Uses for a Wooden Shed
This article aims to give you some inspiration ideas and suggestions about exactly what to do with a shed in your garden. It takes standard ideas for wooden sheds uses and explains how to equip a shed to do each one.
There are a number of factors to consider when looking into what you can do with the space in your garden. The first is the condition of your current shed if you have one. If you are wanting to do something more than make your shed a storage space then you are going to need a well made and clean starting block, this means you can either clear out and clean your current shed or start anew. If you do clear your current one out keep in mind a few things. Firstly it will take more time than you think, your many tools, paint pots and bikes will take a while to move and organise. If you know this is going to be a fairly big task I advise you to hire a van for the day in preparation to take the stuff you no longer want to a local dump. Once the whole thing is empty you can spend some time dusting off all those spider webs and looking around to make sure there is no damage that will need repairing (i.e water damage). Advice for repairing these kinds of problems should be readily available from any DIY guide. If you have decided to start from scratch (which I recommend) then make sure you have a good concrete base to start building your shed on. This garden shed guide seems very helpful and has illustrations.
Now that you have your blank template letís consider some of the ideas you can apply to it.
The most conventional use for a garden shed is a storage closet for all those heavy garden tools and messy equipment. This is a perfectly just use for an outdoor building but often poorly executed and inefficient. A large amount of simple modifications can make you shed work much better. Old kitchen cabinets (that you can pick up cheaply from charity shops or dumps) are perfect for placing across one wall to store paints and chemicals. They can easily be installed and fitted with a lock if necessary for keeping things away from prying little fingers. A combination of hooks and shelving can be installed above these to hang larger tools such as rakes and brooms to save floor space. A great space saver is a few long L brackets padded with foam that can hold up a few bicycles. This gives you room below them as well as a safe place to store them to prevent scratching while moving other shed tools around. Another great way of saving space is organising sections to your shed. This will make things easier to find and by grouping similar shaped things together, save space. A great choice for a new shed for this purpose is the Waltonís Groundsman Apex Double Door Windowless Shed. It provides a high and large storage area, easy access via double doors and plenty of wall space (not taken up by windows) to hand shelves and brackets.
Another popular use for wooden sheds is as a hobby hut to escape to and store all things affiliated with your chose past time. This choice may require you to lead an electrical line to the shed. If this is the case you should consider this before doing anything else and seek professional advice if necessary into how you will go about making a secure connection to your mains/fuse box. Once preparations have been made you can start adding the essential parts to your hobby hut. You will more often than not need a table and chair. To save space I recommend you place this against the back wall. Again you can pick this kind of furniture up from second hand shops and save plenty of money. Another great addition is book shelves on the door walls. These will provide great and easily accessible storage for your tools and supplies as well as giving you a way to quickly organise everything you have. If you are planning on using it often during the winter it may be a good idea to equip the shed with some basic insulating materials and a portable fan heater, just to keep it as cosy as it looks! Other wise items to keep handy may be dust covers for your valuable equipment and strong lamps if you are working on delicate things such as model building. A great choice for a hobby hut would be the Waltonís Kent Wooden Shed. It has plenty of natural light, convenient door positioning and comes in two sizes so you can choose the best suited building for your garden.
While professionally designed playhouses are readily available over the internet and DIY stores you may wish to create your own and kill two birds with one stone while saving a bit of money. After clearing out the shed you can make several small changes to make it look much more inviting to your young ones. Adding small decorations such as curtains and painting the outside will give it a customised and unique feel. You can add some cheap furniture and posters to the inside to make it seem more welcoming. If you are purchasing a new shed for the purpose you should consider a medium to large shed with plenty of windows to allow natural light for your children to play in. As with all wooden garden buildings, be sure to consider space, direction, electrics and a base before making a purchase. An ideal choice for a shed to convert into a playhouse would be the Lincoln Overlap Apex. It is a cheap but effective alternative to a playhouse and is simple to erect and maintain.
There are many other possible uses for your shed, imagination and creativity will allow you to change its use at will. Remember preparation and maintenance will prolong the life of your shed significantly and save you having to buy a new one in only a few years.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
David Farmer is a landscape gardener from the Nottinghamshire area of England. He helps maintain this Garden Buildings Website (http://www.gardenbuildingsdirect.co.uk).