The Decorated Shed

MorenoMasey, Teddington, 2018


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A garden shed in Teddington.

At the back of my garden, I have built a garden shed. Its design is controlled by three simple ideas. The volumetric shape is a proper shed. It is a child’s drawing of a house, a Monopoly house, four walls and pitched roof. Set within a Victorian terrace, the form is contextual, but it is supersized, it feels both at ease and disruptive.

Tall, deep and sitting square-on at the end of the garden, it frames the outside space both visually and functionally. The timber cladding is definitely not house, it is clearly something distinct and not domestic. The oak boards are old and silvered, laid with dark gaps to create a stark geometric pattern. Without interruption the boards run over the whole form in ribbons.

There are no gutters, the roof and the walls are treated identically and there is no superfluous detail, nothing to anchor the building visually to a scale or use. The boards reveal a large opening to the main space and conceal a door to the storage area.

The contrast of the geometry and the texture feels at once hard and tactile, both controlled and random. Everything else is functional but it doesn’t have a function. It is an office, a study, a gym, a conference space, a TV room, a playroom, a library, a bar or a shelter. The shape, the material palette, the arrangement is a simple distillation of non-specific function. A practical tiled floor that runs out to the terrace outside, an unfinished plywood wall to fix things to, a grey wall to project onto and some shelves. That’s it. The door is a glazed garage door, rolling up over the ceiling to leave a clear opening, there are no panels to clutter the reveal – inside is outside.


  • Begun: Oct 2017
  • Completed: Mar 2018
  • Floor area: 21m2
  • Sector: Residential
  • Total cost: £30,000
  • Funding: Private
  • Tender date: May 2017
  • Procurement: JCT Householder
  • Address: Gloucester Road, Teddington, TW11 8UA, United Kingdom