Create a room in the garden this spring
There are many reasons to consider giving your home more flexibility with the addition of an outdoor studio space.
Whether you opt for an exquisite, architect-designed room or an off-the-shelf more standard model, you could end up creating much-needed extra space.
A large garden studio could become your office, gym, hobby area or art room – or even a summer dining space or living room.
Something smaller might give you a playroom for the children or a relaxation pod in which to enjoy a cup of coffee in the evening or a glass of wine at night.
Additional living space
Whatever their size and shape, garden studios can be versatile spaces, suggests Sue Gibbins of Shedstore.
“An oasis of calm tucked away in the garden with just the birds and the flowers for company – what’s not to love?” she asks.
“A garden room can provide that much-needed additional living space, whether you wish to relax away from the house with a cup of tea and a good book, use it as a dedicated playroom and storage for all those toys, or as a grown-up den for older children.”
Work life balance
She continues: “If you’re currently working out of a spare bedroom, setting up a dedicated home office in a log cabin will enable you to work effectively away from the distractions of your household, and might mean you get your spare room back!
“Working in a high-quality building surrounded by your beautiful garden is a definite step towards a healthier work life balance.”
And she adds: “Who wants to go all the way to the gym after a day’s work? Not us.
“Especially when instead you could wander through your garden to your very own state of the art private gym.”
Andy Baxter, founder of Internet Gardener, says allowing nature to influence design choices within a garden studio can help the space to sit well within its surroundings.
“Perhaps ivy can crawl up one wall in a controlled manner of the exterior of your studio,” he suggests.
“If you’ve got the space, large-leaf indoor plants soak up sunlight and will thrive in your studio.
“If space is an issue, embrace the cacti! There’s nothing quite like a shelf of varying cacti and better yet the influx of plants will help keep the air clean.”
Top tips before going ahead with your garden studio might include:
*Consider employing an architect if you want to make a statement or have particular constraints of space or restrictions
*Think carefully about the materials you wish to use and take into account the surroundings
*Decide where you will situate your building and ensure the space is measured accurately
*Don’t be tempted to go too big – your building or pod should be a feature in your garden, rather than dwarf it
*Decide how you want to use your garden building, and then choose one that’s fit for purpose.
*If you are buying an off-the-shelf playhouse, make sure it meets safety standards
*Check the manufacturer’s warranty on an off-the-shelf design and make sure you know what is included with the building
*When using wood consider fire hazards – ensure precautions are taken for electrical items
*For the exterior, appropriate wood treatment items should be used
*Consider fitting your studio out with space-saving yet stylish furniture
*Make the most of natural light by considering where your windows are positioned and any interior features that might maximise light
Andy adds: “A garden studio should be something unique, an individual space where you can express yourself.”