Few find what they want in life right under their noses and some of us have to travel a lifetime and many miles to find what we are looking for. But Madeline hasn’t even had to step foot outside the village she grew up in to find her heart’s desires.

Warm and friendly red is the accent colour in the kitchen in the form of vintage kitchen chairs and the quirky bits and bobs that Madeline has found at collector’s fairs and boot sales. “Old and original are the best. I love old fabrics and I’m really guided by colour. Red is my favourite,” she says.

Warm and friendly red is the accent colour in the kitchen in the form of vintage kitchen chairs and the quirky bits and bobs that Madeline has found at collector’s fairs and boot sales. “Old and original are the best. I love old fabrics and I’m really guided by colour. Red is my favourite,” she says.

The sitting room. Throughout the house, Madeline has managed to create carefully contrived arrangements and collections of quirky objects: everything from shoes to shopping bags

The sitting room. Throughout the house, Madeline has managed to create carefully contrived arrangements and collections of quirky objects: everything from shoes to shopping bags

Madeline’s West Highland Terrier, Hattie, curls up on the top of a sofa

Madeline’s West Highland Terrier, Hattie, curls up on the top of a sofa

There are small careful piles of vintage fabric all over the place and Madeline has a knack of turning the most unassuming lump of furniture into a charming period piece just by throwing a scrap of old fabric over it

There are small careful piles of vintage fabric all over the place and Madeline has a knack of turning the most unassuming lump of furniture into a charming period piece just by throwing a scrap of old fabric over it

A panel, assumed to have been painted by Sutherland himself, stretches down the edge of a wall in the sitting room

A panel, assumed to have been painted by Sutherland himself, stretches down the edge of a wall in the sitting room

A corridor leading off from one corner of the sitting room leads to a more formal drawing room, its panelled walls decorated in a soft eau de nil

A corridor leading off from one corner of the sitting room leads to a more formal drawing room, its panelled walls decorated in a soft eau de nil

The oak-framed garden room extension at the back of the house brings a wonderful feeling of light and height to the ground floor. The weatherboarding has been removed from what would have been the outside wall, exposing original timber frame and the old bricks, which makes them into a charming feature of the room

The oak-framed garden room extension at the back of the house brings a wonderful feeling of light and height to the ground floor. The weatherboarding has been removed from what would have been the outside wall, exposing original timber frame and the old bricks, which makes them into a charming feature of the room

The bedrooms are full of vintage charm, with wonderful old patchwork quilts being used as wall hangings. On the beds are glorious quilts and, dotted among hats, scarves and bedroom bits and bobs are yet more neat piles of quaint old fabrics

The bedrooms are full of vintage charm, with wonderful old patchwork quilts being used as wall hangings. On the beds are glorious quilts and, dotted among hats, scarves and bedroom bits and bobs are yet more neat piles of quaint old fabrics

A corner of the master bedroom displays more of Madeline’s carefully considered collections, grouped together paying meticulous attention to colour

A corner of the master bedroom displays more of Madeline’s carefully considered collections, grouped together paying meticulous attention to colour

There has been a little judicious whitewashing at the White House. Just here and there the normally dark wooden beams and other exposed timbers have been painted in soft white shades

There has been a little judicious whitewashing at the White House. Just here and there the normally dark wooden beams and other exposed timbers have been painted in soft white shades

In the spare room, an intricate quilt has been used to create a wonderful wall hanging behind the head of the bed. Collections of neatly arranged objects line the shelves and the pale beams give the optical illusion of raising the ceiling height

In the spare room, an intricate quilt has been used to create a wonderful wall hanging behind the head of the bed. Collections of neatly arranged objects line the shelves and the pale beams give the optical illusion of raising the ceiling height

The beams bring such an irresistible charm to the rooms that even after endlessly bumping into them on your way to one of the upstairs bathrooms, you would manage to rub your head cheerfully and climb on through

The beams bring such an irresistible charm to the rooms that even after endlessly bumping into them on your way to one of the upstairs bathrooms, you would manage to rub your head cheerfully and climb on through

In complementary contrast to the warm reds used to paint the second of the two bathrooms, the first features crisp whites with shimmering highlights of gold

In complementary contrast to the warm reds used to paint the second of the two bathrooms, the first features crisp whites with shimmering highlights of gold

Madeline’s workroom is artfully packed with cushions and fabrics, ribbons and buttons, irons and ironing boards

Madeline’s workroom is artfully packed with cushions and fabrics, ribbons and buttons, irons and ironing boards

The top floor of the White House is used mainly for storage. One room houses Madeline’s extensive collection of vintage clothing and accessories

The top floor of the White House is used mainly for storage. One room houses Madeline’s extensive collection of vintage clothing and accessories

  • words:
  • pictures: David Merewether
  • styling: Lucy Fleming

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