The great outdoors: Garden Affairs revolutionising outdoor living spaces
Shedworking and outdoor living spaces have become increasingly popular as people look to reduce their commute to work or simply long to be closer to nature. Garden Affairs, specialists in designing studio gardens, have recently introduced a new range with an innovative new material that’s set to revolutionise the genre.
Do you have a garden room dream? Imagine if the only commute to work was a few strides across the lawn. Would an outdoor studio where you could easily pop back to your desk in the evening to complete a project suit you? Would a view of trees and plants from your window make your everyday routine that little bit more golden? Or rather green?
Shedworking is nothing new, of course. Tourists still flock to the wooden boathouse in Laugharne used by Welsh writer Dylan Thomas, and to sculptor Barbara Hepworth’s summerhouse and studio in St Ives, Cornwall. Roald Dahl famously retreated to his writing shed to dream up the vivid characters of his much-loved children’s books. Playwright George Bernard Shaw had a garden room that could be rotated as the sun moved around. Contemporary garden room enthusiasts include property guru Kirstie Allsopp, who has said that her wooden garden room reminds her fondly of the tree houses her father built for her as a child. Canny Kirstie also points out that having an extra room at your property will enhance its value.
Perhaps this is the real creative appeal of the outdoor studio. We know a well-built garden room is economical, secure, quick to install and easy to heat, and that we can incorporate all our customised storage, tables, lighting, modern kilns and so on. But even these practical reasons don’t account for so many artists and writers loving them so much.
It’s clear that a timber garden studio offers serious benefits, but it’s not a serious place to be. It’s a space to play, to experiment, to remember childhood and invent new worlds. Artists and sheds go together like paint and canvas. A creative cabin is where magic happens.
West Country-based family-run business Garden Affairs helps people achieve their garden room dreams by consulting with them to design bespoke living spaces. Each cabin is as unique as its owner and people are free to create their own world inside.
The Garden Affairs team, based just outside Bath in Trowbridge, has been able to help all kinds of creative people set up their own space in their gardens. The design team can advise on everything from the position and size of the garden room to supplying electricity and lighting, as well as whether your home project will need planning permission. The latest generation of wooden cabins is eco-friendly, well insulated and designed to retain warmth in winter and stay cool on hot summer days. There is even an option to plant a sedum roof to encourage wildlife, and to add a water butt to collect rainwater from the guttering.
Constantly reassessing the design of their garden rooms to offer the very latest offerings, Garden Affairs have recently introduced a range of garden rooms called Proline that uses a brand new, sustainable construction material called Tricoya. This is an exceptionally stable, modern wood composite with a 25-year life that copes effortlessly with all outdoor weather conditions. The material is also guaranteed to not rot or warp, and unlike other garden rooms, it is resistant to fungal attack. The range offers design flexibility and low-maintenance costs, but also a stability and durability that is new to the outdoor room market.
Whether customers are looking to install a home gym or a relaxing outdoor living space to both physically and mentally escape the working week, the Proline range does not compromise the style of the building and focuses on the appearance and performance of the room. Its vertical tongue-and-groove effect also gives it a crisp, clean exterior. Created using computer-controlled manufacturing, the Proline is quick and easy to assemble for both professional and DIY installers.
This latest range marks a huge step forward in the world of garden rooms: exceptional stability, a totally rot-proof structure and stylish good looks. There’s your garden dream.
An artist’s studio
Max Ryan wanted a studio where she could run art classes and operate her picture framing and photography business. She didn’t want the expense and hassle of having to rent a studio where she would have to commute, so enquired about installing a large log cabin in her garden in Frome. Max chose a substantial cabin, nine metres wide and four metres deep, with windows and three additional skylights. Inside, along with the main studio space, two smaller rooms were created for a cloakroom and a private office.
Max’s business, Studio 61, is now well established and she says she relishes the short commute and the fact that she can take her dog Howard to work with her. The studio is so warm and comfortable that she has even been able to run life-drawing classes for her students.
Lizzie wanted a studio she could devote to her passion for pottery. After discussing how she needed to use the space, she had a 3.5 x 2.5 metre workshop designed, into which Lizzie introduced her home kiln, which is run by electricity. She also arranged for a plumber to supply water to the workshop, for a handy sink, and opted for a bee-friendly living sedum roof.
Contact Garden Affairs on tel: 01225 774566; gardenaffairs.co.uk or visit the display centre at Trowbridge Garden Centre, 288 Frome Road, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 0DT