Shed Workspace Finds Home

The Shed co-founders, Amanda Fairbanks, Sarah Cohen, and Liza Tremblay, stood outside the new, permanent home for their women’s-only co-working space in Sag Harbor the day they signed their lease. A second cottage on the premises will be available to members for hourly rentals as a conference room.  Kimberly Eads

The Shed Workspace, a women’s-only co-working place that began as a Tuesday pop-up at Estia’s Little Kitchen, is graduating on April 8 to a five-day-a-week permanent location just up the road in Sag Harbor to meet what its founders describe as an enthusiastic demand from its patrons.

Last fall when the co-founders Sarah Cohen, Amanda Fairbanks, and Liza Tremblay set out to create a shared workspace for women that was affordable and reliable — “Just bring your laptop and let us take care of the rest” is one of their slogans — they weren’t sure how their venture would be received at Estia’s on Tuesdays, the one day a week when the restaurant is closed. But over the past six months a diverse crowd of more than 80 women — designers, lawyers, editors, writers, and farmers, among others — used the space as monthly members or drop-in visitors, the Shed founders say.

“It’s become resoundingly clear that the year-round community on the East End needs — and can support — an all-women’s co-working space,” Ms. Fairbanks said in an email Monday. “At Estia’s Little Kitchen just last week we had 16 women working with laptops, iPads, and sketchbooks. After talking with and surveying our members, one day a week was not meeting their needs. . . . It’s time to take the next leap and expand into a flexible space of our own.”

The new location at 1796 Bridgehampton-Sag Turnpike in Sag Harbor will be open 9 to 5 weekdays. One cottage on the property will have amenities such as Wi-Fi, charging stations, Nespresso coffee, and wireless printing and scanning. Six work desks (named for the feminist icons Betty Friedan, Eleanor Roosevelt, Gloria Steinem, Michelle Obama, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Shirley Chisholm) will also be able to be reserved in advance at theshedworkspace.com. The artwork will be by Elizabeth Karsch and fresh flowers will come from Sag Harbor Florist. Yoga and meditation will be provided periodically by Emily Weitz.

Shed members can also book hourly rentals of a second cottage that sits just across a small courtyard for use as a conference room. Both cottages are among a grouping that sit on a parcel of land owned by Michael Derrig of Landscape Details. Vital Habits currently leases the main grouping of cottages and the Shed is subleasing one of them. 

In addition to offering the co-work space, the Shed has expanded since its start into partnering with other local businesses to co-host other women’s-only events such as a Mardi Gras Ladies Night at Lulu Kitchen and Bar, a mini-facial or massage night at Onda Beauty, and Festa al Camino, a benefit for local seasonal workers that was held at Tutto il Giorno and Urban Zen. 

More events are planned. Tonight the Shed, as part of a monthly Master Class series in conjunction with Wolffer Estate Vineyard, is co-hosting a rosé blending and tasting session for women with the winemaker George Unc from 6 to 8 p.m at the estate’s tasting room location on Sagg Road in Sagaponack. The cost is $55 for Shed members, $65 for non-members. 

The Shed and Estia’s plan to continue to cooperate on future events, starting on April 7 with an opening reception for new works by the artists Margot Carr and Melinda Hackett.