Inter-War Art Deco
Again we marvel at how often ‘less in more’ in response to a desire to extend a character home. This inter war art deco semi detached house has been re- imaged by architecture firm Clare Cousins. These semi-detached cottages are not easy to renovate sympathetically. as they are often narrow and somewhat dark. Clever design is required to ensure that additions do not compete with the real hero.
In this case the front room has been retained and a rear section has been introduced clad in terracotta shingles, inspired by the existing terracotta tiled roof. We are a little but in love with the arts and craftiness of shingles: clay, timber or copper, they are beautiful and still practical. If applied properly shingles, wall or roof clad, can provide good insulation, are durable and are largely low maintenance.
The tiles have been mitred at the corners to create crisp, articulated edges. A delicate steel fin demarcates the threshold between old and new. As a result, the new work is recognisable and yet the building continues to respond sensitively to the neighbouring house and broader streetscape. The architects have explained how with their design “the notion of a traditional terracotta roof is questioned with the existing roof wrapping up to sheathe the new form’s walls with tiles”. The terracotta walls have then been punctured by contemporary style black steel framed picture windows.
The use of simple designs with geometric shapes and block colour in the interiors allows the kitchens and bathrooms to look fresh and edgy and still sit comfortably with the inter war aesthetic.