February 2021

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

Ask any successful selfbuilder or home renovator if there were – or are – any challenges in their project, and the majority will have an arm's length list. The hurdles, however, don't just start when the build commences. For some, merely finding a suitable plot can be the most gruelling and time-consuming of tasks. Still, if you want something that much, you'll go to any length to make it happen – with some determination and a positive attitude.

Ade Sosanya is a first-class example of how hard work, perseverance and a few thinking-outside-of-the-box moments will eventually pay off and help you land on your feet. Currently awaiting planning approval for the transformation of their Kent-based 18th-century barn, the Sosanyas have had a far from straightforward journey.

After three years of searching for the right plot at the right price, Ade decided to get creative. Using Google Earth and whilst out and about, Ade would look for redundant sites and, upon finding suitable plots, he’d write letters to the owners asking if they'd be interested in selling their land which, extraordinarily, landed them with the plot he owns today. In his own words, Ade explained: "After over 100 letters and many nos, we got one maybe and eventually a yes!" – and Ade's innovation doesn't stop there. His family's temporary accommodation, two 40ft shipping containers, are a sight to be seen. With ultra-modern interiors, bright and airy spaces as well as on-trend furnishings, this is the most Instagram-worthy shipping container you'll come by. Read Ade's fantastic story for inspiration on making temporary living more liveable.

Elsewhere in this issue, we look at two beautiful extension projects. One ultra-modern transformation worth over £1m in Blackheath's Shooter's Hill and another enviable £75k kitchen extension for a late-Victorian East Dulwich home, which has transformed the way the homeowners use the space.


Rebecca Kemp