Wish List Smith Pauls Shed Petr Krejci Photography 8
Paul's Shed
Paul’s Shed was born from The Wish List, a unique project created by the American Hardwood Export Council, Sir Terence Conran and Benchmark as part of the London Design Festival at the V&A in 2014. Ten leaders in design were asked to commission an object they have always wanted and for it to be made in American hardwood and built by the designer commissioned in the Berkshire workshops of Benchmark furniture. The pieces created would not only be an exploration of the design potential and environmental credentials of American hardwoods but also an opportunity to showcase the continuing importance of craft in design.

I was commissioned by Sir Paul Smith to design and make his ideal garden shed, somewhere he could go to switch off and relax. Taking inspiration from the black fishermen's huts in Hastings and Luis Barragan's iconic window in his house in Mexico we decided to make the shed 3m by 3m, the size of Paul's first shop in Nottingham. The whole shed was made in a single material, rough sawn thermo-treated ash. This new type of heat-treatment allows sustainable ash to be used outside as an alternative to tropical hardwoods. The exposed joinery on the inside and shiplap cladding outside are reminiscent of traditional barns. The whole shed was put on a pivoting base, much like George Bernard Shaw's rotating writing hut. This allowed the shed to be rotated to follow the sun, a Crittall window at the gable end framing the view.

The Wish List was also part of a wider study focusing on measured sustainability. To evaluate the environmental impacts of each of the pieces made, data was collected on all the inputs and outputs from material and energy use, to waste flows and carbon footprint to create a cradle-to-grave life cycle analysis.

Paul's Shed went on to be exhibited in the courtyard of the V&A Museum, London, became a temporary flower shop for Paul Smith Nottingham before finding it's permanent home in a private garden in England.
Sir Paul Smith, AHEC, Benchmark
Pauls Shed Field Portrait
Pauls Shed Red Light
Pauls Shed Interior 2
Pauls Shed Studio Inside
Pauls Shed Structure
Pauls Shed Studio Door Open Square
Paul Smith Office
Pauls Shed Build 2
Pauls Shed
Shed At Va
play button
Photos: Petr Krejci
Film: Petr Krejci