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Design in Storage

Category: Conversion Design Advice December 20th, 2011 by mbc

When designing a layout it’s easy to forget to plan for storage. With a barn conversion the challenge is heightened (often literally) as we often design in full height, full length / full width open spaces that subsume those areas of the home we utilise for storage in more traditional houses (the attic, under the stairs etc.) into the main habitable volumes of the building.

In ‘A Pattern Language’ Christopher Alexander tells us to give 15-20% of the volume of the building to bulk storage.

Plan for dedicated storage rooms, shelving up through double height rooms, raised cabin beds with large storage spaces above and below…

Snippets on MBC

Rather than my usual wordy ramblings I thought I’d challenge myself to come up with some short gems of (throw-away) advice on how I think you should go about a conversion… Snippets …this is one!

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Maintain Traditions – architecture, design and the local vernacular

Category: Conversion Design Advice November 9th, 2010 by mbc

Consider the local vernacular. When converting or renovating you’ll already have a great reference point in the building itself and others close-by of a similar age.

So, in East Anglia, a wheat straw thatched roof is a appropriate choice just as are brick and flint walls in Wiltshire or a cross-over slate lintel on a house in North Wales.

Of course your local planning office may have differing opinions, having decided on a local ‘style’ – rendered walls with stone corners for example, that is not actually in keeping with the local vernacular at all … don’t forget to pick your fights wisely …

Snippets on MBC

Rather than my usual wordy ramblings I thought I’d challenge myself to come up with some short gems of (throw-away) advice on how I think you should go about a conversion… Snippets …this is one!

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Maintain Traditions, Maintain Integrity – materials

Category: Conversion Design Advice October 11th, 2010 by mbc

When working with an old building maintaining its integrity is essential. One of the cornerstones to the integrity of a building is the materials from which it is built and with which it is maintained and the techniques applied to those materials.

Choose your palette carefully – natural stone, slate, local timber, lime mortar …

Then ensure these materials are used in a sympathetic manner…

Snippets on MBC

Rather than my usual wordy ramblings I thought I’d challenge myself to come up with some short gems of (throw-away) advice on how I think you should go about a conversion… Snippets …this is one!

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Maintain Space

Category: Conversion Design Advice September 29th, 2010 by mbc

Most conversion projects involve the division of large functional spaces in smaller, habitable spaces. But keep the space & enjoy it … allow for a full height atrium, keep large open plan living spaces, divide spaces with furnishings, temporary dividers or screens rather than solid, immoveable walls.

Avoid the desire for that extra bedroom or reception room – may as well buy a new build!

Snippets on MBC

Rather than my usual wordy ramblings I thought I’d challenge myself to come up with some short gems of (throw-away) advice on how I think you should go about a conversion… Snippets …this is one!

Posted in Conversion Design Advice | No Comments » « Leave Yours
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Passive Solar Design

Category: Conversion Design Advice September 17th, 2010 by mbc

The opportunities for truly engaging with and implementing Passive Solar Design may be minimal on a conversion project – the orientation of the building is set and there may be limited opportunities for large glazed openings that can provide optimal solar gain.

But do what you can to maximise (openings) and manage (through materials, colours, blinds and shutters) your solar gain – it makes sense!

Snippets on MBC

Rather than my usual wordy ramblings I thought I’d challenge myself to come up with some short gems of (throw-away) advice on how I think you should go about a conversion… Snippets …this is one!

Posted in Conversion Design Advice | No Comments » « Leave Yours
Tags: , ,

Progress

Autumn 2013

Right that’s the summer over with, now I can get on with some real work without the distractions of other things (like holidays and playing with children, all that enjoyable stuff that gets in the way of progress)… With few major jobs (painting, boxing in – nasty stuff!) left inside, mainly fiddly things that need […]

I’m having a moan on twitter… https://twitter.com/barnconversion/status/368427314868396032

A lovely Flemish barn conversion

I love the interior of this conversion and the great use of horizontal slats on this conversion. I retains the essential ‘barnyness’ of the building… flemish-barn-by-arend-groenewegen-architect

Coming soon, my barn conversion guide… Interesting earthship greenhouse project on Kickstarter

I really like this Kickstarter project >> The Farm of the Future: Earthship-Inspired Greenhouse This project is “Prototyping the First 100% Off-The-Grid, Affordable, Low-Maintenance Greenhouse using Earthship Principles and Aquaponics“. If any of those words meaning anything to you you’ll be interested in the project if not, pass it by… It’s already funded so I […]

Barns

Barns Gallery on Remodelista

There is a lovely gallery of barn related inspirational photographs available on Remodelista.

Barns – the Long House

Situated on the North Norfolk coast, this is a building to admire…

Barns – the Balancing Barn

A stunning piece of architecture, although not entirely to my taste…

New fast-track planning permission for the development of barns proposed

The Daily Mail reports on a new fast-track route through planning controls for the conversion of barns…

De-assembled, re-assembled, re-cycled barns

“A bit like a private sector, modernising, repurposing St Fagan’s…”

Design

What is a shadow gap?

A shadow gap – a mysterious dark place between two plains…

Your barn conversion – "what you really wanted for yourself"

Thoughts on making YOUR barn conversion – "what you really wanted for yourself"

Building Regulations, Approved Documents Part D – Toxic substances

An overview of Building Regulations, Approved Documents Part D – Toxic substances

Building Regulations, Approved Documents – Part C Site preparation and resistance to contaminants and moisture

An overview of Building Regulations, Approved Documents – Part C Site preparation and resistance to contaminants and moisture

Building Regulations, Approved Documents – Part B Fire safety

An overview of Building Regulations, Approved Documents – Part B Fire safety

Architecture

Your barn conversion – "what you really wanted for yourself"

Thoughts on making YOUR barn conversion – "what you really wanted for yourself"

The Stirling prize 2012 winner – the Sainsbury Laboratory

The 2012 Stirling prize was won by a outsider, the Sainsbury Laboratory…

The Stirling prize 2012

I think that this years Stirling prize has some exciting projects on the shortlist…

Our engineers … our architects – Le Corbusier

The efficient, shiny world of construction in 1923…

Design in Storage

When designing a layout it’s easy to forget to plan for storage…

News

Green Deal slow beginnings?

Oh dear! The green deal hasn’t got off to a very auspicious start… As reported in the Telegraph today since it was launched nearly a year ago just 12 homes have taken advantage of the Green Deal with a few hundred more in the pipeline. 71,210 households had been assessed for Green Deal measures such […]

The property roller coaster – planning reform to be rethought

Eric Pickles vague compromise on planning reform keeps the house happy (for now).

Energy policy, smoke screens, fracking, confusion and big bucks

There seems to be only one thing that is certain in the world of energy policy and that is that costs will rise annually above and beyond anything that inflation can currently throw at us. Beyond that, smoke screens & confusion seem to reign. Take the recent news for example… It’s reported today that the […]

Flanking manoeuvres and good design…

It seems that the government are undertaking flanking manoeuvres on the green belt…

Green Deal Launch

The Green deal launched in the UK on Monday of this week. Fanfares? fireworks? a deluge of marketing? … read more …

Plaid Cymru’s Green New Deal promise

The leader of Plaid Cymru has promised a “Green New Deal” to rejuvenate the Welsh economy and help maintain Wales’ position at the forefront of Green policies.

Permitted development extension limits to be doubled

The government is due to announce a temporary increase in the maximum depth of extensions that can be built under permitted development rules.

Lloyd Khan, making shelter simple.

I wanted to share an interview with Lloyd Khan that I recently found…

Just what is ‘sustainable development’?

Sustainable development – with the term now enshrined in planning law, what does it mean?

Sir Patrick Abercrombie – “It is a matter for serious thought…”

While reading up on the response of the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) I came across this quote from Sir Patrick Abercrombie…