We’re not usually swept away by something as simple as a garden shed by today is an exception because we found something really cool that we want to share with you. It’s a garden house from Eindhoven, in The Netherlands and it’s unlike anything we’ve seen. Of course, you wouldn’t notice that at first. the house looks like any other regular garden shed…until its entire exterior shell starts to slide, revealing an inner shell made of timber and glass. The inner shell can slide open too in which case the interior living space is completely exposed and becomes an outdoor living area.
Believe it or not, this entire project was developed and completed by someone with no formal architecture training whatsoever. Caspar Schols designed and built this extraordinary garden house for his mother who wanted a place where she could feel away in her own garden, where she could meditate, write, paint, host family dinners, entertain friends, where she could enjoy the company of her grandchildren and where they can have sleepovers, play and perform for their family.
A governmental restriction dictated that the house had to stay within a 25 square meter footprint. That meant either that all those ways in which the owner wanted to use this structure had to adapt to a tiny footprint or that the design had to somehow fool the eye and incorporate surprising and clever features. Obviously, the second option was chosen. As a result, the garden house measures 6m x 4m when fully compact but its length can be increased to almost 12m thanks to the sliding shells, resulting in a 45 square meter floor plan.
The house stands on a platform supported by 18 pillars of reinforced concrete. The exterior is clad in Douglas wood and the inner shell is made of double glass with a timber truss structure. The design is completed by a simple steel roof. The whole project didn’t exceed the 20.000 euro budget and was completed in 2016.
The design is optimized for maximum flexibility, allowing the owner to adjust the layout and the decor based on the type of weather or the desired function or setting. Inside this garden house, four main areas can be distinguished. The first one, at the top left, is completely closed and the perfect spot to sit in on a rainy and cold day. The second one is at the top right and is suitable for warmer and sunny days. The wood shell can slide open to let the light in and the space remains protected from rain and wind by the glass inner shell. The bottom left area is perfect for those warm and very sunny moments when the glass shell can slide open, turning this area into an outdoor living space. The last zone is at the bottom right and is the ideal space for hosting dinners or parties. Here there’s enough room for a 10 meter long table able to sit up to 30 guests.