Monday, May 31, 2010

Country garden with garden office

There's a nice look at how to integrate your garden office nicely into your garden at Channel 4 web site. There are lots of lovely photos and here's a brief snippet to whet your appetite:
Your garden needn't be enormous for you to include an outdoor room. For best results, place it so that it can nestle between trees, or train climbers around it, and ensure that its construction allows for lots of natural daylight. It needs to be well insulated if you're using it all year round, but make sure that its doors can be opened fully so that you can enjoy the warmer weather, if we ever have it...
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Sunday, May 30, 2010

Shepherd's Hut studio from Taylors

Unless you go to a specialist shepherd's hut supplier, it's not been easy to find a model suitable for shedworking. But this studio from Taylors Garden Buildings with the characteristic curved roof, half glazed double doors, and finished in redwood cladding might be just what you're looking for. Each model is bespokely made for every order so you can specify exact arrangements of doors and windows, all of which incidentally, are made using mortice and tenon joints. Options include, skylights, heavy duty flooring and cladding and a roll on-roll off roof.
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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Ryan Mittleman: shedworker


Ryan Mittleman of WeWillFixIt guides us through his move to shedworking:
My wife and I are expecting our second child in September, Since we moved into our house four years ago I have had to move my office from a spare room, to the dining room! Now we are expecting a new arrival I had no option but to review my working situation.

I am an IT Consultant and Website Designer and as such have a lot of paper work and need access to it easily. My options were to rent an office which was just too expensive to think about and as I spend a portion of my time on site with clients so I wanted something that would not feel like a waste of money.

We have a decent sized garden with two outhouses which I have already worked on for storage purposes and utility room, this left a tatty old shed which was ready to fall down. We decided on the area that the shed was taking up, taking it down and then to the local skips was the easy part.

Once the shed was down, it was then a case of preparing the area, shuttering it off and getting on the phone to ask a mate to deliver the concrete. Once the base was ready I got on to order the cabin. We got it up one rainy weekend in April, insulated the floor and boarded. I have been working in here now for a couple of weeks now and am very chuffed with our handy work. Now it is just a case of keeping the keys away from the rest of the family otherwise I reckon I will be looking for a new office!
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Friday, May 28, 2010

Compact micropod launched by pod space

A new compact 'micropod' aimed at providing office acomodation for individual shedworkers has been launched by pod space. Ben Lord from pod space says the pod comes with data/phone points, stainless steel sockets and low energy spot lights, underfloor heating, high security energy efficient Scandinavian door and windows as well as tip top insulation.
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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Guided tour of Shedworking book


A look at the cover and introduction with voiceover by me. Click the strange button thing next to the word 'Screenr' in the bottom right to make it go full screen and maximise your enjoyment.
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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Match Chelsea show garden to its shed: competition

Lila Das Gupta, friend of Shedworking, has launched a marvellous competition at her Hartley Botanic blog. All you need to do is match pictures of the sheds used by six of the designers (photographed above by Helen Fickling whose atmospheric work can also be seen in the Shedworking book) to their actual gardens. Lots more details at Lila's blog here. The winner gets a hot off the press signed copy of Shedworking: The Alternative Work Place Revolution but hurry, the competition closes on Saturday when Alan Titchmarsh rings the bell for the Chelsea sell-off at 4pm.
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Puzzle Prefab Shelter

Our posts on the work of Gregg Fleishman are among the most popular across the whole site so it's nice to see that people have been enjoying them in garden surroundings at the LA Garden Show at the Arboretum. Pictured above is a picture of his Puzzle Prefab Shelter, along very similar lines to his Disaster House. There's an excellent rundown on Apartment Therapy of the garden around the building which was built along sustainable ecofriendly lines e.g. a meadow instead of a lawn and a green roofed dog kennel. Lots more lovely photos at Apartment Therapy and Gregg's site is here. You can see how the building is constructed in the marvellous timelapse video below.

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Little Designs


While we do like Grand Designs at Shedworking, we also like Really Quite Small Designs too. So a large round of applause to Mark Stephens Architects who are putting together a series of short videos focusing on what they describe as probably the smallest restoration in Ireland. Here's what he says:
With the recession tightening in Ireland, the only way to think now is small. the days of the big Celtic Tiger McMansion are over. We have to think small, think smart and with money short we need to get top results for every euro.
It's very much a shedworkingesque project, an old cobbler's home where he lived and worked. And in the same small vein, the whole film was produced on an iPhone. Very impressive indeed.
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Down the garden office path

Now that the sun seems to be bursting forth a little this summer, here is the lovely view of artist and gardener Hannah Barnes' London studio looking from the garage towards the house and, below, the view of her awardwinning garden from the studio window. Lots more lovely photos of her garden at her Urban Eden blog where you can also find details of how to contact her if you would like her to help you maintain your garden (if you live in the Bromley area).
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Go to work in a barrel

Round is the word in 2010 for garden offices and there's a fabulous post at Tiny House Blog discussing the possibilities of using converted wine barrels as garden offices and listing various suppliers in the US and Canada including Hot Stuff whose work is pictured above and Superior Cooperage. At the moment, these companies are mainly looking at the sauna market but they'd be very, very popular shedworking atmospheres, with the added advantage that the barrel shape allows condensation to run down the walls and drain away. As they're mainly saunas, they're pretty room, certainly large enough for chairs and a desk.
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Armadillo shed

The Armadillo Shed from Archie Hunter shows that there's still plenty of room for innovation in shed design. It measures 6ft x 8ft size with high level storage and is made from sustainably managed timber. Apparently the door is designed to be impossible to lever with a crowbar (it has a digital lock too) and the window made with impenetrable 6mm laminated security glass.
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Monday, May 24, 2010

The Crib

The Crib is the followup shedworking design to the award-winning Shack at Hinkle Farm by Broadhurst Architects. Aimed specifically at those interested in a garden office (or as use as a weekend retreat), the Crib is a prefab which is made of sustainable and recyclable materials and is based on traditional American corn cribs where corn was stored and dried (and safe from rats). It has a galvanized steel structure, wood beams and SIP panels with recyclable translucent insulating multi-layer polycarbonate sheets as the skin. The smallest version has siding panels but otherwise is open to the elements.
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Chelsea Flower Show preview: The Living Office

While it doesn't look like being a vintage Chelsea for shedworking, the idea of mixing the concepts of 'garden' and 'office' will be highlighted in the Great Pavilion thanks to office planting specialists Indoor Garden Design and office furniture designers Vitra who have put together what they describe as Chelsea's first 'interior garden', called The Living Office. This display, a kind of 'working sanctuary' will outline the benefits of adding plants into an office environment, something which shedworkers of course already know lots about, and will feature a living wall and a natty system which will grow your lunch including strawberries, tomatoes, mint and chives. Also look out for a grey water filtration system (more commonly known as a fish tank) to feed the plants and a compost bin for both recycling and ambient heating. If you're going, it's at Stand K7.
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Live: Shedworking book chat



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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Container shedworking


This wonderful garden office is the shedworking workplace of music industry executive and artist Debbie Gibbs and built by MB Architecture using recycled shipping containers: the studio is two steel shipping containers on top of a foundation wall with an interior ceiling height of 18'. The first part of the video above deals with Debbie's house and the second her two-storey studio so do keep watching.
Photo: Dalton Portella and more photos at Archdaily
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Shedworking (and book) in The Sunday Times

A really nice piece about garden offices in The Sunday Times by Katrina Burroughs ('Take it outside'). As well as mentioning the Shedworking book it also namechecks a good range of garden office suppliers including Roomworks who built the music room pictured above for Sharon and Ben Edgar in London. Here's a snippet:
“Now Ben and I can jam together again, and it is serving as a really good rehearsal space,” Sharon says. “The pod is a short distance away from the house, but the psychological distance is immense. When you have small kids, you’re on eggshells. You can’t make too much noise, and that’s restrictive. It’s nice to have a space where we can let go. And it looks amazing at night, with downlights on the wood — as though a spaceship has landed in the garden.”
Well worth a browse
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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Chelsea Flower Show: shed preview

Not long until we get to see how Chelsea has done this year in terms of shedlike structures, but there are a couple of already intriguing previews: take a look at the always interesting Victoria's Backyard and then, as Victoria rightly recommends, nip across to Veg Plotting.
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Jeff Shelton: garden office huts

California-based architect and artist Jeff Shelton has a lovely selection of huts made out of recycled wood and other materials on his site which are well worth a browse.
Via Remodelista
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Friday, May 21, 2010

Shedworking spaces do well in 2010 RIBA Awards

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has made its annual awards to tip top buildings in the UK (plus a few in continental Europe). There are several shedworking spaces which got the nod including The Workshop, Studio and Offices, Sheffield by DRD Architects, the delightful Balnearn Boathouse from McKenzie Strickland Assocs and Shedworking's favourite, these Creative Business Units pictured above by Heatherwick Studio , low-cost shedworking spaces for sixteen start-up arts enterprises for Aberystwyth Arts Centre. Here's what they say:
Reluctant to dilute the wooded character of the site by superimposing a single campus-style block, the studio chose instead to set eight smaller buildings among the trees. These consist of simple timber frame sheds, split down their centre and pulled apart to provide light and ventilation and a shared entrance area.
The cladding is particularly eyecatching and is made out of steel
which is the thickness of cooking foil (which is cheapish) and crinkled and sprayed with insulation foam.
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The vote that REALLY counts...

Entries for Shed of the Year 2010 are now closed. Which means that voting is now open. Everything you need to know about how to make your shedvoice heard is at Shedblog. Could there be a tie for first place this year...? We'd urge you in particular to vote in the garden office category which as usual has some really tremendous entries. And keep watching the #shedweek tag on Twitter for updates.
Pictured above is... well, you all know this one don't you?
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Friday posts are sponsored by Extraspace, the flat-packed, man-portable expandable garden building experts. Click here for more details