Cool Things You Can Do When You Power Up Your Shed!   

Thanks to Richard from WhatShed.co.uk for this guest post about cool things you can do when you add power to your shed.

Ok so the title may make you think that we are talking about putting guns on the roof, zombie proof shutters on the windows and so on. But actually what we are talking about is electricity. That is right in the year 2017 we have  this great thing called electricity and it can be used to make your shed, workshop or just general garden building even better! well actually it has been around a little longer than that, but you know what we mean. We want to give you guys a few ideas and maybe even a little inspiration about some fun and cool things you can do when you power up your shed! We will also share with you a few garden buildings that we think would be ideal for you.

 

Have An Epic Man Cave!

Having  a man cave is the cool thing these days. A space where a guy can do what he wants, watch movies, play videogames, watch the match or just do whatever it is he wants. But in a space that is all his own. Well one way to have a man cave and not lose a room in your house is by using some kind of shed or workshop. For a man cave you will certainly want to make sure that you have plenty of plug sockets as you will no doubt have many cool things you want inside. Also by having your man cave outside the house you have far less chance of your other half yelling at you to come and do something when you are trying to watch Luke Skywalker take down the At-At on your big screen TV!

 

You can easily get a well made and strong garden building that would work well as a man cave for under a grand. So the actual building does not have to be as expensive as you would thin. A great example is this awesome looking Dutch Barn inspired shed. It first of all has a really cool look.

 But it also offers you a lot of space. One thing you really want to watch for is the headroom on offer and this particular shed has lots of headroom. Last thing you want is to be hunched over in your man cave when walking around. Also the higher the roof the more cool stuff you can hang from it. This is also large enough to fit in a couch and an entertainment centre.  

 

Get Fit In Style With Your Own Home Gym

Ok so we kind of see the irony of going from a shed where you can sit on your rear end, drinking beer, chowing down on Pringles while watching football to a home gym, but this is something more and more people are using sheds, workshops or even better if you have the funds is something like this cool garden room.  

A gym membership these days can cost anything from £15 a month all the way up to £50 so really you could argue that in the long run a home gym in your shed is going to save you money in the long run. But what do I need electricity for if I am just having a gym in my shed? Is no doubt what a few of you smarty pants have said. But to have a proper home gym, you will want some kind of cardio equipment in there and to get the best ones, you have to power them up. The last thing you want is a manual treadmill!

Things like weights and a weight bench will not require power, but if you do have power in there then you can put a TV on the wall and a sound system which will make working out much better. For example if you like football then you can go on a cross trainer or a treadmill while you watch the match and best of all as you have a home gym, you will not have to bring the treadmill into the living room, scuff up the carpet, ding the skirting board and get an earful of your other half. Yes you could have a home gym without powering up your shed, but we can assure it that it will not be as cool or as motivating as one that does!

 

Give The Kids An Awesome Place To Play With A Kids Playroom

Having a bunch of kids running around the house, shooting Nerf guns, screaming, watching annoying YouTube videos can test the patience of a saint. Not only that kids seem to go out of their way to cause damage to every room they are in! Then you can make this a dream hangout spot for kids. Now we have heard that people have converted a regular shed into a kids playroom, not put any power in there and everything has been fine. Now for younger kids who like to just run around crazy this is fine, but by putting power in there you are actually future proofing your kids playroom, hangout zone or whatever name they want to call it.

What we mean is that older kids will certainly want at least a TV in there. So they can watch YouTube or play video games or even just listen to some music when they are with their buddies. Which by the way just think about that for a second, your kid and all their little friends are hanging out in the garden instead of in your house! Anyway electricity is essential for a teenagers play room as they cannot go more than five minutes without looking at some kind of electrical device. We guarantee you that if you were to tell your kids that you were making them a special room just for them in the back yard one of the first things they will ask is if there is going to be a TV in there!

 

Become A DIY Master With Your Own Workshop

Ok so this is kind of boring and the most obvious one and that is why we did not put it first. But the fact of the matter is, you can have a way cooler and more practical workshop if you have it juiced to the max with electricity! Now you can have a fine workshop without electricity, but what about if you want to work at night? What about if your battery in a particular power tool is dead and you need it directly connected to the mains while you use it? What if you want to rock out to a little Iron Maiden when you work? These are all important and valid questions that can be easily answered if you have power in your workshop.

If you had something like this large 16 X 10 workshop then just think of all the epic power tools you could have. You could have workbenches with plug sockets built right in there is honestly no end to the cool stuff you could make in a workshop with power. And like we said before you can work through the night as you would have light in there. Although if you are running power tools at night you can expect a rather unpleasant conversation with the neighbours.  

 

Host Parties And Dinners

Ok so clearly from the name, we were not entirely sure what to call this. But the idea of this is having a nice space in the garden like a corner summerhouse for example. Where you can have a dining room table and host some fun little shindigs with some good friends and family members that your other half forces you to put up with. Well while you could sit out here in the dark with candle light like you are in the dark ages. It would be much better if you had power in there so you can have lighting, music and maybe even a TV so you can keep an eye on the match while listening to your brother in laws fascinating story.  

Many people would love to have a spot in their house where they can have people over for dinner, but a large dining table can take up a lot of room. Building a conservatory or an extension can cost a huge amount of money and in all honesty not give you the same kind of space something large like a good sized summerhouse can. We honestly think that anyone who is planning on getting a summerhouse in their garden to enjoy company has to think about putting power in there.

 

Get Creative With Your Own Art Studio

Ok this on may seem a little out there, but please hear us out. Far more people use a shed, workshop or even a summerhouse like this one as an art studio, pottery studio or just as a space where they can be creative than you would think. We found this very interesting and in all honesty, we feel that it is impossible to have this kind of creative space without having power to the structure. We say this because what if you get a creative spark at 9 pm and it is dark outside? Having power in there allows you to work on your art when you want to and not when the sunlight dictates. If you are into pottery then you simply must have some kind of power in their so you can work.

 

Adding electricity to your artistic space will also allow you to do more than just ensure the place is well illuminated. You could do things like have a small electric heater so you can work comfortably in the winter. A TV or stereo could even be put in there to help give you a little bit of inspiration or even just give you something to do when you are at a creative roadblock. If you are a creative person and you want a nice space to work then a shed with some power is the best way to go.

 

A Little Word About Putting Electricity To Your Garden Building

Ok so running an extension cable from your kitchen to the shed is really not the way to go or what we are talking about here. If you are putting electricity in your shed, workshop, summerhouse or whatever it is. Then please, please make sure you do it properly. Actually unless you are an electrician we advise that you do not do it at all and hire a professional.

There is a great blog post here about putting electricity into your shed and please make sure you read it before you try and do a quick and easy job yourself.  

 

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“She sheds” are popular in the US – so here is a nice book on them

I have just been sent a copy of a new book about lady sheddies “She Sheds” – it mostly covers American sheds (yes they exist)  but a couple of UK and Australian sheds feature, it has some great photos and ideas to inspire – as you would imagine they are all very stylish.

This one from St Albans, UK is very chic (can I say that) but I have always been a fan of all white shed interiors, so yes I can.

anyway here is the bumf, it’s a nice addition to any sheddies bookcase

She Sheds provides inspiration, tips and tricks in over 100 beautiful photographs, helping you create the hideaway of your dreams. In this beautiful book, you’ll see dozens of in-depth examples of private spaces to inspire you in your own pursuit. Some she sheds are dedicated to making art, some gardening, crafts, or reading. All over the world, women are discovering the solitude and splendour of a she shed.

 

She Sheds: A Room Of Your Own by Erika Kotite is published by Cool Springs Press (£16.99).

Guest post :  A woolly hat for your shed

Thanks to Andy from Workshopshed.com for this guest post about insultation your shed roof.

Everyone knows when it’s cold you put a hat on to keep warm and every house has loft insulation. But when building a shed we typically only have a layer of board topped with felt to keep us warm. My shed was particularly bad as the roof only consisted of some corrugated plastic meaning that even with the heater on it did not keep warm.

Here’s how I retrofitted an insulated roof to my shed with some ideas as to how you might do this yourself.

oldroof

oldroof2

My shed already had a frame supporting the roof so I knew it would be ok for some extra weight. If your walls are a bit flimsy then you want to consider re-enforcing these before you begin.

frames

In my case, I needed to replace all of the roof so I used tongue and groove for the inner skin. However, it is quite possible to put the new roof on top of the old. The result is a sandwich of wood and insulation with battens for spacing and support.

Materials

  • Insulation, blocks are easiest
  • Timber for battens
  • Board such OSB
  • Felt
  • Screws, drywall or exterior
  • Clout nails

Tools

  • Saw
  • Hammer
  • Screwdriver
  • Drill

The first step is to remove the existing felt so that you can measure up for the battens. My shed is a bit of a peculiar shape so my batten frame had to match that. Otherwise, you just need a simple rectangle. When using multiple boards, fit cross struts at the places where those boards meet. If you are planning skylights then add extra battens around that area too. The frame can be made up in advance of putting it on the roof. For a large roof, multiple frames may prove more manageable. Place the frame on the roof and screw through from below to secure.

boardson

You can now fit the insulation into the frame. For block insulation, this should be straightforward. If you want to use rolled loft insulation then you will need to work out a way of stopping it all sinking to the bottom, perhaps cross wires held with screw eyes?

The top of this sandwich is OSB, if you cut this a bit larger than the frame then you can avoid a gap at the ridge. Otherwise like me, you will need to fit a piece of timber in the gap. Before fixing, I find it useful to pencil on where the battens are located. This makes it easier to ensure your screws will go through the top sheet and secure into the batten. You want the screws to be flush with the board so they don’t rip the felt. I drilled holes for mine but found I did not need to countersink them because the drywall screws do that themselves.

felton

For extra waterproofing an under-felt was added, this is the felt that’s used for house roofs and does not have the stone chippings of regular roofing felt. It was cheaper than regular felt and the stones are only needed on the top layer to protect from the sun. So, to top it all off regular roofing felt was used, held in place with clout nails.

finishedroof

The shed still gets cold in the winter as it’s not constantly heated. It quickly warms up with a fan heater and keeps the heat. This means the fan heater can be turned down or off and the shed is still a pleasant place to work.

You can visit Andy’s website for great posts on his various make projects (includes dragons and 3d Printing), or follow him on twitter.


If you as a sheddie have an interesting build or fix you would like to share with the sheddies then Let me know.

Some amazing beach huts not by the sea

I love a shed by the sea or beach huts as you normal people call them.

Here are some great examples of the genre by our fabulous sheddies – the majority of them seem to be owned and created by lady sheddies showing once again that the ladies are on top shed form.

So get some inspiration and enter your beach hut into Shed of the year NOW

The Beach Hut – Cabin/Summerhouse from Garden #shedoftheyear

1920’s Beach Hut – Cabin/Summerhouse from Garden #shedoftheyear

Bespoke Summerhouse Aka The Beach Hut – Budget from Garden #shedoftheyear

Ant’s Pad – Unexpected from Weybridge #shedoftheyear

The Washery – Cabin/Summerhouse from Country Garden #shedoftheyear

Jenny’s Beach Hut – Cabin/Summerhouse from garden #shedoftheyear

The Beach Hut – Unique from Chelveston, Northamptonshire #shedoftheyear

The Beach Hut – Unique from in the garden of a terrace house in central Colchester #shedoftheyear

Jabba The Hut – Cabin/Summerhouse from back garden- Dorset #shedoftheyear

Stay Put Beach Hut – Unique from Felixstowe #shedoftheyear

Beach Huts – Unexpected from Back Garden #shedoftheyear

Bostin Betty – Workshop/Studio from Landlocked in Birmingham #shedoftheyear

The internet’s most waited for BEST of 2015 list – ok it’s sheds

So 2015 was another amazing year for Shed of the year – you and your sheds were on the telly once again on channel 4 – thanks George and the team for doing a great series.

These two sheds were the hardest for us to judge as you saw so they have to top the best of 2015

Inshriach Distillery

The Owl House

of course there were some sheds that did not make it to the final shortlist but I have been posting them over the year using the #wilcosheds hashtag – they have been some of my personal favourite sheds – in no particular order – so enjoy and see you in 2016:)

I love the sugru little videos

I’m a big fan of the super rubber thing Sugru but their little videos show what it can do in a few seconds.

Q & A with author of Shed Decor: Sally Coulthard

A brief Q & A with Author and sheddie Sally Coulthard , who’s new book Shed Decor: How to Decorate and Furnish Your Favorite Garden Room is out on the 19th of Feb.

Q) Shed decor is the 2nd book on sheds you have written – are you as obsessed about sheds as we are?

I think I’m getting worse.  And it’s not just sheds – I’m fascinated by lots of different small space buildings.  One of the most exciting things is seeing how people carve out and decorate spaces for themselves, without massive budgets or complicated materials.

Humans are endlessly creative, especially when it comes to living spaces – kids instinctively build shelters and hideaways, but we often lose that drive when we get older.  It’s a pity because there’s nothing more satisfying that building your own den.  There’s the old saying that everyone has got a book in them.  Well, I think everyone has a shed in them.

Q) Is your book aimed more at female sheddies or can us male sheddies get some inspiration as well?

Shed Decor – it’s not a very blokey title really – but don’t be put off.  This is definitely not a girlie book – there’s a really good balance of sheds and styles. There are some really cool shed interiors – from railways carriages to treehouses – and my take on it is that good design appeals to both sexes.

It’s telling that over half the case studies in the book are sheds that belong to men – from architects to product designers, furniture makers and garden designers.

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Q) what trends have you seen while writing the book?

Vintage is losing its grip and that’s no bad thing.

There’s only so much bunting I can take.  I’ve enjoyed seeing some of the more contemporary shed designs but I think the real difference has been people working out ways to make sheds genuinely liveable, even in cold climates.

There’s been some interesting developments in insulation and solar technology – people want their sheds to be comfortable, not just a cool room at the end of the garden.

Q) what one thing would you say to a sheddie if they wanted to just make their shed look chic on a limited budget?

If it’s cheap orange timber, paint it.  If it’s nice timber, leave it. Oops that’s two things…

Q) What’s your favourite item in a shed you have seen while on your travels

I’m going to cheat a bit and say that it’s not an item, it’s the attitude of the shed owners.  One of my favourite places was a hunting hut deep in the Swedish forest.

The owners leave it unlocked all year round – for passing travellers to rest, make a fire and brew a cuppa – I just think that’s so civilised.  It’s also a gorgeous piece of simple, rustic architecture, which always helps.

Q) what’s next in the pipeline

Busy busy.  A large part of my day-to-day life isn’t book writing, it’s designing gardens and building garden rooms for clients.  I’m about the embark on a big shepherds hut project – which I’m really excited about – and part of the fun is working out how I’m going to build them.   Further ahead, another book.

About Sally

Sally Coulthard I Went to Oxford to read Archaeology & Anthropology, where I became slightly obsessed about all the fascinating ways people have built homes around the world and throughout time.  Ploughed all that passion into a working life that combines making and designing living spaces and then writing about them.  Live in North Yorkshire in a ramshackle farmhouse that I’ll never get round to finishing with a long-suffering husband – who’s a gardener – and three tiddlers.

Some American Sheds that will take your breath away

Yes Shed of the year and the humble shed is mainly a British thing. (if anyone wants to licence it for elsewhere talk to me 😉 )

But it’s great to see the innovation happening overseas in the USA – I have always been in awe of their Tiny Houses but now looks like our cousins are “getting” sheds as well.

Here are some examples added to readersheds.co.uk that will make you think twice about shed like structures.
LANTERNSHED

LanternShed - Jennifer Watson - Amherst, Virginia

THE SHIPPEY SHACK

The Shippey Shack - Derek Diedricksen - Waltham, MA (right outside Boston, MA USA)

THE DOG HOUSE

The Dog House - Jason Arney-O'Neil - Minnesota, USA

PV LAWN CUBE 2011

PV Lawn Cube 2011 - Bradd Crowley - Prairie Village, KS USA

RED SHED

Red Shed - Edward Garland - Warwick, RI  USA

HOUSE OF FALLEN TIMBERS

House of Fallen Timbers - Fallen Timbers - Illinois, USA

THE SHED

The Shed - Matthew King - On lower property, garden overlook.

THE HAMMERSMITH BREWERY AND ALEHOUSE

The HammerSmith Brewery and Alehouse - Christopher Bowen - Pennsylvania

1930’S HUSBANDS’ SHED

1930's Husbands' Shed - Kepa Askenasy - San Francisco, California, USA

If you like this site why not treat me to this book Rock the shack.

UK Architecture graduate win competition to design French Bike Sheds

I can’t see something like this happening in the UK – sheds for all I say!

Taken from Loire & Loges

In 2005, the French National Federation of the Building industry (FFB) approached the Touraine association of young architects, the Girafe for the construction of a new age vineyard cabin.

Big sister of the cabin that the candidates are invited to create, this project already fitted in the program the Loire à Vélo® which then started to take rise. The Cycloyourte, thought as a shelter for one night, like a refuge, was born!

The “loges de vigne”, vineyard cabins, or huts, are modest constructions, often reduced to only one room, and intended to meet the needs for the vine growers to eat, shelter or rest. The first appeared in the Loire Valley in the 16th century and then multiplied to take truly their rise at the end of the 19th century. Since the beginning of the 20th century, they fell in disuse.

Dundee School of Architecture graduate Colin Baillie has won an international contest for a new cycle cabin on the Loire à Vélo trail in France

Baillie – who works for Glasgow-based Gareth Hoskins Architects – was named joint winner of the contest which sought ideas for two sites on the cycle route.

Open to graduate and student architects under 30 years old, the ‘Loire & Loges’ contest sought proposals for simple 15m² cabins where cycle tourists can shelter and rest during the day.

1405616_Colin-Bailli_Model-View_02
Baillie’s winning design will be constructed at Chouzé-sur-Loire between Janaury and May next year. He will also receive around £2,750 at an awards ceremony in Tours.

1405367_Colin_Baillie_Elevations

HT architectsjournal

Sheds that don’t look like traditional sheds on the outside

We love strange and innovate sheds for Shed of the year – but of course some purists will say that’s not a shed – I say does the sheddie love it like a shed? YES well it’s a shed in my book 😉

But here are some sheds that definitely don’t look like your traditional garden shed on the outside (and sometimes inside as well) – and we are all the better for them.

 

ROWHAUS

Rowhaus - mark Rowland - field
FRAMEWORK KNITTERS SHED

 Framework Knitters Shed - Rosalind Smith -  Garden
STRACHAN’S ARCADE

Strachan's Arcade - James Strachan - Garden

CIRCUS SHED

Circus Shed - ydrolina - uppsala, Sweden
THE BOTHY

The Bothy - Donald - Garden
Donald

THE LODGE

The lodge - malcolm stamp  - In our woodland valley
THE HOOTING OWL

The Hooting Owl - Derek McCarthy - Driveway
JAPANESE TEA HOUSE SHED

Japanese Tea House shed - Derek Verlander - Garden
PEAR TREE WEDDINGS HQ

Pear Tree Weddings HQ - Jo - VW Shed 'office' at the bottom of the garden
THE GAUDI SCHOOL SHED

the Gaudi school shed - mark clinton - yard
THE POKI

The poki - Huw Grantham - Garden
LHS BIKESHED

LHS Bikeshed - tom wyatt - Car Park
ECCENTRICA

Eccentrica - Lyndon - in garden
GARDEN COTTAGE

Garden Cottage - Tim Clark - Garden

We love a shepherds hut – so why not build your own (from a kit)?

We love a shepherd huts on readersheds.co.uk – since I first saw a modern one at the Hegelian gardens a few years back.

Shepherd's Hut @ Lost Gardens of Heligan

Shepherd's Hut @ Lost Gardens of Heligan

and then a friend of my better half has one on his farm!

Plankbridge Shepherds Hut

Plankbridge Shepherds Hut

They are not cheap so hut builders Downland Shepherd Huts have come up with a kit so you can give it a go yourself if you are handy like that Will Hardie and have a large workshop or covered area to DIY

They have three kits ranging from £4,825 to £10,395 (excluding sheep)

The starter kit comes with everything you need

Woolley Shepherd Hut Kit 1

4 x 610mm Cast iron wheels
3.6m x 2.15m steel chassis with pull bar
Plastisol coated curved corrugated tin roof sheets
SIP panel structural floor sections
SIP panel side and end walls
Roof timbers

Where as the top of the range kit comes with a lot of fixtures and fittings

Woolley Shepherd Hut Kit 3

4 x 610mm Cast iron wheels
3.6m x 2.15m steel chassis with pull bar
Plastisol coated curved corrugated tin roof sheets
Plastisol coated corrugated side panels
SIP panel structural floor sections
SIP panel side and end walls
Roof timbers
6mm ceiling panels
Celotex Insulation, floor, walls and ceiling
Fermacell internal wall lining
Oak laminate flooring
Skirting boards
2” x 1” classic vertical cladding
Day bed timbers
Vintage apple crates
Futon mattress
Electrical pack including consumer unit and power sockets
External light
Woodburning stove with hearth
Single hardwood stable door
1000 x 100 double opening casement window in UPVC, colour anthracite grey
700 x 500 top hung window in UPVC, colour anthracite grey
Water proof breathable membrane
Exterior steps to hut

so if you have the space then pop over to their website to buy

HT Garden Room HQ