Taking a practical approach

The main design concept for this residential project located in London, UK came from the clients practical need for storage. The solution was initially derived as two joinery ‘edges’ that ran along the ground floor external walls – one pushing towards the front of the property into the living room and the other pushing out from the kitchen into the rear garden.

Designed by Bradley Van Der Straeten, the kitchen became an indoor/outdoor space with the kitchen worktop running right up to a new window with slide and stack doors across the back that allow the whole rear elevation to open up. The large, fixed skylight opens the extension up to the sky and lets in the ample available daylight. The skylight positioning allowed extensive height (and therefore light!) at the opening to the traditional and previously dark middle room but also ensures the sensitive boundary with the neighbour is kept considerately low, in line with council requirements, without cramping the kitchen space.

Further back in the ground floor plan, a hidden toilet is incorporated which is separated from the kitchen and sits within the extended traditional entry. A break out space and cloak area was introduced in the skinny Victorian corridor which traditionally suffers from a bit of congestion when a family is getting ready to head out!
Upstairs, the decision was made to change the existing, broken timber sash windows for a thermally efficient, contemporary timber/aluminium composite with modern opening functions. With the assistance of a new skylight at the top of the new stairs, these new windows allow unbroken daylight to filter into each level and down through the traditional building plan. The new windows provide a very clean aesthetic, both internally and externally, blending the old external brickwork walls and traditional room sizes with clean, maximised, contemporary openings

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