The stone base of a former mill has been repurposed as a raised plinth for house in Scotland, designed by TAP Architects. The new home – called The Larch Mill on account of its black Siberian larch cladding – is designed to reference this history.
Dug into a gently sloping site, the granite mill building was once surrounded by a variety of agricultural structures. Its owners initially wanted to incorporate the ruined mill into the home itself but flood risk in the area restricted any new building to the higher portion of the site. To solve this, TAP Architects used the old mill’s stone walls as a base. This stone base houses storage and a plant room with a separate entrance. The architects organized the house into two parallel bays. The first appears as a linear structure with half its length on the solid ground of the plateau and the other projects out of the granite walls of the mill.
An exterior staircase leads up to an L-shaped area housing the living spaces, accessed from the higher plateau. The Larch House’s interiors are organised around two pieces of furniture. The first is a ten-seat antique dining table that acts as a focal point for the living, dining and kitchen wing. A baby grand piano sits in a music teaching space in the linear wing. Two bedrooms, one to the south and one to the north, feature east-facing windows to bring in morning sunlight. The master bedroom also looks out to the west. Simple white interiors and skylights create bright, open spaces which focus on views of the surroundings.
An area of paving surrounds the entire upper level of the home, opening into a small terrace and garden space to the north. This patio is sheltered from the wind by the place where the house’s wings meet.