Everyone needs a place to relax. Man caves are where men play games, watch sports and hang out with friends. She sheds are where women craft, scrapbook or — if you’re like Chelsea — build things. If you want a she shed, but you’re not sure where to start, here are some ideas to create the perfect getaway.
But first, it’s important to understand more about man caves and she sheds, and why we need them.
About Mancaves and She Sheds
Men and women thrive on spending time alone in their personal space with relaxed rules. This relieves stress, fosters creativity and improves mental health, according to clinical psychologist Dr. Libby Watson.
That’s just one reason why man caves and she sheds — which, typically, couldn’t be more different in appearance and function — have become popular ideas for modern homes.
From the furniture to décor, a man cave often looks nothing like the rest of the house. It may have a pool table, putting green and full-service bar. It may have antlers mounted on driftwood and framed jerseys and trophies on display. And you can bet there’s a huge flat-screen TV.
That’s all by design.
Man caves are more than a place to drink beer and watch sports, according to psychologist Sam Gosling, author of “Snoop: What Your Stuff Says About You.” These spaces — which may resemble a dorm room or bachelor pad compared to the rest of the house — are necessary for men to express their identity.
Women usually influence the home’s design and decor, which leaves some men feeling restless. So, creating a space to indulge in their hobbies meets men’s emotional needs, according to some psychologists.
They’re not alone — professional women and stay-at-home moms also need a place where they can relax, unwind and pursue their pastimes without interruption.
The she shed usually is outdoors, but it could be a converted garage or even a spare room — anywhere a woman can be alone, or with friends, to craft, read, scrapbook, sew or garden.
Women, like men, have different pastimes, but here are some she shed ideas that should work regardless of your interests.
1. Add a Table
If you want to instantly give a she shed some function and versatility, add this to your list of ideas: add a table and a chair. Suddenly, you’ll have a place to pay bills, sew and wrap gifts.
Enjoy woodworking? This table also can serve as a workbench! And you can write, paint and make small home repairs here. Just a simple table can be quite the workhorse.
And furnishing your she shed doesn’t have to be expensive. Just grab a table from storage, purchase one from a thrift store or check neighbors’ garbage piles.
After all, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure, and sometimes, it just takes a little cleaning, staining or painting to make something look new!
Design is in the details, so look for opportunities to transform the table beyond its color or finish. For instance, just adding an inlay can take a table from ordinary to extraordinary!
Watch How to Use a Router and Resin to Create an Inlay for the step-by-step guide.
A container garden is much easier to plan and maintain than its in-ground counterpart.
And the job is more forgiving on your neck, back and legs when you have a potting bench. This elevated area allows you to work comfortably with less physical strain.
Stylish potting benches range from $200 to $1,000 but repurposing old furniture — whether it’s from storage or someone’s garbage pile — is an economical, eco-friendly alternative.
All you need to create a functional potting bench — perfect for working with tall and small planters — is an entertainment, or media, center that you don’t mind sawing up.
Want to add this to your list of she shed ideas? Watch Repurposing Furniture as a Potting Bench for the step-by-step guide.
3. Install Pegboard on the Walls
If you’ve got a blank wall in your she shed, install some pegboard. It has all kinds of uses, whether you enjoy crafting, painting or woodworking.
Drill two hooks through some spread-apart holes, run a dowel through a roll of wrapping paper and hang it up for a convenient gift-wrapping station.
Your local home center has all kinds of hooks for hanging custom wood shelves, canvas paintbrush storage and PVC pipes for sliding in pencils and pens.
But before you install pegboard, consider making a stylish, beveled cleat so you can hang it up and take it down with ease.
Watch How to Make a Beveled Cleat Pegboard Hanger for more information.
Here’s a bonus idea for your she shed: Paint the pegboard, frame it and make it blend in with the rest of your décor!
4. Repurpose Old Cabinets for a Workbench
Upgrading your kitchen? Don’t discard the cabinets! You can repurpose them for your she shed and reduce the budget for outfitting the space.
Just secure the base cabinets to the wall and add a plywood top. If you do a lot of woodworking, the workbench will take a lot of abuse, so go ahead and stain, not paint, the plywood. That should hold up better.
If your she shed is more for crafting, painting or sewing, you can paint the plywood to match surrounding décor. Or, if you want to spend a little more, you can always top those cabinets with a laminate or granite countertop.
It’s your she shed, your budget and your style — so take these ideas and have fun with it!
Watch How to Upgrade Your Workbench with Old Cabinets for more information.
These are just some ideas to inspire your she shed. Do you have more tips? Share them in the comments!