Removing the scars of previous extensions
Rustlings is a Carver-built bungalow that has been extended no fewer than six times in its life. Unfortunately many of these were done very cheaply, with the result that although the property boasted over 3,000 square feet of space, it just didn't work, with odd corridors, boxy rooms and a distinct feeling of being cramped.
James & Brooke admitted that they bought the garden and location rather than the house, and after playing around with ideas for several months, asked us to do a design consultation to come up with ideas to pull the whole space together. They had gone through many ideas, but kept hitting the same problem - they couldn't make the whole thing gel, but we did see a way.
Bifolds to the rear deck area developed the potential for summer living
Creating a single roof opened up an exciting leisure space, with shwoer room
"We'd gone round in so many circles we were tempted to tear it down and start again!”
The first stage in the design consult was to walk through the house discussing how they wanted to live in it and establish the parameters that would drive the redesign. One of the things they loved most was the outside space, with the deck area overlooking the garden. Creating the opportunity to open this up and bring the outside in was very exciting, so we started by working out how that could be achieved,
It then became clear that Brooke wanted a big kitchen with separate rooms for the dog and utility. With his City job and daily commute, James often finds his gym time restricted by work, so he was keen to find a way to include that in the mix. Finally they wanted to have large open family/ dining space so they could entertain friends and family - one Christmas saw them with 24 guests, so space really did matter.
"Once we could see the ideas taking shape we got very excited, especially when we realised that for a relatively modest build budget we could achieve everything we wanted."
The solution to all the problems lay in moving two external walls by just 1.8 metres, and building a complete new roof across the kitchen, utility, and garage which would allow for a dedicated staircase to the new leisure space. The clever part was to curve the front wall and roof so that the whole thing became one unit. THis was needed as the existing garage was out of alignment to the main house.
We took the idea from Oast houses in Kent where the entire roof is built in a curve, and were able to show that while the outside would have a curve, internally it would appear perfectly square.
We produced design details showing the complex roof structure
The finished result blends in perfectly
Despite yielding nearly 700 square feet of extra usable space and redesigning much of the ground floor to incorporate a large cloakroom, cloaks cupboard, new kitchen and utility area, as well as the open plan living/dining space, the final build cost came in below £1200 per sq.m. This was because we were able to take advantage of existing walls for 90% of the build, and achieved the major redesign by moving internal walls and creating the sweeping new roof.
The success of this project shows that you don't always have to follow the conventional approach to deliver an outstanding result. Even though there is no heritage of curved roof building in West Sussex, by using knowledge from other builds we were able to guide the builders and deliver an outstanding result for two vey happy clients .