In the affluent suburbs of Collingham, near Wetherby in Leeds, West Yorkshire, Stuart Riley embarked up on his dream to build his own property from the ground up, to match the precise and exacting standards of his engineering background.
What attracted you to self-building?
It was a number of things really. We had lived in our home for 20 years, loved the area, but fancied a change. Extending the property didn’t feel like enough of a change and all the properties we looked at buying locally left us feeling disappointed, particularly at the quality and finish. In the end we decided to take matters into our own hands, knock down the old house and build our new home ourselves.
Where did you first hear about Silvelox and what impressed you?
Once the decision was made that I would be self-building, I went to as many exhibitions as I had time for. I kept up to this strategy throughout the project, so I’d usually be researching one or two things per show. You have to break down a huge project like this otherwise the project management can be overwhelming. I met Silvelox at the Harrogate Homebuilding and Renovating Show. At this show I was researching front door suppliers and Silvelox were the people who caught my eye. The standard of design and quality of the product is obvious as soon as you see a door. But when you start touching and operating them, you just know you’ve found the door you had imagined.
Why did you choose Silvelox as your door supplier?
Self-building is a great way to build a home, you have a vision and a plan, then you have to carry it out. My plan was to only choose suppliers and products that meet my very high standards, with the investment required why should there be compromise? Sticking to this policy is the only way to ensure high quality throughout. From the moment I met Silvelox I knew I had the door supplier that shared my design and quality standards. It’s their attention to detail that really resonates with me.
Briefly describe your project and the significance of the doors within this.
My property has been an on-going project for 4 years now, I haven’t rushed anything because the aesthetic is so important to me. When I selected the front door I chose the exterior wood and finish that I had always wanted. But it was equally important that I could pick a different wood and finish for the Interior. So I selected the design ‘Shift’, in natural oak, and the model ‘Poker’. At this stage I had hardly even made a start on the interior but I knew oak would be a big feature, so being able to have my front door match this was a fantastic design feature.
It was 2 years after the installation of the front door before I was ready to look at my internal doors. Having an existing relationship and knowledge of a company really gave me confidence to work with Silvelox again. I looked at a lot of competitors and I could have saved money with other suppliers, but I just felt that it would be a compromise to the interior finish and so for me, that wasn’t an option. The fact that I could order all 20 doors to match exactly to the interior side of the front door was also a factor.
The transition between exterior and interior of the property now is so smooth, its little things like this that are so important to me.
What do you like most about the doors, what’s your favourite feature?
I would have to say that it’s the sum of all the parts that makes the doors so good. The design is what I noticed first, its what our friends notice when they visit. But seeing and operating the doors every day is what I like best; the magnetic latch and the 180-degree opening of the internal doors are just perfect. The noise it makes when shutting just assures me that I made the right choice. Being able to open a door to 180 degrees is a really nice feature as well, having open doors sit flush to wall is one of those things that perfectionists enjoy every day!
How do you feel now your project is nearing completion?
Happy that all the effort and investment has been worth it. There are days when you wonder why you started a project like this, but I can assure you that these are soon forgotten when it all starts coming together. The level of satisfaction you get from building your own home is second to none.
Internal door design = shift, model = Poker
Internal side of the front door and all internal doors - Natural oak
|Standard or custom design
|Silvelox Products Installed
Front door and 20 internal doors
Detached, self build
Self-installed by client
Internal = 800 x 2,000mm