Make Your Outdoor Shed Work Double Duty as a Decor Piece With This 6-Step DIY Project

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.
Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

While sheds offer the rather utilitarian function of storage, they can also act as an anchor for a chic outdoor lounge — if you give them the proper design attention. All it takes is a little sprucing up with paint, and you have the perfect backdrop to create a stylish sitting area to welcome guests for drinks or dinner.

Advertisement

With a little help from ​Behr®​ Paint and inspo from the Behr​ ​Color Trends 2021 Palette, we took a previously plain cedar shed and transformed it into a stunning design feature.

To complement the shed, we also painted a potting bench in an accent color — which functions as a bar or buffet to shake up cocktails or serve hors d'oeuvres — and added bit of lighting and decor as the finishing touches to make our outdoor space really shine. Here's how to get the look for yourself.

Prep the Area

Lay a tarp or drop cloth on the grass and surrounding areas to protect it from paint, and gather the other necessary supplies: a ladder, paint tray and liner, paintbrush, paint roller with 3/8-inch nap roller cover, and an extension pole.

If your shed has any windows (ours didn't), you should tape those off with painter's tape, along with any hardware.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse
Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Prime the Shed

Start by cutting in around the edges and hard-to-reach areas with a paintbrush. We used the Behr ​Multi-Surface Stain-Blocking Primer & Sealer because it primes the raw wood for better paint adhesion, and it also blocks out any staining or bleeding from wood knots.

Then, roll the primer onto the rest of the shed with a roller, following the direction of the wood grain. Use a ladder or extension pole to reach higher areas. Allow the primer to dry an hour or two.

Advertisement

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Paint the Shed

Once the primer is dry, cut in around the edges of the shed with a paintbrush. We selected the midnight gray color Broadway PPU18-20 for some drama, and opted for Behr Ultra® Exterior Paint because it's super durable and formulated to protect against damage from sunlight and moisture.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Roll the paint onto the rest of the shed with a roller. Allow the paint to dry fully, and add a second coat if needed. (FYI, Behr Ultra​ Exterior Paint is designed to require fewer coats, which means less work for you.)

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Paint the Potting Bench

To complement the dramatic, dark color of the shed, we painted a wood potting bench in Jojoba N390-3, a soft green hue, using Behr Ultra​ Exterior Paint.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Allow the paint to dry, and then set up your spiffy new cocktail station with various spirits, mixers, and other bar essentials.

Advertisement

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Hang a Couple of Lanterns

Any outdoor lounge area needs proper lighting, of course. Hang a few lanterns on the shed, flanking either side of the bar area. We love these bronze ones because you can safely tuck flameless candles inside.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Dress It Up With Decor

Finish off your sitting area with a few pillows and planters. Simple lumbar pillows soften the space while keeping a sleek look, and a round pom pom pillow adds an unexpected touch.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Tall Italian cypress trees potted in planters on either side of the shed add a bit of symmetry (and privacy) while a hypertufa trough filled with moss acts as a posh yet rustic centerpiece.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

And just like that, with a little paint and a few finishing touches, you've created a stylish sitting area right outside your storage shed.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Thinking about tackling your own exterior paint project? Click here for all the details on how Behr Ultra Exterior Paint can help (and to start picking colors!).

Advertisement


Trisha is a writer, video producer + maker with a knack for creating modern DIY content. When her hands aren't covered in paint, she's most likely holding a camera or power drill or both.