My move to shedworking

Our competition winner on the pros and cons of shedworking

My move to shedworking - Tamsin OrrTamsin Orr won our recent Garden Office Week competition

by writing the best comment to the posts that week.

She described moving from rented business premises to ‘a rather glamorous shed at the top of my garden’.

(Click on the photo to appreciate its full gorgeousness!)

Today I’m reposting Tamsin’s comment so that more readers can benefit from her experience and thoughts on shedworking:

I am often asked why I choose to work from a rather glamorous shed at the top of my garden. My answer is simple, because it makes sense to.

How did I come to be shedworking?
I simply love my home. I have worked hard for it and so I love being there. I also love the simple things in life. I love the flexibility of a life that makes sense. With this in mind, and an inheritance of small value, I decided to invest in building a log cabin and move my independent business in.

I left behind the huge overheads of suburban London rents, business rates and staffing costs along with the stress of the commute (let alone the travel costs). It was the start of simplifying my life and career.

My business involves huge volumes of fabric being constructed into beautiful soft furnishings, so space was important to me alongside a calm environment. A log cabin was a perfect solution.

Moving the business to the home environment meant I had to be very self-disciplined. This I found quite easy, simply because I love what I do with a passion. The other end of the scale means I also have to be self-disciplined to know when to call the end of a working day. That’s probably the hard bit!

The next question asked is: Do you get lonely?
Never! I have a great online network of colleagues throughout the world, all within the same industry. We chat online most days, sort out a dilemma together if there is one. We arrange meet-ups on a regular basis which mean a weekend away networking and training.

We, as online networking buddies, decided it would be great to create an online resource for interior designers/soft furnishers and suppliers, and so we set up MyDecozo, our very own forum. Many within our industry work from home too. It can be a bit isolating so it seems a perfect solution.

So, is shedworking ever a lonely existence?
Absolutely not! I have made many new industry acquaintances, gone on to train with many soft furnishers throughout the UK and beyond, met many admirable people at the very top of our profession. Had I not had the flexibility to be able to take the leap into working from home, I may well have missed the best part of my working life.

Do I lust after a high street or quaint little village business premises?
Yes, sometimes. BUT, working from home means I can spend more time in clients’ homes within a timescale that suits both parties. It gives me freedom of choice too.

I am now totally happy with my shedworking lifestyle. The work/life balance still has its issues but I’ll get there! I have stopped day dreaming and done it, I’m glad I did.

Have you already made the move to shedworking? Or is it a dream to relocate out into the garden? We love to hear your stories 🙂

work from home secrets

In her shed Tamsin runs her business Ambience Home Furnishings, designing and making curtains, blinds and soft furnishings.

Posted in: Garden offices

5 Comments on "My move to shedworking"

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  1. jackie osborne says:


    Tamsin’s posh shed looks lovely; and her story sounds so relevant to so many of us. I haven’t been as happy for years!

    On a slightly off-track note I was particularly interested in her desk chair in the photo – I have seen a similar one on-line and wondered if she like’s hers? Anyone else have a view please?



    • Glad to hear that, Jackie, and remember we always love to have a look at your shed if you’d like to share it on the gallery 🙂
      I’m sure you’ll get a reply from Tamsin soon, so sign up for comments if you haven’t already and you’ll get it straightaway.

  2. Tamsin Orr says:

    Hi Jackie,
    Thank you for your kind words.
    With regards to my swivel chairs, I bought mine from a popular online auction site . Its quite comfortable and whizzes across the wooden floor ok. It tends to feel a bit like its tipping forward a bit, but that could be down to my DIY skills when I put it together ! I think I’ll stick to making soft furnishings !
    Kindest Regards Tamsin

  3. Great article. I work from home but dream of an office of my own (not cramming my work into the dining room/lounge/bedroom). Maybe one day I’ll have my own shed.