Saturday, July 21, 2007

Choosing a shed - The Orb

The Orb is one of the most spectacular and innovative garden offices I've ever seen, a lightweight oval structure with a lovely retro twist produced using boatbuilding techniques ("The totality of the body, chassis and legs gives the orb a structural strength more akin to a yacht than a garden office," they say). With four adjustable legs - great for uneven ground - and a minimal foundation requirement, The Orb can be moved around your garden easily on a whim and taken with you if you move house. According to the makers the oval shell allows the heating and air handling to be very energy efficient with very little heating input. It's available in one size, 4m x 3m.

Orbs comes with all the usual musts such as full electrics and double-glazed doors with optional extras including solar panels and underfloor heating. Walls are 40mm thick and built from a sandwich of GRP materials - making it as strong as a boat! All locks conform to BS 3621.

The Orb - which is also being marketed as a holiday home and for corporate events - is the brainchild of designer Philip Simpson who says he was looking for something unlike a box or classic caravan but that would enhance the shedworker's appreciation of the outdoors. His initial inspirations were in fact gypsy caravans and yachts. Simpson knows what he is talking about - he is responsible for the Earth Gallery at the Natural History Museum in London and the Peace Museum at Ypres in Belgium. It was put together with architect David Miller who designed the Media Centre at Lords' Cricket Ground. They say that:
"Our target consumer segment is the design and brand conscious, 20- to 40-something market, most likely urban professionals with a need for more space - whether in their own back gardens or on a rural hilltop."

Well spotted Lloyd Alter at Treehugger.


  1. oh i WANT one of those.

  2. Yes, they're rather special. My only very minor quibble, and it's not really a quibble in a sense, is that they look a little like the kind of thing that colour supplements in the 1950s suggested we'd all be living in in 2020. I can't put my finger on it. Maybe it's just the shock of the new. But very definitely a welcome addition to the canon.

  3. i WOULD like to see an actual photo of one on their site... they're all CGI and you just can't get the true feel with CGI.