Garden shed becomes a backyard retreat
See how a garden designer turned an old toolshed into a place to work, play, and be inspired
Inside, the sunny, inviting spot bears little resemblance to the run-down toolshed it was when Sweet and her husband, Tom Urban, bought the property from her parents in 2000. “It was nearly a man cave,” Sweet says. “I decided to take a stand against all that nonsense—ha!” Besides, she adds, she needed an office for her landscape-design business, Harmony in the Garden.
Happily, Urban agreed, and together the couple converted the structure into the backyard retreat it is now. They pushed up the ceiling to create a peaked roof; installed skylights and recycled windows; hung window boxes on outside walls with planting beds beneath; and created an outdoor potting table and tool storage area behind the shed near the back fence.
White ceiling and trim, along with floorboards painted pale green, help brighten the interior. Sweet uses a plastic laminate countertop for reviewing plans (homedepot.com).
As the sounds of birds chirping and a fountain burbling come in from outside, more party guests wander into her little oasis and plop down on the big sea-grass sofa. This shack, it appears, truly has become a chick magnet. “When my girlfriends come over,” says Sweet, “we invariably end up here with a glass of wine.”