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Conservatory Installation: Modern vs Traditional

Person controlling there conservatory heating

Not just an extension in terms of adding another room to your home, a conservatory is an extension of your lifestyle. More than just a greenhouse or a sunroom, modern conservatories can be utilised in many different ways.

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Pioneered by the Victorians, conservatories are sometimes known as solariums, garden rooms or sunrooms.

Traditionally they started out in life as greenhouses; a room designed to cultivate and conserve plants.

While they still have that use, modern conservatory designs are essentially an extra room which is more likely to be used predominately or partly for recreation than for horticultural purposes.

Conservatory styles

  • Traditional – such as Victorian or Edwardian. Edwardian conservatories can be square or rectangle in shape. Victorian conservatories are far more ornate than their Edwardian counterparts.
  • A Contemporary Conservatory – with their clean uncluttered lines, contemporary glass conservatories embrace modern technology and modern materials.
  • Orangeries –  originally used for cultivating and ripening exotic fruits, by their very definition orangeries are more grandeur than traditional conservatories. They feature solid brick pillars and large windows in order to capture the most light.

Characteristics of a conservatory

Conservatories have a range of characteristics. These rooms are multi-functional, and can act as a recreational room, a lounge, an area to cultivate plants, a play room, a dining room or just a retreat. What it is used for will all depend on your family’s needs.

Conservatories traditionally feature gable or pitched roofs – which gives them a distinctive look – with roofs constructed from glass or polycarbonate. A traditional lean-to conservatory is also popular, and solar panels can even be added to a conservatory roof to capture the sun’s rays if the homeowner is interested in becoming more energy efficient by generating their own renewable heat and/or electricity.

Both Victorian and Edwardian style conservatories have pitched roofs with an apex, where traditionally there are a set of ridges which resemble a crown.

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  • Timber / Hardwood – timber conservatories look stunning but of course given the material require the most maintenance, compared to conservatories constructed from plastic or aluminium. Popular hardwood conservatories are constructed from maple, oak, sapele and mahogany.
  • uPVC – composite plastic conservatories combine traditional designs. The white Edwardian style uPVC conservatory is an example of a classic looking conservatory.
  • Aluminium – thanks to its durability and strength, aluminium conservatories can feature full height windows to give you the most open look possible.

Whatever the type of material you opt for, most firms will be able to offer a comprehensive package of design, supply and installation, with a 10 year guarantee on workmanship and materials as standard.

More than just a room with a garden view

Most conservatories tend to be built at the back of a property overlooking a garden – which is where the description garden room comes from. Most people opt for a conservatory because they want a room that will compliment their home, increase their living space and add value to their property.

By adding a conservatory to your existing home you are essentially extending it, so you will need to check with your local authority with regards to planning permission and building regulations.

If you’re looking to utilise your outside space and want to invest in a conservatory, Windows Guide has a list of companies who will be able to design, supply and install a wide range of conservatories to meet all your needs.

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