When a seaside house long-coveted by art director Clare Clarkson came onto the market, she jumped at the chance to rework its interior to create an open-plan home, perfect for her large extended family.

Previous pages & above: In order to create a better and more open space for socialising Clare knocked down the walls of the old entrance hall and sitting room, and connected the conservatory with the old kitchen

In order to create a better and more open space for socialising Clare knocked down the walls of the old entrance hall and sitting room, and connected the conservatory with the old kitchen

Previous pages & above: In order to create a better and more open space for socialising Clare knocked down the walls of the old entrance hall and sitting room, and connected the conservatory with the old kitchen

The conservatory connects to the old kitchen

The old kitchen has almost tripled in size

The kitchen area is spacious and light

The ground floor is an incredibly clever mix of the classic and the contemporary, the rural and the urban, the open plan and the cosy nook

In each room Clare has cleverly combined different styles and eras all put together with ease

In each room Clare has cleverly combined different styles and eras all put together with ease

As with everything in this most magical of houses it is Clare's effortless sense of style that makes it so special

As with everything in this most magical of houses it is Clare's effortless sense of style that makes it so special

This is a house that is cherished, yet not over precious

This is a house that is cherished, yet not over precious

In the basement cinema room sofas and comfy chairs are stylishly arranged in front of the large screen

In the basement cinema room sofas and comfy chairs are stylishly arranged in front of the large screen

The large screen hides behind a heavy velvet curtain

The large screen hides behind a heavy velvet curtain

In the grandchildren’s bedroom kitsch paintings are hung in groups on the walls and retro toys and objects style the furniture that Clare found in a Hastings junk shop

In the grandchildren’s bedroom kitsch paintings are hung in groups on the walls and retro toys and objects style the furniture that Clare found in a Hastings junk shop

The dressing table in the grandchildren's room

The dressing table in the grandchildren's room

A cosy guest room has a patchwork quilt and floral wallpaper lending a relaxed botanical feel

Over the garage Clare has created a guest suite

The rattan headboard is from eBay

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