Modern Reflections.

Published on 13th June 2014
Aesthetic preference can be a difficult thing to pinpoint; one man’s cutting-edge classic can be another man’s eyesore. A case in point could be Birmingham’s old Central Library; a concrete and glass structure once listed in Prince Charles’ infamous ‘monstrous carbuncles’ of architecture speech and described as appearing ‘a place where books are incinerated, not kept’, yet many loved its utilitarian Soviet-chic exterior.

At Apropos we know that there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution to architecture and that ultimately, there is no accounting for taste. That said, some of our favourite builds of recent years have involved exploring the power of contrast; adding a modern twist to a period home.

While there is – and rightly so – an emphasis of late on the importance of ensuring that new additions to older buildings, whether residential or otherwise, are rendered sympathetically, it doesn’t necessarily go to say that ‘sympathetic’ must mean ‘similar’. Contemporary can often enhance the classic far more effectively than a mocked construction which pretends to be something it is not whilst tell-tale inauthenticities give the truth away.

The obvious advantage of installing a frameless glass extension (ideally by Apropos!) over a more stolid brick affair – whether conservatory, orangery, atrium or curtain walling – is that it will bring the house and garden together in glorious communion, increasing the sense of space and light. But as to looks, well, we think the results can be spectacular.

While sharp lines are most frequently associated with glass extensions and can provide the most magnificent of contrasts against Victorian brickwork – far more appealing than the Edwardian pastiches so commonly found – not all modern glass extensions need to deliver the cubist’s dream. At Apropos all of our work is bespoke, so we are able to tailor make our constructions to suit your vision, whether incisive corners or cosy curves are your preference.

One of the major attractions of adding an Apropos construction to any home, but particularly those with a characteristic period feel, is the clear distinction between materials. Next to rugged brick or stonework glass appears sleek and fluid, adding brilliance to any space without imposing upon it. Contrasts create an emotive response – both positive and negative – they make you think and they get you talking.

To quote one of our more recent clients, an Apropos glass extension can ‘provide a contemporary design solution which maximises space and light at the optimum price.’ We’ve all moved on from the time when a UPVC imitation of Victorian grandeur was considered the height of sophistication; today stylistic assertions speak of simplicity, elegance, functionality and personal choice, but this is no longer limited to new-build homes. Contrast is not an aberration, it is a marriage; bringing the very best out of two disparate units and making them work effectively as a whole. The Apropos design team have turned this into an art form.

Ultimately, all designers wish their buildings to produce a reaction, to stimulate emotion. At Apropos we make sure that the results are always positive.

For a consultation with one of Apropos’ Design Experts, or just a chat about your World Cup wins and woes, please call: 0800 328 0033 or click here to order a copy of our latest brochure.

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