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Garden Cottages and Small Sheds for Your Outdoor Space

Ah, the charming beauty of a garden cottage! There’s something magical about a backyard dwelling that overlooks a beautifully manicured yard… especially when as much care is put into the design of the cottage as the design of the home itself! Today we spotlight a series of backyard spaces that inspire us with their beauty, innovation and style.

From traditional spaces and revamped sheds to cutting-edge structures and mixed-use spaces, the featured cottages below just might take you by surprise! Enjoy browsing, and don’t forget to share your thoughts at the end of today’s post…

Charming Cottages

We begin with a few charming, traditional spaces that are the epitome of garden cottage design. It’s what you’d imagine as your dream cottage when you close your eyes and envision a lovely haven in the corner of your backyard. For example, the beautifully designed cottage below is used for raising seedlings and orchids. Note the wooden frame covered with prefab siding, the slanted roof covered with asphalt tiles, and the Cecile Brunner climbing roses that add a perfect finishing touch. [from Sunset via My Home Ideas]

Garden cottage with beautiful blooms

This Vancouver garden shed is used to store children’s toys, but it’s also a changing space for folks getting ready to take a dip in the nearby hot tub! Let’s take a closer look at some of the elements involved in the design… [from Glenna Partridge via Houzz]

Vancouver garden shed

Just as important as the design of a garden shed itself is the landscaping and development of the area immediately surrounding it. A raised wooden deck connects this cottage to the homeowner’s boat dock, creating a scenic path from dwelling to water. [from Glenna Partridge via Houzz

Wooden deck outside of a garden shed

Also note the presence of lush perennials around the perimeter of the shed. Not to mention, two pots of flowers and greenery flank the door, creating a welcoming entrance. [from Glenna Partridge via Houzz]

Garden shed, perennials, and outdoor seating

Many garden sheds and cottages are built in the likeness of the larger home on the property. This is definitely the case for the cottage below, complete with a muted eggplant shade of paint and crisp white trim. Again, note the beautiful blooms that surround this dwelling. [from Homeworks via Houzz]

Garden cottage built in the style of the property’s home

Innovative Dwellings

We now take a look at two innovative dwellings that redefine garden cottage design! First up is an abandoned shed that was cleverly transformed into a garden area and cozy retreat! Note the use of gravel in front of the shed, as well as the integration of flower boxes and beds for the growth of plants. Bright yellow is used as an accent color, and floral curtains hang in the windows. [from Atmoscaper Kitchen Design]

Transformed abandoned shed

There’s even a modern seating area featuring colorful chairs, a quaint red wicker table, and of course, an abundance of plants:

Seating area outside of a garden shed

Next we introduce you to Hawk House, a redwood bark cabana designed by Alex Wyndham. This amazing dwelling blends rustic design with modern style. The structure is 7 ft. x 9 ft., and the roof is covered with coastal grasses and native wildflowers:

Hawk House cabana

Not to mention, three of the four walls open so the space can get plenty of ventilation on warm evenings. Note how Hawk House has the power to serve as the perfect guest house and backyard retreat…

Cabana with opening walls

Backyard Havens

We end with two backyard havens that take the idea of a “garden cottage” to a whole new level. In fact, these structures serve specific purposes that may surprise you! Take this backyard yoga studio, which boasts a serene modern design that mirrors the tranquil state of mind of the dwelling’s yoga practitioners. Now that’s a space with a view! [from Webber + Studio]

Backyard yoga studio

And since we’re in a dreamy place, let’s go out with a bang! This poolside cabana accompanies an elegant traditional residence in a beautifully manicured backyard. Potted flowers and lush landscaping surrounds the place, which has a true living room feel and a stellar view of the pool… [photo by Grey Crawford for Harte Brownlee & Associates Interior Design

Poolside cabana garden cottage

What would your dream garden cottage look like? Would it have a picturesque view of the yard? A bed for guests? Supplies for your creative endeavors?  We’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas. Don’t hesitate to leave a comment below…

Kate Simmons

Kate Simmons is a freelance writer and design blogger with a love of all things decor. She spent her childhood writing stories and working on interior design-themed DIY projects. Kate’s published writing reflects her special interest in how design has changed through the decades. Her blog Mirror80 ( http://mirror80.com/) explores the fashion and [...]

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