Adding a contemporary extension to a vernacular dwelling

Adding a contemporary extension to a vernacular dwelling requires a deft hand to avoid spoiling the views. In this case it’s not just the cottage nestled within that enhances the landscape but also the contemporary addition which manages to further ground the building.

In this article we cover:

  • How this cottage went from derelict to refurbished
  • How the renovation used natural materials including lime plaster
  • Materials used for the extension along with specification including insulation build up
  • How the extension finishes match the cottage’s
  • Choice of picture windows
  • How the DIY self-builder tackled carpentry
  • Stove flue: issues with chimney conversion
  • Casting the roof in concrete
  • Details of all external finishes


Written by Astrid Madsen

Astrid Madsen is the editor of the SelfBuild magazine. She previously held the same role in an Irish trade publication, before that she worked at the National Standards Authority of Ireland. She graduated with a BA in Urban Studies from Columbia University in New York and holds an MBA from the Instituto de Estudios Bursatiles in Madrid. France of origin, she now lives in Portarlington, County Laois, where she's taken on the task of renovating a listed building! Email

Low budget DIY cottage renovation

Bathroom Design Tips