paper igloo architecture and design

falls view cottage

near passivhaus

new build + extension

low budget

holiday accommodation

national park setting



Situated in the Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park, this existing vernacular building requires extensive upgrading. An existing extension is awkwardly 'tacked-on' to the side of the original single storey cottage. The slightly dilapidated building requires a complete renovation and the existing extension is to be replaced. The site is located on a major touristic route between central Scotland and the north, with a view to a lovely waterfall to the east and woodland to the west.

Initially a feasibility study was undertaken to ascertain the best way forward: several conceptual options were presented and one was chosen for more detailed design development.

The proposal creates a new aspiring low energy home that will be used as short-stay accommodation. The existing extension is replaced with a 'barn' like form; a set-back at the junction articulates a linking piece. The new extension creates a subtle back-drop to the original cottage, allowing the traditional Scottish vernacular to sit in harmony with the contemporary timber clad extension.

The architecture of the new 'barn' draws on that of the local vernacular, but realises it in an exciting new way. Sustainably sourced timber cladding that is allowed to weather naturally covers the entire extension, with the exception of a band of slate shingle that runs up the west elevation and onto the roof slope where the building is closer than 1m to the boundary, which forms a required fire-break in the cladding. These slates are sustainably re-used from the roof of the existing extension. A new white rendered chimney makes a visual reference to the cottage. Sharp and crisp detailing will ensure the new extension is clearly defined and enhances the contrast between new and old. 

A low energy environmental strategy is considered an integral part of the design: the windows are designed to maximise solar gains and views, the drainage is off-mains, provision is being made for a solar thermal hot water system, and a high level of insulation and airtightness is anticipated throughout.