'Making was more fun than designing': a modern villa with a Victorian feel

The Makers House, squeezed on to a tricky urban plot, is up for the 2018 RIBA House of the Year award

It’s called the Makers House with good reason. The architects made it. I mean, obviously they designed it – but they also got down dirty and helped to build it. “Anything we could do ourselves, we did,” says Sophie Goldhill, partner, along with her husband David Liddicoat, in the young firm Liddicoat & Goldhill. “Sweeping up, running out to the building suppliers, carrying the bricks – you name it.”

She and Liddicoat more or less moved their office and staff to the building site in east London to manage the project. I’ve watched enough episodes of Grand Designs to know this can be a disaster, resulting in rows, divorce, bankruptcy and a lot of eye-rolling from the bricklayers. “No, no,” Liddicoat corrects. “If anything, the making was more fun than the designing.”

Related: ‘I love it when the leaves fall in’: the flat that takes open-plan living to extremes

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