Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Solarium built of sugar


A remarkable shedlike atmosphere by William Lamson built out of steel, glass and sugar. "Like a mountain chapel or Thoreau’s one-room cabin, Solarium references a tradition of isolated outposts designed for reflection," he says. "Each of the 162 panels is made of sugar cooked to different temperatures and then sealed between two panes of window glass. The space functions as both an experimental greenhouse, growing three species of miniature citrus trees, and a meditative environment... Set within the open the landscape, the house functions as a hybrid sanctuary at once evoking a plant conservatory, a chapel, and zen garden." Lots more photos at the link above.

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Shedworking merchandise


We're not turning into a shop, but here are a couple of interesting sheddish bits and bobs that have recently made their way to Shedworking HQ. First, the Motorshed t-shirt above, kindly donated to the cause by longtime supporter of this blog Mark Snelling. I've tried it on and I look quite good in it, even if I do say so myself. Snap one up for yourself at Old Guys Rule.

I also recently retoured Shaw's Corner, the National Trust property which as you all know also houses George Bernard Shaw's writing hut. They are now producing badges of the hut (not remarkable reproductions it has to be said and my photo isn't great to boot) for the pocket money price of 50p. Here's mine below.



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Monday, April 28, 2014

Memories of Henry Williamson's writing hut


A nice piece in the North Devon Journal about the sale of Henry 'Tarka the Otter' Williamson's writing hut includes comments from his son Rob about his memories of the hut. Here's a snippet:
"We would often be asked to go into the hut and listen to what he had been writing and as children we would be asked if it was okay. It was rather magical because he had such a wonderful reading voice. He could read most brilliantly and it was a privilege. Certainly we would be very willing to take somebody who might not give the best price but who would look after it as it is now. Henry’s legacy to the world are his books, not the hut. The hut is a fantastic place and has fantastic memories, but it’s his books that will stand the test of time."
The hut will be auctioned on May 23 and has been valued at £110,000. Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Khōra Architectural Dome


The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is rapidly approaching (May 20-24) so today we start to flag up some of the shedworkingesque buildings to look out for if you visit.


Above (at Stand RHW2) is the rather impressive Khōra Architectural Dome, a steel and glass structure inspired by the Palm House at Kew Gardens from British designer Louis Calmels. It measures 5m in diameter and is 7m high. It has hardwood doors and windows and features curved glass panels in the domed roof.

Here's how Calmels describes it: "The name Khōra comes from ancient Greek. It is a philosophical term which refers to a space or interval between being and non-being. The glass dome is sympathetic to this concept. Plato described 'Khōra' as the image reflected in a mirror, held by the mirror but not retained. The glass dome defines its own space but allows the eye to cross its boundaries and observe the outside as if it were within. I feel my Dome reflects this ethereal imagery as it encapsulates a light, airy space which is beautiful and calming both in the day and at night.” So now you know.
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Homestead Timber Buildings - Manufacturers of Quality Timber Buildings

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Egg-shaped beach huts


"Egg and ball-shaped beach huts have been put forward as possible designs for "storm-proof" huts in Dorset.Students at Arts University Bournemouth designed the huts for Studland Beach as part of a National Trust project."
More details at the BBC ----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Hexi-House


Due to come onto the market in summer next year, Hexi-House is a hexagonal pod building system which will be of interest to shedworkers, aimed squarely at the garden buildings market and specifically at those keen to invest in garden offices.

The pods come in kit form and are  around 5.3sqm, built from high performance composite boarding. But the other interesting element is that father and son team from Belfast Jim and Chris Rooney will run it as a social entrprise. Here's what they say: 
"The primary activity is a pod for private home use. The second activity, is to reinvest the profits attained from the primary activity to subsidize the cost of providing Hexi-House as a medium-term relief shelter for displaced victims from natural or social disasters."
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Tuesday posts are sponsored by Garden Spaces, suppliers of contemporary garden buildings, offices, gyms and studios, many of which do not require planning

Monday, April 21, 2014

Shed of the Year - now a television series


Shed of the Year is coming to a small screen near you. Television property expert and small space enthusiast George Clarke, his master craftsman colleague William Hardie, architect Laura Clark and industrial designer Max McMurdo will be following the ‘Shed of the Year’ competition this year, investigating and assessing some of the 2000 entries from across the UK.
 
Over three shows George and his team will travel to standout entries shortlisted in various categories. 
The series will culminate in the three judges alongside Channel 4 viewers making the extremely tough decision on who is the overall winner of Shed of the Year 2014. 
Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Britain's obsession with luxury playhouses


An interesting article by Tom Bawden in the Independent [disclosure - I work for the super soaraway Indy] looks at the increasingly complex playhouses on the market for children. Here's a snippet:
Not so long ago, the average child was perfectly happy with a playhouse made from cheap scrap wood, cardboard or even a bed sheet draped over a line between two poles. Wonky wendy houses wobbled across the land. Nowadays that won’t do at all, with youngsters around the country living it up in des-res two-storey garden mansions with a balcony, double-glazing, window box, electronic doorbell and, in some cases, even a pretend oven.
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Thursday, April 17, 2014

British Pathé and George Bernard Shaw's shed

Film archive British Pathé has put its entire collection onto YouTube. Naturally, among the 85,000 rare 20th Century videos now available to the public are plenty including sheds and huts, such as this one featureing George Bernard Shaw and his writing shed, which he enters at around the 1.38 mark. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Homestead Timber Buildings - Manufacturers of Quality Timber Buildings

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Sheds more popular for working in than storage says poll


Research from Dunster House suggests that keeping sheds as storage areas is no longer the most popular way of using them  - more than half of the people surveyed said they use their shed as a dedicated hobby space or relaxing hideaway.

Second most popular was using the shed for storage which 43% of respondents did, with a remaining 4% favouring sheds for their aesthetics i.e. the perfect addition to an attractive back garden.

“We all know that sheds have a practical use," said Alex Murphy, Managing Director at Dunster House, "but we hadn’t realised so many people were using them as a bolt hole from the stresses and strain of their everyday lives, either to grab a bit of peace and quiet, or to relax and enjoy their favourite hobbies.

“With people still financially stretched and looking for less costly ways of spending their free time, staying at home and ‘pottering’ about in your own shed seems to be a growing trend, as well as a healthy way of unwinding and keeping active at the same time. I’m never happier than when I’m in my own ‘Man-cave’ in the back garden.” ----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Monday, April 14, 2014

Launch your business in an escape shed


Here's an interesting idea from the Escape the City folk - one lucky person will get three months' free use of a shedworking atmosphere near Clapham Common to set up their new business. It's a liveable shedworking atmosphere so there's also a tiny house log cabin element in it too. There's no rent and there's a host of other helpful stuff like mentoring services thrown in too. More details about how to apply at the link above. Thanks to the eagle-eyed Emma Jones for spotting this. Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Friday, April 04, 2014

Shedworking support worker job

Age UK Cheshire is looking for a part time 'Men in Sheds Support Worker', somebody who is sensitive, friendly and patient with good listening and communication skills, plus a willingness to learn woodwork techniques (or, I'm assuming, have them already). Here's the detail:
"Men in Sheds is a project started by Age UK Cheshire in the autumn of 2008 for older men who feel isolated or are experiencing major life changes. The project is very simple and has one goal, to reach men over 55. We aim to encourage a shed-like environment with a focus on socialising, sharing skills and learning new ones and of course, all of our activities are accompanied with lots of tea and biscuits! We are looking for volunteers to support men who may have extra support needs in various woodwork projects."
Click here for full information and how to apply ----------------------------------------------------------
Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Henry 'Tarka the Otter' Williamson's writing shed up for sale


The writing hut built by author Henry Williamson is to be auctioned next month. Williamson paid for its construction in 1929 (pictured below that year) with prize money from winning the Hawthornden Prize for literature. It is built in oak and elm with slate roof tiles and near the pretty village of Georgeham near Woolacombe in North Devon.



The Henry Williamson Trust has run and maintained it since the author’s death in 1977 and it has been regularly used for lectures and readings. A statement from the Trust says:
"It is with the greatest reluctance that the Williamson family has announced that Henry Williamson's Writing Hut, together with the studio close by and an acre of land, are to be put up for auction on 23 May [by Webbers]. It is to be hoped that the buyer will be sympathetic to the hut and its environs, given its great literary significance. For HW it was a place of sanctuary, and many of his works were written there, including books in the Chronicle of Ancient Sunlight series. It has become, for Williamson readers, a place of pilgrimage, with visitors from as far away as the United States and Australia."


Pictured above is Williamson inside the hut. The sale includes his writing desk, spectacles and blotter. Pictured below is how it looks today.


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Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Win a shed


Beast Sheds have a nice competition for UK bloggers on their site (details here) to win one of their 5×4 Pent B model sheds worth £499, delivered and fitted free of charge. All you need to do is write a blog post about how to use a shed creatively and they can include photos or video. Maybe you'd like to become a shedworker for example... Closing date is April 30.
  
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Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Is this the most shedworkingesque road sign in the world?


Eagle-eyed Shedworking reader Dan Norcev sent this in to us this morning, spotted in the middle of Paris. Does anybody else know of a more shedlike collection of shedbased streets and roads? -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday posts are sponsored by Garden Spaces, suppliers of contemporary garden buildings, offices, gyms and studios, many of which do not require planning