Thursday, August 25, 2011

Come inside.... The Old Barn

John spends quite a lot of time pottering around in our old barn.  Men and sheds - what are they like?  Admittedly, much pottering is required in here, and, in fact a complete gutting out and replacing of all the timber, not to mention a new roof, will be happening before we go much further.  Now that we have been using this space for several months, ideas and plans are beginning to coalesce and we have some notion of how it will be after the renovations.

Anyway -  John is away to the spring lamb sales in Stornoway today, so we can have a little browse around.  Want to come in?  Come on then, lets have a peek inside.

The barn is divided up into 3 spaces.  This is the first room as your enter.  See - he has a little chair and his toolboxes stacked there, and I notice he has left his flask and a little pile of peapods he must have been snacking on - naughty! The concrete partition was originally where the calf was tethered, while it's mother was being milked.

An old metal bed base was stacked  against the wall when we came - isn't there always? Now it has become a handy tool rack.

More tools hanging on some of these massive iron nails that have been hammered into the stone wall.

Old hay making tools that were in the barn already, and John's scythe lean in a corner.

This area was where the milking stall was.  We think it will play the same role for us too, but all those timbers are rotten, so will have to go.

Above  - sorry it is not a terribly good picture - but there is a hayloft. Again, we intend to keep the original usage basically the same, so a new hayloft we will have!  Love those home made ladders too.

At the opposite end of the house is where the living space was.

In living memory, this was used as a weavers shed, and I have posted about it somewhere - oh yes - here.  At the moment it is a store room for feed bins and our bikes.

We intend to renovate it as a basic kitchen space.  Somewhere to pop the kettle on the stove and take a break from the farm chores.  A table at the window, a dresser, maybe and a small cookstove in the fireplace there. Maybe do a bit of cheese or butter making when we get our milk cow thing going.  Please stop me buying the curtain material now!  It will happen though - hee hee.

Oh - and smoking too!  Hams and fish and things like that, I mean.  These holes in the chimney breast have iron bars set in them, so you can hang your produce up to be gently smoked!  Isn't that wonderful? I surely think so.

The middle, and largest space - well we don't quite know yet.  it has a low partition of the ubiquitous corrugated iron, and at the moment has various old kegs, rolls of fencing wire and sheep netting etc.  There is a large pile of foam packaging that I don't yet want to move, as next doors cat has made a very comfy bed - just right for her afternoon naps when the sun slants in the window.

It will probably continue to be used as a storage area, so apart from the wood replacement, it will stay much the same.  

Of course, there are lots of interesting bits and pieces dotted around.  An old Ferguson tractor engine, for example.  There are, in fact, several pieces of this old machine lying in various parts of the croft.  Sadly not enough to rebuild it, but - well - you'll see!  

See how clean and well oiled that engine is?  I think John has been using the oil can again.  I can see it must be nice sitting there, with your oily rag, bringing old rusty things back to life.  The male equivalent of knitting, I suppose.

See what I mean?  Something to do when the rain stops play for a while.

I jut love this home made seed - erm - can't find the word, but you tie it round yourself, - put the seed in and off you go, walking up and down the field, scattering the seed left and right as you go. A seed scatterer?  Made from strong fence wire and an old seed potato sack. I will ask John to model it for you some time.

There are yards of this rope hanging around.  Before baler twine took over as the main tying medium this was the business.  It was referred to here as Tearlach's rope - (Charlie's rope) after the man whose shop sold it.  Our next door neighbour exclaimed with delight when he saw this hanging from the rafters, it brought back some memories which we were happy to sit and listen to.

So there you have it - a wee tour of the barn.  Hope you enjoyed it and come back again - for a cup of tea next time.  I might have my lovely farm kitchen-y curtains up then too.


  1. That's such a joy - having a building like that to renovate is a dream of mine. So much potential.

    Milk, no sugar for me, Jacqui.

  2. Thankyou for the tour.
    A building quietly living and deserving care and use

  3. oh wow, amazing. All that history and space (something we lack!!).
    I love the coking fire area. I'm sure you will enjoy making it the way you want.

  4. Wow, what a wonderful space.... it's nice your hoping to re-use most of it in its original format :) Lots of lovely history there...
    Sue Xxx

  5. What a lovely tour, great to see so many treasures being unearthed and re-used soon too.
    Hmmm tractor engine and parts sounds like a boys project coming on to me ;-)

    Look forward to seeing the space develop, I can see the changes too as you peek inside. Love the idea of the smoker.

    Lots of plans sound lovely xxx

  6. How lovely to see it still standing. It will be a cosy retreat in the rainy winter I am sure.

    Very jealous!

  7. You are so right about men and sheds, Duncan would like a shed, a cellar an attic and a laboratory at his personal disposal (and no he isn't a scientist, just a bloke lol)

  8. The barn is lovely, thanks for showing it to us. My beloved would love something like that, I would become a shed widow!! x

  9. I love your barn! All the barns around here are of wood. I have never seen on like yours out to stone. Thank you for the lovely tour. xx

  10. I'm in love. I'll be over for tea with my knitting.

  11. All of those things waiting to be discovered, and then plans made, it would be like Christmas's and Birthdays all rolled into one!!

    A little bit envious of the steaming bars, how great is that!!

    Thank you for sharing it with us, a lovely tour and insight.

  12. Wow, thank you for the look around your beautiful barn.
    I love sheds and barns, in fact any outbuilding! It would be a great place for my hermitage.
    Much love

  13. What a lovely tour. I feel like I have taken a bit of a vacation this morning :-) I love old barns and this one was especially nice to visit.
    I'll be back :-)

  14. It's like magic. I don't know how you can get anything done with such dreamy (dream producing)surroundings!
    For heavens sake, just buy the curtain material already... and be sure to let us see it right away. Not time to make the curtains yet? No worries, we just want the vision too... Amazing.

    Blessings, Debbie

  15. I love your barn and your plans for it. It's so neat to explore it. Thank you for allowing us the tour!

  16. Hello again, Jacqui.

    I've listed you as a 'versatile blogger' so please feel free to accept and copy/paste this logo onto your blog.

    If you accept the idea is (I think) to continue the link...

    All the best


  17. I am jealous. Your old barn is much, much tidier than our relatively new garage. We have plans for shelves and workbenches, when we get it cleaned out, but all we seem to do is collect more stuff to store in it.

  18. I have just come over to your blogsite from Chris at 'growfisheat'
    Thank you so much for the tour of your barn - what a lovely post this is. Congratulations on your well deserved award.

  19. What a lovely tour. I found myself wishing that plans for one of the rooms included a little "Bed and Breakfast" can dream!

  20. You can never have too big a shed! Yours looks wonderful. Full of past stories and future plans.

    We made the mistake, in our shed, of holding onto lovely ancient individual cow troughs made of wood - and found that we infested the roof timbers with woodworm as a result..not a good idea!

  21. I would love to putter around in that barn! (I would have turned that living quarters end into a wonderful art studio.) I love the first photo where the stone barn looks like it's a natural part of the landscape -- must be the stone.

  22. Thank you - I am so glad you enjoyed seeing the barn.
    GZ - I love the thought of the building quietly living.
    RL - The tradtional buildings are very much part of the land here.
    Treshnish- what a shame - there are many things we would want to keep, but will not be able to. We even have to watch we don't store new wooden items there, just in case.
    Ah Kerri - we thought about B+B at the beginning, but it is not what we are about. xx
    Debbie - I will be looking very hard - you will all be the first to know :)
    trish - what a lovely idea.
    Linda - Hello - pop back anytime.
    Thank you all again. i really love to read all your comments - and to have you visit. xxx

  23. I hope to be on the Island in the Spring...looking forward to seeing the barn for real!!


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