Oak frame self-build

Oak Frame Building Costs

Area: Buckinghamshire
House Type: Oak frame self-build
House Size: 175m2
Build Route: Oak frame and encapsulation

The open plan living space has a spectacular vaulted ceiling Photo credit: Mark Welsh

Rachel and James Good were looking for the perfect rural location to raise their family. After searching several locations, commutable to good schools, they chose a house in Buckinghamshire with land and stables for their horses.

The house itself wasn’t what they wanted but they fell in love with the location and its views. The existing house “was topsy turvy and only had three bedrooms,” says Rachel. “However, it was in a fantastic location, and it had land and a stable block. The house already had consent to extend so we knew the planning department were not against something bigger. Our idea was to buy, knock down and build something that was right for us.”

In 2013, four years after living in the existing dwelling their self-build journey began when they appointed an architect who started to transform their ideas into a reality.

Views stretch over the families paddock Photo credit: Mark Welsh

At this stage they also appointed us as their oak frame partner. James had always admired oak frame houses so it was one of the requirements when they started working with their architect. The house design had its very own unique story, “the two-storey part is the farmhouse and the kitchen is the subservient barn.” Explains Rachel. When James and Rachel approached us for the oak frame we suggested they went for more brickwork than they were originally going to so the property would fit in with the local village vernacular while still remaining individual. The farmhouse is built from handmade bricks from a local company, while the kitchen is clad in oak.

 

After working through their designs with their architect, planning permission was applied for and granted. The total build took 10 months. During this time the family moved into a rental property close to their build so they could be on hand whenever needed.

 

The new house was positioned further away from the road and reoriented to take advantage of the view towards the Chiltern Hills. “It was very much about the view when we were designing the house,” explained Rachel.

I’d always wanted a window seat and now we’ve got one in the living room. The oak is the most beautiful feature and it gives the house character and warmth. We’ll never tire of it.

Rachel Good

For Rachel who loves entertaining and cooking for friends and family new the kitchen needed to have the wow factor. “The kitchen is a real focal point and the oak frame gives it the most amazing character. When we got planning permission, the first thing I did was put a deposit on a Cotteswood kitchen. I am so pleased with the result. The design works so well, it feels very open and it’s perfect for entertaining. It’s an easy kitchen to live in and I also have a walk-in larder that’s oak-framed, too..”explains Rachel.

“Large windows were installed with as few panes as possible because we wanted to see the view, and we opted for big sliding windows rather than bifolds in the kitchen to keep things open.” Explains Rachel

 

When it came to the decor, Rachel turned to Henley-based interior designer Anne Haimes. “Our brief was to create an informal house. I wanted relaxed family living – not too formal, but also quite grown up with calming colours. Annie came up with all the ideas for the colour palettes, paints and furniture.”

 

Rachel and James are thrilled with their house now that everything is finished. “I love the amazing views from our bedroom window,” says Rachel.

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