I've been hunting for a house tour to share with you that demonstrates how neutral faded florals can give the wow-factor, and this Victorian semi-detached property in London, belonging to Leopoldina Haynes, does it to utter Modern Country perfection. 

Come in...you're going to love it! This is a picture-heavy post but you'll be yearning for more!

My Victorian House

Victorian properties very often have a similar layout, and the home of Leopoldina Haynes is no exception....but that's where run-of-the-mill ends. The house is a heavenly blend of contemporary Swedish and French. Remember to practice deep breathing all through the house tour!

Leopoldina Haynes house, photographed by Yasunori Shimomura for Modern Living Japan, September 2013.

Entering into the narrow hallway, the palest of taupe paints above the dado rail, and a chalky, putty paint tone on the panelling below combine to set the tone for the whole house. Period details abound in this home.

Let's go into the living room located at the front of the house. The same paint in different shades is used through the whole house and even the  garden, Dulux Chalky Downs.

Bay Window

Does your heart skip a bit at the little touches of faded florals? Can you spot the Kate Forman Roses fabric on the cushions and lampshades?

Those of you who are especially eagle-eyed will notice that in the image below, there are two chairs in the bay window, rather than the Gustavian sofa that's tucked in there above. And that's because I've been super-sneaky and found some older images of Leopoldina Haynes' house. I found it fascinating to see how the house has evolved....and there's more evidence in the kitchen below further down

Large mirrored panels in the alcoves either side of the fireplace bounce light all around this room. 

 At some point in the past, the living room has been knocked through into what would have been the original dining room. This room is very often on the dingy side in long thin Victorian houses but there light pouring in from the front windows, as well as the light from the kitchen; all helped along by the chic, chalky paint colours.

These prints were bought from an antique dealer in Camden Passage and paired with Venetian frames. The armoire is from Sweden: painted old white set against the mellow Duck Egg blue interior.

And now into the kitchen...

The kitchen has had a side return extension, which fills in the gap beside notoriously poky Victorian kitchens. There is also a small extension to the rear of the house. 

In the kitchen...

The kitchen is painted in Dulux Chalky Downs, a soft neutral with brown undertones. These aren't so apparent in the lighter apparitions of Chalky Downs but if you look at Leopoldina's front door, which is visibly brown, then all will become clear!

Setting the table up...

I love this button-back banqueting seat, upholstered in oyster grey linen (though it would be hopelessly impractical with children - can you imagine the bits of spaghetti getting stuck in the tufting?!).

The rear extension houses the main part of the kitchen in these initial stages.....


I've done a bit of snooping around and have stumbled across photos of the kitchen from various stages of decoration....

Look at it now! There's been a revamp! 

The worktops are now Carrera marble, luxurious white with exquisite pebble grey veining.

Leopoldina Haynes has installed a white La Cornue range cooker and handmade kitchen cabinets from Charlie Kingham Cabinetry in a crisp white (it's Dulux Chalky Downs again, this time number 6!).

This botanical print was sourced from a flea market in Paris and the old seating area has been replaced with another Gustavian sofa with a pillow in Cabbages and Roses Hatley.

Dry Hydrangeas

A limed table and white-washed chairs softened with touches of natural linen on the seats and that gorgeous wing-back chair.

Moving upstairs into the first of the bathrooms...
I love the way Dulux Chalky Downs has been used in so many ways, though there is continuity in that the darkest shade is almost always at the bottom, getting lighter towards the ceiling. 

Out into the hallway....

And into the Master bedroom, which is above the living room, and is the largest in the house. Panelling, cornicing and fitted cupboards enhance the Victorian period of the house.

The headboard has been upholstered with dusted taupe fabric, and finished with a nailhead trim.

Shutters as many of the windows introduces texture into the scheme.

The second bedroom (above the original dining room) has one of the most exquisite treatments I've come across, taking the romantic faded neutrals to another level. Swathes of material tumble down from a coronet fixing above the bed. Leopoldina Haynes used Cabbages and Roses French Check in Beige and Toile de Poulet in charcoal grey on a natural linen background.

Try Annie Sloan French Linen paint for a similar look.

The Gustavian style bed is also given the Cabbages and Roses French Check treatment. Crisp white bedlinen and an over-sized squishy armchair completes the picture.

The third bedroom on the middle floor is the smallest. Cabbages and Roses Tulips and Roses adorns the headboards, and the valence is French Check. I suspect the curvaceous chest of drawers is painted with Annie Sloan Old White and distressed with dark wax.

Calm spare bedroom

Up another flight of stairs to the converted attic...

Spare Bathroom

...and into the fourth bedroom where tongue and groove (again finished with Dulux Chalky Downs) line the walls....

...an a roll-top claw foot bath sits at the other end...

Leopoldina Haynes's house photographed by Matt Clayton-www.mattclaytonphotgraphy.co.uk

Leopoldina Haynes's house photographed by Matt Clayton-www.mattclaytonphotgraphy.co.uk

There is a fifth bedroom but, alas, no pictures! {I'm hoping that's where Leopoldina keeps all her bits and bobs because the whole house is seemingly clutter-free.}

Leopoldina Haynes's house photographed by Matt Clayton-www.mattclaytonphotgraphy.co.uk

Now before you flop down on that bed, worn out from all the climbing up stairs, there's the garden to look at, also stunningly Modern Country...follow me!

All images via Leopoldina Haynes on Pinterest