More than a few years ago (2011 to be exact), I wrote a post about historic detached carports and included some designs of our own that we thought would be fun to build and useful in a variety of situations. Like many of my random design exercises, none of the sketches were built, until now. And I must say that it looks even better in real life than in my head.
A customer in the oldest city in the US, St. Augustine contacted us and was interested in replacing a rather rickety open garage behind her new-to-her 1920s bungalow. We started with some garage designs, but didn't find the right solution until we dusted off the carport/ shed sketches and found something that fit both the site and the customer's needs.
We are now offering plans for the Carport Shed for sale online for the DIYer or those not located in Florida: Carport Shed Construction Plans
Several years ago I was contacted by a woman who was in the process of buying a house in the historic Gillespie Park neighborhood in Sarasota. The 1920s house came with a detached garage in not-so-great shape, placed awkwardly in the middle of the yard and she wanted to replace it. Then she had a few big life changes, including moving out of the country, and the plans for the garage were put on hold. When she called back last year, she no longer wanted to just replace the garage. Instead, since the main house was being used as a vacation rental, they wanted to add a garage apartment that could also be rented out. Historic Shed™ designed a two-story, two car garage apartment with details that complemented the main house with a one bedroom, one bath layout. We also included a large porch for a private sitting area for visitors, accessed by an exterior stair. The cottage is available for rent at: https://www.vrbo.com/811457 So far, it has some rave reviews.
One of our customer favorites is the tropical Snack Shack that we built in Palm Harbor with combination bar and storage shed. The shed design was recently adapted for a narrow site behind a historic Craftsman style home in the Old Seminole Heights Neighborhood in Tampa. The resulting shed was 8'x18' version with framing details that complemented the historic home. The shed was approved by the local historic preservation office.
One of the perks of being in the preservation business is seeing all sorts of great historic sites that aren't always available to the public. When we worked primarily as historic preservation consultants under our Preservation Resource, Inc. mantle, we got to crawl in attics and private rooms of house museums, disused hotels, and even airplane hangers. Now, as we focus on making outbuildings for historic neighborhoods, we get to see private homes that aren't open to the public (I never say no when invited inside for a moment). One of the recent highlights was seeing a high-style Craftsman style bungalow in the Old Northeast neighborhood in St. Petersburg that was under rehabilitation.
Known as the Sargent House, 806 18th Avenue NE was recently designated as a historic landmark by its newest owners, Sharon Winters and Kendall Reid. Originally built in 1923 by LeRoy and Marjorie Sargent, the house is significant for its architecture as a rare example of higher-style Craftsman design and construction in the airplane bungalow type. (See the full report at: http://www.stpete.org/committee%20packets/Community%20Planning%20and%20Preservation%20Commission/2016-04-12%20Reports.pdf). A local landmark designation recognizes structures or places that have historic value or that exemplify cultural, economic, or social value to the city, state, or nation. The benefits of this designation include neighborhood stabilization, increased heritage tourism through the maintenance of our historic character, relief from some of the requirements of the Florida Building Code, and an ad valorem tax exemption.
Historic Shed was hired to design and build a small storage shed to be placed behind the house. The simple shed incorporated elements from the house such as the gable detailing, roof pitch, and outrigger design.
Earlier this year we built a custom garage in the historic Lake Lawsona- Ferncreek neighborhood in Orlando, Florida. Unfortunately, when the garage was first finished, we didn't get very good photos. Luckily, when we went back in April for the Lake Lawsona Garden Tour, we were able to swing by and see the garage nestled beautifully in the finished yard.
The Lake Lawsona - Ferncreek Garden Tour takes place every other year, alternating annually with the Lake Eola Heights Neighborhood Garden Tour and is well worth attending. This year, we were given booth space near H. H. Dickson Azalea Park, which is a phenomenal historic natural landscape park comprised of a ravine down the middle of the neighborhood. It is a great asset that complements the lovely 1920s homes that make up the neighborhood.
Some home details are just so lovely they just have to be replicated. For this 10'x12' shed that Historic Shed built in the historic Duckpond Neighborhood in Gainesville, Florida, the eave brackets and unique gable vents were replicated to create a one of a kind shed. The result is a main house and shed that harmonize very well. The shed design was reviewed and approved by the local historic preservation office.
Last summer we built a shed in the historic Village of Longboat on Longboat Key, which was the talk of the neighborhood according to our customers. The home where the shed was built is the oldest building on the island, built in 1902 and was originally an Inn and Restaurant. The shed we built for them used elements of the main building, including novelty wood siding and a metal roof. It was the first one we built with a transom over the shed doors, which turned out to be a really nice architectural feature.
The shed was set to the rear of the main building, along the side yard with access to the rear alley. It was set far enough from the side property line to allow storage of kayaks and other equipment, so the owners had the concrete pad extended to the side.
The shed had a very steep roof, gable vent that complemented the main house, and a double set of doors that faced the rear alley.
The side of the shed has a central doors flanked by two 6/1 windows. There are also flood vents since the area is located in a flood zone.
About 9 months after completing the shed, we were contacted by a neighbor in Longboat Key who also lived in a historic home. His home was originally the one-room school house for the village, which had been transformed into a residence in the 1950s. He liked the neighbor's shed just the way it was, so asked for something similar, using elements that complemented his home.
The Village of Longboat Key has an interesting history and is worth a walk around if you are heading to the beach in that area (which is definitely worth visiting as well). For a walking tour, see: http://www.longboatkeyhistory.com/tour-route--history.html and http://www.longboatkeyhistory.com/map--details-of-tour-route.html. As you walk around, keep an eye out for the roaming peacocks, which add a nice eccentric touch to the area.
We were approached by someone in the historic Duckpond neighborhood in Gainesville looking to add an accessory cottage in her back yard. After some design iterations, we ended up building a 16'x20' version of our Starlet cottage with elements that complemented her historic home. The design was approved by the Gainesville Preservation Board.
Last year we were delighted to be contacted by a couple with this email note:
My husband & and I have been stalking your site for a year, waiting until our yard was ready to get a shed. I think we're close! We are in downtown Orlando, have a 1911 colonial revival/farmhouse.
We knew we'd like them instantly.
They live in the lovely Lake Eola Heights Historic District in Orlando, located within walking distance to downtown Orlando. The houses were built primarily between 1890 and 1925 and have an amazing array of styles and detail. Theirs was full of texture and character.
They didn't need an overlarge shed, but it needed character and lots of windows. And to be a test case for the colors they planned to paint their house. Because the property is located within a designated historic district, the shed design was reviewed by the local historic preservation office.
A couple of months after we were done, we received this lovely email note with the photo below:
Just wanted to let you know how happy we are!! We don't have much in the ground yet- but the veggies are happy- waiting on electric & water to go in, then the brick paths- then garden beds will be better defined. We have spent more time in the back yard in the past few months than we have in 3 years!
Historic Shed's most recent project was constructed in Tampa's historic Seminole Heights neighborhood to complement an interesting, and virtually unchanged Craftsman bungalow. The owners needed to replace a metal shed that had reached a state of extreme disrepair and wanted the new building to reflect the design of their home.
Click the images below to see a slideshow of the entire shed construction process.
When Florida neighborhoods were being developed during the early 20th century, garages were commonly built behind the quaint bungalows with details that matched the main home. Many of these early outbuildings survive today, but many more have been demolished with only concrete slabs remaining in the backyards or newer structures replacing them.
At our most recent project in the Duckpond Neighborhood in Gainesville there was an existing metal garage behind the c. 1913 home, most likely built in the 1950s, that was too small to house a car and a hazard to anyone who touched the rusty edges. Historic Shed was hired to design and build a new custom gable roofed garage with a side workshop in a style that might have been built contemporary with the main house. The detached garage we designed reflected elements from the main house including the roof slope, shingled gable end, gable end vent, exposed rafter tails and siding. The design was reviewed and approved by the Gainesville Historic Preservation Review Board.
In Florida, we don't always need a full garage to protect our vehicles. We prefer to keep our cars out of the sun and rain, but since we don't deal with snow, walls are nice, but not required. Therefore, many homes built after the 1920s, when cars became commonplace, have integral carports as part of the design in Florida, even when they also have a detached garage.
Other Florida homes have a detached carport design that is easy to add to any historic home property. These designs date from the 1880s through today, with elements from Craftsman Bungalows, Colonial Revival, and Mid-Century Modern all used to make unique and useful structures.
Historic Shed can custom design a detached car port to complement your historic home to protect your car and enhance your yard. Each design can incorporate details from the main house, using traditional materials and design elements that will look right at home at your historic property. These structures can double as entertainment pavilions as well for special occasions.
Some various carport/ storage options that may work for you:
My topic at the recent Historic Homes Workshop in St. Petersburg was on choosing exterior paint colors for historic Florida homes (it seemed more fitting to the theme of the workshop than "History of Outbuildings"). Below is the slide presentation that was used as a background for the talk. Unfortunately it doesn't have my witty delivery along with the slides, but I am available to give the presentation to neighborhood associations and other local groups that are interested in the topic. Or you can email for clarification on any of the slide information.
(Click on the four arrows in the lower right corner to see the slides at full size.)
We have a lot of people in love with our shed designs, but because we use high-end materials, they don't always fit into everyone's budget. So, we've spent some serious time discussing how we can create a more economical design without compromising the charm, detailing and longevity of our product. A shed with faux board and batten siding was one of our design solutions, using pressure treated plywood to simulate the board siding and then applying cypress battens for a finished look. This would reduce both material and labor costs, but when detailed properly, still looks appropriate behind historic homes.
Board and batten is a traditional historic siding that originated in Norway and Sweden. It was popularized in the United States by Andrew Jackson Downing in the mid 1800s in his picturesque residential designs. The siding was commonly used in Florida for outbuildings, including barns and garages, making it an appropriate material for use on sheds in historic districts. (See a Florida property built in the 1880s with board and batten outbuildings and the shed we built to complement it.)
We'd been discussing building a prototype of the board and batten economy shed for a while, but hadn't managed to find the time. Then we were contacted by a Clearwater couple who wanted an 8'x10' shed that complemented their 1920s bungalow with a stucco exterior. Since they did not need cypress lap siding to match their house, we suggested trying the board and batten shed. They jumped at the chance since the interior of their home features board and batten on their built-in cabinets and as their bath interior finish.
We customized the shed to reflect elements from the main house; we installed a checkerboard gable vent, angle cut the rafter tails, and installed brackets that mimicked the ones on the main house. The end result created a very pleasing shed design that was less expensive to build, yet that maintained historic character and still uses durable materials. We are now pleased to offer the Historic Shed™ Board and Batten Shed line. We think you'll like it.
Bungalows typically have great curb appeal, but when set amid entire neighborhoods of historic bungalows they are even better. The shed featured in this Bungalow Shed post is located in a great tree-lined, National Register-listed, Florida neighborhood with 325 contributing buildings, the majority of which are bungalow residences. Like many areas we get the pleasure of working in, the attractive neighborhood is very walkable, neighbors are friendly, and the dogs are spoiled.
|The shed under construction in our shop
|The finished storage shed with jerkinhead roof, gable vent, outriggers, and siding to match the main house|
|Clipped eave detail|
|Carriage House style door detail|
Used for storage, the shed has a plywood interior for added strength and to allow shelves, hooks and other accessories to be easily hung on the walls.
|1x6 roof sheathing over exposed trusses and plywood-covered walls|