May 6, 2015 by lovenellie
Hope you all had a great Bank Holiday weekend. I managed to pop up to Grand Designs Live at the Excel Centre. If you know me, the chance to get advice from experts and attend workshops, well frankly there is no stopping me. I’m not really one for Morris Dancers or Maypole action so a day mingling with other interior and salvage types was much more my thing for the Bank Holiday. One of my main motivations for the shlep over to the East of London ( it’s not pretty – lots of cranes and apartments being built everywhere) was that over the past few months I have slowly become more and more aware of the chat concerning ‘sheds’ and according to my Twitter feed if I was interested in sheds it would be a good idea to check out Amazing Sheds the new company started by George Clarke and Studio Hardie. Max McMurdo was also being interviewed about his upcycling on the Grand stage by George Clarke, so on paper this was looking like my kinda perfect day.
For ages sheds have mostly been a cold damp wooden box type affair at the end of the garden. Usually it’s where Dad keeps his tools, maybe a few tomato plants, some stale fags and if you’re lucky a bit of home brew. However get with it, times are a- changing, with the popularity of programs like Shed of the Year and Amazing Spaces suddenly we are seeing sheds as blank creative spaces and releasing their potential. Sheds are now an extension of the home, a place where a hobby can be realized or noisy teenage children can be confined. Now they are not damp, they are not cold, they quite frankly can be palatial and in the case of the new’ Super’ Sheds made by Amazing Sheds they can actually be a bit nicer than the main house!!
NB. The bottom left is not a photo of a Boyband it is indeed the clever dudes at Studio Hardie and Mr George Clarke!!!!! If they all turn up to help assemble the flat-pack shed kit when you buy it, ladies across the land will be parting with their children’s University fund and purchasing one in no time !
Running out of space in our home needn’t be a costly and stressful thing. It’s just about thinking differently and realising that the space at the end of the garden, which usually houses the compost heap,an area where grass never grows and the old, now green teak furniture that you had been meaning to take to the tip for years, could be put to better use. Sheds don’t need planning permission as long as (serious bit) it’s not going to cover more than half of your garden and is not going to be too close to the house ie 5 meters away and the shed cant be more then 2.5 meters high. Don’t build one without permission if your house is listed or in a conservation area and be careful about your boundaries, make sure it does not cross any of them. A shed can be popped up relatively quickly with no mess in the main house and no fuss. More info on planning can be found on the planning portal.
If you need an extra bedroom, playroom or office or a combination of all three then one of the new wave sheds could be the answer. I know so many people who work from home but find the distractions of family life annoying while they are trying to take conference calls etc . A shed office would be the perfect solution .
Office pods in the garden are not a new thing but what’s different with an Amazing Shed is that it does not need to be just an office. The cleverly thought out design means with a twist of a knob a desk can go flush to the wall allowing space for playing or social gatherings. Stools can be stored back into the wall which allows plenty of floor space for kids play or rock band practice! Clever design makes it a multi-functional space, so that each family member at different times can claim it as their own.
In a meeting on Tuesday I just happened to mention the Amazing Sheds to Charlotte Norris a Director at Hilary Sayer,a residential property search firm based in London and she said “Many of my clients view their garden as being as important as any room in their house and having and ‘Amazing Shed’ is taking the concept to another level. We are starting to see a shift towards people staying in their homes for longer. Having a space like this in your garden is another way of helping your home grow and it can serve your family in different ways over the years.” Sounds to me like she knows her stuff.
Whilst at first glance an Amazing Shed can seem a bit pricey but nicey. Small sheds start at around £20,000 and when you compare this to the hassle and stress of moving, stamp duty and solicitor’s fees it suddenly becomes a realistic and sensible option. For a full specification sheet and a list of all the various design specs that you can choose from visit the Amazing Sheds website. The Craftsmanship of Studio Hardie also makes each shed a work of art and combine that with the genius functionality behind the design and I can guarantee a large dose of shed envy. Enough from me the lads can tell you more….
Another one of the ‘Shed of the Year’ gang is Max Mcmurdo and he too has a clever shed concept using shipping containers or ‘Reetainers‘ as he calls them. Max can customize each shipping container to your own specification adding by Bi-fold doors, windows and even a desk outside creating an upcycled self-sufficient building. They have such a cool and edgy look, a genius idea. In fact Max now works from an office made of three stacked on top of each other.
The ‘She Shed’ is also a bit of a buzz phrase at the moment, men are being moved aside as woman claim these spaces as their own. Its not uncommon to find a shed with a sewing machine or cocktail bar and lovely floral wallpaper, somewhere Mum can escape and chill out with a good book maybe ! That said if your thinking of transforming your shed into something a bit more purposeful, not just where you keep your spiders, then a look at Readers Sheds for ideas is a must and if your feeling super inspired after that why not register your interest for taking part in Shed of the Year 2016. I know that I am very tempted.
With the rise of people becoming hosts and renting out spare rooms for the odd night via online agents like airbnb, a super cool shed with a bed could also be an extra source of income for your family when not in use maybe?
So in summary Mr Clarke and Studio Hardie can give themselves a massive air punch as it’s a job super well done. The rest of you start thinking SHED… the new series of ‘Shed of the Year’ is being filmed as we speak and airs later in the year. If you have run out of space at home there is now a fantastic easy option for you so no more moaning.
That’s all from me folks,chat again soon and do share any of your Shed successes on my facebook page LoveNellie or just come and join the chat.
Love Lynne x