The ladies have spoken. The days of the drab tool shed sitting out in the backyard are gone. Mark Longenecker, with Sheds Unlimited in Pennsylvania explains, “The designs of our buildings have proven to be so popular with women that some men order a shed for their backyard as a storage building and after it arrives, their wives don’t want to let them use the shed for storage anymore.”
Yes, it’s time to shed any previously held notions or conceptions you may have. Take a look and see just some of the creative ways that today’s designing women are using their she sheds.
Having your very own she shed is relatively simple. Deciding just how you want to use it, may take a little planning and imagination. There are virtually no limits to the myriads of uses and styles that you may desire. For inspiration, search “she sheds” online. You’ll find dozens of Pinterest pages offering a variety of inspiring images.
Your “Google” search will also turn up plenty of additional websites where you will discover some she shed ideas that you may never have considered. We were especially impressed with Donna Jenkins shed, which she calls “The Hobby House.” Donna’s shed was built for her own personal use. “I didn’t have any inspiration to speak of,” she says. “I literally just laid out my doors and decided how they went together. It sort of happened organically. I did all of the construction myself. My husband helped me with the four corners — getting the posts in the ground, true and straight and then again with the rafters. I personally did everything else myself with the millwork we had accumulated during our homes renovations.” Donna will be debuting her own website/online store TinkerHouseTradingCompany.com in mid-July. She says, “I have been gathering artisan made wares that are inspired by a life in the garden. I have been focused on small American companies and cottage industries. We will also be hosting workshops and events to teach everything from flower arranging, paper flower arts and other similar things.”
Another website that offered inspiration is Kelly Morse’s MontanaHappy.com, which epitomizes the beauty of “Life Made Simple.” On her site, Kelly shares a pair of sheds that she discovered while on a garden tour. “The garden alone was so beautiful,” she says, “but when I saw the pair of she sheds it was pure magic.”
If you’ve got the ideas but not the know-how to build your very own shed, there are local builders who specialize in that sort of thing. James Sweeney of River City Enterprises (804-310-1661) says, “Virtually, our only limitation is your imagination.” In other words, you dream it up, he can make it a reality. He says that you could even turn your shed into a “stone” cottage using a manufactured stone application.
Longenecker (quoted previously) says that his Pennsylvania-based Sheds Unlimited, which delivers into the Richmond market, can provide the shells and the homeowner can do the conversion of the interior or hire a contractor to personalize their shed. “We have had customers convert modern sheds into art studios, recording studios, guest houses and more,” he says. His company also manufacturers “sheds” specifically designed to be used as pool houses.
While VPC Builders, a full-service construction firm specializing in commercial and residential construction, custom home building, Green Building, and remodeling, primarily serves residents in North Carolina and South Carolina, we found a lot of inspiration in their images showcasing one of their projects. Jake Smith, project manager for VPC, says, “The communities in our area are home to a lot of clients that are outdoor-minded people. We get asked a lot to build small, outdoor buildings so that homeowners can pursue their hobbies while still getting to enjoy being outside. The garden shed that we completed for this homeowner was exactly that; we matched the style to the main house and gave her enough space to enjoy working outside while staying out of the elements.”
Now, put your imagination to work. Why settle for an uninspiring tool shed filled with nothing more than a lawn mower, a rake and a thousand other things that you just can’t bring yourself to throw out, when you can have your own private office, a guest house, a reading room, a writing nook, a sewing room, and yes, if you dress it up just right, your “she” shed could easily become a man-cave.