Inspiration For My Window Shed

STYLISH SHEDS AND ELEGANT HIDEAWAYS by Debra Prinzing and with photographs by William Wright is the most treasured book in my garden library. I received the book a few weeks ago and have referred to it every day. With the passing of each page, I see ideas that would be perfect in my new little shed.

About two years ago, a life long dream began to happen and now it’s ready to be finished. Several old windows had been given to me and were piled up everywhere there was a spare place to hide them. Thirty-six windows sat looking lonely for months and months. But along came Stylish Sheds and now I have vision and purpose for the old windows.

It is hard to find multipurpose sheds of the kind I wanted to build. Most people use a shed to store tools and never give a thought to its many other uses. My desire was to have a garden sanctuary where creativity could thrive. I wanted to start a few seedlings, hang a few bird’s nest, display memorabilia important only to me, and stock it full of books about the things I love. The book Stylish Sheds does just that and in so many unique ways.

I searched the Internet and bookstores for inspiration hoping to find colorful pictures and descriptions of how other people had accomplished such a retreat. And then one day, Shirley Bovshow of Edenmakers’ Blog told me to take a look at Debra Prinzing’s Book Stylish Sheds and Elegant Hideaways. There is a website called Shed Style that is Debra Prinzing’s blog and information site for all things sheds.

Southern Comfort is a chapter of Stylish Sheds And Elegant Hideaways filled with ideas on how to give your property a  heart and soul. The couple featured in this article have outdoor living spaces and a stand alone area that flow from one to the next. Old jars, birdhouses, antique gates, and a most interesting iron chandelier are part of the Southern Comfort chapter.

Each mini chapter of this book is an adventure telling of the families who desired a retreat of their own and the instructions on how to do it yourself should you wish for one too. You will take something with you from every page.

The following information was taken from the site,  Shed Style

Recently transplanted from Seattle to Southern California, Debra Prinzing is a garden and design features writer. For the past year, her “NW Style” column appeared in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. She has recently begun to contribute stories to the Los Angeles Times’ Home section.

She has a background in textiles and journalism, took her Master Gardener training with King County (Wash.), and studied landscape design and horticulture at South Seattle Community College.

Debra is the author of four gardening books, including “The Abundant Garden” (2005) and the “Pacific Northwest Garden Survival Guide” (2004). Her articles have appeared in Fine Gardening, Cottage Living, Sunset, Better Homes & Gardens SIPs, Seattle Homes & Lifestyles, Alaska Airlines magazine and Romantic Homes, among other publications.

Debra Prinzing a site about her work and other publications she has written.

9 Comments Add yours

  1. Hi Anna, thank you so much for taking the time to tell your readers about Stylish Sheds and Elegant Hideaways! I can’t wait to see how your “dream Shed” progresses and gives you joy~ We’re just back from Garden Writers in Portland and it was amazing. Such great people, gardens, plants and new information about our profession.
    Glad to know you’ve got Raleigh on your calendar for 09! It will be fun to meet you in person,
    cheers, Debra

    ** You are so welcome. I look forward to meeting you as well. It is a joy to own your book!


  2. Nancy Bond says:

    PS Love your beautiful, fall header, too!

    ***Thank you! It’s one of my favorite places. It’s on the border of Virginia and W. Virginia in the Shenandoah’s National Park. It was taken last year while visiting my son in Harrisonburg, VA.


  3. Nancy Bond says:

    I love that shed in the first book photo! I’m sure it could accommodate some of those lovely windows! This is almost as exciting as house decorating! I hope you’re having fun with it.

    *** Nancy, It’s been a dream for a long time. When my grandbabies come along, I’m going to make a fire pit and patio off to one side, add some kiddo fun things for them to have a place to imagine, and lots of little places to sit and swing. My dil says she will probably never see her kids cause they will be at grandma’s house. I promise not to steal them but I will make it so they have a great time while here.


  4. Racquel says:

    What an inspiring book. I can’t wait to see your shed with the repurposed windows and the private space you create in it.

    ***I can’t wait to share the story!


  5. omg, I am putting this book on my Christmas wish list! It looks amazing. Your collection of old windows is fabulous too. Add me to the list of people who want to see your shed when you’re done. I just browsed the rest of your blog and loved your post on fences. There were some beauties featured.

    ***I’m so glad to have you in my garden today. I have really enjoyed the book and will be doing several post on the building of my own shed. We should be starting in the next two weeks. We’ve been clearing the land and getting permits. I’ve already got the wood. It’s going to have a tin roof called Copper Penny. It looks like copper but isn’t. So join me–I’ll have a seperate tab just for the shed updates.


  6. Robin says:

    I can’t wait to see this project once it is completed! The book does look like the perfect inspiration for you.

    *** It really is Robin. My husband said to quit looking at it. I’ve always liked little nooks and fun spots where imagination begins.


  7. joey says:

    May your dream for the shed come true, dear Anna. I loved this post! Many, many (many) years ago hubby and I bid on 6 old English stained glass windows for our dream pub (wine cellar and sauna). Yes, we got them … at a very pricey bid (the auctioneer noted we both had been bidding against each other … duh)!

    ** Against each other—oh my word..too funny. I was just saying to Cinj that I got these windows for free at a salvage yard. They had a whole tractor trailer full. No one wanted them for years…so I took as many home as I could fit in the back of my husband’s truck. It was 36!

    Did you build the cellar/sauna?


  8. Cinj says:

    I LOVE those windows, especially the ones with the leaded glass. Your shed will be prettier than mine, but we have to keep it warm in our cold climate so I didn’t do many windows.

    ** I lived in lots of cold places while my husband was in the AF. I know that it would have been hard to build my shed with windows when we lived in ND. But I did dream and now I can do it. I got the windows at a salvage yard–they just gave them to me. I was in the right place at the right time.


  9. Gail says:


    Hey there! I have been working on getting my blog up to speed and bookmarks working and I am happy to say I now have a direct link to your website again!
    But enough business! This book looks wonderful! Have you decided on your design yet? I always wanted to make a shed from old windows and kept dozens of them until they became a messy hazard. Oh, but I wish I had them now, sigh!
    I can start collecting them again!


    *** Good for you Gail, Puter stuff is nuts sometimes. I’m glad you are linked to me–that’s the important thing!

    I have forever wanted a little shed that is a haven for all my trinket paraphernalia. It’s the part of me that isn’t ashamed to say—I want a place to play! I started this little shed at my former home and then we decided to build our current home.

    I’m almost glad the process is starting over cause I’ve gotten a good many fun ideas from the book. I was winging it before. I’m going to have a front porch, window boxes, a dinner bell. rocking chairs—- bunch of very loved old stuff!

    I guess I’ll do a typical 12/12 pitch roof and lots of windows. It will evolve as I go along. I can’t wait. My dear hubby and I are working on the area every chance we get. So far, I’ve seen lots of bindweed.


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