Quarto Publishing sent me a copy of She Sheds Style in exchange for an honest review. So here’s what I think.
With a backyard not much bigger than a postage stamp we don’t have room for a shed, but if we did I would love to turn it into a little refuge I could call my own, aka a she shed. It would be light and bright with all the mod cons (I BIRTHED TWO BABIES ALLOW ME HIGH-SPEED INTERNET AND WIFI) and space to blog, shoot flatlays, and stretch out with a book. Which might seem like a tall order but people do it. We saw that in Erika Kotite’s first book, She Sheds: A Room of Your Own, which introduced us to artists, yogis, gardeners and others who have turned tiny structures into spaces to work, dream and treasure. Now in her new book, She Sheds Style: Make Your Space Your Own, Erika shows us how to plan and style our sheds (real or imagined) so that they reflect our own design sensibilities.
“Modern, cheerful and artsy, Kirsty Patrick’s shed is a perfect marriage of form and function. A busy entrepreneur with a growing artisanal light fixture business, Kirsty made budget choices — an old door made over into a table and chipboard wall paneling — that nevertheless convey an ultra-chic aesthetic.” — She Sheds Style
Erika wants to help readers create spaces that are both functional and fabulous. What will you use your she shed for? For making art? Then you’ll want plenty of natural light, durable surfaces that are meant to get dirty and clean up easily, and places to store and organize supplies and tools. As a home office? Consider an ergonomic chair (comfort is key for a space you’ll use for hours on end), task and overhead lighting and well-placed sockets for a coffee maker or a kettle. For extra lodging? You’ll need a comfortable sofa or daybed, hooks or a closet for guests’ clothing and some sort of storage for bedding. Erika walks readers through the pros and cons of rustic/repurposed vs. refined sheds (including all kinds of ways to kit out a kit shed), teaches the basics to consider when defining your shed’s architecture, and offers lessons in how to use colour inside and out.
“Rachel and Ryan Rose added this handy overhang to the side of her storage-turned-she-shed. With its generous metal roof and gravel patio area, the places becomes a welcome area for relaxing alone or with friends.” — She Sheds Style
“The ottoman, a wonderful Turkish gift to the world, is the perfect furnishing for a she shed. It’s versatile, because you can prop your feet up on it or use it as a low table. Rebecca Itnner’s version shown here has a third use — there’s stylish storage inside the vintage suitcase. She made this ingenious little piece using a midcentury modern fabric and a hot glue gun — no sewing necessary.” — She Sheds Style
My favourite pages in the book are the DIYs, all simply explained with step-by-step with instructions and photos. What could make your she shed more YOU than including elements you made yourself? There are how-to’s for mosaic stepping stones, a Dutch door, a drop-down bar, personalized string lights, a simple no-sew window treatment and more.
If you’re thinking about creating your own she shed, She Sheds Style is a great place to start. It’s encouraging, easy to read, and offers a tonne of solid advice without being overwhelming. I’d love to see a companion workbook where you could record your design plan, materials, budget, colour palette and DIY elements all in one place or an expanded edition with plenty of room to jot down ideas.
Do you have a she shed or dream about making one of your own? I want to hear all about it!
For a chance to win a copy of She Sheds Style, tell me what you’d use your she shed for (or what you already use it for, if you have one you lucky duck!) in the comments below. This entry is mandatory.
For an additional entry, visit try small things on Facebook and like (or love!) this post and leave a comment, then tell me you did so and your name on Facebook in the comments below. (Shares aren’t necessary, but YOU’RE THE BEST AND ALWAYS SO GOOD TO SHARE AND I LOVE YOU FOR IT! ALSO THANK YOU FOR HELPING ME PICK THE BEST PHOTO TO FEATURE FIRST!)
And feel free to tweet the following once per day and leave the url for your tweet in the comments below (one entry per tweet). Make sure you’re following try small things on Twitter for your entry to count.
Planning your own retreat? Erika Kotite’s “She Sheds Style: Make Your Space Your Own” can help! Win a copy from @trysmallthings 11/4 CAN https://wp.me/p4xBed-6Qp #SheShedsStyle
The contest is open to Canadian residents 18+ excluding Quebec and ends at 11:59 p.m. EST on November 4, 2018. The potential winner (chosen at random) must respond to prize notification within 48 hours and provide the correct answer to a skill-testing question, otherwise another winner will be selected.
Images shared here with permission from the publisher. Image 2 by Colin Poole, GAP Interiors. Image 3 by Rachel Roe. Image 4 and cover image by Rebecca Ittner.