|BUSINESS OF THE WEEK:
Backyard Buildings, LLC
By Lisa Carroll, Staff Writer
Backyard Buildings LLC. is the entrepreneurship of husband and wife team Robert and Brenda Hall.
It was Brenda who spearheaded the business back in the
1990’s, when tasked with building a shed for her daughter.
“She needed it to be portable,” Brenda shares, “and
something a woman could pick up and put in the back of her truck
without having to ask her husband to do it.” Over time and with
the help of her girlfriends, a determined Brenda honed her carpentry
skills until she developed the techniques to create structures she was
During this process Brenda met Robert, who was working at the
lumberyard where Brenda purchased supplies. Robert was thoroughly taken
with this woman who was teaching herself to be a carpenter. “I
was flabbergasted,” he told me, smiling warmly at his wife.
Robert was impressed by more than Brenda’s woodworking finesse.
Brenda survived two brain aneurisms during the time she was
building her business. “She is the toughest lady. We met in 1996,
but she wouldn’t marry me until she found out she was going to
live.” In 2003, Brenda underwent gamma knife radiosurgery
to deal with the aneurisms. The procedure was a success, and the two of
them were married four days later. Robert, along with a menagerie of
friends, helped Brenda in her recovery, encouraging her along the way.
As soon as she was able, Brenda was up and running again.
and Brenda Hall of Backyard Buildings are an inspired couple who really
love their work of creating functional structures for people.
Brenda initially focused on smaller buildings that were easy to move
around, once Robert got on board, they began building larger structures
up to 10' x 20'. The Halls construct their sheds from the ground
up on 4" x 6" pressure-treated runners, using 16" centers, 2 x 4
wall construction (16” o.c.), 5/8” all wood T111 siding, 2
x 6 floor joists, 3/4” CDX subflooring, 1/2” CDX roof
sheathing, and a 30-year dimensional shingled roof. The overhangs on
the roofs extend 8" on the sides and 12" on the ends, which is an
important consideration in our rainy locale. “For every
shed, we go to the local lumberyards with a list of what we need, pick
up our supplies, bring them home, and start the saws
up,” said Robert. Once erected, Brenda coats them
with mildew-resistent primer and good quality paint in the customer's
choice of color. Clearly these sheds are built to last.
“We’re not taking any shortcuts with these buildings at
all,” Robert affirms. “We take the time to build a real
quality product. We have high standards and won’t compromise them
for anything.” The buildings are delivered to your site
ready to use and leveled with concrete blocks as needed.
Creating structures for people is relational process, and thus each
shed becomes its own unique experience. “We meet a lot of nice people
doing this,” says Robert, “and you know, while the shed design doesn’t
change that much from building to building, every one of them is
different.” Brenda agrees. “You get to know people over the course of
building them a shed. A lot of them have become our friends.”
who buy these buildings consider them an investment. A quality building
adds to property values, and people find uses for them that enhance
their lives in some way. A Backyard Building might become anything from
a computer game room to a cat house. Some are birthed into greenhouses,
while others develop into finished cabins. Many are used simply for
storage, as people realize the value of having extra room for their
stuff. The chicken houses Brenda designed are built with the happiness
of the chicken in mind, and are sturdy enough to withstand
Oregon’s toughest weather for decades.
and Robert live in a vintage home on the banks of the Coquille River,
where they bring into being colorful lampwork beads, bottles, and
jewelry. This started out as a hobby and has become another creative
business venture on the side. Robert forges the kaleidoscopic
glass in the flame,then Brenda fashions it into exquisite jewelry.
“She’s the creative one, “ Robert says. “If it
was up to me, I’d be building boring old sheds over and over.
Every idea we ever had is her idea. I listen to her because of her
proven track record. I’m accomplished at getting things done, and
she doesn’t even have to nag me anymore!” Robert said, as
Brenda burst out laughing.
they manage to find spare time, Brenda and Robert like to travel up the
coast to visit artsy little shops and just enjoy living in this
beautiful place. To learn more about Backyard Buildings, LLC, visit the
website backyardbuildings.net, or give them a call at 541-396-7433. To check out their lampwork artistry, visit their online shop, High Water Studios, at http://www.etsy.com/shop/highwaterstudios
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