If you’re wondering how to make a garden shed look nice, add a little vintage character. Salvaged windows and barn-board siding give this garden shed visual appeal. Thoughtful details, like the window trim on the exterior and the cupola perched on the roof, transform what could be a basic storage shed into an inspiring garden-side retreat. And don’t be afraid of a little color, either. Because sheds are smaller, a bright and bold color will simply pop, rather than overtake, like it would on a larger house or garage.
It's obvious that the designer who created simple shed designs like this one wanted to create an outdoor place to relax out of the sun and weather. The simple 2×4 framing and plywood sheathing add an interesting and low-cost touch. But, it’s the owner's use of a pair of sliding glass doors that make this shed so special. Here again, you could save money by sourcing many of the materials such as the doors from a local salvage dealer.
This interesting cube-shaped building is definitely not a shed. Not the way the builder used slats on three sides to provide plenty of ventilation for those evening meals in the great outdoors. Note that the entire back wall is solid to help keep the weather out, you could add outdoor curtains to help block any excess breezes and keep out the rains. What a great way to create your own outdoor family room!
We found all the materials to build this shed at our local home center. Most of the construction is straightforward and requires only standard carpentry tools and a circular saw. For how to build the shed windows and door, you’ll also need a table saw, power miter saw and router. We used a Kreg pocket hole jig and pocket hole screws to assemble the door and windows. With a helper or two, you could have the platform and shell built in two or three days. Then expect to spend four or five more days completing the siding, trim, doors, windows and roofing.
For example, the last three sheds I built were trimmed with white PVC trim boards instead of painted cedar 1 x 4s. This new plastic lumber, which I used for the rake, fascia, frieze and corner boards, is impervious to bugs, warping, splitting or decay, and it never needs painting. Other low-maintenance options include: vinyl or aluminum windows, faux-slate roof shingles, fiberglass or steel doors, composite decking for steps, and fiber-cement siding. (I don't usually recommend aluminum or vinyl siding for sheds; neither material is rugged enough to survive the inevitable beating outbuildings take.)
Concrete requires 3” (7.5 cm) of compacted hardcore (all-in ballast or other crushed rubble/gravel) underneath the 3″ concrete layer. The base can be level with the ground or raised above it. If you want it to be level, excavate the top earth to 6” (15 cm), to allow for the hardcore layer and 3” (7.5 cm) of concrete. Level the area with a rake and spade and remove the pegs.
It’s unconventional, but building the roof upside down on the platform has advantages. First, you avoid a lot of ladder work. And second, you can nail the soffit material to the overhangs easily without having to work overhead and in cramped spaces. You do have to take a little extra care to make sure the framing is square and the perimeter 2x4s are perfectly straight before nailing on the soffit, though. Start by cutting out the rafters using the pattern in Figure D (in Additional Information below) as a guide.
This little cottage of dreams has an adorable story behind it. These crafters were in need of a workshop and noticed their neighbor getting rid of his small unattached garage, so they inquired about it, before getting some friends and transporting the whole structure to their backyard, where they gave it a complete makeover. Neighborly interactions, a helpful gang of friends, and a cute, flowery cottage? It's almost too good to be true!
Although skids are often set directly on the ground, I prefer to lay them on a bed of gravel. The stone creates a very stable base that’s not likely to settle or wash away. Begin by laying the skids in position on the ground, then mark around each one using spray paint or flour sprinkled from a can. Move the skids out of the way, then use a flat shovel to remove the sod and about 2 in. of soil from the marked areas. Check the excavated areas to make sure they’re close to being level. If they’re not, remove a little more soil from the high spots. Next, add 3 in. to 4 in. of gravel. Compact the gravel with a hand tamper or gas-powered plate compactor, then replace the skids.
Victoria, Australia-based Archiblox designs and makes sustainable, prefabricated modular residential and commercial projects. This simple, straightforward, and modern structure can be used as a studio, office, guest house, or pretty much whatever you desire. Modules can be grouped together for larger spaces and are designed to subtly echo the geometrical arrangement seen in nature.
The fact that they’re lightweight also makes them really quick and simple to install. Each panel features an interlocking mechanism on each side which attaches in seconds to the other panels. Most people can expect to lay around 100 m2 of these plastic pavers in just an hour, so there’s no need for building your shed base to take up your entire day.
Are you against the idea of a treehouse because you fear for your kids’ safety? Then, here’s the solution. If you don’t want them to hate you ever since their childhood (they’ll have plenty of occasions later on), you’ll buy a nice shed and you will paint it to turn the construction into a beautiful playhouse for your children. The shed in this photo was actually turned into a playhouse for 2 little girls.
When you’ve decided on a shed location, dig two trenches 16 in. wide, 12 in. deep and 13 ft. long. Center the trenches 66 in. apart. Fill the trenches with a 3-in. layer of gravel and compact it with a hand tamper. Repeat this process until the trench is full. Use a level and long board to level the top layer of gravel. If the ground is flat, also make sure the gravel beds in the two trenches are level with each other.