Watching our plans gradually come to to life is supremely exciting. My parting words to anyone visiting site are always the same, ‘Please please send me photo’s the minute, THE MINUTE you get there!’ Every time, i’m rewarded with some lovely detail flashing up on my phone, be it the arrival of the beautifully expansive shaped windows for the ‘Toblerone’ rooms, the carefully chamfered edge on the OSB lighting groove or the precision installation of the milky grey larch cladding. It’s been a crazy month of summer juggling but here, at last, I share my photographic joy!
The Royal College of Physicians recently published the report ‘Every breath we take: The lifelong impact of air pollution’. The report highlights the often overlooked section of our environment – that of indoor space – and sets out factors which can cause can cause poor air quality in our homes and the effects of these pollutants. The report offers a number of major reform proposals setting out what must be done if we are to tackle the problem of air pollution.
Indoor air pollutants contribute to asthma as well as other respiratory conditions and diseases. Indoor pollutants include VOCs (volatile organic compounds) from offgassing building materials, paints and finishes, and furnishings; other toxic chemicals emitted from cleaning products and mould which grows on moist materials and surfaces.
At the West Wittering Beach House, we are addressing exposure to indoor air pollutants starting with the construction materials (source control) and ventilation.
We are using Coillte’s Zero-added formaldehyde Oriented Strand Board (Smartply OSB3) throughout the property. On the first floor we will use this material as a healthy design feature by cladding walls, floors and ceilings in these boards. OSB is an engineered wood-based panel consisting of wood strands bonded together. The strands are bonded in layers in different directions. The key to reducing air pollutants is to use a board such as this with a healthy binder.Ceramic floor and wall tiles will also be used extensively. Tiles are dense, hygienic and easy to clean and meaning that allergy causing microbes and mites won’t get a look in.
There will be enhanced automatic ventilation of the internal air within the building. The problem of internal air quality increases as homes become ever more air tight to meet the Government’s carbon emission targets. One of the key solutions is to ventilate (allow air in) from the warm areas like bedrooms and living rooms and out through the wet areas like bathrooms and kitchens. Air quality is improved by increasing the amount of outdoor air coming into the house, diluting concentrations of indoor pollutants, and pushing stale and damp indoor air out of the home.
This new report from RCP backs up the findings of other recent research, including the BEAMA survey “My Health My Home” which revealed that over one third of UK homes are at an elevated or severe risk of having polluted indoor air.
More to follow as we select the appropriate materials and ventilation technologies.
So, the old garage and extension have been taken down and rebuilt, the house has been stripped back and the ground floor internal walls are up. Most recently the scaffold has been erected and the roof taken off and new first floor created. Now we have protection from bad weather, it’s full steam ahead with the new roof and first floor internal walls. Meanwhile, in the studio, we are very busy finalising details for the exterior roof and wall finishes, insulation material, heating system, lighting plans, signing off the windows….
We had a brilliant time choosing colours with Little Greene’s colour consultant yesterday. The appointment was quick and easy to arrange; we completed a briefing document in advance and supplied drawings and a Pinterest mood board so that we could get the most out of our session. The consultant came to our studio equipped with her suitcase full of swatches and with a great idea of what we were looking for, having taken the time to read through the information we supplied. In the one hour consultation, we were able to cover the entire ground floor, developing a coherent, well considered colour strategy, not only looking at walls and ceilings but also kitchen and wardrobe doors, feature timber clad walls, painted beds and a gorgeous glossy colour-pop oversized sliding door leading from the hallway to the dining room. We thoroughly enjoyed taking time out to plan such a fun aspect of the project and are so pleased to have used this service.
Last night we were at the launch event for the amazing new Domus Tiles showroom in Battersea. We have been recommending Domus to our clients for years (since we used them for the tiles throughout our own home in fact). Their new showroom is absolutely fabulous and the range of tiles is stunning – covering all the latest trends- pastels, handmade aesthetic, rustic, pop, new geometrics, XXL format. Thank you Domus for a great evening and for creating the perfect showroom. Take a look at this film which gives a flavour of the Domus edit – I love them all!