitchen, with classic country furniture cabinets designed as freestanding pieces instead of being built-in,’ explains Grainne, who commissioned her parents’ company, Fountain Antiques in Coleraine, Northern Ireland, to produce a bespoke island, glazed dresser, and cabinets on both sides of the Aga. The kitchen is finished with a wondrous collection of antique and vintage treasures that give the room its individual magic. ‘I don’t like throwaway culture,’ she says. ‘Things come in and out of fashion, but if you buy a piece because you love it, you’ll always love it.’
Classic cabinets were made to order by Fountain Antiques and painted in All White by Farrow & Ball. The freestanding design of the pieces, coupled with a vintage painted dresser, refectory table and shelves with original brackets, creates the mood of a traditional kitchen in a Victorian country house. The soft white colour scheme and cool Carrara marble worktops, reminiscent of a Victorian pastry counter, enhance the open feel of the room, while an Aga range cooker adds to its warmth. Prices are available on request from Fountain Antique Studio - call 028 7035 2260 for more information.
Photos by Susie Lowe
Article by: Amelia Thorpe