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Rear garden extension with sliding doors

Garden Extensions: Expand Your Horizon

25 October 2023
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Garden Extensions: Expand Your Horizon

Corner view of garden extension with sliding doors when open

ODC Project: Four sets of sliding doors mean access to the outside from every room in this home’s transformational garden extension

When it comes to homes in the UK, space is a prized commodity. Many of us want to expand our living areas, and garden extensions or garden rooms have become a popular solution. They not only create extra room, but for owners of homes with more traditional layouts and the original window openings, a garden extension with contemporary glazing is a way to enjoy a space to relax space year-round.

Expanding Space, Embracing Nature

ODC SL700 sliding doors for rear garden extension

ODC Project: A rear garden extension featuring three panel sliding system which glides back to allow life to flow to the outside

Many mid-century homes have separate reception rooms with access to the garden via French windows, a back door or utility room. However, as our families grow and modern living demands extra living space, these homes can feel a bit confined. This is where garden extensions come to the rescue, offering a more open plan interior together with a seamless blend of indoor and outdoor living.

Glazing that Transforms Spaces

Glass extension opens up mid-century home

ODC Project: Large rear garden extension for mid-century detached home creates a contemporary space for its owners

Garden room extensions have the potential to transform the feel of your home, and architectural glazing plays an essential role in achieving this. Glass walls and sliding doors are a perfect choice for many older homes. Here’s why:

Abundant Natural Light:
Installing glass walls and sliding doors in garden extensions not only create an appealing aesthetic, it also floods the space with natural light, making the interior feel even more airy, spacious and welcoming.

Seamless Integration:
The beauty of glass walls and sliding doors is that they create a fluid transition between indoor and outdoor spaces. This connectivity lets you enjoy your garden’s sights and sounds from the comfort of your home, creating a tranquil and relaxing atmosphere.

Energy Efficiency:
Modern glazing technology provides excellent insulation. It helps maintain a comfortable temperature inside your garden extension throughout the year, reducing energy costs and making your home more sustainable.

A Design Update:
Glass walls and sliding doors add a touch of contemporary design to your home. They complement its architectural style while simultaneously bringing it into the 21st century.

Your Garden Extension: Exterior Finishes that Harmonise

ODC SL800 aluminium sliding system for garden extension

ODC Project: Brick extension with two panel SL800 sliding system won a London’s Best Home Extensions category in the Don’t Move, Improve Awards

When considering the overall look of your garden extension, your architect will no doubt suggest an exterior finish that complements the existing structure and that echoes the original home’s design. Wood cladding, painted render, or brick can be used to create a harmonious exterior that respects your home’s aesthetic. However, a predominantly glass extension is a solution; glass works with all architectural styles.

Matching the colour palette of the garden extension with that of the main house helps unify the two structures and are definitely a plus when obtaining planning permission. Neutral, subtle tones are often the best choice to maintain a timeless look. Powder-coated aluminium frames can be colour-matched to the windows and doors of your existing house or you can opt for more contemporary, fresh contrast colour.

Sometimes, a garden extension is an opportunity to update all the glazing for a contemporary facelift; architectural glazing designers will be able to offer bespoke high performance window solutions for all openings whatever their size, with the latest energy efficiency ratings, a choice of opening mechanisms, and with the highest security standards.

Garden Extension Flooring: Flow and Flush Thresholds

Flush thresholds and choice of flooring create flow to the outside

ODC Project: Carefully chosen flooring materials create flow to the outside for this large L-shaped garden extension and garage conversion

We do see and photograph many garden extensions in our work as designers and installers, and it’s always great to see the final finished interior, often completed many months after we have been and gone! We install our sliding and bifold doors at specified levels to ensure the thresholds will be perfectly flush with the planned internal floor levels and the final external patio and terrace levels. Often the homeowners’ choice of flooring and hard landscaping is key to creating a space that flows. Here’s what works in our experience:

Natural Materials:
If your home features traditional natural materials like hardwood floors, extending this material choice into the garden extension can provide a seamless transition and a warm, inviting atmosphere.

Porcelain Tiles:
Made from extremely tough ceramic porcelain, tiles are a practical choice for garden extensions, as they are durable, easy to clean, and available in a variety of finishes that capture the look of natural stone, marble and wood.

Underfloor Heating:
In the UK’s cooler climate, underfloor heating is an excellent addition to garden extensions. It ensures that the space remains comfortable throughout the year, allowing you to enjoy your garden views even during the colder months.

Garden extensions are a fantastic way to enhance the living experience in many UK homes. The choice of glazing, exterior finishes, and flooring plays a pivotal role in creating a space that achieves that desirable indoor and outdoor living lifestyle. When executed with attention to detail and respect for the home’s original design, your garden extension can add both value and charm to your property, providing you with a bright and connected oasis that becomes the heart of your home.

If you have initial drawings for a garden extension, or you’ve just started discussions with your architect about ideas, please get in touch – it’s never too early to ask for our expertise, and it will give us an opportunity to offer glazing solutions you might just not have considered!