What is a She Shed and Do You Need One? (Yes!)

What is a She Shed?

A she shed is a small, personal space, usually in the backyard, that women can make completely, unabashedly their own.

Whatever you use your she shed for, these tiny, separate structures offer comfort and respite from the craziness of the world. A she shed can be whimsical or practical, simple or extravagant, solitary or meant to be shared. Either way, it’s a great opportunity to get very creative with a personalized design.

The History of She Sheds

Almost as long as there have been man caves, there have been she sheds. In response to this hyper-masculine space, women wanted an escape of their own. The goal was to create a personal retreat that could be as girly and joy-filled as the creator desired.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the popularity of she sheds exploded with so many people working from home and families being together all the time. The she shed is a fairly simple and inexpensive way to expand the living space of a home.

And while a home extension adds square footage too, a she shed is decidedly different since an addition is still part of the house. While trying to relax in your home, you might find yourself thinking, “I probably should go back to work right now.” Many women appreciate that a she shed is completely separate from their house making it feel like more of a getaway. When you are in your she shed, you are saying to the world, “This is MY time.” It’s an interruption-free escape that’s right outside your back door.

She Shed Ideas

She Shed Planning

To get started on your she shed project, you’ll need to decide if you will be repurposing an existing structure (like an actual shed!) or building a brand new space. Be sure to research your local building codes in case you have any restrictions like size, foundation type and even color. You may also need a permit if it’s a brand new structure.

If you are building a new structure, the next step is scouting out the perfect area in your backyard. Try to pick a spot that is as close to level as possible as that will make things easier when construction begins. You may also want to consider the surrounding trees and amount of light your she shed will get.

Next, think through all your must-haves and nice-to-haves for your she shed. At a minimum you’ll want to make sure:

  • You can fully stand up. Some existing structures may be too short to use comfortably.
  • You have light. You can up your natural light by installing windows, glass doors and even skylights.
  • You are comfortable in the temperature. Adding insulation can help keep your shed warm in the cooler months and cool in the warmer months.

How about taking your she shed to the next level by adding power? Bringing in power gives you the capability for lights, music, TV and even a mini-fridge for snacks and beverages. You can also create an even more climate-controlled environment with an overhead fan, a window AC or space heater.

Many she sheds also include an outdoor area like a patio, deck or hardscape to create a finished look and to expand the usable space. You can decorate with a bistro table and planters with flowering annuals.

Speaking of decorating, that’s the most fun part! Be sure to hold back some of your budget for furniture and accessories that delight and relax you every time you enter your new backyard getaway.

Types of She Sheds

The sky’s the limit with what you can use your she shed for. It should reflect your personality, style and interests. To get your creative juices flowing, here are a few ideas:

  • Writing/reading nook – Running out of space for all your favorite old books inside your home? Create a cozy spot to read or write the next big Pulitzer Prize-winning novel.
  • Art or crafting space – Sewing, quilts, painting, scrapbooks, macaroni necklaces – whatever you are into you can make it.
  • Wine den – A built-in wine fridge and beautiful, eclectic stemware will set the stage for your girls’ nights in.
  • Shed theater – Watch nature documentaries or old seasons of the Real Housewives – there’s no fighting over the remote here!
  • Greenhouse – Love your plants and miss them in the off-season? Nurture your plant babies all year round in a greenhouse space.
  • Coffee/tea bar – Nothing says cozy me-time than sitting down with a cup of your favorite warm beverage.
  • Home office – OK, so this one isn’t exactly relaxing, but it’s very functional. You can design the ideal backdrop for Zoom meetings or making videos as part of the project.
  • Yoga/meditation studio – Design a quiet place to breathe, stretch out and get into the perfect headspace.
  • Staycation house – Can’t get away very often? You can still have a mini vacation in your own backyard if you add a bed and a few other creature comforts like shades on the windows.
  • Spa room – Is your assortment of creams, masks, nail polishes and other beauty tinctures exploding out of your bathroom? Create the ultimate self-care space.
  • Collection gallery – Whether it’s your Beanie Babies stash from the 90s or your grandmother’s tea cups, a she shed offers an unapologetic place to display your treasures.

But there is absolutely no reason your she shed needs to have a defined purpose. Skip the theme and create a simple no-boys-(and kids!)-allowed, do-not-disturb space to be alone with your thoughts. Whatever you decide, make your she shed 100% you!

She Sheds in Northern Virginia

You deserve a place to call your own. Outdoor Spaces is ready to help you build the custom space of your dreams. Give us a call to get started today!