The Natasha Marshall Studio – Building project

Behind the scenes photos of the Natasha Marshall studio being built.

The Natasha Marshall studio – building project completed 2008. We have been asked about our unusual studio, in the backcourt gardens, so here is our story behind the project from start to finish in pictures & words…

This new, award winning office building involved the rebuilding of an old derelict printworks at the back of an urban block in Glasgow. It subtly develops the section to introduce natural light and intriguing views into a subterranean space. It refurbishes the existing tenement’s communal court and begins the transformation of a run down back lane, while creating unexpectedly large and bright office spaces.

Awards: GIA Best Small Works Award 2009 / RIBA Award 2009 / Nominated Scottish Design Award 2009

Otago Developments own the building:

Otago Developments which was set up by three architects and two textile designers who all studied at Glasgow School Of Art – Robin Webster, Miranda Cameron, Stuart Cameron, Neil Fullerton and Natasha Marshall. The architects form cameronwebster architects and the textile designers Natasha Marshall Ltd.
Our aim is to take buildings that are not working anymore and give them a new lease of life by transforming the space, and the outside exterior through inspirational architecture and design. We keep an eye out for new projects all the time and to date have worked on three projects together as a team.

The Printworks – Purchased and Removed
Neil and Natasha had seen an article in the Sunday Times titled ‘Is it Worth it’ and went in search of this hidden and unloved building. On finding it, they called architect friends Stuart and Miranda who also loved the idea of doing something with the building as they had been looking at it the week before. Cameronwebster architects had been working on a new project in Bank Street for a client at the time and had noticed the derelict building that was on the back lane that runs on the parallel to this property.


I have included are a few photos taken before and after the building was taken down. Once inside the building we found that there was raw sewage flowing into it, a few rats and a strange floor plan. Once surveyed the structure was deemed un-safe so we had to remove the building above ground level as you can see in the photos. I love the photo of just the post box in front of the empty space! This was a daunting stage when we had purchased a building and then just had a hole in the ground! Then came the excitement for things to come and it wasn’t long before it started to resemble a building again.

The Build of The Printworks:
Cameronwebster architects put forward the new plans for The Printworks, which was then eventually granted. The new building granted was set across 3 levels to create two large office areas, a meeting room, two toilets and a kitchen. To get light into all the spaces there has been a great use of glass, including sinking a garden into the basement.
These images show the changes from before and after build. At the same time as we were building, the Piping Studio next door also built an extension to their building that filled in the space to the left hand side of the view in the original photo.

Favourite photos of the building:

The wooden staircase is stunning and people often comment on the link to Mackintosh in feel – maybe this is not surprising seeing as the architects cameronwebster studied at Glasgow School Of Art! Love this view up the stairs in to our Natasha Marshall Plectrum wallpaper.

I love these two photos of The Printworks that shows cameronwebster’s great use of light in their buildings – Glass floor in the meeting room bringing light into the kitchen below and Natasha Marshall beanstalk design roller blinds. Kitchen with our Natasha Marshall Fern tea towel and red kitchen worktop bringing colour into the space. Lightwell garden sunken into the basement.

Natasha Marshall Launch their studio collections:

Natasha Marshall have this year also moved into the top floor of the Printworks to store and dispatch their new studio collections of fabrics and wallpapers. The design studio is still down in the basement that they share with cameronwebster architects and LCD Architects. It is wonderful to be in such a creative space with a team of creative like mixed friends working.

Bit more history….

The Printworks was a working printmakers for years before being left derelict for around 3 years. Before that it started it’s life as a glue factory. The slaughter house is next door at the end of Bothwell Lane and this was our second project! I will share the story behind that and will ask cameronwebster architects to guest blog the plans for both projects very soon.