Divide the open space with decorative accents
“To define different zones in an open space, use subtle changes in natural lighting and finishes. Using a long skylight above a kitchen worktop or fixed window for a seating area creates a different feel in these spaces, while something as simple as changing the orientation of floor tiles can mark a soft separation between two areas.
Maximize every inch
“Look for potential in unusable spaces. For the remodel of an existing loft, we added cabinets and storage under the eaves, but decided that the space near an oddly located skylight would be better used as a reading nook for the children of the family. , by adding a shelf recessed in the storage frame. It’s an inexpensive way to create a cool feature.
To unlock space
“We are looking for ways to remove as much unnecessary circulation space as possible. The usual thing to do in a converted Victorian apartment is to bring the two front rooms closer together. But here we have removed the wall separating the hallway and the kitchen, leaving the support beam exposed.It unlocked so much wasted space and created a real kitchen diner.
A nod to the existing building
“Draw inspiration from the existing fabric of your home to create a sculptural, site-specific element of your project. For our Step House, we wanted to create an extension that gives the impression of having been removed from the original building. Stepped steel beams hold it in place, but it looks like it’s the same stonework inside as it is outside.
Area with shelving screens
Maximize storage in small spaces using shelving screens. Exposed structural shelving creates separate yet connected areas within one space. Our Framework House’s oak shelving screen allows the family to maintain connection in the open-plan kitchen/living room, while enjoying its own space.
Find clever ways to let the bursts of light in
“You tend to want to knock everywhere, but sometimes it’s possible to bring light into a space without major construction, which can be expensive and detract from the original fabric of an older building. »
“It may be sufficient to use existing openings that preserve the character, or to create new, smaller ones to let in light or create visual through lines. In the Green House we were able to let the light in through a series of small openings [in the roof and rear façade]in addition to a beautiful circular roof light, preserving much of the existing rear facade and avoiding the need for expensive steel framing.
Paint to enhance the base brick
“If your budget is tight, use cheap basic engineered brick to build your walls, but paint them with clay-based paint from Bauwerk or Earthborn to create a rich, textured finish.”
Add Height to a Period Home
Fraher & Findlay
“If you are in a Victorian and Edwardian building, you can add height to rooms and eliminate drafts by lowering your ground floor level to take advantage of the often generous void below the floors, by laying a new structural floor slab at this lower level.”
Use the glazing to enjoy the outdoors in winter
Gregory Phillips Architects
“Elevate your extension by using floor-to-ceiling glass. It gives you the feeling of living outside while staying warm and dry in winter. In summer, when you open the glass, you feel like outside. Add metal cladding to help the extension blend in with the historic brickwork while still having a contemporary look. »
Leave your materials bare to save money
“Save time and money on interior finishes and fittings with ‘Materials Honesty’, using basic building materials in a creative way that celebrates their honesty.”
“For the bare house [in east London]we left the steel structure and masonry exposed, used glazed brickwork as a backsplash, formed custom faucets from copper pipe, and used self-finished bamboo sheets to clad a ready-made kitchen.