40 Garden Shed Ideas for Pretty to Practical Outdoor Buildings

By   | Last Updated :   February 3, 2021 | Filed In :   Garden Furniture Ideas

Feeling uninspired when it comes to your garden shed? When you’ve put time and effort into making the rest of your garden look beautiful, you can’t just settle for a brown box in the corner. However, if you’re creatively spent, don’t worry – that’s what we’re here for!

So in this post we’ll be looking at a huge selection of garden shed ideas, spanning the whole range of pretty to practical.

Garden Shed Ideas

Whether you’re a gardener who needs storage space, an artist who needs a potting shed, or just a guy who needs a man cave – we’ve got ideas for everyone.

1. The classic shed

This is the shed you’ve seen a million times. Just by looking at the picture, you know the texture of the walls, the musty smell and the piles and piles of clutter inside. If it was possible to really love this most basic of sheds, you wouldn’t be reading this article.

2. Trellis-fronted shed

Even the simplest shed can be transformed into a pretty cottage garden feature with the help of some trellis. Paint it in white or a pastel shade for that fairy-tale look, and plant climbing roses, honeysuckle or jasmine to slowly cover it.

a very cute she shed with a trellis completely covering the front

3. Shed with a porch

This Swedish-style shed gives you something the classic British shed does not. That is, somewhere you can sit outside a rest from all those important DIY jobs you’re definitely finishing, while guarding the door to make sure nobody can come in to observe all that progress you have most certainly been making.

a red-orange shed with a pretty white porch

4. Shed with a deck

Much like a porched shed, except just a deck without cover. You don’t benefit from an overhead shelter, but keeping the space open makes it much more versatile.

a shed with a decking area in front of it

5. Pavilion-style shed

I’m not exactly clear on why having more than four sides turns a shed into a “pavilion”, but I’ll accept it because they look lovely and deserve a pretty name. The rounder shape gives you a bit more room to move around inside a pavilion shed, making it easier to keep it organised and see what you’ve got. It would also make it easier to install a hot tub, or poker table inside. Just saying.

an octagonal pavilion style shed with garden furniture outside

6. Pretty potting shed

If you’re a truly green-fingered plant lover, it’s worth having a space where you can properly tend to your leafy babies. A potting shed gives you the storage and workspace you need to bust out the compost, and a glass-fronted (and glass-roofed) shed like this one doubles up as a greenhouse, too.

7. Barn-style shed

This lovely, American-barn style shed is perfect for adding character to a homely garden. The bright colour is super inviting, and it’s up to you to play with the proportions of the roof and doors to fit the scale of your garden.

an american barn style shed painted green

Photo by Rex Way

8. Church-inspired chicken coop

We’ve featured this gorgeous little chicken coop before – and I’m sure you can see why! The pretty church-style windows and glazed doors give this shed some real character. Of course, there’s no reason why your chickens shouldn’t live in style, but I wouldn’t blame you if you kept this hideaway for yourself!

9. Green-roof shed

Green roofing, or organic roofing is where you cover a roof with plants and flowers, that feed off of sunlight and rainwater. It’s excellent for sustainability and the environment, and is also a beautiful way to bring more green life into urban areas.

It’s important to get the right plants that can withstand the light and moisture in your garden, so get some planning help from a professional if you like the idea. Take a look at our post on green roofing for more ideas!

10. Summerhouse sheds

Summerhouse sheds are all about maximising the light and warmth inside while giving you a glorious view of your garden. The double doors and big windows are perfect for feeling like you’re outdoors (but with a bit of shelter)! However, this style is not so suitable for sheds hiding disused bicycles and old tins of paint.


11. Minimalist chic

Even low-maintenance gardens (like this gravelled one) can benefit from a shed. The combination of pristine edging, multi-toned stones and black and tan colours give this simple backyard a slightly Japanese aesthetic, which I love.

a minimalist shed painted black and brown in a gravel garden

12. Luxe door update

Refreshing your shed door can instantly make the whole thing look more luxurious. Try updating the hardware (handle and hinges), giving it a coat of paint in a modern colour, or replacing it all together. This shed is fairly unassuming, except for the elegant door. The combination of panels, window panes and shiny handle all look great – and the colour keeps it cohesive.

13. Cottagecore painting scheme

A crisp coat of white or pastel paint looks especially smart when it’s contrasted with a bright door and matching shutters. This cottage-esque garden shed looks so cute with its rustic shutters – perfect for framing the view over the flowers and vegetables growing outside.

14. High-impact paintwork

While we’re on the subject of paintwork, sometimes the best strategy is to go bold. This red and white combination has a festive feel, but you could swap in a sunny yellow, rich aubergine or ocean blue for year-round appeal. I like the bug hotel on the side, too – find out how to make your own insect hotel.

a bright red shed with a white trim

15. Overflowing window boxes

Another cottage with a cute, “fisherman’s cottage” vibe, this time showing how you don’t need an abundance of flowers to create charm. The bushy blooms in the window boxes are just enough to look inviting, and the fuschia contrasts beautifully against the blue door.

a grey shed with blue door, white window shutters and purple flowers

16. Beachy vibes

Do you live by the coast? Or do you simply want to bring the fresh, rugged style of the beach a little bit closer? Well, you can’t go wrong with some whitewashed wood mixed with touches of yellow and pale blue.

This quirky little shack is brought to life by the eclectic collection of plants and succulents, as well as the sweet window with net curtains inside. Finishing touches like the wreath, welcome sign and rustic door hinges complete the cosy look.

17. Beach hut style

If you’re keen on that last idea and want to bring a beachy style to your garden, why not borrow some inspiration from actual beach huts? After all, they’re essentially just really expensive sheds in fancy locations! There aren’t any rules saying your shed has to be brown or grey, and jazzing up your garden with a rainbow-coloured shed will lift your spirits on a grey day.

Brightly painted beach huts to inspired your garden shed ideas

18. Quirky camper-van

If you like the idea of using paint to transform your regular shed into something more exciting, you can get really creative. This cute camper-inspired paint-job might not suit everyone’s garden style, but it’s certainly a bit of fun that turns the shed into a talking point. Other suggestions include: a canvas tent, ice cream stall (especially if you have an open front), gingerbread house or flower stand.

19. Vintage trailer shed

Of course, depending on what your typical shed shenanigans entail, you might even be able to use a real camper or camping trailer as a shed. Vintage trailers have an inimitable personality that can make your garden feel completely unique, and offer a perfect setup for a backyard den. This one has been refitted to work as a garden bar – love it!

20. Camouflaged cabin

Some sheds don’t need to be the centre of attention in a garden. If you’re trying to help your shed blend into the surroundings to keep the main focus somewhere else, try giving it the same treatment as your fence. This dark shed isn’t exactly invisible, but matching the woodwork with the garden perimeter goes a long way in disguising it.

21. Allotment shed

The location of your shed is pretty important too! Think about its positioning in relation to what you’ll be using it for. If you’re cultivating an allotment or kitchen garden, it makes sense to keep everything you need within easy reach of your vegetable patches.

turquoise garden shed ideas in an allotment

22. Shallow shed

Working with a small garden space? Think beyond the standard shed dimensions. Less garden usually means fewer things needed to keep it tidy, so a shallow shed like this one might be all you need storage-wise. Keeping your shed organised will help you make the most of a smaller footprint – try our tool storage ideas to help you.

23. Half-shed

An alternative to a shallow shed is a half-shed. The name gives it away – half-sheds often look like someone literally forgot to build the other half of the shed. You get all the same visual aesthetic as a traditional shed, but only lose 50% of the floor space. Great for roof gardens or terraces.

24. Log store sister-shed

Your shed doesn’t have to store absolutely everything in your garden, especially if there’s stuff you’ll want regular access to. However, it’s a good idea to keep all of your practical garden bits in the same area, simply to keep them tidy.

This cute green shed blends with the fence but highlights the attractive log store. Tucked behind the garden edging (alongside the compost bin), it’s clear this corner of the garden is for substance as well as style.

a green shed with log storage in the corner of a garden

25. Tiny balcony greenhouse

It’s very, very unlikely you’ll be putting a shed on a balcony (but I have seen it done)! However, if you’re trying to think of space-saving balcony ideas, don’t think that you have to sacrifice storage and work areas altogether. This tiny greenhouse hardly qualifies as a shed, but it provides a micro version of the potting sheds and work areas you’ll see elsewhere in this list.

26. Regular greenhouse

This amazing greenhouse shed has actually been built using reclaimed materials. Look closely and you’ll notice the back wall is made up of old, whitewashed doors, and the surfaces and roof are vintage and DIY. Your shed – or greenhouse – doesn’t have to come straight from a hardware store!

27. Double-doored delight

If space is an issue, try upgrading to a shed with double-doors. When you’re in and out your shed doing gardening work or DIY, you’ll be grateful for the extra space. Depending on how much room you have, you could give yourself just enough room for a wheelbarrow or lawn mower – or give yourself enough room to wheel in bikes, motorcycles and even cars.

a large brown garden shed with double doors

28. Garden chillout den

The garden shed doesn’t have to be a cobweb-filled cabin! Get more use out of your shed by transforming it into an outdoor den. Enjoy your morning coffee, read a book at the weekend, or simply get some peace and quiet by hiding somewhere people won’t think to find you!

a quirky she shed interior, painted contrasting shades of pink and red, with a sofa, bookshelf and desk

29. Spectacular she-sheds

We have a whole post about women getting their own cosy outdoor space to find some peace and quiet. This gorgeous little summer-house style she-shed takes up hardly any room, but offers the perfect spot for curling up with a book and a coffee to enjoy the sun.

30. Garden man-caves

We haven’t forgotten about the guys though! Our garden man-caves post has loads of suggestions for creating an outdoor zone designed to unwind in style. This idea for a garden music studio has a cool, seventies vibe.

31. BBQ shed

Are you always itching for BBQ season? With a semi-sheltered grill-shed, you can fire up the flames whenever you like. Full disclosure; your family and friends might take some persuasion to dine alfresco in winter!

32. Pizzeria shed

On a similar theme, what about building a wood-fired pizza oven beneath a shelter? You’ll need to keep it well-ventilated (so, in fairness, this can quickly become not-a-shed), but homemade pizza from an outdoor kitchen is the perfect way to start a family night-in or host a pizza party with your pals.

33. Secret garden bar

You don’t have to cook outdoors in order to enjoy drinking outdoors, and the 2020 lockdown has seen a surge in popularity of garden pubs. What looks like an ordinary (if beautifully coloured) shed from the outside can open up into your very own speakeasy… if you know the password!

a blue garden shed with a pallet bar inside and alcohol bottles stacked on DIY shelving


34. Private cinema screening

While we’re on the subject of transforming your shed into a private venue, let’s take a look at garden cinema ideas. In the UK, outdoor cinemas generally rely on half-decent weather, but you don’t have to worry so much if you relocate your screen to inside a shed.

You can set your shed cinema up with a projector, drinks cabinet and super-squashy armchairs – and never worry about them getting wet!

35. Picture-perfect details

Co-ordinated decor will really bring the style of your shed together.

The pretty, off-white theme of the shed is continued in the deck edging, the eclectic pots and baskets, the garden furniture and the window boxes. Beautiful.

garden shed ideas that match the colour of your shed with fencing, patio furniture and plant pots

36. Gatekeeper’s lodge

This little stone garden cabin is utterly charming – but if you’re not prepared to build a stone shed, you don’t need to! There are several ways to create a stone effect using vinyl wallpaper, or paint and stamps. Add a shingle roof, paint your door a crisp, fresh white and add old-fashioned details like iron hinges and a stone step.


37. Raise it up

You can (ahem) elevate  an ordinary shed by putting it on a sturdy, stilted platform. The space underneath is perfect for bin storage, building a kid’s den or – as this family has done – stringing up a hammock. A raised shed might not be practical for storing the lawnmower, but it’s a charming spot to pot some plants or crack on with some DIY. Plus, it makes for a great vantage point if you’re keeping an eye on little ones roaming around the garden.

38. Glamorous glass roofing

This octagonal potting shed looks spacious and bright, thanks to a pared-back colour scheme, some great tool storage and, of course, its stunning glass roof. This design is perfect for feeling like you’re working outdoors while still providing some shelter and privacy.

39. Alpine cottage

This may be my favourite shed on this whole list, and combines elements we’ve already looked at – bright paintwork, shingle roof, cosy porch and attractive door. The pops of mustard and teal look cheerful against the brown and white of the walls, but it’s the heart-shaped trim that really gets me.

40. Playful “warped” design

This kooky shed could have jumped straight out of a fairy-tale illustration, with its off-centre windows and asymmetrical panelling. The curve of the roof and crooked chimney are also adorable touches. If you want to build your family a playhouse that you can later reclaim as a shed – or if you love a whimsical, enchanted garden style – this kind of quirky design is perfect!

a whimsical, crooked-looking shed that could be from a storybook

…And that is our official top 40 of garden shed ideas! As we said, there are all kinds of ways you can make a simple garden shed more beautiful and functional, no matter what your style is or what you need to use it for. If you’re inspired to build your own shed, you might like this guide I found while browsing ideas.

Let us know in the comments which garden shed ideas are your favourite!


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By Kirsteen Mackay

Kirsteen is a professional writer who traded a tiny garden for an even smaller balcony when she moved to Brighton in 2015. Her interest in gardening stems from a keen desire to turn her simple slab of concrete into a lush urban oasis, complete with cosy-but-practical garden furniture and delicious edible plants.

View All Posts By Kirsteen Mackay »

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