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For millennia, or as long as humans have coexisted under the same shelter, men and women have sought to create a place within the home to just get away. Recently, we have seen man caves become more common, as men convert corners of basements, dark and riddled with spider webs, into their spaces.
Characteristic of the man cave are second-hand leather couches, big screen televisions, beer fridges, and walls covered in sports memorabilia. In these spaces, men can be men and do not have to argue over decor or what to watch.
The problem with the man cave as a space dedicated to masculinity, is that in many homes, these spaces exist organically. Upon moving into a new house, it is only a matter of time before the detached garage becomes a place for men to store and tinker with new tools, perhaps unnecessarily.
Now, with two places of work or hobby, and one of leisure (the cave), men have gained a monopoly over individual space within the residential property.
Recently though, women have begun to take a stand, their sights set on the garden shed as a new forum for me-time.
She sheds have risen in popularity as outbuildings dedicated to crafting, gardening, dining, lounging, or even as generic office space for the woman, by the woman. The she sheds of home improvement blogs and television programs seem a bit ambitious for the average wife and mother, often appearing as fully livable guest homes. Despite this, there are plenty of ways to create a warm and inviting space for the hobby, work, or leisure that do not need to break the bank.
In this article, we offer she shed inspiration adaptable at low, mid range, and big budgets.
Many people have an existing shed, used currently to house seasonal outdoor maintenance equipment, or perhaps, old broken down gear that has since been replaced. If this is the case for you, then you are well on your way to the perfect she shed with the biggest expense already taken care of.
The hard truth regarding men and their toys is the more space they have, the more they will keep, and NOT get rid of, regardless of when something has last been used. Sheds sometimes become mausoleums of extra building material and broken down, in-need-of-a-new-part, lawnmowers. By reclaiming this space, you will force the man in your life to finally utilize that dump pass and declutter.
Once it is cleaned out, you can have some fun with the design. In the picture above, you will notice the windows adjacent to the open door. Most sheds do not have windows or any means of natural light, but this is an essential component to the vibe you are trying to create in your peaceful little hideaway. Best of all, putting in windows does not have to be super complicated or expensive.
If you can get your hands on an old window that has since been replaced, or a cool vintage window, often sold as thrift or antique stores, for a decent price, all you really have to do is get the measurements, mark the place on the shed where you would liket the window, and make a few quick cuts.
As the shed walls are likely just planks of wood, or even plywood, the cutting should go pretty easy. You can use a Salzsaw to get started, and once you have a large enough line cut, can squeeze a circular saw blade in for easier, more precise cutting.
From there, just tack in the window at each corner. If you cannot find a window, or if the ones you are finding are too thick/thin for the shed walls, simply order a piece of plexiglass to specifications slightly larger than the window cut out, and take it over the hole on the inside.
If you are worried about the look of the overlapping glass from the inside, you can get crafty with curtains or even floral arrangements around the window
With a mid-range budget, you have a few options for the structure and outward aesthetic of your shed without having to do much leg work. Any large home improvement center will sell prefabricated sheds in a few different styles, like the one featured below.
You will notice this shed comes with windows, shutters, two sets of barn style doors, and even a small porthole. These are design elements that will be difficult to apply to an existing shed on a small budget.
The other advantages to going prefab are your choice of color, roof style, and perhaps most importantly, the location of the shed on your property.
The shed style featured to the left from Home Depot retails at just under $5000, however there are other less expensive options starting at about $600.
If you’re looking to go all out, and have dedicated a good chunk of money to bring you she shed dreams to reality, then you might as well go custom. Believe it or not, there are companies that specialize in custom shed design and construction. After all, depending on what you are truly going to use the space for, a she shed is nothing more than a little home.
Customization is the key here. If you can think it up, you can do it when you hire a builder. The whimsical, architectural look is highly sought after in she shed designs.
Check out HomeTalk bloggers Mirabella and Isadora’s shed with its tin roof, led paned windows, window boxes, and high arch.
Not quite sure what you are looking for? Eastern Shed, a company out of New England, has some customization tools on their website that are perfect for creating and executing on a vision.
When it comes to the overall design of your she shed and how that will tie into your budget, the most important thing to consider is what you will actually use the space for. For example, if it is to be a hub of all things gardening, then it might not need all the accouterments of a custom-built shed.
On the other hand, office or lounge space would not be complete without natural light, insulation, and electricity. You would be hard pressed to make these uses work in an existing shed, and may end up spending just as much on the conversion in the end.
Once you have figured out the look, feel, and what exactly you want out of your she shed, you can make a choice about budget and practicality. Regardless, craftiness, imagination, and a willingness to do-it-yourself go along way in taking back this me-time space to relax and find balance in your ever-busying life.