A family home, open, bright and warm and welcoming. The house should reflect our personalities and lifestyle. That was the essence of our brief. We spent a long time planning the house with our architect so as to include every possible aspect of our wish list. The site is south facing onto a mature garden. It is idyllic and has a rural feeling despite being in a city. Our extended family live either side of us and their only request was that it be a bungalow and have a grass roof so as to blend into the landscape as much as possible. From the road you would barely know the house existed; It is deceptively private.
When we started we were a very young family of four. Today, we are a very young family of five and LOVE our forever home where we all have a favourite spot. The kids delight in their huge kitchen playroom where they can ride their 'trikes and scooters in circles picking up snacks & drinks on the way! The massive glass doors that open out onto the patio and garden are a continuation of their playground and a haven of green & nature for us all to explore and enjoy. The south facing aspect makes this main living space bright and warm throughout the seasons. The large brick walls that book end the space and huge wooden beams that run across the room, provide great character and age that new builds so often lack. We can watch our children play inside and out in safety whilst sitting in the kitchen having a cuppa.
The grown ups favourite spaces are definitely the sitting room, bar and outside terrace, which houses a large open fireplace. We love entertaining and there is nothing better than sitting outside with the fire, drinking a glass of wine. The doors to the bar open whilst music drifts and a feeling of relaxation settles. It is like being on holiday without having to leave the house. The huge brick wall and fireplace in the sitting room gives this large space a cosy feeling where we relax into the night.
The enormous skylight that runs almost the length of the house provides immense light to what would have otherwise been a dark corridor; Genius in design. The glass is not only functional but also provides entertainment! Wet days where we are stuck indoors makes watching rain drops splash or snow fall, a joy. Clear nights have allowed us to lie on our backs and star gaze, guessing the location of the Plough and North Star. Once we spotted Jupiter! A huge joy to our five year old learning all about the solar system.
The bedrooms are all East facing with windows that jut out at an angle to catch the morning light. In the evening they are cool, dark and inviting for sleep. The bathrooms are all spacious and bright. The grass roof, layers of insulation, triple glazing windows and solar panels all make this an extremely energy efficient house (which was definitely something we had on our wish list). It is super warm and safe. Our architect did a huge amount of research on passive house requirements and energy saving measures to help make our home run for less.
The house has been the result of a great partnership between client, architect and builder. We managed to achieve exactly what we wanted through clever design, detailed planning and great craftsmanship. Concerns were discussed and solutions solved to every problem. We are delighted with the result and look forward to many great years ahead in our new, warm, safe and fun home!
Luise, Stephen + kids