Design FeaturesAsk Questions Online
What would you say are the greatest buildings in Britain? How would you decide on the criteria that would shape your selection? Would it be purely down to architectural excellence, or would other factors come into play? What about the way in which the building was used, the way it has evolved, the people who used it, the stories it could tell, and the impact that its existence has had on history? Would it need to have revolutionised architecture? We’re interested in your thoughts; we’d like to hear your views.
*Gasp!* What a scurrilous accusation, we thought, when reading through our lovely supporter’s comments on Facebook and discovered that someone, who shall remain nameless, had likened one of our conservatories to a… a… to a McDonald’s!
Now, while we’re all partial to the occasional ‘golden arches’ indulgence, when it comes to architectural statements, it’s not really the look we’re going for. Ok, so we admit that a few of the elements are the same; we use a lot of glass and aluminium plays its part in both Apropos and McDonald’s …
Glass and aluminium structures have been synonymous with innovative, cutting edge architecture since Apropos’ forefather: Vincent Hartley, patented his first aluminium greenhouse design in 1938.
Where Vincent led many followed and today glass and aluminium buildings dominate the skylines of some our world’s most important cities. The strength and weather-resistance of aluminium is what marks it out above all other materials for the construction of these colossal sky scrapers; allowing for more unconventional designs to be realised and boundaries pushed.
With such a long architectural history, it is hardly surprising that Great Britain has a veritable plethora of amazing buildings. From the superb grassy sprawl of Edinburgh’s Scottish Parliament, right down to Portland Bill; that iconic lighthouse on the Dorset coast, the length and breadth of Great Britain is populated with glorious architecture.
This week at Apropos, we’ve decided to look at five of our favourite Great British buildings, and explore the reasons why we love them.
The Palace of …
Gone are the days when glass extensions were whatever homeowners desired – so long as they came in white uPVC. With today’s bespoke designs, homeowners have almost unlimited scope for their aspirations. Apropos’ Peter Holland provides a low down on the six key influences for glass extension design:
1. What is the style of the original building?
“Some period or listed properties suit more subtle bespoke extensions that adhere to orangery designs,” says …
A ruin is more interesting than a freshly completed building; it shows the effects of time and experience.
Walker Evans, photographer.
There is a petrol station in Nottinghamshire with Grade II listed status. Disused now, this one-time roadside filling station has a great, swooping winged canopy that has something of the Sydney Opera House in its style. Designed in the 1960s, it has a futuristic swagger which manages to capture some of the excitement and ‘go-getting’ attitude of the age, and yet in 2012 the structure was slated …
People tend not to think much about doors and windows, but at Apropos, we believe that they can make the biggest impact in terms of interior design. Here are 10 things to consider if you’re looking for ways to revamp your home.
Natural light is good for you – We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. No matter the design – skylight or patio doors – having a source …
Everywhere we look we’re bombarded with trends, with every season, in every part of our lives, and with influences coming from every part of the world, yet most of us lack the funds to update our decor on anything like a regular basis. Is it any wonder that we often find ourselves dissatisfied with our lot?
At Apropos we’re firm believers in the adage that a change is as good as rest, but we also think that change needn’t cost a fortune.
What is a window? A piece of glass that lets in the light, shuts out the weather and provides a view on the world.
They’re usually rectangular, occasionally square or circular in form and are positioned so that adults can look out of them comfortably. They come off production lines by the thousand and rarely inspire any thought of creativity. We look through them, never at them. It’s a shame, because with a little original thinking and bespoke fabrication, the window can become a design element in its own right.
Design with a capital D can sometimes sound pretentious; the airy-fairy ramblings of a trailing-cuffed one-time-trendy, or the buzz-words of an up-and-coming would-be.
We watch home improvement programmes for a two-fold thrill; the vicarious pleasure of a job well done and the indulgence of incredulity; well, it looks good, but that would never work in a normal house.
In reality however, Design is little more than a collection of ‘statement’ features pulled together to create a cohesive whole, so bringing ‘it’ into the home is a fairly simple process. It …
One of the key tenets of successful home interior design is working with the features you’ve got. While your house shouldn’t necessarily dictate how you use it, its architectural features, aspect and dimensions can give you a clue as to what might work best when it comes to décor. The same applies to an Apropos extension.
Although every Apropos structure is bespoke, we do have something of a style of our own. We work with glass, so all of our structures are light, bright and airy, regardless of size. We …
Apropos has a heritage dating back over seven decades, and it is a heritage built on glasshouses.
In 1938, Apropos’ founder, Vincent Hartley, patented his first aluminium glasshouse design.
Vincent was influenced by the glasshouses of the Victorian period, but he believed that these glasshouse designs could be improved – by using aluminium to construct his glasshouses instead of iron.
With this in mind he set about creating modern designs for glasshouses, starting from the simple premise that glasshouses should be clean …
We’ve been designing architecture in glass of the highest quality and standards for decades now. With award winning designs that stand the test of time, add value, space and light to your home and help to bring your property firmly into the future.
Glazing though, is a constantly evolving industry as is the world of architecture, which is why we’re always on the lookout for ways to keep our offerings …
In our new Influential Interiors mini series we explore the worlds of prominent interior designers and innovative concepts.
This month Sarah, Creative Director of Bio Fires, talks to us about eco-fuel, tabletop burners, loved-up customers and why Apropos and Bio Fires fit together in the world of architecture and interior design.
First off, we have to know – how can Bio Fires work with Apropos conservatories and orangeries?
Bioethanol fireplaces would add to the contemporary look of Apropos conservatories and orangeries perfectly. This is …
A few weeks ago we sent a team of photographers down to one of our recently completed structures; a majestic glazed link way for Kenton Lodge, a luxury retirement home located just outside of Newcastle upon Tyne.
The architecture of Kenton Lodge has evolved over time – to meet the needs of its residents and expand the ways in which the space can be used – consisting previously of two separate buildings. The first, and grandest of these, …
Summer is obviously the season when all of our products here at Apropos, come into their own. With the summer sun shining down on us, it’s an easy step to thinking about how we can make more of everyone’s favorite season, and every one of our products is perfectly aligned to do so. Today, though, we’re focusing on the modern orangery.
In the past, we’ve talked about how cosy an …
Aluminium windows are slimmer than ever before, thanks to the continuing hard work of industry design teams, such as those here at Apropos.
For instance, the super slender aluminium windows now offered by Apropos measure just 43mm to the outer frame.
As our design engineer Brian Britch, explains, “Our aluminium windows adhere to a similar ratings system to that which is used for white goods such as washing machines. The …
A conservatory can be the perfect answer for any homeowner looking to refresh their home, increase their floor space, or wanting a slice of contemporary living.
Conservatory design has come a long way in recent years; particularly in the affordability of bespoke, made to order, conservatory options. Today, anybody can have a unique conservatory designed and created to match their exact requirements, for just a little more than it would cost them for a …
Bi-folding doors are the perfect way to blur the boundaries between your home and garden. Made up of a run of glazed panels which can fold one way or the other, folding sliding doors will maximise the light entering your chosen room, no end.
When installed with a flushed tracking and matching tiling from the room through to the garden, you can go further, creating a seamless transition …
For homeowners wanting to build bespoke conservatory extensions, there are a number of issues you need to consider before getting your conservatory extension project off the ground:
It pays to employ professionals to design your conservatory extension, but is it best to go for an independent architect or use the services of an in-house team at a conservatory extensions company?
In-house teams, like that at Apropos, …
Mouth watering orangery perfect for kitchen extension
An orangery-style kitchen extension has proved mouth wateringly delicious for a listed Edinburgh property.
We couldn’t resist taking a look at this marvellous kitchen extension once again. The property – a beautiful, listed four-bedroomed apartment located in the gorgeous Murrayfield district of the Scottish capital – was completely renovated, with Apropos proud to be involved in the sympathetic kitchen extension, …
Wanting to extend your kitchen? Not sure what style to go for? Looking for inspiration? Then, take a look at the following case study from Apropos.
We were proud to be involved in and innovative project; designing and erecting a lean-to conservatory, in order to bring some ‘industrial chic’ to a kitchen-cum-dining area in Newark.
A RIBA-registered architect was the owner of the property, and …
Rooflights, also know as skylights and roof lanterns, are becoming more and more popular, as homeowners realise they are a great way of letting light flood into the home. Nowhere is this known better than amongst Apropos’ clients – thanks to the our bespoke designs and precision engineering.
Built using a high-tech glazing product and strong aluminium, Apropos’ rooflights look beautiful in any home and are unrivaled for style, …
Up until recently, patio door systems were the door systems of choice for most homes, but that has all changed, thanks to the arrival of affordable folding sliding door systems in the British market. Folding sliding doors are opening up homes like never before, creating amazing living experiences for homeowners who have them installed.
Greater flexibility is achieved with folding sliding doors that is not found with patio doors. A pair of patio doors can have both or …
Glazed walkways are such a versatile feature; they can be added to an existing home to create a sheltered area which connects a courtyard, or used to bring disparate areas of a barn or similar conversion together as one. Alternatively, you could employ a glazed walk way as a room in its own right, to link two previously independent parts of your property together, or create a covered walk way which leads to the drive, and provides protection on wet and windy days.
In architecture, as in all other fields of design, trends come and go. Throughout the ages however, there has been one material, one design element, that has been at the height of vogue since the Romans discovered how to make it, it’s only hiatus coming for a brief 200 year spell when that pesky window tax was ruthlessly enforced. We are, of course, talking about glass.
Unlike other …
In recent years conservatories have received a bit of an unfair reputation for being ‘just a garden room’. Whilst this may have been the case in the past, it certainly isn’t now, as modern design techniques and building materials revolutionise home design.
Thinking of conservatories in terms of a ‘glass structure’ or a ‘glass extension’ will help you to envisage the many ways a bespoke conservatory could transform your home. Bringing together your garden and interior whilst adding space and light, can make your home feel like a totally different …
At Atelier Garden Studios we are constantly striving to improve our offering and create new, innovative designs with which to expand our range.
Our current range of customisable garden studios includes;
The Vista – the baby of our family which offers an inspiring, compact space at an affordable price point. The Vista makes the perfect garden office or relaxation space and can be customised to meet your requirements.
When it comes to interior design we all know what we like, there may be trends and fads, but each of us has an underlying taste which will be present throughout our homes. Conservatories should be no different, gone are the days of mass produced, white UPVC additions, now your conservatory can reflect your taste and style just as much as the rest of your home does.
As the name would suggest; bespoke orangeries can come in many guises; each one as individual as you are. Like everything we do here at Apropos, our bespoke orangeries are designed for you and your lifestyle and are able to accommodate a range of different uses.
From the moment your local designer visits your home, we want to get the best idea of how you plan to use your …
The start of a new year is always a great time for fresh thinking; we set resolutions, get our homes in order after the upheaval of Christmas and begin to plan for the year ahead. The new year opens up new possibilities for all of us and with Apropos on board the new year could mean new horizons for your home, as well as your lifestyle.
With Apropos the possibilities are pretty much endless, thanks to our bespoke design service and time honoured manufacturing and engineering skills. If the laws …
Here at Apropos we take on all kinds of projects; both big and small. That’s the beauty, you see, of providing a bespoke service; we work with each and every client on an individual basis to design, manufacture and install their own personal glass haven. Whether you’re dreaming of Christmases spent under glazed skies, or cosy evenings in your open plan kitchen extension; Apropos can help turn your dreams into a reality.
Surprisingly though, one of our favourite pieces of architecture in glass to work on is the humble sky …
Like any part of the home, from time to time your conservatory will need a bit of sprucing up. For some this can be fixed with some new pieces of furniture or a few potted plants but for others, a little more imagination is needed.
Old conservatories tend to be draughty conservatories, and draughty conservatories often get relegated to no man’s zones in the home. The same goes for cramped conservatories shut off from the home, those without any real purpose and conservatories or garden rooms which simply aren’t living …
If you’ve been following us on Facebook and Twitter for a while now, you may recently have noticed some of the new images we’ve been sharing. The latest of our bespoke structures to be photographed, The Frame Project is a modern kitchen extension with a retro twist.
We fell in love with The Frame Family’s design ideas from the moment we first heard about them and when the images of the finished project arrived at Apropos HQ, we couldn’t wait to show them off! There is something about the meeting …
If you’re looking to let extra light flood your home, but don’t want the hassle of a complete home renovation, then why not make any room DOORlicious, and packed full of natural light, with Apropos’ range of bespoke door sets – all manufactured at our in house factory right here in Manchester using time honoured precision engineering skills and only the highest quality materials.
At Apropos we offer three various types of modern glass and aluminium door sets, each of which offer a slightly different look, and slightly different uses. …
A while ago Dulux were running a very clever advertising campaign set in a (perfectly on trend) dystopic future, completely lacking in colour. By the end of the ad the entire city-scape is transformed, as citizens began to thwart the authorities and jazz up their white washed walls with all the colours of the rainbow.
Well, it seems to us, that the world of conservatories is much like that white washed city from the ‘before’ scenes of the Dulux ad – a landscape of white washed framework and uninspiring views …
The orangery is a very traditional structure here in the UK with a rich history, quite literally, as a statement of wealth and class all the way back to aristocratic Britain.
Originally intended for use as an artificial climate in which to grow citrus fruit – and primarily oranges – the orangery was once a British status symbol. But after decades of nurturing foreign fruits, as advertised, the humble orangery was freed from its constraints by the abolishment of the window tax.
Fiat lux – let there be light – has been an architectural driving force for centuries. We value and crave natural light, not just because it’s convenient and looks good, but because it’s vastly beneficial for our health; giving us strong bones; healthy hair, teeth and nails; improving our concentration; and influencing our moods. The Romans knew the power of light in building design, and since that time, the importance of light has not diminished. Whether in public places or private dwellings, the presence of natural light is considered an …
Imagine yourself back a week or so, in the last days of June and the first days of July. Temperatures have risen to 30 degrees Celsius for the first time this year; humidity has peaked at 85 per cent, which is around the average stickiness rating of Singapore; you feel languid and slightly stifled inside and yet you’ve things to do, so lounging in the sun just isn’t an option.
What’s the solution?
You slide back your Apropos bi-fold doors and let your home breathe.
A good proportion of Apropos customers come to us with relatively simple projects in mind – they want a bespoke conservatory, or veranda, or they would like their existing ramshackle conservatory upgraded into a stylish new orangery. These are our bread and butter projects. We love them because they’re at the heart of what we do. The rest of our customers bring projects equally enjoyable, but presenting more of a challenge: an Apropos structure as part of a wider renovation; a full barn conversion; a new build; and that’s when …
During the course of the last decade open plan living has been growing in popularity, to the point where one in five British homeowners have removed a dividing wall within their home to let the light flood in.
If you’re one of the remaining four, you needn’t be left behind – going open plan is easier than you might think, especially when working with Apropos.
There are three main objectives in open plan design: integration of family activities; increased light; and the reduction of ‘dead space’ in the home.
Although the weather hasn’t been playing ball, we’re truly into the start of summer. If you’ve not yet had a chance to revamp your interiors since the winter set in, now might be the time to embrace a make-over, freshen things up and get your home summer-ready.
Apropos’ Top Five Decorative Styles for Summer 2015
Making a Splash – Water features have always been popular with gardeners, but have you thought about having one indoors? Indoor water …
Finding inspiration for your perfect glazed extension can be tough. Sometimes seeing what other people have done can help you to work out what features do (and don’t) work for you. Last month we had a lot of interest in our favourite five veranda designs, so this month we thought that we’d take you on a tour of our top bespoke conservatories.
5. Small But Perfectly Formed – Big might often be beautiful, but this petite conservatory certainly doesn’t lack for style. Despite its position against a rustic stone …