Many of our clients ask us how we can construct a side return extension and still keep the character of their Victorian house. This project in Chiswick is a good example. We incorporated a Victorian style bay window with doors leading out to the back garden. The windows and doors reflected the style of the house sash windows. On the adjacent lean-to part of the extension, a more contemporary fully glazed window was inserted. The result was a seamless blend of traditional period features of the property with a contemporary modern space inside.

When it comes to furnishing your new extension, you then have a choice of modern or traditional.  For this project, the owners achieved a happy balance.  Very classic, it is neither traditional Victorian farmhouse nor ultra-contemporary.  Thanks to the windows, patio doors and Velux windows, the extension is light and airy.  They have added low-energy lighting and modern underfloor heating that gives their home a touch of sustainability as well. 

If you did want to give a Victorian feel to your new extension, you could consider the following features:

  • Colour scheme – the Victorian paint colours tended to be quite dark shades of red and brown.  You could find a shade you like and instead of painting the whole room, use it as an accent colour and paint a coffee table or one chair, a shelf, etc.
  • Flooring – either tiles or wooden floors would be appropriate.  Consider carefully if you intend to install underfloor heating.
  • Cornicing and ceiling roses – some Victorian houses have more features in their rooms than others.  If you really don’t like the modern look of your extension, install some picture rails, dados and/or cornicing to complement the other rooms in your house.
  • Radiators – It is now possible to buy heat-efficient Victorian cast iron radiators so you don’t have to compromise between energy saving and style.
  • Furniture – Antiques all the way.  It may take longer than popping to Ikea but by the time you’ve finally figured out how to build your flat pack table, you could have searched on ebay, at a car boot sale, antique shop etc and found something far more appealing.   

We are always happy to offer our advice and listen to your ideas and thoughts on the look and style that you would like to achieve for your extension.  For more inspiration, please have a look at the gallery of our projects to date.