garden workspace

A Fourpenny Chalet build for a sloping garden...


When The Fourpenny Workshop was called on to create a brand new office space that would make the most of the corner of a garden with a lovely view, we jumped at the chance. Our customer was after a bespoke building, specially designed to suit a fairly small, redundant space and it had to work with the modern style of their home and the sloping nature of their garden.


Although we’re well known for our Shepherd’s Huts, restoration projects and knowledge of historical buildings, at the Fourpenny Workshop we can turn our hands to more contemporary projects too - in fact, we've used some fairly high-tech, innovative materials and techniques for this Chalet building project.

We visited the site to take measurements and discuss the project requirements (as well to consider the direction of the sun to ensure our new outbuilding would be light and bright throughout the day and evening) and we then fed all these elements into our design process.


As with all of our bespoke building projects, we drew up a set of detailed plans so our customer could see exactly what we were going to create and could give his seal of approval before we actually began the build process. 

Although the slope of the site was a bit of a challenge, we used it as inspiration for our design and incorporated an accentuated roof pitch. We wanted the building to be full of light and to bring the outside in, so we maximised the windows (aiming to keep them contemporary in style and clutter free) and we opted for extra tall aluminium doors too - simple, modern and practical.


There was quite a bit of initial groundwork at the site (exacerbated by the slope) but once we’d set the foundations, we created a base line of Staffordshire blue bricks which was smart, sturdy and contemporary. The perfect partner to the rest of the materials we had in mind. A concrete floor finished off the first stage.


The main structure was built using a SIPs system (Structured, Insulated, Panels). These consist of two sheets of high performance sterling board, sandwiching a thick layer of eco therm insulation between them. These panels can be easily fabricated and prepped (back at the Fourpenny Workshop) and then simply erected on site, creating a strong, well insulated framework for construction projects.


We chose a rubber roof system for this outside workroom project - durable throughout wild weather and hot sunshine and also good at sealing noise in (or out). Perfect for outbuildings intended to house a good music system, or a cinema screen - or for builds in noisy neighbourhoods. We incorporated a substantial overhang at the front of the building, creating a verandah area to blend the interior space with the garden and make a lovely spot for a drink in the sunshine.


The garden Chalet was already starting to take shape, but the addition of the beautiful red cedar panelling (one of our favourite wood types) really added the wow factor. The cedar was finished by machine for a clean, modern look (rather than with our usual, classic Fourpenny feather or waney edge) and we fixed the cedar vertically.

The windows and doors are black aluminium - strongly contrasting with the red cedar but not detracting from it and they allow for a siteline all the way through the building to the garden beyond.


We completed the project with interior plasterboard and a plaster skim throughout the room - all ready for a nice fresh coat of paint.

To make this gorgeous Garden Chalet thoroughly useable we’re also going to be laying a reclaimed wood floor and installing a stylish and functional wood burning stove. This lovely simple build will become a garden office, relaxation room and bolthole for the family and the wood will weather beautifully.

If you’d like your own bespoke garden Chalet, an outside office space or a garden guest room, why not get in touch? Whether your style is cool and contemporary or a little more rustic, The Fourpenny Workshop could be exactly what you’re looking for.