Potter Shed planning

The design inspiration. That uppermost
round-topped window is being replaced.
The one you see here will be used in the shed.

In order to create a list of materials needed for the “Harry Potter Garden” shed I’ll be building in the spring, I have to have better plans than the sketches I posted previously. I’m only a “weekend carpenter” and have never tackled a project this large.

Fortunately, I am an art director and know my way around measurements, scale, color, production – and softwares that help me put it all together. Here are some “drawings” I made in Adobe Illustrator. The file is in layers – so that the actual frame drawing below is underneath the color illustrations in my file. I did it to a 1″=1′ scale in my original drawings to make my life easier. Now I have a better idea of how much, and what size, lumber will be required.

I plan to use as much used and repurposed items as possible. I’ve taken measurements of the doors and windows I already have that are either coming off my house, or were here in the garage or attic when we moved in (14 years ago!). I also have a pile of scrap lumber left over from the jungle gym that was in this spot previously.

One of the first things I did was check the city code for building sheds. It turns out I do not need a permit to build. From the city’s website: A BUILDING PERMIT IS NOT REQUIRED FOR: Construction or installation of one story detached structures associated with one-or two-family dwellings or multiple single-family dwellings (townhouses) which are used for tool and storage sheds, playhouses or similar uses, provided the gross floor area does not exceed 144 square feet (13.88m2). At 8’x10′ mine will be well under that at 80 sq. ft., so I’m covered.
I figure my life will be easier if I do everything in stages over time. The goal will be to have as much completed by Garden Walk Buffalo as possible. (July 25 and 26, 2015). I won’t stress if it’s not quite there at that time.
Below is what I’m thinking. I am officially obsessed. Losing sleep thinking this through almost every night. Beats obsessing over how much sleep I’m not getting.
The front of the shed will actually face into my garden, so it won’t be seen from the street. The 15-glass-pane door, round -topped feature window, diamond-mullioned window, a “porch” roof, a rain chain, roof-peak finial, window boxes and a solar light made of a terracotta pot ought to charm it up.
The Harry Potter Garden will return to its original spot in front of this facade of the shed. Still not sure if the roof here will be tiled, or shingled. Price will be a determining factor. It will also get an arbor for a climber, up over the windows.
Much like the house, I’ll do a bay window here with an interior ledge for early spring plant growing. I already have lots of diamond shaped lattice scraps in the garage from past projects for a trellis. The siding and shingle style and patterns are taken from the house.

The roof here on the back side will be corrugated clear plastic panels. It won’t have electricity, so I’ll need that for light and for any growing done in there. The whole back portion of the shed, not seen from the driveway will be a potting bench and shelves.
The area of the garden now open for this project. It’s 14’x32′. I’ll incorporate and add on to the checkerboard pattern of grass and pavers. Along the edges will be perennials. Along the side facing the driveway, the Harry Potter garden will go back in. On the inside, there will be a wall for hanging tools, shelving, and benches for potting and even growing some early spring plants.
This useless door in the attic will become
the “back” door of the shed. It’s insanely narrow.
This window is coming out of the house (it’s practically falling apart anyway)
and will be the feature window on the front of the shed.
This 15-pane glass door has been sitting in the garage for 14 years. FINALLY I’ll get it out of there. Those bi-fold door shutters to the left may become the planter box on the driveway side of the shed.
This attic window is coming out. It’s useless. We’ve seen snow come in it. On blustery days it’ll even pop open. It’s getting replaced and will be used on the front of the shed.
This is a bonus window that’s been sitting in the attic since we moved in.
It’ll get used someplace.

I have a long-time garden blog, a popular garden on America's largest garden tour, and have co-written a book on garden design titled, "Buffalo-Style Gardens: Create a Quirky, One-of-a-Kind Private Garden with Eye-Catching Designs" When I'm not doing all that, I am an advertising designer always out looking to design things to promote your business. Look me up at #jcharlier.

0 comments on “Potter Shed planning

  1. Can't wait to see it built. I do hope you have a Shed Warming party where we can all get potted!


  2. Anonymous

    Nice ideas and reuse. It will be colorful too.


  3. This comment has been removed by the author.


  4. Hope your plan comes together. It looks great. Right now all we hear about Buffalo is SNOW!!!!


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