Gazebo in Nelson

Nelson Gazebo

This gazebo had to be carefully designed to slot into a very specific and tight spot between a pool and staircase, over a BBQ area and allow room for a prized bougainvillea! The location is stunning, looking out over the ‘Cut’ and Haulashore Island in Nelson Harbour and our clients wanted a real ‘statement’ structure to complement their outdoor entertaining area. Access was rather awkward for the raising of the frame with plenty of steps involved but we had a perfect day and were lucky enough to be invited to cool off in the pool at the end of the day!  A macrocarpa tongue and groove ceiling and beautiful shingle roof complete the look.

Character living in a Mohawk barn, Motueka

Character living in Motueka

The standard Mohawk barn design was used here resulting in a character property in the Motueka Valley.  These clients opted not to have an open vaulted area as in the Mohawk in Rangiora but went for additional living space upstairs instead.  Again, the pale walls contrast with our timbers to give a clean, fresh look to the home.  Polished concrete floors on the ground floor and oak boards on the first make for a stylish property as does the decorating in one of the bedrooms!

Pergola for outdoor living and dining

Pergola for outdoor entertaining in Ruby Bay

Occasionally Timberworks is approached to design a structure for external use, perhaps a porch, garage or, as in this case, an outdoor living and dining area. Nelmac commissioned us to design a pergola for their clients in Ruby Bay who were carrying out an extensive landscaping scheme. The frame was to sit around a large fireplace with integral flue and provide an appealing space for outdoor entertaining. Our sketches were approved, drawings completed and a walnut stain chosen and before we knew it, a perfect Nelson day dawned for the raising.  The structure complements the hard landscaping perfectly, linking a patio and decked area to the house and will sit perfectly in the mature gardens once the planting has been completed.

NZ Woolsheds inspire stunning frame for new home in Tai Tapu

NZ woolshed-inspired stunning frame for new home in Tai Tapu

Our clients on this project have taken ‘involvement’ to new heights! The macrocarpa trees were planted (26 years ago), felled, logged and milled by the client. He then bid them au revoir and had them transported from Christchurch to our workshop in Ruby Bay. Our instructions were to create a rustic frame, retaining all the wane (natural curve to the wood once the bark is removed) and natural features that we found in the timbers. The 10-acre section where these timbers were ultimately destined for is far from ordinary.  Rich planting of natives took place twenty years ago and there is a beautiful flower garden and established vegetable patch, so the new property needed to sit here comfortably; an organic approach was called for.

Ensuring the joints and housings matched up perfectly made an interesting change for the Timberworks crew as normally we’d be dealing with right-angles and square timbers but it was an extremely rewarding process and everyone was delighted with the end product. It was a fascinating journey for us to work with a client who had such intimate knowledge, not only of each and every timber on this project, but of plants and forestry in general. The lifecycle of these trees is clearly evident in the macrocarpa frame; many details which are normally removed during milling and crafting were actually retained, accentuated and celebrated; photos 15 & 16 show this clearly; sapwood as well as heartwood, wane, burrows created by insects etc. The walnut stain applied as the final stage brought all these details to life and gave a rich patina to the dressed but only coarsely-sanded, timbers.

We had a great team for the 4-day raising in Tai Tapu with the clients and their builder pulling their weight and putting in long hours. We had a clear, perfectly even ‘Magroc’ floor pad to work on and the whole building will be sheathed in these structural insulated panels (SIPs) which will make for a fast, straightforward build. The Canterbury weather was ideal and the week flew by; before we knew it, that enormous jigsaw had been assembled, the last piece ceremoniously inserted and the frame ‘topped out’ traditionally with a large sprig of macrocarpa. For now we must wish our clients good luck with the remainder of their build and we look forward to renewing acquaintances when we visit later in the year to see the finished product!

** April 2017 We’re delighted to hear that our clients are now happily esconced in their stunning new home having fought off the fires which raged all around them in February 2017. Their vision and attention to detail sing out in the finished property as these new photos demonstrate.

Great work by High Country Homes who were the principal builder and designer.

Pre-engineered design for Mohawk barn in Rangiora

Mohawk barn in Rangiora

We’re delighted to have some photos of a recently completed house near Rangiora. The exposed Macrocarpa internal frame contrasts beautifully with the white walls and the clients’ choice of furnishings showcases the timber in spectactular fashion. The drama of the vaulted ceiling can be appreciated from many different angles within the property and of course from both the ground and first floors.

Gazebo in Mapua

Gazebo, Mapua

Timberworks has designed and built a couple of Post and Beam gazebos as a mini show-homes for various exhibitions.  These were designed to be less than 10sqm so that they can be built without the need and expense of building consent.  Ideal for spa pool, garden, park setting or similar.  This one was sold on as a outdoor seating area.



Timberworks was asked to design an attractive Post and Beam frame to support some stunning custom designed western red cedar doors on the end of a small boathouse.

Pool House

Pool House in Mapua

Activekidz Swimschool in Mapua wanted to extend their teaching season by adding an indoor pool to their existing outdoor facility.  Sitting on the hill above the village of Mapua, overlooking Tasman Bay and the Richmond Ranges beyond, the new building needed to be in keeping with the self-catering chalets on site and nestle unobtrusively into the landscape. Our clients wanted a contemporary look with plenty of exposed timber to frame the views through the large glazed areas.  The roof and end-wall cross-bracing added a fun element to the design which worked well for an area that was to be used for teaching.
Hire the pool for an hour and see firsthand how the poolhouse looks; go to Activekidz Swim School for more information.

Gazebo Sleepout

Gazebo Sleepout

The second gazebo that Timberworks built as a show-home was clad, insulated and finished internally as a sleepout.  The mix of chunky timbers with curved bracing and additional beams along the walls gave a very cosy, appealing room to use for guests or as an office.

Wedding Gazebo, Hanmer Hotel

Wedding Gazebo, Hanmer Hotel

The designer’s brief here was to create a Gazebo to provide the Hotel with a suitable structure to host weddings.  Simple in design, the quality materials like the Macrocarpa Post and Beam frame and the cedar shingles give it a timeless quality and provide a perfect backdrop for photos. A combination of hidden and exposed steel connections were used, countersunk and painted black.

Have a look for yourselves, the Gazebo is situated in the back gardens of the Heritage Hotel in Hanmer.


Richmond Summer House

Richmond Summer House

A truly client-inspired building that surpassed everyone’s expectations.  The original brief was to create an away room separate from the house and over the lake that was accessed by a bridge from an upper lawn.  Once the beauty of the exposed timbers below became apparent the client decided to create an additional outdoor living space underneath the Summerhouse as well. The Post and Beam frame is made of ‘old man’ pine that has been stained prematurely grey down below to give it a consistent weathered look without hiding the grain of the timber.

“Timberworks have been involved in creating two buildings on our property; a Garden cottage (Richmond cabin) with interior trusses and a two level Summerhouse overlooking a lake. The accuracy of the workmanship is faultless.  We have found Timberworks to be completely reliable and professional and their attention to detail is everything we could have hoped for.  We live in a park-like environment and have noted that visitors and guests react to the Garden cottage and Summerhouse as features of interest and beauty in the overall landscape.  We would have no hesitation in using Timberworks again, or recommending their services to other people.”  – Rick and Sarah Griffin – Silvan, Nelson

Vineyard and B&B on the Banks Peninsula

Vineyard and B&B on the Banks Peninsula

Our clients on the Banks Peninsula have a love of European barns and planned to build a new one on their vineyard at French Farm near Akaroa. The 6-bay barn was based on the Timberworks designed English barn and was to provide storage for vineyard equipment, a home office and a wine tasting area and B&B accommodation upstairs at one end. There was also to be provision of a wood storage area at the back of the property under low eaves. Timberworks supplied the concept design and building consent drawings as well as crafting and installing the timber frame. Bandsawn heart Macrocarpa was used and treated with a salt solution stain which gave an immediate aged, weathered look as well as being a wood preservative. The cypress weatherboards were also treated with the salt solution and together with the red barn roof mean the building fits in to its surrounding perfectly.

To see this property first-hand, go for a wine-tasting or stay a night; Valley Road Vineyard.

A ‘Cruck’ Hall at Rippon Winery

Cruck Hall at the Rippon Winery

The family who run Rippon winery, overlooking Lake Wanaka, had a vision to create a wedding and events venue to take advantage of the spectacular setting amongst the vines looking to the Southern Alps.  They had grand ideas. The resultant Rippon Hall is stunning.

Four enormous portal frames were crafted from larch grown on the farm and together with the exposed purlins, ridges and hip rafters, provided the framework of the Main ‘Cruck’ Hall. A combination of mortise and tenon joinery and hidden and exposed steel hardware were used for the connections.  Recycled native rimu was used for the floor, which complements the majestic timber trusses perfectly.  This is one of Timberworks’ more unusual projects, a truly dramatic building and a lasting legacy for the next few generations of the family who have worked the land here since the early 1900s.

Award winning B & B in Hanmer

Award winning B&B in Hanmer

Set in the beautiful outskirts of Hanmer, surrounded by 360 degree mountain views, this architect designed property is a stunning place to call home. The clients drew inspiration from the English style post and beam projects they saw on Grand Designs and in books and magazines and committed themselves to creating something similar. The Post and Beam is crafted from rough-sawn macrocarpa with a light sand and oiled finish. The post and beam extends throughout the living areas, Bed & Breakfast reception area, front entrance and covered verandahs.  There are a multitude of exposed beams, posts, braces etc which look gorgeous in this extensive building.  The combination of warm timbers and pale plastered walls creates a truly inviting home and the split-levels and mezzanine make for an interesting, characterful layout.

Experience Timberworks’ craftsmanship first-hand by staying at this stunning property; go to Mad Cow Manor.

Expansive Douglas Fir frame in Kaikoura

Expansive Douglas Fir frame in Kaikoura

Kaikoura Mountain Retreat was a truly inspiring project to be involved in. The location has unsurpassed views over the Kaikoura coast line and mountain ranges. The clients have extensive experience in the international timber industry and knew the style of property they wished to create and from which species of timber. The Post and beam frame is made from Canadian Douglas Fir and Western Red Cedar. The structure consists of two 12m long by 1m deep girder trusses which sit on four large posts and are connected with black steel plates and traditional Mortise & tenon joinery. Spanning between the two girder trusses are nine 6m span arch trusses at 1.5m centres.  Douglas Fir common rafters tie the trusses into the side walls.  The end result is spectacular, the photos say it all.