Refreshing the parts

Build your perfect home by extending, converting, reworking layouts and introducing new schemes says Portia Lubbock, who presents contemporary designs to inspire you.
Stanza Interior Design


  • Project: Side Returns
    Homeowners of Nappy Valley are turning their homes into stunning spaces thanks to the architects, interior designers and, in most cases, the planning authorities says Gillian Upton.
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  • Project: Kitchens
    Introducing a new kitchen is a big project and the breadth of options is breathtaking. Colour is huge this year, “The biggest colour trend is for green kitchens – it’s a good base colour that works well with most other shades,” suggests Sam Hart, designer at Roundhouse. And he adds: “Don’t confine beautiful accessories to the living space – be bold and display prints, books and artworks in the kitchen.”
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  • Project: Open Plan
    An open-plan space gives everyone room to breathe and is especially good for family life. Clever use of contrasting colours and materials can create depth within the area
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  • Project: Broken Plan
    Subtle barriers are an elegant and stylish way of zoning areas for different purposes. Crittall-style doors are ideal, so too bookshelves, art panels or standalone fireplaces and media walls. “With the rear of the house so open, clients are increasingly keen to keep one room on the ground floor closed off and separate,” says Run Projects. “This is particularly important for families with young children or teenagers.”
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  • Project: Basements
    With extra room in the basement, there’s a whole other level with which to be playful. “Get as much headroom as possible,” cautions Bygga. “And include as much natural light, whether from lightwells or windows or by the staircase.” As for function, that’s easy, says Ensoul. “Our clients want to bring as much under their roof as possible to enjoy every minute at home with their partners and families. This has translated into a trend for home cinemas, wine cellars, gyms and even hotel-like spas as well as the counterpoint – a fully functioning home study.
  • Project: Lofts
    Opening up your loft space may just give you endless views you wish you’d discovered sooner. It’s the perfect place for guest bedrooms, en suites, a study or somewhere to chill and soak up the views. Simply Loft has other ideas: “Small loft conversions are great for a kid’s room; sliding a single bed under the eaves space works really nicely,” says Helen Wood
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  • Project: Bedrooms
    By being creative with the space and layering luxurious textured textiles and colours, your bedroom can turn into the most stylish boutique-style boudoir. “Many owners are choosing to forgo a spare bedroom to create the next level of luxury – their own dressing area and en suite bathroom linked to the master bedroom,” says Clara Bee
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  • Project: Kids Bedrooms
    Creating a children’s bedroom that can grow alongside them can be achieved by adding quirky corners, playful elements and letting their personality in. “Integrate storage into the eaves for tidying away all the toys and books,” suggests Simply Loft.
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  • Project: Bathrooms
    From brassware and tiling to colour and shape, there are plenty of options to bring life and pure pampering into your bathroom. “Black brassware is very much on trend now,” says BPM Bathrooms.
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  • Project: Outer Space
    The garden is a place to bring your home outdoors, with an outdoor kitchen, a play area, built-in seating, an office and beautiful landscaping. It’s also the place to be planet friendly, says Neal’s Nurseries. “Sustainable soil will become more important. Gardeners will be using more environmentally-friendly materials such as wood fibre and green waste compost.”
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