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Pick a side return: Everything you need to know about building London’s hottest extension style on a budget

by News Room
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Ah, the side return extension: it’s the to-do or not-to-do conundrum which will keep many a London homeowner awake at night.

Yes, it’s frighteningly costly and messy, but it’s the ultimate architectural tweak to take the long and narrow Victorian terrace into 21st-century living.

Interior designer Gemma Fabbri, founder of Studio Fabbri, overhauled her galley kitchen in Walthamstow last year, infilling the pointless side alley and adding two metres onto the 4m-long space.

Interior designer Gemma Fabbri and her partner Danny undertook a side return extension

Chris Snook

Having completed a loft extension during the pandemic, and watching the price of materials rise, “we realised that if we didn’t jump in and try and do it at the tightest budget we could, we’d probably end up having to move,” says Fabbri, who lives with partner Danny and their children aged 12 and seven.

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