Brad Frost Web Headquarters
Well, it happened. A new headquarters for Brad Frost Web LLC is now in my backyard.
I’ve been in my house for almost 5 years and have always used one of the guest bedrooms as an office. But now that we have our daughter, things have shifted around quite a bit. One guest bedroom is now her room, and our office take up the other. My parents and other family visit frequently so we wanted to free up a room for them to sleep. Also, our house tends to get a little crazy. My wife runs her business out of the house, and our daughter is busy running around, having fun, and making noise. It can be tough to focus, and even tougher to field conference calls and record podcasts.
It was clear that the setup wasn’t sustainable, so I started exploring options.
To build or not to build?
I toyed with the idea of moving to a co-working place, but getting a space for me and Ian would be pretty pricy after all is said and done. I also love working from home and getting to see my daughter throughout the day. I also love the fact I don’t have to get in a car to go to work, and didn’t want that to change.
We had a big 20’x20′ sheet metal shed in our backyard that served as a garden shed. The groundhogs loved the dirt floor as they would burrow underneath and shack up.
I always thought I’d turn that into a garage, but that idea never excited me as I don’t feel my car needs a home. One day lightning struck (probably after hearing Dave talk about his home office shed) and I realized I could put our office in the backyard.
I looked into prefab options, but I found none of them fit my needs. I needed to have a dedicated garden shed space for lawnmower, etc. enough ceiling height to not feel cooped up, and big windows to let the light in. So we committed to working with a contractor to build our shed.
I naturally solicited advice for what to include in a home office, and got some great recommendations.
If you could design your own work environment (say, build your own office building in your back yard), what features would you consider must-haves?
— Brad Frost (@brad_frost) August 22, 2018
Here are some of the features I’m pumped about:
- Big ol’ windows to let in a lot of light
- Double-hung drywall to reduce the noise from our construction yard neighbors and also contain our own music-making noise
- Hard-wired internet ethernet connection served from underground conduit
- Giant whiteboard wall (taking a cue from Dan and his awesome office)
- Temperature control
- A dedicated garden shed space with slatwall the whole way around
But probably the most exciting thing is that this project fulfills a dream I’ve had for nearly 20 years. My dream has always been to have a dedicated music space where everything is sitting there wired up and ready to play. Flip on the amps, hit record, and get going. I’ve invested in the requisite gear over the last 15 years, but now that we have this space that dream is now a reality. Which means that after we put our daughter to bed we can go out to the shed to jam and record.
I’m so freaking excited.
OH! And one of the coolest, most serendipitous things happened. The day after the office was completed, I got a visit from the one, the only Jen Robbins. She was visiting family and friends in the area and we were so happy to have her over for dinner. But here’s the thing: Jen wrote the first book I ever read about web design. I very much owe my career to her, so it was so cool to have everything come full circle with her checking out the new place I now build websites. This is the house that Jen built.
We’ve only been moved in for a few days, so we’re still getting a feel for what’s needed. I definitely need to acoustically treat the room, hang some art, get some plants, and clean up the big mess our yard has become. But that’s all minor stuff.
There’s one more feature that I’m super excited about. We have enough space for another person to work out of the office, and I’d love to host you! If you’re a web person and/or musician who happens to find yourself in Pittsburgh, lemme know. We can get some work done, play some music, eat some food, and have fun.