Onwards and upwards

Have you decided to finally do that kitchen extension? Is the loft conversion next on your to-do list? If this is your year for renovations (or just redecorating), I’m here to help, from the early planning stage to the finished look.

Get planning!

So, where do you begin? If your project involves any structural changes, then before you start choosing paint colours and deciding where the new sofa will go, you need to consider a few factors. Will your renovation require local authority planning permission? Will your extension comply with building regulations? Structurally, will your dream loft conversion be viable?

The first step is to engage an architect. A good architect (or architectural designer) will not only draw professional plans that the project builders will be able to effectively work from, they will also be able to advise on the best workable space layouts, liaise with structural engineers and surveyors where appropriate, and design solutions that will be compatible with local authority requirements, thus speeding up the approval process. Once the plans are approved (which can take months even if approved first time), they will also be able to either provide or recommend a reliable build and design team.

Delivering your dream interior

Once your project plans are approved, this is the best time to engage an interior designer (if you are not planning to do the designing yourself). Getting an interior designer on board early isn’t absolutely essential but it is beneficial as the team can then work in collaboration from the outset to deliver your dream result.

An interior designer will usually consider space planning and furniture planning as part of the design project, so lighting, electrical sockets and other key layout decisions can be made before wardrobes are built and electrical wiring put in place. If you are designing the project yourself, consider these decisions early to avoid disappointment or additional project costs later.

Now you are ready to get creative – more on this next month!


Architectural designer Wayne Greenway, at Greenway Associates, can provide well-considered plans that also work in tandem with Tandridge District Council’s requirements!  

Deborah Smith, is the founder and design director at Menagerie Interiors. Email her at deborah@menagerieinteriors.co.uk and follow her on Instagam.

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