Kevin McCloud's personal choice of memorable builds are gathered together here for the first time.
To celebrate 14 glorious years of programming, Kevin McCloud delves into the archives of Grand Designs to highlight which were his favourite projects and why.
Kevin McCloud is best known as the presenter of Grand Designs. He writes books and articles about decoration, design, and lighting, and is editor-at-large of Grand Designs magazine.
I am a huge (huge...) fan of Kevin McCloud and have watched the majority of his Grand Designs episodes over many years. I was very excited at the prospect of owning a book detailing the best of his Grand Designs over this period.
This is a hardback book smaller than A4 size and more is the pity for it. Whilst many Grand Designs are included most are afforded only two sometimes three pages. The photographs weren't nearly as opulent or well taken as I would have expected and the narrative whilst well written is so brief. I just wanted more! I would have loved for this to have been a beautiful coffee table sized book with amazing glossy photos and so much more of the story behind the houses and the build. But that is not what this is, so instead I would almost view this book as a picture index of the Best of Grand Designs. I found myself googling builds and looking for more information and this book has been more of a platform to find out more. Having seen many of these builds on Grand Designs ( the television programme) at least I had that to fall back on and perhaps it just isn't possible to convey all that is portrayed on television into a book.
This book is definitely a good trip down memory lane if you have watched Grand Designs over the years and it has certainly piqued my interest in trying to source some of the earlier series to re-watch. In fact the thought of a Grand Designs marathon of all 100 programmes is rather appealing!
If you want to be inspired then this book is truely inspirational. Many of these builds were completed totally out of dedication and love and a determination to accomplish what the owners had dreamed of, often for years. Whilst I couldn't imagine building a "Grand Designs" worthy house there is something quite captivating about the results of those that do and often their stories are as interesting as the build itself. This book covers some builds outside of England which are unique and quite amazing.
I would recommend this book as a gift for someone who loves Grand Designs or someone who is interested in architecture.
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