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Welcome to the August edition of i-build magazine! This issue is packed with inspirational projects and products as well as useful advice for your self-build.


Despite the pandemic and its knock-on effect on the housing market, many first-time buyers are still on the prowl for their first-ever home. According to the Financial Reporter, 93% of first-time buyers are still considering buying in 2020; demonstrating that coronavirus has had little impact on the majority of this cohort. Many first-timers struggle to get a foot on the housing ladder while looking for their dream home in an idyllic location; however, there may be an alternative route to homeownership. In this month's edition, we have talked to self-build guru Kevin McCloud about just how viable self-building is for first-time buyers. In this exclusive Q&A, he explains that self-building is not just for a middle-class demographic and is – in fact – a suitable option for many. Turn to page 18 to read the full article.

Elsewhere, we sit down with Rachel McArdle – or as she's better known on Instagram @bluebellsandfeathers – to discuss the design and build of their rural farmhouse-inspired home – which resides next to a dairy farm where her partner Jarlath works. To take a peek inside Rachel and Jarlath's self-build sanctuary, turn to page 22.

Now, while self-builds and home renovations hold sentimental value for most self-builders; there's nothing quite as nostalgic as Ben and Hannah Haines' barn conversion in rural north Cornwall. Building on a site that had been in his family for years, Ben recalls growing up playing in the paddocks and recognised its full potential as a holiday home. With Unique Homestays' input, Ben and Hannah have created a beautiful, calming getaway that replaces an old, run-down property. Turn to page 14 to be blown away by neutral yet rustic interiors and surrounding views to die for.

As usual, our pages are jam-packed with inspiration for your home building project. This month, we've highlighted a self-build and home renovation favourite – Crittall. We've hand-picked six inspirational uses for Crittall doors, windows and partitions. Turn to page 10 to discover more. While on pages 06-07, we've chosen some interiors accessories for a dark, dramatic interior.

Rebecca Kemp