Real home: an open plan extension to a 1920s home creates a family friendly space

A homely take on industrial style makes this large living space extension the hub of the Marodeen family’s new house by the sea

Kitchen diner open plan

Built in the 1920s, the Marodeens' new home was the house that time forgot, as nothing had been done to it in 50 years. ‘It had this teeny-weeny kitchen that was revolting,’ recalls Amanda. ‘Thankfully, it also had an imposing double frontage and a huge entrance hall. The feel of the place was just exquisite and we had to have it.’

First job on the list? A new open plan kitchen diner. Find out how they did it – and then see all our real home transformations and extensions.

Fact file

The owners: Amanda Marodeen, a full-time mum, lives here with husband Mark, who works in finance, and children, Molly, 19, Dylan, 16, and Sienna, seven

The property: A detached, five-bedroom house, built in the 1920s in Littlehampton, West Sussex

Amanda loves: Walking on the beach; Shopping at The White Company; Avocados; The film Dream Girls and its music; Cats

Project cost: £103,650

‘The first thing I wanted to change was the kitchen,’ says Amanda. ‘I didn’t only want a large open-plan space, I wanted it to be huge, as I knew it would be the hub of the home. ’ 

The decision was made to knock through the existing kitchen, breakfast room and utility, and then add a single storey extension into the garden by almost 4m – a loss of outside space that the family was happy to compromise on.

Industrial kitchen extension with wicker chairs and brick wall

Bespoke units, Stephen Anthony Design & Bespoke Kitchens. Quartz worktops, Silestone. Emperor smoked oak engineered flooring, Mark Doran. Merle medium cream ceiling pendants, Barker & Stonehouse. Rhone bar stools, Maison Interiors 

Mark had to convince Amanda that they should include a kitchen island, as she originally wanted more clear space, but she now finds it offers invaluable storage.

Industrial kitchen extension dining area rooflights leather chairs

Locker unit, Barker & Stonehouse. Ladder shelves, Loaf. Calia extending dining table, John Lewis. Industrial leather dining chairs, Rockett St George. Fridge-freezer, Panasonic. Ovens, Siemens

‘Even though the kitchen was going to be a key part of the space, I didn’t want too much clutter and I had to resist the temptation to have lots of cupboards and worktops. I also wanted a lot of clear space,’ explains Amanda. 

Industrial kitchen extension minimal white units

Drainage grooves have been cut in the Silestone worktop around the sink to avoid the need for a separate drainer. For a similar sink and tap, try Franke

‘I’ve always wanted to do a project like this,’ Amanda, homeowner

Amanda invested in furniture with a reclaimed look to give the new extension an industrial edge.

Industrial kitchen extension dining living rooflights with sofa and table

All of the walls are painted white, which emphasises the portraits Amanda took of her children.

Industrial kitchen extension living area with bi fold doors

The couple included a seating area to make the new extension the hub of family life. Freya sofa, DFS. Scatter cushions, Loaf. Rug, Neptune. Leather sling-back chair, French Connection Home. Floor task lamp, Maison Interiors. For a similar coffee table, try Barker & Stonehouse

Knocking together the existing kitchen and dining room and adding a four-metre rear extension created the ‘huge’ space Amanda craved. It was created to look seamless from the outside, with its cream rendering and pitched roof, angled and tiled to mimic the original building.

  • The full feature – including stockists and more images – appears in the March 2016 issue of Real Homes. Subscribe today to take advantage of our money-saving subscription offers.

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Laura Crombie

Laura Crombie is a journalist and TV presenter. She has written about homes and interiors for the last 17 years and was Editor of Real Homes before taking on her current position as Content Director for Country Homes & Interiors, 25 Beautiful Homes Period Living and Style at Home. She's an experienced home renovator and is currently DIY-renovating a 1960s house in Worcestershire. She's been quoted on home design and renovating in The Times, The Guardian, The Metro and more. She's also a TV presenter for QVC and has been a commentator for Channel 4 at Crufts dog show.