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Guitar & music studio in the garden

Bespoke Garden Music Studios — an Instant Hit!

Bespoke garden music studio

We all love music of one form or another but if you’ve got someone in the house who is regularly playing, practising, singing or composing, a bespoke, stand-alone music space is the absolute ideal. After all, we all have different tastes and you don’t want to disturb other members of the family, or indeed those living next door or nearby, especially when it’s late. More to the point, it’s often more enjoyable as a musician if you can play at a reasonable volume! That’s where a made-to-measure garden music studio really fits the bill. Because it’s bespoke, it’s perfect for playing music on the inside but designed to shield out much of the sound to those outside. So when acoustics have been designed well, you can really rock out without needing to worry about waking the neighbourhood!

Acoustic Insulation Built In

It’s all done with careful acoustic design. Unlike the rooms within a standard domestic home, Gembuild’s garden music rooms feature double-glazed acoustic glass to windows and doors, acoustic sound boarding (very dense, sound-blocking plasterboard) to walls and an unusually generous filling of acoustic insulation within the ceilings and cavity walls. With all this acoustic protection, it’s much harder for sound to escape to the outside. So your family in the main dwelling and the neighbours nearby are less likely to hear children practising their scales repeatedly, teenagers rocking out with their friends or indeed the latest version of your next Top Ten single being played at full volume. A new, acoustically insulated garden music studio can be an oasis of calm from the outside, yet a musical haven on the inside. No longer will musicians or performers have to think twice about turning up the volume another notch.

Sound Booths & Rooms-within-a-Room (RWARs)

Sound booths & vocal booths built inFor those who like to record music without having to worry about picking up background noise, sound reflecting back off resonant surfaces and unwelcome white noise ‘hiss’, Gembuild can also incorporate a made-to-measure acoustic sound booth, a kind of acoustic room-within-a-room (RWAR), right there inside the garden music studio. Such a sound booth would usually, of course, also feature an internal communication window, once again featuring double-glazed acoustic glass.

Perfect for Singers, Musicians, DJs, Producers & Tutors

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Garden buildings for accommodation

Garden Buildings for Accommodation

Garden buildings make great accommodation annexes

Sometimes there comes a point where there is not enough space in your home and you simply need to expand. Or perhaps you need extra room to accommodate a dependent relative, for example an aging parent who will benefit from living very close by, or a son or daughter who is ready to fly the nest but simply doesn’t have the resources to afford their own property.

So, what are the options?

An extension or loft conversion is an obvious choice, but both are extremely expensive and will also disrupt the home for several months or more. Be prepared for a mess, dust everywhere, perhaps muddy footprints and the company of workmen walking about in your property for a seemingly never-ending period of time. If your extension involves knocking down walls to create access and new openings in load-bearing walls, also be prepared for cracks appearing in nearby walls and ceilings, existing doors suddenly not fitting as well as they used to because they’ve dropped, and an enormous amount of decorating and making good at the end of the process. Then there’s the ‘snagging’ stage, which can sometimes be like getting blood out of a stone, and don’t forget ‘budget creep’ as the extension runs into unforeseen problems and complications that, whichever way you look at them, always seem to cost you extra money.

Is there is an easier way?

Absolutely. Compared to the potential nightmare of traditional extensions and conversions, a timber-framed garden building is plain sailing. Firstly the cost will be a fraction of the price. Moreover, the time for construction will be days rather than months. There will be no walls to knock down, no cracks to make good and no dust to clear off every surface in the entire home. And your ‘visitors’, the workmen, will be gone before you even know it. In fact, most of the build will have happened before they even arrived. With modern timber-framed buildings, custom modules are made up in advance, making the assembly time on site incredibly fast. What’s more, all of the action takes place outside the home, not in it. Companies like Gembuild will do it all for you, right down to painting the fascias and woodwork in the colour or finish of your choosing, so you don’t have to. Such things are all included in the price. Take a look at a few Gembuild examples:

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A little creative inspiration to make the most of your garden office space.

Finding space for a garden office can be hard, especially if you live in a city or a town where outside space is limited. However, if you’re one of the lucky people who has managed to get an office in your garden and are now looking for the best ways to kit it out, we’ve compiled a few tips on how to make the most of that space in order to create and open and creative atmosphere for you to perform at the best of your abilities. Take a look at our suggestions below and hopefully we’ll give you a bit of creative inspiration!

  1. Do leave your windows bare – if you’re in a small room, lighting is super important. Rather than being a hermit and working in the dark, let the light in. Natural light helps create the illusion of space and freshness and automatically makes the room seem less miserable and dingy, plus you can spend hours daydreaming out the window (however, this is not recommended when trying to run a business…)

  1. Do get a load of mirrors – Well not necessarily a load, one or two will do. But make sure you get some. Mirrors, like windows can automatically make a room seem bigger and more airy if you place them strategically. Working in a small and confined space can sometimes feel claustrophobic – especially when you’re stressed – so make sure you make it seem like there’s plenty of room for those creative thoughts to float around. Again like windows, they are also great for distraction as if you set them up strategically you can spend hours admiring yourself from different angles.

  1. Do use lamps instead of lights – If you’re a bit of a night owl or simply work crazy long hours, the likelihood is you’ll be working in the dark. Overhead lights can be overbearing and pool all the light in the room to one place, thus making the room seem smaller. A scattering of lamps and other light sources can instantly make a room seem more expansive and draw the eye around the room more rather than to one focal point.

  1. Do buy glass or Lucite furnishings – Things like desks and tables can end up taking quite a lot of room within the home office so make sure that you buy clever. Lucite and Glass furnishings are see through (obviously) meaning that having them in the room makes it look way bigger than it actually is, as the surfaces aren’t covered with the dark colours of wood. These furnishings are also the ‘in’ thing right now so are fairly easy to pick up on the cheap!

  1. Do get hidden storage – hidden storage is going to be a life saver in a small office, clear away the clutter to create an open space for brainstorming and clear thinking. You can get a variety of clever and stylish contraptions that will help with your filing and storage and they are honestly worth every penny. If your job requires a lot of paper work, hidden storage allows you to tuck it all away neatly and get rid of that impending sense of doom that a cluttered desk carries with it.

There you have it, our top tips for making the most out of your garden space. Your garden office can be a source of inspiration, so make it an airy, comfortable and enjoyable place to be. You want to remember you’re in the garden and sitting side by side with nature so make the most of those windows! As these spaces become more and more popular, people are finding new and innovative ways to make the best of their situation. Some buy swings, some buy beans bags, some build mezzanines – some people do all of those things! Remember, these are just some of our suggestions, your space if yours to do what you want with it.  Have a look at our range here to begin the journey!

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Games Rooms, Micro Bars and Marvellous Man Caves…

As the price of pints keeps on rocketing and more pubs are trading football for flat whites there is an underground movement rumbling throughout the UK. In gardens everywhere from Beckenham to Bradford; Games Rooms, Micro Bars and Marvellous Man Caves are sprouting their quite beautiful heads and creating a revolution. Wave goodbye to the long walk down the road for a flat lager and a packed out beer garden and say hello to your own back yard – this isn’t just a garden building, it’s a brave new world.

Escapism has long been a fascination for mankind, finding a place to unwind relax and escape the stresses of everyday life can be hard. Some people find it in the gym, others find it in a book and many find it in the form of Lethal Weapon 3 Pinball Machine.
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Building your own cave is the ultimate indulgence; you can sculpt it around you and what you like without having to worry about the general public. If you don’t like a song, don’t worry! With your own hideout you will no longer have to gaze hopelessly into your drink for 3 and half minutes whilst waiting for the latest pop anthem to finish and reality to kick back in – you can get yourself your own Juke Box and charm your friends with your tunes (they look gorgeous as well!).
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And don’t you just hate it when you go to have a game of pool only to find 5 50p’s sitting at the side of the table as people queue to use the beaten up cues? Au Revoir to that – get your own Pool Table and become a master of the game – you really can create your own little haven right at the back of your house.
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Whilst this all may sound like fun and games there is one serious thing to think about and that’s the quality of the building you’re in. The last thing you want on a wet and windy night is your beloved jukebox being ruined due to leaky ceilings and damp walls, so having a well built, well-insulated and reliable building is the key to having a great games room. Remember, this cave/room will eventually becoming your baby so treat it like one – keep it warm and safe and look after it as best you can from the start. Do not cut corners/costs on the initial outlay as it can end up coming round and biting you in the backside so always make sure the building is to the highest standard. If you’re unsure as to what is required to create a suitable environment for you and your new beloved devices, head over here to read the tech specs of exactly what you need to be looking for.

Colgate-with-pinball Games rooms are revolutionising the way we spend our downtime so stop sitting in the dark dingy pub and bring the pub to your garden! Kit your room out with all the things you love and party the evening away 24/7, 365 days of the year – who wouldn’t love a night of pinball, pool, good tunes and ice cold beers at a small fraction of the price of the pub?

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Glamping barrel

New for 2015: Glamping Barrels

“Glamping: a glamorous form of camping involving accommodation and facilities more luxurious than those associated with traditional camping.”

As well as our contemporary and colourful camping pods, Gembuild now offers a range of superb glamping barrels. Made of light, treated timber, these are rather more rustic than the pods and feature 2 bedroom accommodation for sleeping up to 4 people. Glamping camping barrel - cut away viewThey’re substantial in size and offer adaptable living including the ability to use the 2nd bedroom with either a double bed or twin beds. At the front there is a large open-fronted terrace area with bench seating, which will allow you to enjoy all the benefits of the great outdoors while remaining snuggly undercover. A lockable front door leads to the middle room which can be used as a lounge during the day but is easily converted to a twin bedroom at night. At the far end the second double bedroom features a panoramic window, which can be opened, again allowing you to feel really at one with the natural environment without necessarily being at the mercy of the elements.

The entire glamping barrel has a footprint of 5.4m x 2.24m. The roof is protected by asphalt shingles and any exposed timber is treated with eco-friendly oil-based wood protector. The Glamping barrels - various coloursbody of the glamping barrel is designed and built to sit clear of the ground and as such represents a very durable and easily-maintained structure which, with appropriate maintenance, should last for many years.

At time of writing the flat-packed price is just Read more

Skinny Faygate with a sedum roof002

Sedum & Wild Flower ‘Green’ Roofing

Here at Gembuild, one of the options we offer is ‘Sedum & wild flower’ roofing, a type of covering which is becoming increasingly popular in the UK — but what’s it all about? Here we give you some insight into its features and benefits. First, some background information:

Skinny Faygate garden room with a sedum roofSedum roofs fall into the category of ‘green’ roofing, which denotes a roof covering which, instead of using traditional roof tiles, slate or shingles, features a ‘living’ roof of growing vegetation and even flowers. This is highly attractive, natural-looking and has many other benefits (more about those below). At Gembuild we use a Sedum & wild flower mix when customers opt to have a ‘green’ roof on their timber garden building, office or studio. Once established this will form a very soft outline to the upper part of the building and, in terms of the garden design as a whole, blur the edges between what’s known as ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ garden landscaping. With a sedum roof, garden rooms will sit within the natural flora and fauna of the garden in a much more natural, organic way — almost becoming part of the garden itself.

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5 years old cedar cladding test board

Fifty shades of grey cladding

The great advantage of Siberian larch and Canadian cedar cladding is their high resistance to decay and high durability from natural preservatives. We use both types of cladding for our garden buildings and all our cladding is FSC or PEFC certified timber from well-managed forests.

Siberian larch has long been used for cladding in Russia and Europe and is very slow grown and consequently much denser, straighter grained and less knotty.

Western red cedar has become one of the most popular species of timber cladding, both internally and externally. The majority of red cedar is imported from North America, particularly Canada. It is also straight grained and largely free of knots.

Our cladding has a fifty year plus life without any need for treatment. The natural oils and resins within the boards keep them free from fungal and insect attack.

As well as a long maintenance free life, you’ll also get pleasure from seeing your garden office changing colour to a beautiful silvery grey.

We have had a cedar panel on test at our offices for over 7 years now (see below). This has gone through several stages of greying but has now settled into the lovely silver colour you see on old churches.

You must not confuse the natural and healthy weathering of your building with fungal attack. The progress of greying is influenced by rainfall and the orientation of the building, and eventually the whole unit will settle in to a uniform silver colour and will remain that way for the many years of life you can expect from a Gembuild garden building.

It may well go through 50 shades of grey before it reaches its final colour but I hope you will agree it was well worth waiting for! 😉

5 years old cedar cladding test board