Author Archives: Office Studio Spicer

  1. Five minutes with Manni Kalsi

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    5 minutes with Manni Kalsi: Women in architecture

    Did you know, in 2023, the ARB reported 31% of architects are women. The industry has a perception of being male dominated but we wanted to catch some real time thoughts of whether that feels the case.

    In honour of International Women’s Day, we interviewed our Architectural Assistant Manni, to get her take on all things design, industry and influence.

    Here’s how the conversation went:

    1.What made you want to do Architecture? 

    I‘ve always been drawn to materials and textures and how they impact how we experience our surroundings. After realising that I always had more photos of buildings not people whenever I’ve been on holiday, it felt like the natural choice.

    2.What is your favourite design style? And Why?

    A mix of rustic and modern contemporary. I’m drawn to the cleanliness of modern contemporary and the warmth of rustic styles. 

    3. What’s your favourite stage of architecture to work on? Why? 

    Stages 4-5/ technical design and construction phases. This is where the design really comes to life and requires the collaboration of multiple professions to deliver a proposal that is functional yet personal to the client. Working out and detailing specific spot details are also quite fun.

    4. What do you think sets Studio Spicer apart from our competitors?

    We deliver bold designs that often push the parameters of the local vernacular. So, there’s much more for me to learn here.

    5.How are you finding your Part III course so far?

    It has been very interesting learning about the ins and outs of running a practice and the ever-changing nature of the industry.

    6. According to the ARB, Architecture is a male dominated industry (Reported 31% female in 2023). In your experience, would you say you’ve particularly noticed this?

    Yes, absolutely. So far in my career, I have often been the only woman as part of the architectural staff.

    7.If yes, would you say this is changing with time? 

    I believe so, I am starting to notice more women-lead practices emerging. I have also noticed a higher number of women on my Part III course, as opposed to my Part I studies which I started 10 years ago.

    8. Any further comments on how you find your job or the industry as a whole?

    It has been positive to see how organisations such as the RIBA have been more involved in pushing reforms such as the changes with the Building Safety Act, namely Jane Duncan who was the RIBA Chair at the time.

  2. The benefits of living walls…or roofs

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    It’s no secret that us humans are certainly making our stamp on planet Earth. This being said, it’s also no secret we need a global effort to improve the effects we’re having on our big blue and green sphere-shaped home. Here at Studio Spicer, we are ISO accredited. This, in short, means we have a commitment to sourcing and encouraging sustainable solutions to our projects and clients.

    You may have seen some of our projects have living walls incorporated into design, including our office here in Stratford Upon-Avon. Living walls are an ecological and economical way to reintroduce life into urban settings, besides the fact they look awesome!

    Aside from changing with the seasons and the opportunity of fragrant walls here are some of the benefits of living walls can have on our society: Removes air pollutants, reduces urban temperatures, improves biodiversity and attenuates rainwater. The good news doesn’t stop there; there’s also some direct advantages living walls could have on your business. Thermal benefits help reduce heating costs. Keep out the hustle and bustle for meetings and conferences with helping to reduce noise levels. Research has also shown they have been linked to reductions on stress and increases in productivity and creativity, therefore as result an improved sense of well-being for your workforce. They also help to demonstrate sustainable credentials and help towards those all-important CSR targets.

    All in all, whilst being pretty and an ‘insta-worthy’ feature to your property, living walls hold their practical purpose for taking small steps towards a greener future.

  3. Marketing Assistant appointment

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    Say hello to Jess Hughes! She joins us as Marketing Assistant to manage our marketing and social media channels. With experience in B2B and B2C markets, she will expand on our channels for both demographics. Jess has a first-class honours degree in business management and has previously spent time in roles such as Personal Assistant, Professional Trainee and a Marketing Executive.

    In her free time, you can find Jess socialising with friends, listening to live music, enjoying any form of sports (watching or playing) or aiming for a new PB in the gym!

  4. Studio Spicer Architectural Visualisation

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    Development in Wooton Wawen gets an animated movie to help sell the proposals from plan. The client wanted to emphasise the outstanding views to the rear of the property and commisioned an animation from Studio Spicer’s in house visualisation service.

  5. Planning consent for 4 new properties in a rural setting.

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    Consent has been granted for four high-quality dwellings in rural Wychavon. The proposal has been brought forward in lieu of an extant Class Q approval for the conversion of the existing agricultural buildings on the site.The proposed dwellings follow a simple agricultural form with a sympathetic material palette in keeping with both the regional and agricultural vernaculars.The development seeks improve the biodiversity of the site through the provision of a diverse mix of habitats, including wildflower meadows, woodland planting, and an attenuation pond for aquatic life.

  6. New appointments at Studio Spicer

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    Studio Spicer welcombed two new members of staff over the past few months, Jacob Fenwick – Part 1 Architectural Assistant and Manni Kalsi Part 2 Architectural Assistant.

  7. Home Farm planning approval

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    Consent granted by committee for the development of four high quality, single storey dwellings positioned around a central courtyard. The proposals have been brought forward in lieu of an extant Class Q approval for the conversion of the existing agricultural buildings on the site.

    The proposed dwellings comprise a simple built form with large areas of green roof and feature gables. Red brick, timber cladding and profiled metal roofs form a sympathetic materials palette, very much in keeping with both the regional and agricultural vernacular.

    The proposed dwellings will seek to minimise impact on the surroundings, being of similar proportions to the existing former poultry sheds. Considered landscaping with attenuation ponds form a village green appearance and will further enhance the bio-diversity on the site.

  8. Planning approved

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    Planning approved on replacement dwelling in Warwickshire green belt. Studio Spicer Architects worked closely with the planning department and sub-consultants to ensure satisfactory design and outcome.

  9. Barn conversion completed in Welford on Avon

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    Stylish contemporary Grade 2 listed barn conversion receives Building Regulation sign off and official completion certification.