Saturday, April 30, 2016

Literary Trumps needs your help


Another quick mention for one of the Shedworking staff's side projects (which features at least one shedworker in Virginia Woolf). It's a crowdfunded Trumps game focusing on writers, their quotability, their literary prizes, their major works, and, naturally, their speed. You can find out more (and pledge) at the Unbound site which is publishing it.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Off-grid shepherds' huts


Somerset-based Blackdown Shepherd Huts are launching a 'Eco Solar Huts' range in response to requests for environmentally-friendly huts, wired for 12V, with USB sockets.

"We've had an increase in demand for huts that customers want situated in remote, unspoiled locations," says Will Vickery, who owns Blackdown which already use local suppliers, Somerset wool for insulation, apply predominantly water-based paints, and fit the exterior of the huts with British steel. "Alongside this, people want to feel good about having a low impact on the environment. We've also had requests for huts to be located where it is not possible or feasible to run mains power.

"This eco-friendly method means that everything in the hut is powered without any mains electricity.  It even has a 12v fridge running off the solar.  Our huts have been designed to use as minimal power as possible so there will still be power even on grey days.

"There is an inverter that steps up the 12v to 240v to run the gas hot water boiler fan, ignition and the gas hob ignition.  Inverters themselves use a small amount of energy when on. To this end, we have mounted a little remote ‘light' switch so the inverter only needs to be flicked on when the water or hob is needed to help people reduce the power being used."

The Eco Solar huts can be powered with either semi-flexible Mono-crystalline solar panels curved over the roof or with rigid ground mounted panels. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Air conditioning in a garden office


An interesting short article by Advantage Air Systems looks at the pros of having air conditioning in your garden office. Here's a snippet:
Direct electric heating is expensive and inefficient to run, whereas modern air conditioning units are vastly more energy efficient. They can reduce electricity bills by as much as 30-50%. If you use your garden office all day every day, you could find that your newly installed air conditioning system pays for itself within a few years in reduced running costs. Air conditioning systems also benefit from being very controllable. You can set the timer to the desired temperature for maximum comfort and efficiency resulting in a space that is cool and comfortable in the summer and warm and cosy in the winter.
 Well worth a browse.
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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

What shed should I buy?


A jolly little interactive quiz from Waltons. Click here to have a go. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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 25, 2016

Smökers: Mark Reigelman's shedworking art


An art installation in New York by Mark Reigelman who placed a specially-designed wooden cabin over various manholes which had steam coming out of them to create a jolly effect.
Smökers II from Mark Reigelman II on Vimeo.
Via designboom --------------------------------------------------------------------
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Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Shed Head craft beer launches


One for shedworkers to look out for from the start of May from Carlsberg. According to the Morning Advertiser, it will be a 4.6% ABV American Pale Ale made with Cascade and Citra hops which will be produced in Sweden and imported into the UK. It will be part of the same Backyard Brewery range as The Lawnmower.
Thanks to the eagle-eyed Uncle Wilco.

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Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Studying tiny houses


The Tiny House Project is a course run by Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania which aims "to develop a unique living/learning educational experience that integrates concepts of sustainability, simple living, environmental science/studies into students’ coursework and lifestyles". Students will design and build their own tiny houses and indeed live in it for a few weeks in a project the college says it hopes will postition it as an innovator in sustainability education. Here's a bit more from them about it all". If you're in the area on April 28, tiny house expert Bill Rockhill (pictured) will talk about his tiny house building experience.
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Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Cardboard shedworking


Ideal for the eco-minded shedworker with a penchant for water, Harry Dwyer and Charlie Waller of Aircraft Workshop have created what they claim is the world's first houseboat made entirely of recycled cardboard. Theywill be showcasing the logic-defying boat for the first time at Grand Designs Live on April 30.       

The aim is to make use of otherwise wasted cardboard found in and around the site of their workshop, transforming it into a fully seafaring vessel, capable of sleeping two. The boat, currently being assembled in London's historic docklands will contain two bunks, an electric motor, kitchen and all the amenities one would expect to find in a houseboat, in cardboard. As well as all the interior facilities, Harry and Charlie will include everything required for a fully functional boating experience such as fenders, rubbing strips, funnels, wheelhouse, portholes and even an anchor. ----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Is this the world's fastest shed?


We've reported on various motorised sheds over the years, but Kevin Nicks from Chipping Norton claims his is the fastest, an upcycled VW Passat which can do nearly 90mph thanks to its V6 engine. More details about Kevin's build and battle with DVLA at the Daily Mirror -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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 18, 2016

Chelsea Flower Show 2016: The Cloudy Bay Garden



New Zealand winery Cloudy Bay will be back at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show again this year with this Sam Ovens-designed garden. Here's what Sam says about it:
The primary material is western red cedar timber (a natural material that exudes quality), which is used in the construction of a deck, boardwalks and cabin, a waterside retreat. A large reflective pool adds a sensory element to the design with connotations of setting sail and drifting away, or even escaping. The cabin and boardwalk elements have a pontoon-like quality.
And this is what last year's Gold-winning Cloudy Bay garden with garden office looked like, below.


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Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Chelsea Flower Show 2016: The Harrods Eccentric British Garden


Continuing our look at this year's shedworkingish elements at the 2016 Chelsea Flower Show, The Harrods Eccentric British Garden is designed by Diarmuid Gavin, no stranger to shedworking designs who readers will remember from his 2007 design. It's more traditional than many of his previous wellknown designs though is still an "alternative take on a quintessentially English garden, in which he embraces flowering herbaceous perennials, formal topiary and regimented structure". In particular, look out for the octagonal folly tower which is inspired by English cartoonist and illustrator William Heath Robinson, and which promises surprises for visitors. There is also a shed that will contain Heath Robinson-inspired gadgets. --------------------------------------------------------
Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Henry David Thoreau's cabin vs gas pipeline



An excellent article on Atlas Obscura looks at how protestors, led by timber-frame builder Will Elwell are protesting against a planned new gas pipeline through their village of Ashfield, Massachusetts (and some of the state's sensitive ecosystem), by building a cabin modelled on Godfather of Shedworking Henry David Thoreau's Walden cabin right in its proposed path. Here's a snippet:
Though Elwell had grown up close to Concord, and often went fishing at Walden Pond, he’d never really thought much about Thoreau. But he knew that Thoreau had written about civil disobedience, intertwined with philosophy, society, government, and nature. “Thoreau felt that if the government is not taking care of those who it governs, then there’s a right for citizens to express their opinion about that,” says Elwell. “And also if they need to create some kind of civil disobedience to change things, instead of just sitting around and accepting the status quo.” 
More details at the campaign's Facebook page Thoreau Cabin Pipeline Barricade
Photos by Will Elwell. 
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Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Garden office made from surplus building materials



Enviromate is a platform which allows you to buy and sell surplus building materials and has recently seen an influx of DIY enthusiasts who have discovered supplies they can buy for cut-down ‘trade' prices as well as making cash selling surplus materials from their own projects.

Paul Wells from Kent used Enviromate for the materials for his home office project. Using only surplus materials like double-glazed windows, timber and plasterboard that would have otherwise gone into landfill, he set about building a fantastic home office in his garden, all for just £150.

“My focus for the build was essentially to finish the project for as little cost as possible," Paul told Shedworking. "I wanted to completely self-build the office space in my garden, but I didn't want to pay prices at DIY stores for brand new materials. I ended up trawling through various other marketplaces and 'For Sale and Wanted' sites before I came across Enviromate.

"I was pleasantly surprised at how being a ‘building’ marketplace, it was easy for me to find the majority of what I needed for the project. I sourced all material from the site, and I was lucky that in my area there were some great bargains.” ----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Shedworkers at risk of back health problems



It's Chiropractic Awareness Week and this year’s campaign focuses on shedworking, flexible working, and the impact that working remotely can have on back health. The campaign is a result of consumer research conducted by the British Chiropractic Association who say that a fifth of people working remotely on a computer do so from the sofa, and more than one in ten admit working from their bed.

Work was cited as a trigger of back or neck pain by nearly a fifth of sufferers, but despite this, more than a quarter of workers admit to taking no proactive measures to protect their back while at work, whether at home or in an office.

The survey revealed that sitting in the same position for long periods of time was the most common cause of back or neck pain in the workplace, with over two fifths of workers who have suffered from back or neck pain citing this as a contributing factor.

The BCA has the following tips for shedworkers and other people working at home:

* If possible, always work at a table, sitting on a chair, rather than on the sofa or in bed.
* The top of your screen should be level with your eyebrows and if you are working from a laptop, make sure you are not hunching over the screen.
* If you don’t want to invest in a computer stand, place sturdy books, for example shopping catalogues, under your laptop so that you can adjust the level of the screen to fit your eye line.
* Use a detachable keyboard and mouse whenever possible, as this will ensure that your movement is not restricted and you are not placing unnecessary strain on your back.
* Taking regular breaks is extremely important and the BCA recommends workers move around every 20-30 minutes. An easy way to ensure that you get away from your desk is to set a loud alarm in another room.
* When making phone calls, take the opportunity to get up from your desk and move around as you talk.
* Embrace the privacy of working from home by doing regular stretches.

The BCA has developed a series of simple exercises to improve posture and help prevent back pain on its site here. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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 11, 2016

Chelsea Flower Show 2016: The Garden of Mindful Living


Today we start our annual look at the forthcoming shedworkingesque delights at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show next month with The Garden of Mindful Living, designed by Paul Martin. Built by Beautiful Horizon Landscape and sponsored by Vestra Wealth, this lovely piece of microarchitectre is described as a "contemporary modern garden owned by a busy city client" and has been "inspired by the love of Far Eastern travel, yoga and a requirement for a calm space in which to relax after a busy day at work". It includess Corten walls, grey-splashed limestone, and large sliding shutters "that open to reveal the sparkling city views at night". There's also an excellent interview with Paul about his garden studio and garden in general in the Irish Times. --------------------------------------------------------------------
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Friday, April 01, 2016

New cloaking technology behind launch of invisible shed


Every year we bring you some incredible designs on Shedworking, but this is probably the most incredible: a Western Red cedar-clad timber building with full electrics and a woodburning stove built to be invisible if you are looking at it from the outside, but with all the usual features inside, including swivel chairs, recycled moss insulation, and a small fridge powered by the wind turbine on top (you can just make out its shadow in the image above). The prototype model - pictured above - is the result of a collaboration between French architects Avril Poisson and Italian timber experts Pesce Daprile. The really clever bit is the invisibility mechanism which is largely done with carefully-concealed mirrors and plenty smoke but there are more details about that in the Guardian newspaper. --------------------------------------------------------
Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.