When we moved here ten years ago, I was very grateful that our house had a tool shed in the back yard. It’s a luxury to have storage space for garden tools, pots, soil, the wheelbarrow and other various outdoor odds and ends.
Since I’ve written for home magazines for many years, I’m often exposed to fabulous, high-end homes and landscapes. Most home design writers will agree with me that this is both a blessing and occasionally, a challenge.
It’s endlessly fascinating to hear about people’s crazy remodels and sloping lots and zoning issues and architects and builders and interior designers. It’s a rare privilege to see their incredible, perfect homes. On the other hand, sometimes I return home with a critical eye instead of a grateful heart for all that we have.
I recently wrote about a beautiful lakefront home in Montana’s Whitefish Lake for Mountain Living magazine. The homeowners Orlan and Debra Sorensen built the most fabulous stone garden shed you’ve ever seen, complete with a sitting area and porch overlooking the lake. You can peek at it here, and the shed is the last photo at the end of the story.
Dreams vs. Reality
If I were going to splurge on a new potting shed, perhaps I’d consider one like the custom structure by Sheds Unlimited posted above. Something charming, with windows to let in the sunlight, and maybe even with a little table inside where I could escape and read fine literature and sip something like…oh, I don’t know… a sparkling drink with fresh mint and lavender syrup.
But the reality is that our shed is of a slightly… different architectural style. Our shed, in fact, looks like this:
It’s rectangular with a flat roof, and the exterior is covered with old, reclaimed cedar fencing. Because it is so wonderfully utilitarian and because we’re trying to live sustainably with what we have, I’ve given up trying to class up the shed and have decided, instead, to celebrate its unique flair.
I added a few metal signs to the front of it to celebrate its funky siding, and nailed the warped boards back in place.
The shed is topped with a lovely faux owl that is supposed to scare the flickers away from our siding but which, in fact, does not fool fowl or the rabbits who visit the garden.
I had the structure re-roofed, and Pop kindly added vents to keep it cooler in the summer. It may not be a magazine-worthy shed, but it’s functional and fun and I am grateful for it.
How About You?
Do you have an area in or around your house where you’ve decided to simply go with what’s there? Have you decided to keep your rare pink bathroom fixtures or sturdy Formica counters and let them become part of your home’s charm? I’d love to hear your stories in the Comments section below.
Here’s to making the best of what we have, and embracing the funky!