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Mike & Jen, High Oatfield, Lochdon, Isle of Mull. PA64 6AP

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How The Hide came to be





FInlay on "his" decking


With the arrival of our grandchildren we initially decided to build a studio to enable the family to come and stay during what has become our busier and busier season. As the building progressed I fell more and more in love with it (I wanted to move in but Mike frowned on that idea) so we decided to offer it as self catering in 2019 when our young family were not here.

It has been a labour of love, starting from absolute scratch we created a wonderful space for a couples retreat.

Having built the majority of our own house 16 years ago we had a fair idea of what was involved. Mike sat and designed the building one evening, we wanted a natural timber Larch cladding and a traditional tin roof with big French windows to make the most of the stunning view of the hill and passing wildlife. The idea was to have a small kitchen area to one end, comfy leather armchairs in front of the 3m windows and a king sized bed all in the same open plan space with the en-suite shower room and entrance porch to the rear of the building.

Laying out of the footings and waste pipes

Working from Mike's sketches we started by installing the waste system, water, electric cable and all services in the same trench then built block pillars to stand the floor base on. A lorry load of timber shortly arrived and actual construction soon started. We sourced some wonderful windows and doors from www.velfac.co.uk and the day they arrived was like Christmas (I am easily pleased it seems)


Our first completed truss

It has been a real family affair with our nephew coming over from Ireland to help build the framing and our daughter with her boyfriend helping me with building the trusses then erecting them and finally insulating the frame and roof. Charles was like a monkey, he works on French tall ships so leaping about on the trusses was child's play to him whereas I needed 3 points of contact at all times. Mike did the internal partitions and put the windows in, then did the roof once the trusses were up. Our son came home to help lay the floors and a mezzanine for our grandson as he gets older and it suddenly started to look like a proper studio.


Building the timber frame prior to sheeting and insulating


Mike and I worked long hours getting the Larch cladding on and with each day the look of the studio changed. 3 lots of timber treatment later, to ensure the larch colours down nicely, and the external bit was finished.


Beautiful planes larch cladding going up, first of two layers


Once we had first fixed the electrics and plumbing the next job was completing the 200mm insulation (it is so warm) then plaster boarding and timber lining the ceiling. The kitchen went in next followed by en-suite shower room.

As I write this down it seems to have all happened in the blink of an eye but it has been a bit all consuming, not that we are complaining I would do it all again (not sure Mike feels the same though).


Nearly complete just waiting for the decking timber to arrive

A deck with a view!

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