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10 Amazing Ways to Decorate & Transform Your Old Garden Shed

Posted by Lauren Okie on

Ah, the garden shed. A simple, unfussyand perhaps a little messyplace to store your gardening tools, lawn mowers, fertilizer and soil, unused pots and more. But what if we told you that your plain old garden shed could be transformed into a focal point of your yard? Whether you simply give your garden shed an exterior makeover or repurpose the structure into a more useful space, upgrading your humble garden shed is always a good investment.

In this article, we'll share 10 awesome DIY decorating ideas and style transformations for your garden shed.

1. Style your garden shed like a modern farmhouse

A modern farmhouse white white and black details.

Image Source: Drummond House Plans

Crisp, white lines. Warm, blonde oak floors. Black fixtures and accents. Tons of wood, fresh greenery and cozy textures. Yep, the modern farmhouse trend is here to stay. Why not turn your garden shed into a charming, Joanna Gaines-inspired masterpiece?

Here are some ways to showcase an on-trend mix of rustic and modern elements right on your garden shed:

  • Consider adding shiplap or stone to the garden shed's front or sides
  • Use a soft white paint to create a clean, bright exterior
  • Add iconic farmhouse sconces to the garden shed's exterior
  • Paint the door a modern neutral, like navy, gray or red
  • Choose a garden shed that already has a black or dark gray roof

If you choose to turn the inside of your storage shed into the ultimate modern-meets-rustic retreat, you'll need to decorate the inside too. Think tons of natural wood, green plants, black fixtures and hardware, and simple leather or upholstered furnishings.

If your shed feels too modern, then a rustic coffee table or vintage light can help soften the space. A touch of fabric, like a chunky knit blanket in a blush or taupe, can help balance the space, too.

2. Bring boho vibes and rattan accents to your garden shed

Craving a more laid-back, softer vibe for your garden shed? Whether you're into neutrals or bold colors, these bohemian-inspired garden shed ideas are both unique and affordable.

The popular bohemian style has a few hallmarks: rattan, fringe, leather, Moroccan rugs and poofs, and unique patterns, textiles and accessories. Best of all, the bohemian trend offers ton of space to show off your own style. There's room to showcase color, or pick a cleaner palette of neutrals.

Like the modern farmhouse trend, this style allows you to mix and match vintage pieces with modern, clean lines. A lot of popular stores, like Anthropologie, World Market and Urban Outfitters, are known of their lines of modern boho furniture and decor.

Here are some bohemian-inspired decorating ideas for the exterior your garden shed:

  • Choose a bohemian neutral, like blush pink, terracotta, muted turquoise or mustard yellow for your garden shed's exterior
  • Add a little Moroccan-inspired tile work, a terra cotta tile or a funky, patterned tile
  • Place a fringed swing, rattan armchair or macrame hammock in front of the garden shed

Of course, these are just ideas for your garden shed's exterior. If you aren't going to use your garden shed for its intended purpose, you can transform its interior, too.

You can turn the inside of your garden shed into a bohemian lounge area for less money than you think. Add an iconic Moroccan trellis rug, a Moroccan pouf and an overgrown green plant in a rattan planter. Throw in a few cute candles, some bright floor pillows, and a funky lantern, and you're done!

3. Add coastal blue and whites to your garden shed

Love the idea of transforming your garden shed inside and out, but not a fan of the bohemian style? Why not turn your garden shed into a blue-and-white, coastal-inspired retreat?

Brands like Serena & Lily have zeroed in on a softer, more modern take on beach house interior design. Featuring tons of blue and white, soothing wallpaper, and modern rattan, this look is both on-trend and timeless.

You can bring this fresh, California-meets-Cape Cod style right to your backyardand for less money than you might think.

Start by painting your garden shed in a fresh white or a soft blue. Then, on the inside, consider a coastal, modern peel-and-stick wallpaper. Layer rattan mirrors, textured pillows and textiles, and wood accents throughout.

4. Transform your garden shed into a reading nook

A child reads in a small garden shed converted into a reading nook.

Image Source: Home My Design

Need a place to read and relax? Why not turn your underutilized garden shed into a reading nook your whole family can enjoy!

To start, open up your garden shed's front door, and imagine how you'd like to relax in the space. Depending on the size of your shed, you may have enough room for furniture... or only have square footage for some floor pillows! Whether you're sofa shopping or just looking for a bean bag or two, you can find great deals on gently used furniture on OfferUp and Facebook Marketplace.

If space allows, you can also add built in shelves for books! Or, if your family reads e-books, go the minimalist route. 

Don't forget to add an area rug, comfortable pillows and throw blankets, and some lighting. You can even install beautiful sconces or cute reading lights without running electric to your garden shed! Just try this magic light trick from beloved interior designer Nesting with Grace.

5. Add a lattice and vintage elements to your cottage-inspired shed

We love a vintage-inspired exterior, whether you use your garden shed to store garden supplies and outdoor equipment, or have turned it into a bonus retreat! In fact, adding simple elements like a lattice or a cool antique store find can make all the difference in boosting the curb appeal of your backyard structure.

Lattice installation is inexpensive and a piece of cake. Adding a lattice, whether you paint in white or leave it natural, will add a soft charm to your outdoor space. You can also grow vines or bougainvilleas on the lattice for an overgrown, natural look.

For an extra dose of cute, consider adding vintage-style wall decor to your garden shed's exterior. This rustic hanging butterfly is both neutral and vibrant, and will help complete your garden shed's shabby chic look.

6. Paint bold, geometric patterns onto your garden shed

Want to fully modernize your garden shed? Consider adding colors and patterns to your storage structure with some fun paint, a ruler and some masking tape.

To get started, look for inspiration online. There are so many different patterns you can create. Simple, geometric lines are an optionand you'll only need masking tape to achieve this look. You can also order stencils from Etsy if you'd like to add florals, mid-century patterns or another cool look.

Now, it's time to pick your colors. Most masking tape and stencil designs allow you to choose from spray paint or traditional paint, but make sure you read all DIY instructions carefully. Finally, if you are painting the garden shed's exterior, choose an outdoor paint!

7. Make your garden shed an artist's studio

A garden shed that's been converted into an art studio

Image Source: Backyard Buildings & More

Need a space to get creative? Want to offer your kids a place where they can make a grand ol' mess? Why not repurpose your old garden shed into a detached art studio!

While you could go all out and with your garden shed art studio, it's okay to convert the space in just an afternoon, too. Start by cleaning out the space. Then, give the interior a fresh coat of paint. White is usually best for a studio, since it will pick up natural light.

If your garden shed doesn't have windows, you'll want to look for another way to get more natural light into your new art studio. Yes, this can be done! You'll need to cut a hole and reframe for the window, though. This is a lot of work, but if you are truly using your garden shed to create art, it could be worth it.

Of course, if your "art studio" is just a fun place for your kids to finger paint and make slime, opening up the front door and letting in some fresh air should suffice. You could even hang some outdoor wall art on the shed if you like.

8. Turn your garden shed into a game room

Need a place for your teenagers to have some fun? Why not turn that obsolete garden shed into a DIY game room? Creating a game room can be as simple or as complex as you wish!

First, find some inspiration online. What do you want the vibe of your space to be? Whether you're going for a charming, rustic look or want a more mid-century modern touch, you'll want to start by identifying your style, then setting a budget.

You'll probably want to add a plush area rug, lounge seating for four or six, and a coffee table, if you can fit it. This will give your guests a comfortable place to let loose.

For decor, old movie posters or fun printouts from Etsy should do the trick. Feel like splurging? Add a neon sign to your garden shed game room!

Finally, stock the room with fun and games. From Monopoly and Scrabble to newer games like Cards Against Humanity, variety is key. You'll also want several decks of cards on hand.

9. Convert an underused garden shed into a play space

You can also transform your garden shed into a designer playroom for your kids or grandchildren! A garden shed is actually a perfect way to add a kids zone to your property without having to change up your home's layout or mature decor.

As always, we recommend perusing Pinterest for playroom inspiration. Whether you're aesthetic is modern, transitional, or traditional, we know you'll have so much fun designing and decorating the perfect garden shed playroom.

Because you're creating a play house, feel free to go wild with color! Why not choose a hot pink or periwinkle blue front door? Add whimsical decor, comfortable kids seating, and tons of toys. A teepee, pretend kitchen or mini workbench would also be a cute addition.

For art, go DIY! You can make a kid-friendly gallery wall, create a chalkboard wall that kids can decorate again and again, or try a collaborative mural. Remember, this is a space to have fun and let loose!

10. Turn your backyard shed into a she shed

Finally, why not convert your backyard shed into a place designed just for you?  Women all over the country have upgraded their old garden sheds into stunning she sheds: gyms, lounge areas, gathering spaces, home offices and meditation retreats.

Best of all, designing your own she shed will serve as a fun, creative DIY project that you'll enjoy for years to come. There's ton of inspiration online, and you can hone your style in a space that only has to work for you. If you've always wanted a room that's all purple everything, now's your chance.

Here are some awesome ideas for a she shed:

  • Create a home office with a standing desk, a place to relax, and tons of cute pictures and plants
  • Make space for your yoga mats, exercise bikes, weight and resistance bands with a sleek home gym
  • Design a ladies lounge perfect for happy hour, book club and everything in between

Want more she shed inspiration? Check out this amazing collection of upgraded garden shed decorating ideas here!

About Happy Gardens

Happy Gardens curates an online collection of unique, thoughtful garden decor and merchandise. Whether you've been searching high and low for awesome wall decor, an interesting wind chime or a unique rain chain, Happy Gardens has what you're looking for. After all, each product we stock and sell has been chosen to fill your outdoor space with charm and cheer.

Our beloved collections include a remarkable variety of top-rated, beloved products including hanging wall decor, painted bird houses, eclectic wind chimes and interesting garden ornaments and statues made from metal, stone and more. Plus, our new line of merchandise is bright, exciting, and great for gift-giving. Check out our wine glasses, tote bags and mini planters for all the garden, bird and plant-lovers in your life.

Want to learn more about our newest and coolest products? Join our mailing list with your email address. Want to bring some good vibes (and tons of tips and tricks) to your news feed? For tons of garden inspiration and your daily dose of greenery, follow us on Instagram and Facebook.

We're always here to help via chat if you need help picking out that perfect gift, redecorating your garden shed or reimagining your backyard.

 


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