Sunday, April 25, 2010

SundayStills - barns

One of my favourite shows of the real estate / reality genres on tv comes out of the UK, called Dream Home Abroad. It deals with the trials and tribulations of people who have big dreams and invade the picturesque countryside of France and Italy, buying up ruins abandonned buildings and turning them into gorgeous homes.

Sometimes, I can see the potential in the falling down, rock strewn, property.

Though, most of the time, I am simply transfixed by the outcome.

And wonder why the French and Italians have not bought up the ancient piles themselves to transform them and sell at inflated prices to those enchanted but less adventurous (foolhardy?) Brits.

We don't have any centuries old ruins waiting to be made habitable again.
I would dream of a barn conversion, with a view of the countryside...
but these old barns will soon disappear to make way for a development of large, expensive townhomes.
For more barns, from the many, many Sunday Stills participants who actually live on farms and use their barns, see here


  1. Lovely shots all. It's sad to think that they will tear down such history to put up crap that all looks alike and has no character.

  2. Beautiful photos! I too love old barns and buildings. I guess we can always dream!!! Sigh!!

  3. Colleen: what's worse, is destroying all the good farmland to put up more housing

    SueAnn: thank you. I hadn't really appreciated the beauty of barns until I got back into photography and started seeing good photos of other barns.

  4. Loved your photos. I watch those shows too, especially the one where the English people do the Barn conversians with astonishing results.

  5. Dear Violet,

    Loved the barn pictures and hope the future of these wonderful barns aren't as threatened as they might seem.

    I love watching Househunters International (especially the French and Italian house hunt episodes commonly featuring Brits on the hunt). Sometimes we get a glimpse of the completed restorations but more often than not, we see only the beginnings of the long process. I'd love to see the show you mentioned but, alas, I don't think we have it here. Perhaps with time . . .

  6. Janice: I suppose, in the end it was all worth it, but what a lot of work is involved!

    crazysheeplady: thanks. I really should have been working at that point and not sitting by the dside of the road, waiting...

    Annie: it may take a few more years, but the signs are up in the area. I found it interesting that there were still hay in these abandonned barns.
    the Dream Homes series is on BBC Canada, though I think it may have been on HGTV at some point.

    Ed: thanks. pity I waited til the last minute (really, all these are from this morning!) and it was raining.

  7. Wow, that pink sky in the last photo is amazing. Loved all the pics.

  8. Gigi: thank you! I planned my route to be at this sideroad at the right moment of the dawning. it was raining all night, so was thrilled to actually see a sunrise!

  9. Wow, wow, wow, the last picture. omg it is just fabulous. take care....I love old barns and buildings too.

  10. OH! These are so the light seen through the slats of the last one in sunset...very cool.
    It is a sad thing to see them go along with the land.
    PS...I undated my post today...more barns there now!

  11. I love the big white barn!!! The barn in the sunset is perfect!

  12. Char: thanks

    Chloe: thanks, maybe the rain helped afterall?

    Cinner: this was one time when the photo looks better than the real thing! it was very windy by the side of the road, so was pleased it turned out not too blurry.

    KK: yes, perhaps I should make more trips to photograph them before everything is made urban.

    Brenda: isn't that a great barn! I could really see it being converted into a beautiful wide open space for living.

  13. Beautiful photos! The sky is just amazing in that one shot.

  14. So sad that truly majestic old wooden barns are becoming a thing of the past...these are such beautiful images of them! That pink sky pic should be printed and hung in a gallery:)

  15. WildBlack and Michelle: thank you

    Oliag: you know, I have never had any of thse digital photos printed...
    thank you for the encouragement!

  16. I love old barns, the more decrepit the better.

  17. SAW: I remember driving through some back roads with a friend who thought it a shame those old barns were left standing. she saw them as a blight on the landscape. I nver quite shared that view.

  18. These look like some of the places I would call "dream houses"... lovely...

  19. Owen: we may one day be neighbours in NZ!

  20. I have watched a few programmes about Brits who bought houses in Italy, Spain or France, and they really made me wonder about those people, who were very often unrealistic, had not done their homework, were culturally insensitive to the extent that I wondered why they wanted to live there... except for the fact that the weather was warmer, and they could turn it all into little Britain....but maybe they all settled down?
    I have not read the Bill Bryson book on Australia. I wonder whether it would make my ears burn.

  21. I think the French and Italians grew up in cold, drafty centuries old places and now want to live in nice warm modern homes with running water and central heating. They don't want to tangle for years with contractors and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to live in another drafy centuries old place.

  22. lovely photos! I love watching shows where they go from barn to home! Its so awesome, I've always wanted to renovate a barn into a house....maybe one day!

  23. Very nice photos, very atmospheric.

  24. Persiflage: yes, they all seem to have no clue about the local liscencing, and get caught up in the month long holiday in August...

    your ears may burn with Bryson's book, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and I think you all have a very good sense of humour.

  25. XUP: which would explain the abandonning of these structures.
    maybe they can get more money out of the foreigners?
    OUR dream home in France will not be drafty, but will have huge windows opening onto an garden by a vineyard...

  26. Wilmoth: I'm willing to let others do all the heavy work!

    Nora: thanks. I'm glad the fact that I was cold and wet and miserable while taking these doesn't show!

  27. Beautiful images. Old barns are so photogenic. Such a shame that many aren't then preserved. I love all those British househunting shows too, especially all the "escape from the rat race and live out your dreams" ones :).

    My photography is now available for purchase - visit Around the Island Photography and bring home something beautiful today!

  28. I like the last shot..very nice! I was also struck with the torquoise green color in the first photo..I found it interesting! :)

  29. Beautiful shots all! Especially the last one! Can you imagine the money it would take to convert one of these structures into a home? Far out of reach of most of us...guess I'll just live vicariously through TV shows.

    Love your lovely new header!

  30. Robin: thanks. I think I'll have to go back for more pics. I realized I could wander inside the red barn, but decided to wait until it was not raining.

    FFF: really? it shows up turquoise on your screen? it is actually a dark green.

    Susan: dreams can be quite expensive, can't they!


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