The Big Barn – A Modern Family Retreat Inspired By Its Rustic Surroundings

After purchasing a piece of land in Northern San Francisco, the owners asked studio Faulkner Architects to help them build their new home, a large 4,000 square foot structure which they dubbed The Big Barn. There was already a farmstead on the site, an old, abandoned barn from the 1950s.

The Big Barn has a clean and simple geometry and is partially clad in reclaimed woodView in gallery
The Big Barn has a clean and simple geometry and is partially clad in reclaimed wood

The architects used it as a source of inspiration for the design of the new structure, while also being inspired by the town’s agricultural history, the neighboring houses and the surroundings in general. At the same time, one of their main objectives was to turn this into a sustainable retreat with a modern design and structure. The result is an eclectic building with lots of character.

The asymmetrical roof shape gives the house a quirky and modern allureView in gallery
The asymmetrical roof shape gives the house a quirky and modern allure
A fireplace and a chimney were incorporated into the design although they're not typically found in barnsView in gallery
A fireplace and a chimney were incorporated into the design although they’re not typically found in barns

The new barn has a simple and rectangular footprint, with volumes that slightly cantilever on one side over the hillside and an asymmetrical gable roof to top it all off. As mentioned before, it draws inspiration from the existing old barn and other neighboring structures but at the same time follows a minimalistic overall aesthetic. On the outside it’s clad in reclaimed wood and corten steel and its openings are quite peculiar. On the sides, tall and narrow windows with shutters and recessed into the walls the same as the entrance and there’s a big glazed section in one of the corners which opens the living areas to the serene views. Inside, the design makes use of natural materials and earthy colors and thus the spaces has a modern farmhouse-inspired vibe.

The house is mostly closed off and its openings are generally very narrowView in gallery
The house is mostly closed off and its openings are generally very narrow
The main social areas are gathered into a large open space with large windowsView in gallery
The main social areas are gathered into a large open space with large windows
The windows wrap around the corner and have farmhouse-inspired metal framesView in gallery
The windows wrap around the corner and have farmhouse-inspired metal frames
The palette of materials and colors used inside the house is generally inspired by nature and the surrounding topographyView in gallery
The palette of materials and colors used inside the house is generally inspired by nature and the surrounding topography
The tall vertical windows have wooden shutters which fit seamlessly within the facadesView in gallery
The tall vertical windows have wooden shutters which fit seamlessly within the facades
A section of the barn cantilevers slightly over the sloping hillsideView in gallery
A section of the barn cantilevers slightly over the sloping hillside
Corten steel was used extensively toegther with weathered wood for the house's exteriorView in gallery
Corten steel was used extensively toegther with weathered wood for the house’s exterior
The Big Barn fits naturally into its surroundings by blending the old and the newView in gallery
The Big Barn fits naturally into its surroundings by blending the old and the new