For those grand de­sign­ers

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PARK LIFE: Inchdryne Lodge is a self-build tim­ber house in Cairn­gorms Na­tional Park. It cost £250,000 to build and is val­ued at £375,000.

Would-be ren­o­va­tors and self­builders should see 2009 as an ex­cel­lent time to start a build­ing project. The Scot­tish Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing Show, at the SECC in Glasgow on May 16 and 17 can help you make the most of your home.

A 34% in­crease na­tion­wide in the num­ber of plots avail­able for self-builders makes this an ex­cel­lent time to con­sider build­ing your own home.

Ad­di­tion­ally, with the op­por­tu­nity to ne­go­ti­ate hard on labour and ma­te­ri­als prices in the cur­rent eco­nomic cli­mate, po­ten­tial self-builders and ren­o­va­tors could make sig­nif­i­cant sav­ings on their bud­gets if they plan care­fully, shop around and do their home­work.

Ac­cord­ing to show or­gan­iser Nick Noble, there has never been a bet­ter time to self-build. “With land prices fall­ing and skilled

Only moth­ers, daugh­ters, sis­ters, aunts or nieces are wel­come at the Mac­far­lane Homes open day to­mor­row (April 30) at the Holmes Park de­vel­op­ment in Brox­burn.

The eco-friendly house­builder re­alises that it is mainly the woman who is more in­ter­ested in the finer points of a new house, such as the in­te­rior style, kitchen de­sign, bath­room-ware, tiles, work­tops and floor cov­er­ings, and is invit­ing ladies only to the open day.

Vis­i­tors of the fairer sex can en­joy a glass of wine while looking at a range of in­te­rior fin­ishes, from cur­tain fabrics to gran- labour be­com­ing more avail­able, this is a great time to self-build. Self-builders are very ac­tive, as il­lus­trated by the fact that one in three new de­tached houses be­ing built is a self-build project.”

Bring your plans, out­line draw­ings or just your ideas and speak to one of the many ex­perts at the Show. Michael Holmes, TV pre­sen­ter and se­riel self-builder, will be head­ing up a team of ex­perts of­fer­ing ad­vice on ren­o­vat­ing, de­sign, plan­ning, self-build­ing, and greener liv­ing.

The show fea­tures more than 140 ex­hibitors, 36 free sem­i­nars with sub­jects in­clud­ing a be­gin­ners guide to self-build, ren­o­va­tion do’s and don’ts and eco home­build­ing, and 24 free mas­ter­classes led by ex­hibitors cov­er­ing their area of ex­per­tise in­clud­ing Q&A ses­sions.

Tick­ets are £5 in ad­vance or £8 on the day (un­der 16 free). Visit www. scot­land.home­build­ing­ or tele­phone 0871 945 4546. ite, and hear about the op­tions which will al­low buy­ers the op­por­tu­nity to per­son­alise their new home to suit their bud­get or style.

John Lewis will be pro­vid­ing some of the soft fur­nish­ing fabrics, and in­te­rior de­sign­ers Franssen In­te­ri­ors will be on hand to in­spire. Plus some­one on the day will win a £500 shop­ping voucher in a free prize draw.

The open day runs from 2pm to 7pm, .

The de­vel­op­ment com­prises 44 three, four and five-bed­room houses with prices start­ing at £212,000 plus in­cen­tives. Tele­phone 0131 660 2200 or visit www.mac­far­lane­ Fol­low the sun this sum­mer on the Eden ro­ta­tion day bed, which is set on cas­tors. It's made from syn­thetic wicker, so is soft to the touch, but also weath­er­proof and can be left out­side. £795 from John Lewis.

AT­TEN­TION TO DE­TAIL: The bed­room in the showhome at Brox­burn.

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