At the moment we are working at very exiting project in South Kensington and it lies in the Kensington Conservation Area. According to the appraisal most of the houses on this street were built between 1820 and 1849 and some houses were built between 1870 and 1889. The London Bomb Damage maps indicate that this specific house were destroyed by bombs in WW2. Maybe was not totally destroyed in WW2 but certainly has sustained serious damage. House was repaired rather than being demolished and re-built.
The project stems from the customer’s need to increase the square footage of the property. Originally the property consisted of a large room about 5 meters high and a mezzanine, a raised bathroom, and a small room that overlooked the back of the building.
Initially, the main problem was how to connect the various floors, due to the different levels between the various existing rooms, the small bathroom, the living room, the mezzanine, and then above the rooms, the terrace. The terrace is the customer’s favourite place, who wanted to keep it at least the same size from the beginning. The only possible extension was upwards, and immediately it was decided to create an elevation above the living room, creating an additional level.
The challenge was to design a staircase that would allow all these levels to be connected. In addition, the old bathroom also had to be made accessible, which was about 600 mm higher than the existing bedroom. It was not easy to connect the various floors together, respecting the building regulations and the limited usable space. The staircase carves a void space from the new terrace and reaches all levels with constant risers and threads, all the same. This was a real challenge. Furthermore, from the beginning, it was decided to use a roof skylight, a transparent but opening roof, which had the purpose of transporting light inside the rooms and at the same time representing a characteristic of the house.
The client decided to strictly maintain an Edwardian style in all environments, and also in the choice of colours, he tried to reproduce those of that period. Unlike smaller, darker Victorian homes, Edwardian homes were boxy, wider, and more spacious, with larger hallways and more windows. Edwardian homes are famous for ornate decorative details, including floor tiles, stained glass, and wood, as well as large rooms with high ceilings. Characteristic features of the Edwardian style draw inspiration from 18th-century French style, English Baroque, and Victorian style.
The Edwardian buildings tend to be coloured in lighter shades such as light brown or shades of white. Edwardian homes will also be recognized by wooden frames on the porch, wide corridors, and parquet floors. The design has tried to respect this guidelines. Plus, all the toilets, ironmongery, taps, plates kept the same style. Every single detail of the house tries to respect the Edwardian style model. Even the radiators and in particular the towel rails of the bathrooms were purchased in the same early 20th-century style.
The only modernity that have been admitted are the sockets and switches, in general, the electrical system, which however is discreet, and all the plates reflect the colours of the environment.
Construction should be completed in a few weeks, there are small architectural details to complete. but we are satisfied with the result.