Many people who make even just casual visits to the Ireland county of County Carlow are likely to perceive that it would make a wonderful place to live. Like much of Ireland, this county, which is in the Republic of Ireland’s South-East Region, has natural beauty in abundance. Its relatively small population – of 54,612, as recorded in the Republic of Ireland’s 2011 census – also helps to give it a peaceful feel. These factors probably influenced the decision of married couple Tom and Sasha Sykes, a writer and a furniture designer, to have a timber frame home constructed in the area. However, it has emerged that the home has many merits besides just its location.

From New York to County Carlow

Tom and Sasha moved to County Carlow following the birth of their first child, Ben, now aged eight. They had been living in New York – where, as Sasha has explained, they had “a fantastic, mafia-owned midtown Manhattan apartment”. However, as Sasha has further revealed, she and her husband needed additional space after the arrival of Ben, who “spent his first month sleeping in a chest of drawers”.

Their solution? The construction of a new home – with modern, traditional and practical elements – on a County Carlow estate that has been owned by Sasha’s family since the eighteenth century. Construction of the home, which was specifically intended to be small, practical and easy to take care of, lasted ten months and was complete in 2009.

Many other people can live in great self build houses

The example of the Sykes’ home suggests that many STREIF clients could especially benefit from self build timber houses. They could benefit, for example, from self build timber frame homes that, like the Sykes’ home, are simple in design and so can avoid becoming too financially costly. However, thanks to different construction elements usable by STREIF, including wall panels and floor and roof cassettes, there remains plenty of scope for variety with timber homes from STREIF. The particular house lived in by Tom and Sasha measures 2,000 square feet and has two storeys, four bedrooms and two bathrooms. Other great features of the house include a carved-oak door, high ceilings and big French windows through which mountain views can be enjoyed. You can largely let your imagination run free when you think about what features you should have as part of a timber frame house from STREIF.