Walthamstow, London, UK
TYPE Interior Exterior Modifications & Garden Studio
SERVICE Architecture | Design | Fabrication | Construction
We were engaged to help connect and improve the existing spaces of a Victorian terrace house for a growing family. As working, creative professionals, the clients also needed a secluded space to work from home as well as an extra bedroom.
The client had a modest budget and a baby on the way which set a narrow time frame. We suggested phased works, starting with a remodel of the existing house. Phase two was to create a new build studio at the foot of the garden. Moving the study out of the main house saved money and vacated the required third bedroom.
Phase 1: Main House.
We began by opening up and reconnecting the existing ground floor spaces with a warm yet modest palette of natural materials and lots of white. This made the most of the abundant natural light offered by the position and the house be- ing ‘end of terrace’. A neutral colour scheme also allowed colour and pattern to come from the busy day-to-day lives of the growing family. A small lean-to in black timber gave vital storage room back to the living spaces and set a material palette for the external works.
Phase 2: Garden Studio.
The clients (a cinematographer and a producer) needed a larger than usual home studio. We proposed a new lightweight pavilion to sit under an existing Cherry tree, borrowing heavily from the client’s much loved Japanese tea-house aesthetic. This is essentially a concrete box with a blackened timber lid and is sited to receive the warm afternoon light which, when filtered through the shifting cherry blossom feels at once contemplative yet lambent.
Externally, stained larch timber cladding carries a memory of the Yakisugi burnt timber of the traditional tea pavilions, whilst matching the existing garden fence and new lean-to. The building both resembles the ancient Chashitsu and serves as a structural and phenomenological study of the type, which is born out of our combination of architectural and building practise. We designed, managed and built both phases in just under nine months”