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Eight Dapper Backyard Studios Proving the 'Shoffice' is a Thing

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Though it may sound like a portmanteau invented solely to infuriate, the "shoffice" is apparently a thing, and the Wall Street Journal is on it. These backyard office-sheds are catching on with a certain set of homeowning Londonites for the same reason that backyard expansions are; a deficit of space, the prohibitively high cost of moving to a bigger home, and the fact that the British planning system allows a fair amount of leeway with backyard structures—like the curving oak-lined shell that Platform 5 Architects created for a couple in St. John's Wood—as long as they take up less than 50 percent of the available space, aren't used for sleeping, and have a maximum pitched-roof height of 13 feet. Below, six more examples of handsome "shoffices."

Photo via Dezeen

↑ This backyard Writer's Shed, completed in April of 2013 and recently shortlisted for the 2014 Architects Journal Small Projects Award, was described by its designers, the firm Weston, Surman & Deane, as "a haven in the city; a fairy-tale hut" responding to their client's "passion for children's literature and mythologies."

Photo via 3rdSpace

3rdSpace is meeting the U.K.'s shoffice needs with prefabricated backyard structures that can be assembled in the week. This model, the 3 Bay Modular Library, is pictured above in the back of an Oxfordshire home.

Photo via My Modern Met

↑ Architect Erin Moore designed an off-the-grid writer's cabin called The Watershed for her mother, Oregon-based nature writer Kathleen Dean Moore, with a prefabricated steel frame and red cedar siding.

↑ The Hackney Shed by Office Sian is a low-budget, one-person workspace made from from oak and outfitted bookshelves sandwiched between structural columns.

Photo via Dezeen

↑ To create the so-called Wall of Zudaji, in Hamamatsu, Japan, 403 Architecture utilized scrap timber left over from other projects clad in corrugated plastic.

Photo via Kevin Deevey

↑ Feeling the squeeze of having two small children at home, Canadian architect Kevin Deevey created what he calls a Manhut, an 100-square-foot box in a shady patch of his backyard.

Built by designers Hunter Floyd and Damon Wake for an exhibtion called MicroDwell 2014, the Cinderbox is a freestanding home office that, as they put it, "perfectly transposes to the Sonoran Desert's inherent character."

·Bring That Novel You've Been Working On to This Dapper Cabin [Curbed National]
· 3 Bay Modular Library, Oxfordshire [3rdSpace]
· Daughter Creates Off-the-Grid Writer's Retreat for Her Mother [My Modern Met]
· Desperate for Space, Brits Build in the Backyard [WSJ]
· The Hackney Shed by Office Sian [Architizer]
· The Wall of Zudaji by 403architecture [Dezeen]
· The Manhut by Kevin Deevey [Kevin Deevey]
· Nab a Desert-Inspired Freestanding Home Office for $30K [Curbed National]