Originally Published on March 9, 2022. Last Updated on April 10, 2023.
She Shed Styles and Themes
Seaside She Shed
Bring the beach to your backyard with a nautical-themed she shed. Go with an ocean-themed color scheme — white walls as the backdrop decorated with driftwood shelves and potted palms. Style The Ocean Chair with a complementing side table and ottoman in Pacific Blue on an outdoor rug to complete the look.
Create a quiet place that feels like a rustic, remote getaway by leaving beams exposed throughout the entire shed and rolling out a faux fur outdoor area rug. Hang black metal light fixtures and decor made from upcycled wood, and make the space even cozier by adding a small wood-burning stove and styling a few outdoor rocking chairs around it.
As if you needed another excuse to go vintage shopping. Surround yourself with all the treasures you unearth at antique shops, thrift stores, and flea markets. Look for pieces that can handle the outdoors, such as wrought iron furniture, galvanized metal buckets, and wooden ladders. If the furnishings you pick up look a little worse for wear, a fresh coat of paint will usually do the trick, or embrace wabi-sabi, the Japanese art of celebrating the imperfect. If you plan to incorporate delicate pieces into the interior design of your she shed, weatherproof the area so your treasures are protected.
We’re inspired by this post on Coloradosheds.com, where natural colors and textures combine with delicate accents like lace to turn your she shed into a cozy cottage. If you have the space, hang French doors on the front to create a striking entrance and offer an elegant source of natural lighting.
Minimalist She Shed
The minimalist approach is a great way to keep a small she shed from feeling cramped. Inspired by Scandinavian design, where the aesthetic is simple, sleek, and functional, choose one or two key pieces of furniture that feature clean lines, display a few accent decorations (think a large plant or piece of art), and make sure you have windows that let in plenty of natural light. Stick to a color pallet of whites, neutrals, and earth tones, for both the interior and exterior.
A Treetop Twist
Who says your she shed has to stay on the ground? If you have a large, sturdy tree in your yard, unleash your inner kid and build your own retreat up among the boughs, transforming your she shed into a tree shed.
Best Uses for Your She Shed
Now that you’ve chosen the look you love, it’s time to think about possible uses for your she shed.
A potting shed is a perfect place to show off your green thumb. An idea suggested by Extraspace.com is to add a workbench, shelves, and storage areas for garden tools, compost, and potting soil. Wire electricity to your garden shed so you can plug in grow lights, or if that’s not an option, you can install large windows that let in lots of natural light.
Work From Home Space
Turning your she shed into a home office lets you separate work life from personal life — and your commute is only a few steps from your back door. Besides a good wifi connection and electricity, all your she shed needs is a desk, comfortable chair, and some decorations to personalize your space, such as fresh flowers or framed photos. Oh, and don’t forget the snacks when 3:30-itis hits.
Crafts and DIY
If you’re looking for a space to explore your creativity, then your she shed is a natural choice. Pro tip: whether you’re crafting or DIY, wire your she shed for electricity so you can hang lights and plug in power tools, and make sure you have plenty of shelves and storage space for all your supplies.
Or, if you’re an artist, She Shed Living suggests using your she shed as an art studio. It’s quiet and offers plenty of privacy — the perfect environment for an artist. Set up your easel by the window, and have weatherproof storage for all your art supplies.
Turn your she shed into your personal home gym or yoga studio. Be sure the space is well ventilated, and don’t forget to add portable speakers so you can really turn the music up while you sweat.
Have a separate space to spend time with your bestie by making your she shed an outdoor gathering spot. Style the area with an all-weather conversation set, hang outdoor string lights, and either add a bar cart or build a small bar complete with a mini-fridge so you can serve up cocktails and snacks.
Create a quiet, private space where you can crack open a good book by filling your she shed with a relaxing chaise lounge or deep seating set. Have a basket of warm blankets nearby so you can stay cozy, and lighting is essential, so opt for one or two coordinating outdoor lamps.
Escape to your private outdoor movie theater by hanging an outdoor flat-screen TV on one side of your she shed, and styling comfortable deep seating furniture on the other side. Stock up on your favorite concession snacks, and you’ve got yourself the ultimate space to watch all your favorite flicks.
Soundproof your she shed to make it a prime spot for composing, jamming, or simply listening to music — as loud as you want.
A Guest House
Turn your she shed into a cozy home-away-from-home for family when they come to visit. Sure, it may take a little extra effort to install plumbing and electricity, but it’ll be totally worth it to make sure your guests are comfortable (while giving you some privacy). Plus, meeting for morning coffee outside the she shed will be something you’ll all look forward to.
Make a little space go a long way with these organizational tips:
- Use seating with built-in storage. A bench with pull-out drawers or a couch with storage space below the cushions keeps your area tidy.
- Add shelves to hold décor, keep supplies organized, and save as much space as possible. Extraspace.com suggests using floating shelves or multi-tier shelving units.
- Build a murphy table. This wall-mounted unit opens out into a table, and when you’re not using it, you can neatly fold it back up into the wall. Murphy table designs often include shelves too, which is an added bonus.
- Think outside the shed. Building storage space on the exterior of your she shed frees up the limited space inside. Add shelves for plants that need full sun, and hooks where you can hang tools and décor.
- Use handy rolling storage bins to store your essentials such as art and craft supplies. Just roll them under a chair or coffee table when you’re done using them.
What does a she shed look like?
A she shed is a freestanding structure about the size of a traditional shed. Like guys and their man caves, women use she sheds to relax and enjoy their interests. The style is up to you and your tastes and needs.
How much does it cost to build a she shed?
The cost for building a she shed can start as low as $600. This is doable if you already have your own shed and get thrifty with materials. On the other hand, she sheds can cost as much as $30,000 — this is if you run plumbing and electricity to it, use top-of-the-line materials, and have professionals build it for you, as outlined in this article from She Shed Living.
How long does it take to build a she shed?
It can take one or two weeks to complete a she shed. The amount of time will depend on your schedule, whether you build from scratch or use a kit, and how much work you plan to do (i.g. construction, painting, decorating, etc.).
Do I need a permit to build a she shed?
Smaller accessory buildings don’t usually need permits, but there are exceptions. For example, if you plan to make your structure larger, use it as a livable space, or run electricity to it, you might need a building permit. Check the local zoning laws and restrictions in your area first to see if you need a permit to build a she shed in your backyard.
How do I keep pests out of my she shed?
There are multiple ways to keep your she shed pest-free:
- Keep any doors or windows closed when you aren’t using your she shed.
- Fill small gaps in the walls with caulk.
- Keep your she shed well lit.
- Keep food and drinks in secure containers.
- Clean your she shed regularly.
- Trim back bushes and tree branches around your she shed.
- Don’t leave piles of wood or much near your she shed.
- Use lavender, daffodils, and marigolds to repel pests.
Source: LP Building Solutions
Can I sleep in a she shed?
Yes, you can turn your she shed into an extra bedroom. Before building, check your city’s local zoning laws and ordinances to see if you need a permit.
What do I put in a she shed?
Fill your she shed with items that fit your style and the space’s intended purpose. For example, if you want it to be a sewing area, run electricity to the structure so you can plug in a sewing machine and lights, and add in shelving and storage to hold sewing supplies.
Do she sheds need foundations?
Yes, she sheds need solid foundations to allow for water drainage, ventilation, and stability of the structure. The type of foundation you need will depend on a few things:
- Local zoning laws.
- How you plan to use your she shed.
- How long you want your she shed to last.