Friday, April 30, 2010

Men spend a year in their shed

According to a new survey of 3,000 chaps by National Shed Week sponsor Cuprinol Sprayable as reported in The Sun (as they put it 'Wood you believe it?'...), over a lifetime, the average man spends just under a year of his life in his shed or to put it another way, three hours and 20 minutes a week. The survey also revealed a tenth of them have a sofa and television inside too. No survey yet on how much time women spend in the shed. Perhaps we should commission one?
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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Craven Road Studio wins Governor General's medal

The Governor General’s Medals in Architecture are awarded by the prestigious Royal Architectural Institute of Canada and recognise outstanding achievement in recently built projects by Canadian architects. Among the winners this time round is the marvellous Craven Road Studio by Shim-Sutcliffe Architects. Here's what the Institute says about it:
"This urban studio building was designed for study, display and storage. The bright space receives indirect illumination through a system of narrow light coffers surrounding the building’s perimeter."

Thanks to Lloyd Alter for the alert (Lloyd's own prefab project also won a GG)
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Bamboo Pavilion: grow your own garden office

The idea of growing your own garden office is a rather appealing one and the Bamboo Pavilion from the David Garcia Studio offers another insight into how that might be achieved. The idea is the shedworkingesque structure relies on the ability of living bamboo to a) support a considerable vertical weight and b) grow tremendously fast in the right conditions. Here's how they describe it:
"The plant is allowed to grow through a grid floor and roof structure initially held in place with scaffolding. Metal plates are inserted into this grid structure where bamboo ‘columns’ are desired. As the plant matures and increases in girth it grows into the steel ring forming the structural connection to the floor and roof plates."
More details at the David Garcia site.
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Shedstore: list of 3rd party installation services in UK

The folk at Shedstore are putting together a list of companies and individuals who offer installation services for garden buildings so that customers who buy one of their self-assembly products will have a starting point if they want help with their new building. Shedstore point out that they can't fully endorse names on the list but it will still hopefully be a useful resource. And of course if you offer this kind of service, get in touch with them at installations@shedstore.co.uk
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Writers' Cabin Summerhouse

The BillyOh Writers' Cabin Summerhouse from Garden Buildings Direct is a pleasant space for shedworking, available in 10 x 6 and 10 x 8 sizes with long windows, offset roof to improve the writing space and tongue and groove cladding.
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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Clipper CS-1: interior shedworking

The Clipper CS-1 is a shedlike capsule office designed for use inside a traditional office by Douglas Ball and Jeff Sokalski. Measuring 2m wide x 1.22m deep x 1.22m high, it was built of plywood and plastic on a Lexan powder-coated steel frame with a fibreglass seat sporting leather upholstery, customised footrests, extendable sidewing tables and its own air supply. It was designed as part of a study for Herman Miller into improving office cubicle spaces and around 100 were built, one of which is now in the permanent collection at The Museum of Design in London.
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Whopping rise in sales of garden buildings

Sales of sheds over £1,000 are rocketing, according to the Daily Telegraph which says that B&Q's sales of its Tenbieight Shack Up (£1,149, pictured above) and Cannock summer cabin (£1,299) are up hundreds of percent. It follows John Lewis' entry into the market earlier this year. Two key quotes from those who spoke to the Telegraph's Harry Wallop:
Gurinder Jellehwallia, a buyer from B&Q said: “More and more of us want to reclaim some personal space in our homes so whether we’re retreating to our greenhouses, home working from our sheds or playing in our summer houses this trend looks set to continue.” Suzanne Imre, editor of Living Etc magazine reinforces this trend: “I think there will be need for retreats. If more and more people are working from home you will need to have areas you can section off and go to where it’s quiet."
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Garden office on wheels

This rather cosy garden office is the shedworking space of interior designer Jennifer Farrell as showcased on Sunset. Jennifer designed it herself to fit nicely onto her decking underneath her fig tree and give her nice views over the garden (hence the use of plexiglass in the walls). According to Sunset:
"The floors are inexpensive particle board, stained dark espresso to suggest hardwood. And, to save costs, instead of hardwiring, Farrell ran a weatherproof extension cord under the deck and up through a hole in the floor of the pod, popping up just under the desk."
Best of all, the whole thing is on small but strong casters so she can move it around easily and avoid the delights of planning permission/building permits.
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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Work, row and relax in your garden office

A rather nice semi-stilted garden building recently put up by The Garden Room Company in the heart of Durham. Though a great place to work, it's technically a garden rowing room with covered hot tub area and features a sedum roof, bifold aluminium doors, green oak posts/beams and Thermowood cladding.
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Studio Shed (screencast)


You can visit Studio Shed here.
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Tuesday posts are sponsored by The Home Office Company, manufacturers of unique garden rooms since 1998. Now in 10 exciting new colours. Click here for more details.

Heather Bestel - shedworking tip of the month

This month, Shedworking's Calm Editor Heather Bestel recommends the power of the nap.
With no set start or finish times and no official elevenses, shedworkers can easily find themselves engrossed in their work and forget to take a break.

Without the usual office distractions you may think this is good for productivity, but in fact, it is not. Neither is it good for your health. Researchers have found that the brain needs a rest every now and then and can refresh itself with just a short 10-20 minute power nap. The benefits have been found to include: higher cognitive functioning, improved memory and learning, higher productivity rates, alertness and less stress. And it’s good for your heart too.

So after lunch today, why not sit in the garden with your eyes closed just for 10 minutes and join some famous nappers including Leonardo Da Vinci, Einstein and Thomas Edison.
More stressbusting advice from Heather at her site here.
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Monday, April 26, 2010

AVL Workskull

A remarkable shedworking creation from the nothing if not eclectic Atelier Van Lieshout who say that it is "designed for large offices as a secluded place, where employees can work alone undisturbed, have more privacy for phone calls or retreat from the world".
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Every garden needs a shed…

The lovely Deborah Nagen from architects and designers naganjohnson has been in touch to tell us about their ongoing project in Canada for the Metis International Garden Festival called 'Every garden needs a shed and a lawn…'. Here's what she says:
"It's a conceptual look at the 'elements' of a good garden and a humorous take on the English habit of plonking sheds and lawns in our gardens before thinking about the design at all. The garden consists of 10 sheds with themes such as 'pollination', 'beauty', 'soil' and 'water' - each shed has a thought provoking interior, a window and a tiny garden, so, for example, the 'Pollination' shed is full of jars of honey (about 1,000 of them, from a local honey supplier), and a garden consisting of 10 lavender bushes.
All marvellous, the only specifically shedworking space is 'Beauty', pictured above, which boasts a simple white desk and chair in a white shed with a slit view of a white runway where someone might pose for a statue. Deborah blogs at Peculiarspaces too which is well worth a browse.
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How will shedworkers vote in UK General Election?



Just to leap upon the election bandwagon, we thought we'd invite readers (both shedworkers and non-shedworkers) to indicate their voting intentions in the forthcoming election. It's all entirely anonymous so please do make your mark in the poll above. We'll also be running one on election day itself as a kind of exit poll to see how accurately Shedworking's readers mirror the country at large...
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Büro Holzbau Rupprecht

This marvellous shedworking space belongs to German timber specialists Holzbau Rupprecht and is understandably made out of wood, rough sawn cedar on the exterior, various fir on the inside. It's one of the larger garden offices we've covered on Shedworking, coming in at 77m² and including offices, a spacious meeting area, archive and bathroom. A narrow corridor connects it to the adjacent apartment building. Designed by Berschneider und Berschneider.
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100 garden offices in the running for Shed of the Year 2010

National Shed Week (now approaching its fourth incarnation) including the much coveted award of Shed of the Year is rapidly approaching (keep up to date with all the latest NSW news and information at Shedblog): the week now has its own sponsor in Cuprinol Sprayable which means that this year’s Shed of the Year winner scoops £1,000 and all category winners receive Cuprinol Sprayable products. Here are the key dates
* Deadline for entries – May 20
* Public judging runs until June 20
* Category winners/Shed Week finalists announced - June 21
* Shed of the Year winner unveiled during National Shed Week which starts July 9

There is obviously a category for garden offices and if you'd like to enter your shedworking space - and I hope you will - then just nip along to readersheds.co.uk and sign it up.
Video from Decorated Shed
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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Public writing hut

This marvellous shedlike atmosphere by Gene and Susan Flores is actually called 'Little House to Honor a Request for Poems'. They describe it as a public writing hut which moves from town to town and is made from wood, branches, steel, stainless steel, measuring 6' x 6' x 9'. And from the same couple comes the 'Jacal for South Texas' (below), a traveling writing hut for lost stories.
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Win a shed with B&Q Stories

Stories is an exciting blog-style tool that invites you to share your personal home improvement experiences – on a given topic – with fellow DIY dabblers. This is your chance to read and share memorable and enjoyable stories with the diy.com community. Be creative and original. Inspire others and be inspired. Share your DIY highs and lows and triumphs and woes. But most of all enjoy writing your story.
B&Q
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For great value home insurance, get a home insurance quote online from Tesco Bank. Every Little Helps.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Old greenhouse into a garden office

While many people buy their garden offices new, if you already have a decent structure in your garden which could be converted, it's well worth considering 'recycling' it. Life strategist, speaker and author Caroline O'Neill mentioned today on Twitter that she was starting to turn her old greenhouse (pictured above) into a garden office - we look forward to more photos in coming months.
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