Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Garden office piano


A piano-shaped Nordic Noir model from Garden2Office (tapered at the back to fit the garden) for a professional pianist in Mornington Crescent, London. It features a grass roof and two layers of sound-bloc plasterboard with a sandwich of acoustic foam matting. The water butt is an old galvanised steel water tank planted with reeds and lillies. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday posts are sponsored by Garden Spaces, suppliers of contemporary garden buildings, offices, gyms and studios, many of which do not require planning

Monday, January 30, 2017

Wheelless shepherds' huts


If you like the shepherds' hut curved roof vibe but don't actually want a shepherd's hut to work in as a garden office, then it's worth taking a look at this model from The English Shepherds Hut Company via its sister company Timberpad. Because hey don't have a wheeled chassis, there is more flexibility in terms of design possibiliteis. The one above has a 6m x 3m interior and, nice touch, a heated oak floor, the one below is for Norfolk textile specialists Textile Spirit, a workshop studio which needs particularly good storage, generous work space and worktops, and impressive lighting.



At the same time it's cleverly just small enough to avoid full building regulations high jinks and the curved roof also helps with Permitted Development issues.. Elsewhere there is a solid oak floor, double glazed French doors and two very large windows. --------------------------------------------------------------------
Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Shedworking in iNews: The unusually creative ways people work from home


Shedworking was happy to help out iNews (the online branch of the 'i' newspaper for which our staff once worked) with this piece about the best places to work at home. Unsurprisingly, we went for garden offices. Also a nice mention for Archie Workman and his canal boat at Gamechanger. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

New shedworking column in The Idler magazine


The Idler magazine was the first national title to cover the birth of The Shed magazine, the pdf magazine forerunner to Shedworking's online home here. So we were delighted when longtime friend of this site Tom Hodgkinson asked the staff to write a regular column about the delights of garden offices/buildings and microarchitecture in general for the magazine. The first column is now out in the latest issue which you can buy or subscribe to here. The magazine has a nice hefty book feel to it (though not too weighty) and also features writing from Michael Palin, William Boyd, Jo Lo Dico and Bill Drummond, plus an interview with Chris Donald (editor and founder of Viz), Lucy Birley on fashion, Nicholas Lezard on the radio and a new beer column. In the next one I'll be looking at how to make your own garden office. ----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Workplace Trends Conference 2017: Wellbeing & Productivity


Though not specifically for shedworkers, the Workplace Trends Conference always has sessions of interest to all those with garden offices (or who work remotely) and the concept of shedworking is often raised. This year the conference is focusing on wellbeing and productivity with various presentations from expert folk, plus good networking opportunities. Among the sessions are:

* Re-Thinking Nature for the Workplace - a look at how we can ‘learn from nature’ to come up with hi and low-tech solutions for workplaces

* Oliver Heath on Biophilic Design – how to improve our connection with nature in the workplace

* Friend of Shedworking Nigel Oseland on Creating Environments for Collaboration, Creativity and Concentration

And another FoS, Su Butcher from Just Practising, will be live tweeting the whole thing at #wtrends

It's all happening at Kings Place in London, on March 22 from 10am to 5.30pm. Click here for details. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday posts are sponsored by Garden Spaces, suppliers of contemporary garden buildings, offices, gyms and studios, many of which do not require planning

Monday, January 23, 2017

Wikkelhouse: Garden office made out of recycled cardboard



The Wikkelhouse (from the Dutch for 'wrapping') comes from Amsterdam-based Fiction Factory and is made from virgin fiber paperboard, dozens of layers of recycled corrugated cardboard which are wrapped around special moulds. On top of this is a shell of wooden slats. It's strong, it's long-lasting, and it doesn't get soggy if it drizzles. There's a modular element too so it's easy to adjust the size - the smaller versions are specifically targeted at the garden office and shedworking market, but larger ones can incorporate kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms for tiny living.


Wikkelhouse from Wikkelhouse on Vimeo. --------------------------------------------------------------------
Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Shed Box of Delights: Concrete dovecote/children's playhouse


This week's little beauty is a former concrete dovecote repurposed by AZO Sequeira Arquitectos Associados into a playhouse for children. More photos at the link. --------------------------------------------------------
Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

A guide to garden office wall thickness

Hard on the heels of this guide to garden office timber, comes a similar brief look at the importance of wall thickness and how much you need from Garden Life Cabins. It looks at five options
  • 19mm - 28mm thick
  • 34mm - 44mm
  • 70mm thick
  • 44mm + and 70mm + (customisable)
  • Quick Fit (18mm + frame)
Here's a snippet:
The basic rule with wall thickness is the thicker the timber, the better the insulation and durability. So, a year-round garden office generally needs thicker logs than a summer house you’ll use only in high summer. Please note that insulation and heat loss are not only dependent on the thickness of the walls: windows make a difference too.
Well worth a quick browse. You can read the whole thing here. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

ABC Cinema shed

Abc Cinema - Pub/Entertainment from garden #shedoftheyear This remarkable build by Anderson 'Andy' Jones must be an early frontrunner for shed of the year 2017. A recreation of a typical 1970s/80s cinema, it has original seats, signings, foyer, and display boards as well as a traditional 35mm projector. Up to 34 people can watch films inside the 'cinema' which took Andy more than four years to build. More photos and details at readersheds.co.uk and there's a nice piece about it on Movieweb. ----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Visible Shed - composting lavatory


For a long time back in the 2008s we ran a weekly series looking at outhouse sheds. We're not bringing that back a la Shed Box of Delights, but we do keep an eye out for interesting shedlike structures. Here is a lovely one from Invisible Studio, a timber lavatory for their Visible Studio which we've featured before here. Its a composting one built from "waste or scavenged" material, cost nothing and they say has no environmental impact. You can see other clever timber shelters from them 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, January 16, 2017

Pop-up retail sheds


An intriguing article in Mlive by Lynne Moore about new shopping plans for Muskegon, Michigan, where plans are in place to use nine sheds as temporary retail units in vacant lots later this spring and hopefully at holiday times, such as Christmas. According to the story "The portable sheds could be incubators for retailers looking to establish more permanent sites downtown... Tenants would pay a small fee and would be required to commit to regular business hours. Ideally, the tenants would sell unique, handmade items."

Here's an especially interesting quote from city Manager Frank Peterson:
"The goal isn't to make money on those. The goal is to get people in there five, six days a week. They'd have to commit to being there, especially during the peak season."

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

Friday, January 13, 2017

Box of Delights: John Jones, 18th century shedworker


For this week's Box of Delights, we bring you the historic octagonal garden office in South Salem, New Jersey, built by lawyer John Jones in 1735. Brick built (Flemish bond), it claims to be the oldest surviving law office in the United States. Inside there is just one room which has a vaulted ceiling.
--------------------------------------------------------
Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Inside Roald Dahl's Writing Hut - the book


If you like Roald Dahl's writing hut, then this is the paperback book for you. Produced by the Roald Dahl Museum in Great Missenden (just round the corner from Shedworking HQ), it is a 95-page breezy look at the building and history of the hut and how Dahl very much put his personal imprint on it. And at only £4 it's a snip.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

A guide to garden office wood


This is a guest post from Manchester-based timber merchant Theos Timber

There is more to choosing a garden office and shed than price.  How you are going to use it is one factor.  Will you be using it for potting plants or storing your garden tools?  Will it be used as a summer house or a tool store?  The choice of timber should also taken into consideration.  If you wish to use your shed for hobbies, a more robust timber variety ought to be your best bet.

In an ideal world, we would go for the most robust shed on the market.  Instead, many of us will go for the cheapest shed and end up buying a new one within a decade.

In Britain, the average shed is a wooden one.  It may have been bought from a multiple retailer like B&Q, Argos or Homebase. Some may have gone for a bespoke design. The beauty of wooden sheds is the scope for custom-made designs. On the whole, wood is long lasting, depending on the variety of timber you go for.  As for drawbacks, the roofing felt can be damaged.  Plus they need maintenance (especially the cheaper sheds).

For this post, we look at the pros and cons of the different timber types used in wooden sheds.

Cedar

The most expensive wooden sheds are made from cedar wood.  Their natural oils make the cedar wood resistant from bugs, mould and mildew.  Their durability commands higher prices, with cedar built sheds almost double the price of their pine equivalents.

Spruce

Grown at high altitude, Spruce timber makes for a good, durable surface.  In Northern Europe, spruce is good for outdoor use, which is why it’s a popular timber variety for wooden buildings.  The only drawback is the wood is prone to warping, depending on the altitude of the forest.

Larch

In terms of strength, Larch timber is a good second place wood to Cedar.  Therefore, it is a suitable alternative wood for exterior cladding.  The high cost of Larch timber may be out of some people’s budgets, but it is a cheaper and excellent alternative to Cedar wood.

Pine

Many sheds, especially budget priced ones, are made of pine.  It is a lightweight material, which makes self assembly a viable option, and the cheapest of timbers.  There are a couple of shortcomings: one is the short lifespan of the structure; the other is the amount of maintenance required.

Fir

Another popular softwood material is Fir.  It is noted for its stability and smooth texture, which is why Fir is a popular timber variety for saunas.  It is used in weather protected heavy construction projects.  Unlike Cedar, it is prone to attack by termites.

----------------------------------------------------
Wednesday posts are sponsored by The Stable Company®, the UK's premier supplier of garden offices and garden rooms. Click here

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Can I claim tax back for my garden office?


One of the commonest sets of questions sent to Shedworking Towers are variations on the 'What kind of tax breaks can I claim if I become a shedworker?' theme. There does not seem to be any really hard and fast rule, it depends who you talk to, but there's another point of view from accountants Peter Jarman at their site here which is well worth a quick read (but essentially fittings, running costs, VAT and resale are all ok, deductions for buildings are not). Here's a snippet:
Tax deductions for the building  X
A garden building, whilst being a movable item, is considered a structure from which your business operates by HMRC and therefore the cost of the building is not allowable against business profits. This disallowance goes as far as the design and planning of the structure as well as the initial decoration.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday posts are sponsored by Garden Spaces, suppliers of contemporary garden buildings, offices, gyms and studios, many of which do not require planning

Monday, January 09, 2017

Ecospace garden office




A lovely garden office in London from ecospace, one of the oldest names in the garden office market and who have recently followed the trend towards developing more of a tiny house area of expertise. With a cedar and larch exterior and with a mezzanine level, it's bigger than the average shedworking build and doubles up as guest accommodation. More details and photos at dezeen. --------------------------------------------------------------------
Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Friday, January 06, 2017

Box of Delights: Ronald Duncan’s writing hut


Back in the mists of time (well, 2007/8), we ran a regular-ish column on Fridays called Box of Delights in which we highlighted a shedlike atmosphere that caught the staff's fancy. And the good news is, it's back! We're rebooting it with the cliff-top writing hut in which poet, novelist and playwright Ronald Duncan worked in Devon. Rather overlooked today, Duncan had an impressive roll call of friends (Mahatma Gandhi, TS Eliot, Ezra Pound, Gerald Brenan, Benjamin Britten, and Kathleen Ferrier).

He built the hut in the 1960s (it replaced a rather rickety lookout post) and although it fell into disrepair after he died in 1982, it was rebuilt and now contains his old writing desk (a door from a ship wrecked nearby) and copies of his works which can be taken by visitors (it is a popular area for walkers).

More details and photos at Angela Williams' excellent Literary Places site where she notes that the sound of the wind there is very loud indeed... --------------------------------------------------------
Friday posts are sponsored by Warwick Buildings, manufacturers of outstanding quality timber buildings. Click here for more information.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Crystal Living garden offices



Crystal Living is a Cheshire-based family-run firm which specialises in conservatories, orangeries, glazed extensions and, happily, garden offices. If you want a shedworking atmosphere with plenty of light, it is well worth taking a look at their website which contains plenty of examples of glass roofs, roof lanterns, and clever glass systems generally (e.g. selfcleaning and heat reflective). Other secutiry extras include anti-bump and anti-pick technology to doors.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thursday posts are sponsored by Cabin Master: garden offices and studios to fit any size garden. Top quality contemporary or traditional buildings.

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Melissa Cole's home brew shed build


Beer and food writer and blogger Melissa Coles has put together an excellently extensive step-by-stop post on her Taking The Beard Out Of Beer site about how to buld a shedlike structure in which you can make home brew (readers with long memories will remember that the original Shedworking HQ also housed the staff's annual homebrewed cider and associated equipment). Here's a snippet:
Creating something of your own is a deeply satisfying thing to do. Brewing might become a lifelong hobby, or just an excuse to hang out with your friends, sitting in a comfy chair in your shed, drinking a few brews whilst your beer kit bubbles away in the background. Either way, it’s well worth trying your hand at it.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tuesday posts are sponsored by Garden Spaces, suppliers of contemporary garden buildings, offices, gyms and studios, many of which do not require planning

Monday, January 02, 2017

The 12 Days of Shedmas

A clever idea this from John 'Shedman' Davies, illustrated by Edward Ward based on joint ideas. They can all be found on 12 Days of Shedmas on Pinterest.