Sunday, May 27, 2018

Garden office shingles


Lovely shingles made from Tricoya (a kind of MDF) by designer Tim Denton.
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Friday, May 25, 2018

Crane Garden Buildings at Chelsea Flower Show


Congratulations to Crane Garden Buildings who for the fifth year running (and at their 12th year of exhibiting) have won a 5 Star Tradestand Award at Chelsea Flower Show, pictured above. Allocated a larger plot than in previous years, they showcased the company's Pavilion Garden Room and matching Superior Shed. Both buildings had cedar shingle tiles and Georgian windows. They were painted in Farrow & Ball’s Old White, with the doors, windows, and veranda of the Garden Room in Pointing

The stand was put together with help from Bressingham Gardens and Robin Tacchi Plants who supplied the plants, and LLD Slate who provided the slate signs. -------------------------------------------------------
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Thursday, May 24, 2018

INSITU free furniture offer


INSITU Garden Offices has a good offer on at the moment - they will supply free furniture installed in any of their garden offices with an internal footprint over 15 square metres this summer.

"As far as I am aware we are the only high specification garden office supplier that offers such a bespoke interior 'design and fit' package using such a wide range of high quality furniture products including the latest ergonomically-designed mesh back task chairs for the professional user," said Roy Boone, Sales Director. "The furniture choice is extensive with many different contemporary ranges, styles, colours and finishes available, designed and manufactured by one of Italys’  leading manufacturers, Quadrifoglio."

Interior space planning, furniture advice and rendered 3D visuals of the design layouts proposed are included in the package. Pictured above are examples of a current project where the client has not yet chosen her preferred option and which will come with bi-folding doors (below is a typical fully fitted installation).


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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

1.6 million people work from home


Around 1.6 million employees regularly worked from garden offices and other places in their home last year, according to new analysis from the TUC. The analysis shows that 1 in 16 of the UK workforce worked from home in 2017 – unchanged from the year before, but up from 1 in 20 in 2005.

The report indicates that:

* 4 out of 10 homeworkers are women

*16-19 years olds are least likely to home work (2%) and over 60s most likely (11%).

* The South West has the highest percentage of employees working from home (9%), and Northern Ireland the lowest (2%).

* Agriculture has the biggest share of employees (23%), followed by the information and communication sector, where nearly one in five works from home (18%)

* Managers are most likely to work from home (12%) followed by ‘Associate Professionals’ (9%) such as architects, engineers and designers.

“Lots of people would like to work from home but have not been given the chance by their boss," said TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady. "That’s a shame, because it can benefit employers as well as workers.Homeworking can improve productivity and it can stop the loss of experienced staff when they need more flexibility for family responsibilities. It has wider benefits too, like less traffic and pollution, more accessible work for disabled people, and keeping premises costs down.

“Many bosses already recognise that homeworking can make staff happier and more effective. But other employers need to catch up. Trade unions can help negotiate home working policies that work positively for both employers and staff. The government can help by investing in broadband infrastructure so that every worker can get a high-speed connection at home. And we encourage businesses and public services to include homeworking in job design and recruitment.”
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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Blue Forest's treehouse at Chelsea Flower Show


One of the shedlike highlights of this year's Chelsea Flower Show is this marvellous treehouse from Blue Forest.  The two-storey build has Cedar cladding but most appealingly also an 11m stainless steel slide (see Philip Schofield come down it in the video below). Other details include a window seat and what Blue Forest describe as a 'Narnia wardrobe' which is the entrance to the slide. If you're going today, it's on Main Avenue and the natural woodland planting scheme is designed by Architectural Plants.

A post shared by Phillip Schofield (@schofe) on
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Monday, May 21, 2018

New Plankbridge shepherd's hut at Chelsea Flower Show


Plankbridge will be causing a stir at RHS Chelsea Flower Show this week with this rather splendid new model, their 'Ten plus 4' which comes with its new copper finish, fumed English oak, railings, and covered deck. Inside, it's decorated with Shadow White and Vardo from Farrow and Ball. The official Shedworking verdict is that it's a lovely job and while it's a new model, it harks back strongly to the early days of shepherds' huts. And as a garden office, I doubt very much if anyone would turn one of these down. Good job!

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Sunday, May 20, 2018

Haynes Shed Manual: How to create roof tiles part 2 (video)


The second part of the video which we mentioned here on Thursday, part of the work going into our Haynes Shed Manual (out about this time next year). Here's what John says about it:
An 'all action' video. No talking but have added sub-titles. This is the first part of the process for creating the 'raw' shakes. The next step is similar as each sixteenth is split into two shakes, that have parallel edges and a small triangular piece of waste wood. So, in theory, I should get 32 shakes per log. However, with knots and spiral grain, I get anywhere between 10 and 30 in practice. Once I get the 'rough' shakes I then need to shape them. That is a subject for a follow-on video.

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Friday, May 18, 2018

Garden offices in parking spaces


Now here's an intriguing idea. In The Hague an experiment is underway whereby the local council in collaboration with campainging group De Natuurlijke Stad is encouraging residents to turn their car parking space on the street into something greener. This could mean that you would be able to turn your section of concrete into a garden office. Pictured above is an example of what can be done, quite a shedworkingesque setup, called the ‘Debatmobiel’ (debate-car) belonging to Eline Keus. A little more about the project at The Guardian.

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Thursday, May 17, 2018

Haynes Shed Manual: How to create roof tiles (video)


 Back in December I mentioned that John Coupe and I were working on a Shed Manual for manual specialists Haynes. It's coming along nicely and John has put together a short video all about splitting 25 Sweet Chestnut logs to create the 'Shakes' (roof tiles) for one of the sheds we are building and documenting for the book.

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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, May 16, 2018

Garden office for an interior design company






Here's one of Garden2Office's latest Sportskabin models in Nordic Noir cladding with a variety of optional extras, a new office for an interior design company. It includes a small central heating system that also heats the shower, plus there is a custom desk fitted with its own 5amp lighting. LED strip lights are fitted in the bathroom and under the wall shelving. To let in extra natural light, Mark and the team fitted three 1m square skylights over the work area.
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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The Handwritten Letter Appreciation Society's writing shed


The excellent Handwritten Letter Appreciation Society - 'We pledge to keep handwritten letters alive by encouraging people to carry on writing them' - run by Dinah is taking a shedworking turn this summer when it appears at the Purbeck Valley Folk Festival in August. It's one of Plankbridge's finest which has appeared at Chelsea Flower Show (silver medal) and spent time at various National Trust properties, as well as Kate Humble's garden. Dinah says that she hopes its 'wow factor' will "entice people over to have a go at writing a letter to a friend or loved one."
The hut will also play host to folk singer Hannah Scott who will perform her song letter (see video below) on its steps.

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Monday, May 14, 2018

The fastest shed in the world


While this is arguably the world's fastest office on wheels, Kevin Nicks's motorised shed (pictured above) is certainly the fastest shed after reaching just over 100mph on Pendine Sands in Carmarthenshireat the weekend (Kevin's previous best was an official 80mph though I know unofficially he has been much higher). The shed is based around a Volkswagen Passat which now has a Audi RS4 engine installed. Below you can see it in action. More details at The Independent. -------------------------------------------------
Monday posts are sponsored by garden2office, the Swedish garden office specialists. Click here for more details.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Cooking in your garden office


Although it's nice to get out of the office for a bit sometimes and come back to the house for rest, many shedworkers kit out their garden office with enough kitchen machinery to make their own meals out there. I've spoken to many who have their own kettle, fridge, toaster, and even microwave.

If all you're doing is boiling pot noodles and drinking cupasoups, then here are a couple of cookbook suggestions you might like to investigate. The first is Meal in a Mug by cookbook specialist Denise Smart published by Ebury. It includes 80 recipes featuring stews, salads, and an impressive range from sticky toffee pudding and elderflower jelly to spinach lasagne and kedgeree. And Christmas pudding.


Here's an example below:



Slightly more complex but also useful is Made in the Office by architect and office worker Rachel Maylor, published by Frances Lincoln [full disclosure: they also publish my books Book Towns and Shedworking].


Here's what the publishers say:
The book shows you that you don't need to have a fully equipped kitchen to knock up avocado and poached eggs on toast (you can poach eggs in the microwave!); and you don't need chef training to make pesto courgette pasta. And you don't need to think ahead the night before, either. You can make 70 quick, simple and healthy dishes in your lunch break.
And here's an example:

Friday, May 11, 2018

Garden office and working from home fashion

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Thursday, May 10, 2018

Arts and crafts garden studio


A nice build by Booths Garden Studios for Wendy King who is a keen on arts and crafts. It measures 15' x 9' with a 3' flyover roof and a 6' decking on the front, with French doors and recessed blinds in the windows (including a fanlight window). In the video below, Alex Booth talks about the advantages of a flyover roof and the importance of garden office orientation in general.

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Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Plankbridge shepherd’s huts at Elmley Nature Reserve


A lovely photo-essay by photographer SarahLou Francis features her weekend away at one of  Plankbridge's shepherd’s huts at Elmley Nature Reserve on the Isle of Sheppey. Here's a snippet:
I stayed in ‘The Saltbox’, one of the newer additions to the Elmley retreats. Designed in collaboration with Richard Lee of Plankbridge Shepherds Huts, every detail is a delight from the rustic reclaimed wood seating & generous kingsize bed, the copper backsplashes, and the corrugated tin shower cubicle inside; to the Finnish thermowood tiles, outdoor shower, and incredible fully glazed bi-fold window wall on the outside. Built using English Oak, ‘The Saltbox’ is inspired by traditional Victorian Shepherd’s Huts with the utmost respect for traditional craftsmanship. The perfect retreat to hunker down & cosy up…
Strongly recommended to read/see the whole piece via the link above. ------------------------------------------
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Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Hideouts: Grand Vacations in Tiny Getaways




Gestalten is arguably the leading publisher of microarchitecture coffee books which feature a range of garden offices and other shedlike atmospheres (see here for reviews of previous publications). Here's the latest, Hideouts, which is highly illustrated and features builds from around the world. And here's what they say about it:
The way we travel has changed. We no longer want a generic, one-size-fits-all vacation: We want to explore on our own terms and immerse ourselves in local culture. Simply witnessing nature is no longer enough—we want to live in it. A fusion of glamour and camping, Hideouts will guide you to experience the most awe-inspiring locales around the world. Across the globe, you’ll find incredible destinations, each offering their own unique advantages. You can wake up in a yurt on a mountain top, reside in the forest canopy in a treehouse, or take in incredible panoramic views in an eco-lodge—and that’s just to name a few.
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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