Writing shed design contest

Joint runner up

Our writer‘s shed is a ‘nurturing’ space that responds to Ty Newydd’s literary purpose and geographical position as well as its prominent situation within the grounds.

It is separate, yet not isolated. Though it angles away from the gaze of the main house, with a view to the sea, it deferentially curtsies to the historic building, offering itself as a sculptural jewel in the landscape. A defensive structure, fiercely guarding its soft, pale interior it functions as a shell beautifully and privately.

We imagine our Writer’s Shed, glowing softly at the end of the garden, sculpture-like and serene. Its copper patina changing with time and the light of day.

Inside it evokes memories of attic bedrooms, tents and boat hulls. The white painted boarding bears the marks of nails and the previous layers of white paint as the shed is refreshed for each new writer. And so that no writer need ever be alone, we propose a small wood stove as companion. For kindling fires and warmth as well as for brewing tea and listening to the sound of dry wood crackling into flame.

The proposed design comprises glulam frames bolted together and clad in copper, black and white wood.

Our proposal named ‘Nutshell’ was developed with the artist and writer Nicky Arscott and the visualisations were created by Sublime Visuals.

Judge Sunand Prasad praised all the winning and commended schemes for their ‘qualities of poetry, beauty, delicacy, versatility, tight planning and sensitivity to the site.’

Timber Arc

Jules grows, fells and converts his own timber into structures, craft and furniture. He approached Craftedspace to collaborate on a micro-structure that uses laminated structural arches and can be delivered in one piece to site on a trailer. This process allows Jules to work from his base in Wales, adding value to his timber crop and to deliver products across the UK.

Driven by a desire to create sustainable solutions, the Timber Arc has to date been conceived as a stand-alone compost toilet for allotment associations, private individuals and

The Centre for Alternative Technology.

However it could be a sauna, meditation space, summer house or garden office.The Timber Arc has already evolved through several iterations exploring different arches, styles of cladding, ironmongery and the use of salvaged portholes as well as bespoke window openings. Featured at Grand Designs in 2013 this micro-structure sets the standard for the high attention to detail that Jules’ creations command.

Photo 1, 5 & 6 by Jony Easterby, Photos 2 , 3 & 4 by Jenny Hall

Woodland Pavilion – Pafiliwn y Coed

“I love how it feels enough like a stage to perform, but not too much like a theatre space, so we can still ride bikes across it and get a big group of strangers to have a spontaneous dance off.”Mark Olver, Curator and Comedian

The first three years of the Comedy Festival grew behind closed doors in packed out venues across Machynlleth. Hosting award winning comedians in unusual venues, Little Wander Production Company were in a position in 2013 to offer accessible, family friendly shows outdoors for free. With Mark Olver at the helm, the Pavilion has hosted some of the ‘best in show’ spontaneous collaborations between acts and the public.This was made possible by the minimal infrastructure of the Woodland Pavilion which has sought to amplify the beauty of a little patch of under-used woodland.
Re-orienting the centre of the town away from the roads and cars, the Pavilion has placed the green fields of Y Plas Machynlleth at centre stage.The Pavilion consists of a stage with a suspended roof hanging from the trees by chains, raked seating, off grid lighting and a bicycle powered sound system. Over two summers it has hosted a huge range of events in the great outdoors. Funded by Sustainable Tourism Powys, Glasu and the Machynlleth Comedy Festival.

Photo 1 & 3 by Edward Moore, 2 by Jon Starbuck and 4, 5, 6 by Jenny Hall

Kitchen, Old Station Machynlleth

The property is set in an eco-park. To date there have been no residential properties here but Chris
persuaded the planners that his live-work arrangements suit the fringes of the park as well as the quirks of the historic building.

Most of the interiors had been fitted out by the time the kitchen brief was fully developed. It was
very much the antithesis of the jewel in the crown. The kitchen was small and had lots of windows
and doors leading to an office, a utility space and car park.

A key design decision was to close one of the doors onto the car park and to turn a window into a door leading to the garden. So great for stepping out into the morning sun with a coffee!

Chris’ exacting standards as an engineer set the tone for the design brief coupled with a dislike of
magnolia country kitchens. The scheme uses slate, glass, FSC oak and stainless steel to create a
functional crisp aesthetic. ME Construction managed the works and Tom Provost hand built the Oak cabinets.

Images: Giles Thaxton

Private residence, Snowdonia National Park

Set in several acres of the Snowdonia National Park this historic mill is nestled in the embrace of a babbling brook that leads down to the Dysinni River and out to sea.

The unique beauty of the site lent itself to exploring a strong tradition in Finnish and Nordic architecture where shapes and structures from the natural site are transformed and then transmitted into the architecture.

The design of the extension celebrates the stream and the way it wraps around the house, the corners effectively ‘knocked off’ to aid the flow of people and water around the building.

The beautiful oak tree standing tall on the opposite bank is framed in the glass gable; the babbling brook framed in the large glass panel adjacent. Contemporary in design the building does embrace key elements of the local vernacular in the closed eave detailing and dry jointed stonework.

As well as extensively refurbishing the existing property, the house has been structurally modified to improve internal zoning and circulation and to allow the expanded kitchen to benefit from the new views south and upstream.

Contractor Ian Sneade and his capable team completed the works in early 2015.

Images: CAD renders

Barn Conversion

An intriguing project of contrasting materials and styles, Craftedspace worked for The Timber Frame Company Ltd to realise a personal brief for the design and construction of an ancient Exmoor barn.

The barn had been modified over many years. Its roofline was quirky and unique and though perished, Roberta wanted a faithful replica of the oddities. She also wanted to bring light into the interior and to replace some of the internal walls with steelwork to support the roof.

Our team responded to this brief, designing and installing new roof trusses, conservatory and porch in green oak to salvage the structurally compromised barn, filling it with light. Roberta also created an internal loggia running the length of the south facing elevation.

The result, an eclectic architectural language that unifies the farmhouse and barns into a stylish and original network of buildings that make a unique and crafted home.

Photos by Roberta Edgar

Straw bale home

“Jenny made it easy to translate the ideas in my head into a tangible framework. She used her considerable skills to pin down the essence of what we were looking for.”Jim Carfrae

A truly sustainable self-build project, Craftedspace worked for The Timber Frame Company Ltd to realise a personal brief for an elegant and innovative home with a Douglas Fir stilt construction.

Designed and built by the team, the bespoke timber frame was part of Jim’s ambitions to build a timber clad straw bale house.

The overall design of the self-build ensures high performance. The straw is non-structural but functions as an external cladding completely encasing the post and beam Douglas fir frame.

This solution means that the straw can be easily renewed without compromising the structure. The building sits on a steeply sloped North-facing site and benefits from a large clerestory window to bring light into the interior.

The timber frame was built by Rob of R.J. Gulley Builders who was awarded Master Builder of the Year 2007 for this project.

Jim Carfae has written a Phd on moisture performance of straw bale construction and works as a natural building consultant in the south west.

Photo 4 by Jim Carfrae

Timber extension

Invited by self-builders Geraldine and Brian, Craftedspace was commissioned to design an extension that complimented their original timber frame house.

Providing full architectural drawings we created a design to satisfy the lifestyle of the family.  The master bedroom has an internal balcony providing both privacy and direct connection to the garden and woods beyond. The large downstairs kitchen benefits from glazing to all orientations and a light well over the dining room table.

We designed the timber frame to maximize space within the roof void and heating and hot water demands are entirely met by a solid fuel burner and solar hot water panels.

Geraldine managed the project, using a timber framing contractor and ME Construction who provided the groundworks, first fix, services and roofing. Geraldine herself undertook the second fix carpentry and joinery, making the windows, doors and cabinetry throughout, ensuring an exceptional home completed to a beautifully crafted standard.

Caradoc’s Hideout

“Craftedspace have a sensitive and collaborative approach with a strong professional style. They created an imaginative community space that is invaluable to its residents.”Ryland Llewellyn, Urban Renewal, Caerphilly Borough Council

A community creation, Craftedspace was invited to answer an exceptional brief to create an artwork for the residents of Groesfaen, funded by Heads of the Valleys Artworks, Wales.

With a passion for projects of this kind, we launched a programme of workshops and events that included local walks, den making and tea drinking to explore the aspirations of the residents. Everybody wanted something for the kids, a storytelling place or a den.

The result – an original design that evokes myth and local legend, where the landscape and building become one; an unusual round weathered oak framework nestled into the hillside.

Created from a broad array of stakeholder inputs and approved by play safety and structural engineers, the space was created for everyday climbing and playing as well as for local legend storytelling! It’s great to hear the kids feel it is theirs.

Chandlery

Commissioned by Walk The Plank and Roustabout in close communication with the planners, Craftedspace was set the brief of designing a landmark building for this mixed used site in one of Wales’ most beautiful national parks.

Our resulting design was a hybrid of traditionally built post and beam and modern timber framing techniques, to create a cost effective build with an attractive exposed Douglas fir frame to the interior.

The site presented several challenges that were integrated into the design, turning problems into

innovative solutions. The unstable ground necessitated an upside down reinforced concrete slab foundation, functioning much like a boat. The wedge shaped site dictated the form which benefits from simpifying the roof into a true curve but defining the timber wall into facets.

Craftedspace also supervised the build of the design itself, ensuring a high standard from design to completion.

It’s basically a very nice shed.

Art >

Water Tables

Poetic reflections

Contact Us >

If you would like to discuss a project please call 01654 702340 or click here.