Common Storage Shed Designs

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For as simple and rustic as a shed can be, implementing one in your back yard will require some planning. In addition to procuring the necessary permits and clearances from your neighborhood association, you’ll also need to go through the surprisingly involved process of selecting a design that is suitable for your needs. 

One of the first things you’ll discover when deciding to build or buy a shed is the large number of shed design types there are. It can be confusing to figure out what each style of shed looks like. Take a look at our descriptions and pictures below and you’ll quickly understand which type of shed design you like best.

First time shed builders are often surprised by the number of options available to them. However, with a little bit of knowledge going in, you shouldn’t have any problem at all finding one that suits your lifestyle. After you choose a style, you’ll be able to figure out the shed cost

A-Frame Shed

The A-frame shed is probably more or less the design that comes to mind when you hear the word shed in the first place. These structures are simple, but effective and usually feature enough room for your basic tools and lawn equipment, as well as the occasional larger item, like a lawnmower. 

It is certainly possible to find very well made A-frame shed designs, though buyers should note that because many budget options fall into this category, there are some duds in circulation as well. High-quality timber and good craftsmanship will, of course, always go a long way towards ensuring that whatever shed design you choose stands the test of time.


  • Classic design
  • Typically affordable
  • Sizable enough to accommodate basic storage needs


  • Quality may sometimes be a concern
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Barn Style Shed

The barn or gambrel style shed is in many ways similar to the design of the A-frame. The big difference is the shape of the roof. While the A-frame roof slants down sharply into the shape of (you guessed it) the letter A, the barn-style roof bows ever so slightly to allow more headroom across the length of the shed.

Consequently, buyers may wind up getting a little bit more storage space bang for their buck. Because the ceiling is slightly higher, it is easier to integrate shelving and vertical storage to house more tools. 

Barn style shed adopters are also often drawn into the appearance of the structure. There is certainly a rustic quality to this design that will appeal to those who appreciate a pastoral aesthetic. 

Granted, high wall barn style sheds do tend to cost more than the A-frame alternative, but those in need of enhanced storage opportunities are typically willing to accept the discrepancy. 


  • Higher ceilings
  • Ample storage
  • Charmingly rustic aesthetic


  • Frequently on the pricey side

The Craftsman Shed

For those looking for something a little more ornate to put in their backyard, there is certainly no beating the craftsman style shed. As much about aesthetic beauty as it is about storage, the craftsman shed benefits from an attention to detail that may rival the efforts put into your house. 

Indeed, the architectural features are often similar, from window dressings down to the door hinges, craftsman sheds take every detail into account to ensure you get exactly what you are looking for. The approach yields a beautiful, bespoke structure when all is said and done, but the cost is usually pretty high. 

People that are just looking for a place to shove their lawnmower will probably want to pass this option up. However, those with an interest in beauty, and, for that matter, property value, may take an interest in the craftsman style shed.

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  • Attractive designs
  • Lots of customization options
  • May provide ample storage space


  • Very costly

Modern Shed Design

Technically speaking, all of the shed styles featured here are modern in the sense that they are at least contemporary enough to be purchased and assembled. However, when one thinks of a modern shed, the image that comes to mind is typically a little bit more specific. 

Though “modern sheds” can come in a variety of shapes and sizes, often enough the design to which the term refers features a slanted roof, sizable windows, and an almost artistic aesthetic. 

The primary appeal of the modern shed will undoubtedly be its unique, some may say “fresher” appearance. 

While you can likely find a shed of this variety in a size that suits your needs, there is nothing inherently more sizable or user-friendly about this design concept. If the look appeals to you, the modern shed may very well be the way to go. 

However, those who are less particular about the architectural features of their shed may be more inclined to save money on an A-frame.


  • Unique design
  • Sufficient storage


  • Often pricey without being more useful than comparable choices

Saltbox Shed

The saltbox shed is unique for the fact that one side of the roof is shorter than the other. The point of the design is to give you a little bit of extra headroom as you enter the shed, without paying the enhanced cost of a high ceilinged shed.

If it seems like a bit of a basic feature, it kind of is. Nevertheless, this option will appeal to people that would appreciate the comfort of a higher shed, but can’t quite swing the cost.

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  • Affordable
  • Plenty of head clearance


  • Fairly basic design concept

Lean-to Shed

Last, but not least, the lean-to. This shed is unique for the fact that it literally leans against an exterior wall of your home. While it isn’t known for providing considerable amounts of storage, it can function as almost as a deluxe exterior closet of sorts.

Most people use their lean-to shed for storing smaller items, like tools, grills, etc. While you may not get the same mileage out of this design as you would from the others, there are several situations in which this design holds the advantage. 

For one thing, lean-tos are great for people that have very limited yard space, as they tend to take up a very modest amount of room. They are also affordable, and relatively easy to assemble, making them a great option for the do-it-yourself enthusiast.


  • Affordable
  • Easy to assemble
  • Great for people with small yards


  • Very modest storage capacity

Final Thoughts on Popular Storage Shed Styles

No matter your budget, at least one of these shed designs should suit the needs of you and your backyard. Whether you’re looking for an ornate architectural feature or just someplace to throw your tools at the end of the hard day, there is a shed out there for you!