Jump to content

Grand Designs


Recommended Posts

The best Grand Designs are always the one where some mad man builds a family home with his bare hands, disappearing at 4am and not returning until bedtime for seven years against impossible odds, nearly killing themselves in the process. The chap with the Italian family who built his home into the cliff face by scooping out mounds of rock with a teaspoon instantly springs to mind. 

 

I prefer that George Clarke one – Shit House to Lovely Home or something. The projects are amazing and they really drill down into all the grubby financial details. George is like a dog with a bone when it comes to budgets and often tells the couples to their face that they've fucked things up, rather than slink off away and coat them off like Kevin does. There's also hilarious bits where he grabs a lump hammer and gets all hot and bothered bashing down a wall in every episode. Don't get me wrong, there's some moneyed wankers on it, but the majority of people seem really nice and you root for them. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

for a lot more hands on building with grubby money conversations More4's low fat Grand Designs, Building the Dream, is also worth a watch. 

 

I always imagine that show gets the builds that Kevin McLoud turns his nose up at.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The house in the new episode was ridiculously extravagant but it was hard not to admire the execution. That stone staircase was beautifully done, and reminded me of a miniature version of the staircase in IM Pei’s Berlin History museum extension. I think it was the first time I’d seen a handrail carved into the stone. 

 

The plucky self-builds on Grand Designs are good, but it’s also nice to occasionally see beautiful architecture that shitloads of money can buy. 

46D2CB5F-51E1-4F91-9C99-A7FF01502226.jpeg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Loved this weeks's interior and a real testament to how much people can achieve if they have a vision. Not too sure on the whole logistics if they ever wanted to sell the property though seeing as it's pretty embedded on her parent's land.

 

Genuinely thought she might have died at the end of the project though with the amount that cancer had affected her. Glad to see she hadn't.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought last night’s was really impressive and so glad they got it done. 
 

Compare with the interior on the house on Love It Or List It which was on the hour before on C4 and it was like chalk and cheese! I know they’re not comparable shows but shows what a difference taste makes. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I watched the one where the nice couple converted the old cinema in their little town the other night. I'm a sucker for exposed concrete, but that was objectively a properly stunning project. It was just a pity about the spa pool, but they seemed happy. I nearly arced the television out of the window when they announced the budget though. It was a few years ago, but still, what an amazing thing to achieve for the money. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Art Vandelay said:

I watched the one where the nice couple converted the old cinema in their little town the other night. I'm a sucker for exposed concrete, but that was objectively a properly stunning project. It was just a pity about the spa pool, but they seemed happy. I nearly arced the television out of the window when they announced the budget though. It was a few years ago, but still, what an amazing thing to achieve for the money. 

It objectively wasn't. The exposed concrete interiors went way too far! The outside was beautiful though.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hooo boy, I had to rush off to the kitchen at the end of that one to do the washing up. Pretty ridiculous that a 35 year old barn has to retain its rotting frame simply because it's in a conservation area. Still, the guy persevered and I was really impressed with what they achieved.

Link to post
Share on other sites

another strong ep but they are definitely hampered by the gaps in filming with Covid - understandable but thats both now where we go from barely finished structure to having moved in and finished.

 

have to admire both of them this week for the graft and effort they put in, especially in the circumstances - they really deserve that lovely place to live for the effort alone. 

 

the conservation laws do seem mad in this case, at a push I understand keeping the exterior looking the same in this case (not that it was exactly attractive to start with) but making them spend a fortune to protect a rotting 1980s wooden frame is just stupid and served no heritage or cultural conservation purpose at all in this case.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 14/01/2021 at 07:55, sofasurfer said:

Loved this weeks's interior and a real testament to how much people can achieve if they have a vision. Not too sure on the whole logistics if they ever wanted to sell the property though seeing as it's pretty embedded on her parent's land.

 

Genuinely thought she might have died at the end of the project though with the amount that cancer had affected her. Glad to see she hadn't.


Or if someone buys her parent’s house, and a battle for boundary lines erupts.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just caught the first episode of this series.

 

Christ. Like a tacky Dulux advert. £4.5m. A monument to the follies of class and money. And nothing of worth really. Just extravagance.

 

Not helped by how spectacularly unlikeable the owner was. A toff, with family ancestral home, a family crypt in Scotland but speaks like someone who's never left Sussex, who goes on about how he was military but neglecting to mention that he's come from the particular type of military background that the term 'Rupert' was built for, who ships the kid off to boarding school asap, who could just ask his mom for a spare million to help him out, and who could manage to get the bank to give him multiple mortgages when he needed it. It's hard to not have some schadenfreude.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Second episode much better.

 

I normally don't really like the big open space thing, and I never really like the false agricultural look either, bit in this case I really quite liked it. And hats off to them, that's a completely enormous task for someone that doesn't know what they're doing, and then they've got the illness issues as well. Great. I love the style of a lot of it, especially the self made furniture and the reuse of the farming equipment.

 

The conservation issue is absurd. There's nothing to conserve there. In living memory it wasn't there. It's obviously not a barn anymore. Insisting it has to be saved is ridiculous. It's not a great piece of architecture, it's a tool, it's nearly disposable, it's a big shed. And it's rotten. Let them get rid of it. It was a strong breeze from coming down in a few years anyway given how the posts were falling apart.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Quite liked this week overall. It's not entirely to my taste - that window - but overall it's quite nice, it's big without seeming totally ostentatious and it's not that extravagant in any one area.

 

There's no way they aren't getting a divorce at some point though. He's clearly a bit of a stress head control freak and is evidently no good at communication, and she's strong willed, outspoken and the fact the entire project is obviously driven by her desire makes me suspect there's going to be friction there in the not too distant future. There was clearly some tension over that staircase - she had a clear idea of what she wanted and he just did what made sense to him, and she did not like it.

 

But, the build... It's nice. Besides that window. You'd need to be a particular kind of extravert to put your bedroom, including ensuite bathroom, in a room that has an entire wall of glass facing the road and entrance to the property. You'd have to pull the curtains closed to have a shit if you happened to be in the bedroom. I suspect the odds on intimate moments being done with that window uncovered are very, very short...

 

Also admirable that he even put up a decent place for his mom and her partner at the same time. I don't imagine there's many that could even dream of doing it - though of course he did drop the nugget of information that he has another property he could borrow against...

Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought they had a very odd dynamic that couple, with the way that she kept making negative comments in a sort-of joking way about his inability to communicate and him being a stresshead. She reminded me a bit of that Alpha Mum from Motherland, but they both sounded like hard work. I couldn't help but wonder what would happen if they got divorced, and had to think about how to resolve the issue of the overlapping families across three generations living in various wings of this enormous house.

 

Although that said, by far the oddest thing was the fact that at the end, they had a massive painting of Columbo in the hallway. Seems like a slightly incongruous thing to have a massive painting of Columbo by the entrance to their Dutch barn-inspired modernist dream house. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Really didn’t like this week’s house - the slate roof should have stopped at the walls and the windows were horrid with that same dark grey finish, it looked like a Minecraft house - also didn’t like the furniture and furnishings what little there was, zero style or taste with some shocking choice in art - that fucking lion :blink: Also that argument over the staircase was just weird, what a strange couple. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

It certainly wasn't subtle. Buildings like that are scattered all over the Kent countryside if Zoopla is anything to go by. Enormous agricultural structures with dark cladding and upsetting angular boxes erupting from every surface. It looks old hat before it went up. The stairs were a good microcosm for all that was wrong – argue about it all you like, they're not that nice. Just everything about it was a bit underwhelming, from the grim plot it was set on to the framed football shirt in the bedroom. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 19/01/2021 at 19:18, Chindie said:

Just caught the first episode of this series.

 

Christ. Like a tacky Dulux advert. £4.5m. A monument to the follies of class and money. And nothing of worth really. Just extravagance.

 

Not helped by how spectacularly unlikeable the owner was. A toff, with family ancestral home, a family crypt in Scotland but speaks like someone who's never left Sussex, who goes on about how he was military but neglecting to mention that he's come from the particular type of military background that the term 'Rupert' was built for, who ships the kid off to boarding school asap, who could just ask his mom for a spare million to help him out, and who could manage to get the bank to give him multiple mortgages when he needed it. It's hard to not have some schadenfreude.

 

Reading between the lines, I'm sensing you didn't like the owner very much... 

 

:lol:

Link to post
Share on other sites

Another good episode but agree there was something off with the couple - she was weird, super pushy and assertive and I didn't like her at all. That setup would be dead weird if they split up and she keeps the house with the old in laws next door. There was an entitled air about her despite all the work and money seemingly coming from him.

 

It must be so stressful just building a house without all the other distractions they often have (babies/illness/money) and yet one partner often has a huff and just pulls a face like a spoiled child.

 

Odd location too, Lincolnshire looked very very flat but it was a bit of land in the middle of some light industrial and nurseries. 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 21/01/2021 at 19:08, K said:

Although that said, by far the oddest thing was the fact that at the end, they had a massive painting of Columbo in the hallway. Seems like a slightly incongruous thing to have a massive painting of Columbo by the entrance to their Dutch barn-inspired modernist dream house. 

 

The Columbo picture above the entrance is there to remind him to pick up his keys.

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Chindie said:

 

Not particularly.

 

To be fair, we thought he was a tosser as well. Watched the ep a few weeks back and agreed it was a massive waste of money although, from memory, I was quite jealous of the wine cellar and the finish wasn't terrible but just no where near worth the money spent to live next to a graveyard.

 

For that cash, I'd go and build a massive F O country house somewhere rural. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Last night's was a bit different. Environmentalist builds a self heating house. It was quite a nice, if a bit bland build, but I'm not sure I fancy the long term safety of that roof. Also he would drive anyone insane with the fanatic environmental, recycle mindset. It's obviously a worthy position, but there's a point at which things need to go, they don't have an infinite life. That settee was knackered and no amount of re-covering it could hide it was knackered. And the presence of the wood burner feels a bit off - the house is self heating, or it isn't. 

 

But overall a nice enough build. But for the casual grand piano. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.