One for the Books


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Need room to write? Look no further than a cabin in the backyard.

Writing is a solitary pursuit, and most creatives who put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) need quiet to arrange their thoughts. Author Virginia Woolf said it: “A woman must have…a room of her own if she is to write fiction.”
No matter the genre, having a place to write is even better when it embraces its natural surroundings.
Two writing cabins, both completed in 2021 during lockdown, provide their authors with solace—and a connection to the outdoors.
The Writer’s Cabin, designed by MuDD Architects, was designed and built in just a few months for an author of children’s books who wanted the space to be a source of inspiration for her writing.
The cabin—in the north of Madrid—is a technological first for the architectural firm; they used digital fabrication combined with highly skilled master builders.
The envelope of the house roof is made of folded oxidated iron. The most challenging part of the structure was the complex curvy bookshelves—made of locally sourced pine—which were adapted to fit the cabin’s high sloped roof.
The shelves comprise 100 different pieces cut with CNC, and they were left untreated on purpose, providing a keen contrast with the maple cladding panels inside.
A dimmer light allows the author to change the ambiance of the space, and smaller lights are placed inside the bookshelves. Two technical lights illuminate the writing table from above.
The oxidated iron frame of the main façade allows the laminated glass to meld into the garden, highlighting its different plant species.
Another enclosed writing space, The Writer’s Room, sits in a corner of the back garden of a house on Alma Road in Dublin. According to Clancy Moore Architects, the author “needed seclusion, to be able to work without being seen, and yet to feel connected with the house.”
As the author’s home is part of an existing terrace of houses, the site was inaccessible for the builders and so the architects designed the cabin so it could be constructed off-site and then craned into place.
Angular in structure, the room is lined in red-stained beech and mirrors, and contains a desk, a daybed, and storage. There’s a sense of coziness and comfort amid the textured
red walls.
Recognizing that rest is as important as production in the creative process, the architects designed the cabin to reach beyond the back garden. Through the mirrored ceiling, the cabin provides a distant view to the sea from the daybed.

The Writer’s Cabin
MuDD Architects
Barcelona, Spain
Nacho Villa
Marbella, Spain

The Writer’s Room
Clancy Moore
Dublin, Ireland
Fionn McCann
Dublin, Ireland

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