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11 Genius Conservatory Ideas to Suit Every Home

Conservatory Ideas
Lean-to conservatory by Vale Garden Houses (Image credit: Vale Garden Rooms)

Our round-up of conservatory ideas, along with glazed extensions and orangeries, will help you create a beautiful room with a view that seamlessly extends into the garden. 

Adding a conservatory to your home will not only boost your living space but allow you to enjoy your garden all year round.  

Depending on your style of home and your budget, these multi-purpose glazed extensions are available in a range of configurations, from off-the-shelf options to fully bespoke designs.

(MORE: Conservatories: Ultimate Guide)

1. Glazing Creates the Illusion of Space in a Small Conservatory Idea

Conservatory ideas - small conservatories

Townhouse conservatory by Vale Garden Houses (Image credit: Vale Garden Houses)

Light is the best way to open up a small space, which is why compact conservatories often appear more spacious than they are and can sometimes work better than a brick extension.

Small designs work well with terraced homes and cottages. They make the perfect light-filled hobby room, reading room or home office.

(MORE: Home Office Design

2. A Classic Orangery Should Complement Your Existing Home

Conservatory ideas

Bespoke orangery design with a glass roof by Garden Vale Houses (Image credit: Vale Garden Houses)

Classic orangeries tend to be sympathetic to the existing property, blending in with the look and feel of your home. 

What is an Orangery?

An orangery is a more substantial building that has less glass and more structured walls. They tend to have a solid roof with a large glazed roof lantern in the centre. 

Look at including colours and materials that complement, and pay attention to the overall design and roof style.

“Where possible utilise matching building materials for the base works - reclaim or handmade bricks, stone, flint facings and render, all need to be appropriate to the building and the area in which you reside,” says Lisa Morton Director at Vale Garden Houses.

(MORE: Matching Materials for an Extension)

3. A Modern Glazed Extension Should Ooze Contemporary Style

Conservatory ideas - modern conservatory

Anthracite grey extension from Thames Valley Window Company   (Image credit: Thames Valley Windows Company)

Today’s contemporary glazed extensions have a minimalist finish with floor-to-ceiling glass walls which look stunning from every angle. 

Often square or rectangular, modern lean-to conservatories and glass extensions feature bifold doors and roof lanterns to create a space that basks in natural light and fully unites the home and the garden.

4. Make the Roof a Feature in Your Conservatory Idea

Traditional Conservatory Ideas

Victorian style conservatory in Norfolk with glass pitched roof by Vale Garden Houses (Image credit: Vale Garden Company)

Gothic and Victorian style conservatories often have a steeply pitched roof and ornate detailing. Choosing this style is an effective way to add an eye-catching design feature that suits period properties. 

5. Create Instant Wow-factor with a Large Glazed Kitchen Extension

Conservatory Ideas

Use a glass extension to extend your house and kitchen area like this design by  Westbury Garden Rooms (Image credit: Westbury Garden Rooms)

A large glazed extension is perfect for creating a multipurpose living space.

Ideal for a light and airy kitchen extension, adding a glass extension will open up your house to create a social space, with garden views. Perfect for cooking and entertaining.

6. A Lean-to Conservatory Idea is an Affordable Option 

Conservatory ideas - lean to conservatory

Lean-to conservatoires work for all style of houses (Image credit: Getty)

The most popular conservatory idea is a lean-to conservatory with a single, angular sloping roof. Often referred to as a modern-day garden room, it is a simple and affordable design that can be adapted to suit both period properties and modern homes.

Do I Need Planning Permission for a Conservatory?

Most conservatories can be built under Permitted Development with the same rules that apply for a single-storey extension.

“Lean-to structures are simpler in style than traditional conservatory designs, with large expanses of glass that make the most of outside views. These structures also pair perfectly with bifold and sliding doors and suit nearly every home,” says Ryan Schofield, Managing Director, Thames Valley Window Company.

(MORE: Sunroom Ideas)

7. Good Lighting Will Create Evening Ambiance 

Conservatory Ideas

This stunning orangery by Westbury Garden Rooms looks wonderful at night (Image credit: Westbury Garden Rooms)

Although conservatories and orangeries will be flooded with natural light during the day, they can become dark and uninviting at night, so it pays to consider your artificial lighting scheme. 

  • Well placed, dimmable, wall lights will catch the light and twinkle against the glass
  • The addition of softer table lights will create a relaxing, warm glow
  • Built-in, discreet spotlights can add directional lighting along walls and are especially suited to orangeries and glazed extensions
  • LED strip floor lighting is also a good choice along any steps or split level areas
  • Light your garden with outdoor lights to create something that glows beyond the glass

(MORE: Garden Lighting Ideas)

8. Blinds Will Keep Your Conservatory Cool

Conservatory ideas - blinds

Multi-functional, Perfect Fit Roller Blinds from Swift Direct Blinds  (Image credit: Perfect Fit Blinds)

To make the most of your conservatory, you will want to focus on adding blinds or window films to create shade, as well as privacy.

Electric blinds are a great way to cover a glass ceiling area that is hard to reach but can become expensive as there will be a lot of glass to cover. You can however get handy tools to help you manually open roof blinds to keep costs down.

9. Add a Touch of Elegance to Your Home with a Traditional Conservatory Idea

Conservatory ideas

Beautiful yet traditional this conservatory design, by Westbury Garden Rooms, looks wonderful with it's glazed walls and glass roof (Image credit: Westbury Garden Rooms)

For something architecturally striking, an Edwardian-style conservatory often has a square shape and large glass panels, which gives a timeless yet stylish look.

Victorian-style conservatories, on the other hand, are elegant and spacious and feature a rounded bay frontage that allows for panoramic views of the garden.

10. Add Colour to Give Your Conservatory Idea a Unique Finish

Conservatory ideas

This dark grey conservatory by Vale Garden Houses, adds a contemporary finish (Image credit: Vale Garden Houses)

Manufacturers can add colour to your conservatory frame to match your existing home for a beautiful finish without compromising on style. 

Natural shades and muted greens are a popular choice for period properties, while grey and white tend to be better suited to modern houses. 

“If you’re looking to add colour into your conservatory, PVCu or timber are now widely available in an array of colours and finishes and can even be made with wood grain details. With the option of choosing a dual colour combination, homeowners are allowed to add colour into their conservatory in a variety of ways,” says Ryan Schofield.

Conservatory ideas

Modern glass conservatory by Thames Valley Windows (Image credit: Thames Valley Window Company)

Clever flooring and bifold doors can create a seamless transition from inside to out. 

Look for indoor and outdoor tiles in a similar colour and with an anti-slip finish.

By using the same flooring for your conservatory and patio you will create the illusion of space, as well as a functional entertaining area with added wow factor.

(MORE: Bringing the Outside In)

Katie is an experienced journalist and has renovated two houses including a 200-year-old cottage and a 1950s semi.