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A 200-year-old Michigan barn gets an amazing makeover into a house

barn house exterior

Northworks Architects was tasked with transforming a dilapidated 200-year-old barn into a modern living space while preserving its historic charm, nestled on a 60-acre farm outside Niles, Michigan. Collaborating with a local contractor and a barn restoration consultant, the architects conducted a thorough investigation of the existing structure.

The homeowner acquired the property almost three decades ago and was informed that the barn had been relocated to the farm before the Civil War. At that time, it was on the verge of collapse. A team of local Amish craftsmen undertook the restoration, preserving the original beams and framing, which were seamlessly incorporated into the new home design.

barn house exterior

Painted aluminum was selected for the exterior siding and roof, which mimics wood planks. Enormous crank-operated sliding doors preserve the barn-like feel of this weekend getaway home. The barn’s original silo was preserved to complete the illusion of a working barn.

farmhouse patio

What We Love: The architects nailed it on this project, total perfection down to every detail. The selection of materials from the barnstyle awning windows to the metal lofts highlights the spare aesthetic charm of barns. Overall, we think this Michigan barn makeover is fantastic, especially when you see the “before the renovation images” of how the barn looked before the project team completely transformed it into a fully-conditioned home.

Tell Us: What are your thoughts, do you think the architects were successful in transforming a dilapidated Michigan barn into a livable home? Let us know why or why not in the Comments below!

Note: Be sure to check out a couple of other amazing home tours that we have featured here on One Kindesign in the state of Michigan: Warm and inviting log cabin on a tranquil lake in Northern Michigan and Tour this amazing Scandinavian-inspired modern farm home in Michigan.

rustic dining room

Interior posts and beams were preserved, while the walls, floors, and ceiling were clad with reclaimed barn wood.

rustic living room

The main floor is decorated with a continually rotating collection of modern art.

farmhouse dining room

Above: 15-foot-tall steel-framed windows — installed on either side of the barn – flood the space with natural light. The windows are flanked with crank-operated panels that slide open and shut just like traditional barn doors.

rustic living room

Above: Nestled by the Fond du Lac natural stone fireplace, a cozy seating area showcases a chair and ottoman by furniture designer Jens Risom grounded by a vibrant striped rug.

rustic kitchen

rustic kitchen

Above: The streamlined kitchen features stainless steel appliances and cabinets. Above the kitchen is the owner’s bedroom loft, where you will find a bathroom and an elevator that are concealed in facing structures inspired by corncribs.

farmhouse family room

rustic bathroom with a freestanding tub

Above: In the bathroom, the Vero sinks are from Duravit. The soaking tub is the Aquatica Purescape™ 327B Freestanding Acrylic Bathtub. The sliding barn door leads into the owner’s bedroom.

barn house exterior

A new limestone foundation accommodates an indoor lap pool. The landscaping was designed by P. Clifford Miller.

farmhouse indoor pool

Above: The new lower-level space that houses a lap pool features walls and ceilings clad in cedar. This helps to absorb humidity while creating a cohesive aesthetic with the main living spaces.

farmhouse patio

Above: Over the indoor lap pool, the poured-concrete terrace is idyllic for entertaining. This outdoor haven is furnished with vintage Russell Woodard Sculptura wrought iron sculptural garden patio tables and dining chairs. The design of the steel railings was inspired by traditional cattle fencing.

barn house exterior

rustic stone guest house exterior

Above: This charming house next door was constructed for the homeowner’s daughter.

rustic stone guest house exterior

rustic stone guest house exterior with a covered patio

rustic bedroom with a sliding barn door

rustic bedroom

BEFORE THE RENOVATION

barn house exterior before the remodel

barn house exterior before the remodel

barn house exterior before the remodel

barn house exterior before the remodel

PHOTOGRAPHER James Yochum

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Luella
1 month ago

I love the inclusion of the before and during photos of this conversion! Thanks.