Garage to Office, Stockport, Cheshire

How many people out there in suburbia use their garage to park a car? What do you use your garage for? Here’s one converted to a home office using birch ply, black aluminium and glass.

Many, especially architects, claim the tag of self-build for their office. What is usually meant by this is self-project-managed; tradesmen are organised to arrive at certain times, and things are made ready for the next white van to arrive. And this is undoubtedly a challenge. Well, this office is self-built; every joist has been self fixed, every screw, nut and bolt has been self driven-in, every one of the plywood boards sized, cut, drilled, countersunk, sanded, and varnished. OK, so the electrician connected up, and I didn’t actually manufacture the sliding aluminium door, but you get the drift. When the building inspector suggests you wall-up the garage door you do a full house energy loss calculation to demonstrate your alternative works; when secondary glazing fabricators quote you 3x cost for black rather than white frames you design and make your own from milled aluminium extrusions which you get powder coated, make a grub screw corner joint and fit rubber gaskets – I think it’s known as jumping through hoops.

Completed 2014.