If you’d like your home to have that eclectic European style where everything looks interesting and nothing matches, plan a trip to Stamford’s Le Barn.
“I’d always wanted to have a little antiques business,” says Kathy Sachs who has a busy practice as an interior designer with her partner, Nana Smith. When her three children outgrew their horses, Kathy knew exactly what she was going to do with the old horse barn. She took out the stalls, installed old barn boards for a new floor, cleaned up the windows and – Le Barn Antiques was born.
Kathy has an keen eye for the unusual. “I love seeing things and visualizing them in another use,” she says explaining how she markets Chinese hatboxes from the markets in Beijing and Hong Kong as legless side tables. “Rooms often have too many legs between the sofa, armchairs and coffee table, so an accent table with no legs looks more interesting,” she says, with the authority of a designer who has made more than one room look beautiful.
Much of Kathy’s stock of treasures comes from France, which she visits several times a year. “I have a lot of French country furniture that is perfect for family rooms. It’s a family-friendly livable style,” she adds. In addition to rustic farm tables with time-worn patinas, Le Barn stocks wine tasting tables originally used for impromptu tastings in the wineries. “The top folds down,” Kathy says, opening one up. “When it’s not in use, the winemaker folds it up and it’s stored against the wall until the next tasting.” Some might even have a few wine stains. And why not?
All manner of accessories grace the top of credenzas, ormolu cabinets and zinc-topped tables. Kathy recommends grouping accessories, like the French vases originally used for confit. They come in range of warm golds and greens. Hard-to-find matching bedside tables are another speciality. “It’s so difficult to find small scale bedside tables in the U.S.,” she says.
Visiting Le Barn is easy. Call and make an appointment. And give yourself plenty of time because the old horse barn has now been joined by another barn built to look just like it. If, when the weather turns warmer, you feel like making a day of it, Kathy says you should bring a blanket and a picnic and sit and enjoy the high view over the Connecticut hills.
Have you ever visited Le Barn? It's just off Long Ridge Road in Stamford.