Take a look inside this stunning off-grid home inspired by nature

timber cladding on exterior of eco self build
(Image credit: Simon Burt)

When Catja and her husband Philip decided to move out of London with their three children, West Sussex seemed to offer everything they were looking for. Catja found an ideal plot of 1.5 hectares, half of which is woodland, and located just a short walk to the sea.

The plot already had a property on it, but Catja discovered it was badly built, uninsulated, and so poorly set on the site that it didn’t connect to that fabulous garden. “We bought it with the idea of refurbishing it,” says Catja. “I’m not a great fan of knocking properties down, but it was more environmentally friendly to demolish it, self build and recycle as much as we could. The bricks were used as hardcore on site.”

Alexandra Pratt
Homes Journalist

Alexandra Pratt is a home journalist with over 20 years experience, who has written for a number of self build titles. She has interviewed countless architects and self builders.

She is also a serial renovator and has been overhauling properties for over 15 years, and has built her way up the property ladder by undertaking DIY, living on site and project managing her own renovation and self build projects.