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Easy-breezy modern barn is nestled into a hill

A gorgeous take on vernacular

Timber house built into the side of a hill. Jim Westphalen

This very modern home is modeled after a very old vernacular. Vermont-based architecture studio Birdseye Design designed the house after a bank barn—a style of barn that sits at ground level and is often nestled into a hill—and gave it a thoroughly contemporary twist.

The Bank Barn House abuts a hill on a 27 acre stretch of land in Vermont. Its shape is vaguely reminiscent of its namesake, with a gray timber and glass facade that rises into a gabled roof. The three-story house features a garage on the lowest level embedded into a hill and a main entrance on the second level where the land flattens out. Three bedrooms and a laundry room occupy the top floor.

Living room with wood burning stove and modern furniture. Jim Westphalen

The entrance leads into an open, spacious layout where communal spaces like the living room, kitchen, and a work space flow around an angular staircase built from steel and wood.

Floor-to-ceiling windows that wrap the house are only interrupted by steel beams painted a stark white. The rest of the house embraces a similar minimalist aesthetic thanks to polished gray floors, clean lines, and neutral furniture that allow the green rolling pasture to really pop.

Kitchen decorated in neutral tones. Jim Westphalen
Staircase leading upstairs. Jim Westphalen
Bed facing large window in bedroom. Jim Westphalen
Group of people sitting on back patio at dusk Jim Westphalen