Here at Crestwood Storage Barns we are committed to celebrating and serving our customers. This post about a customer’s garden shed / she shed is the first in a series of blog posts that will tell the stories of our customers and some of the unique ways that they are using Crestwood storage sheds.
Mariette Spidel : Miss She Shed
Mariette Spidel moved to Arkansas with her husband, David, in 2011. She was in search of a more relaxed, back-to-earth lifestyle and decided that Madison County was the place to make this happen. They purchased a property near Bohannan Mountain and Mariette began turning the place into her home.
One of Mariette’s biggest hobbies is gardening. But she is not just any gardener; she is a Master Gardener through the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension. She practices organic gardening and is passionate about natural growing techniques and caring for the local environment. For Mrs. Spidel, gardening includes growing a variety of vegetables, herbs, and flowers, and raising butterflies to enjoy the flowers. Being a cosmetologist and skin care professional by trade, she then creates natural skin-care products and more with ingredients from her garden. These products are for sale through the Spidel’s home-based (or shed-based) business, Good Acres Life.
We got to know Mariette when she began to look for a garden shed to set alongside her 30×40 garden plot. She had driven by our storage shed business often and wanted to support local business so she dropped by to see us. As we started talking and she started dreaming, it didn’t take long for the “garden shed” she was needing to morph into a full-blown She Shed.
Lonnie, the owner here at Crestwood, spent time with her, drawing up different plans and making sure we would build her the custom shed that would fit her dreams. As we were talking to Mrs. Spidel in preparation for this blog post, she mentioned that it was the patience of Lonnie in working with her that made her want to buy from us. She said, “He was ultimately patient. I’m a very inquisitive consumer. I asked a lot of questions and he gave me the time of day. He did all the right things.”
Mariette’s plans for this “Garden shed on steroids” were very unique. She was looking for a building that could function as a storage space for special gardening tools, an area to display her collection of antiques, a place to host friends, a private space for reflection and morning coffee, a winter greenhouse, and a work space for her business. The final plan we landed on to accommodate these unique needs was a large wood A-Frame storage shed with an extra-deep front porch. We built a door into every side of the shed – single entry doors on the ends and 6’ double-dutch doors on each side. Mariette also wanted an extra high ceiling to make the space feel larger. She says now that she is so grateful she paid the extra for that. It makes a big difference how spacious the inside feels.
We built and delivered the shed to the Spidel’s Bohannan Mountain property, placing it right up against the garden plot so the doors on the one side open directly into the fenced-in area. This is when the shed started its journey from being a storage shed to being a She Shed extraordinaire.
The Spidels added a ceiling and installed a beautiful floor that looks like weathered, white barn wood. They ran electricity throughout the shed and then finished out the walls, installing bead board around the bottom portion of the wall to add an elegant touch.
When all this was done Mariette started adding her special touches: a 2 ½ foot antique chandelier hanging from the center of the ceiling, a beautiful 1940s kitchen cabinet for storage on one wall, a large table, old classic chairs and other furniture, and antique décor. When you see this she shed it is isn’t hard to believe Mrs. Spidel when she says, “This shed is kinda like a baby to me.
Mariette starts off most of her mornings in Miss Shed Shed, drinking coffee and spending time thinking. Her two dogs and cats often join her, either hanging out inside or relaxing on the she shed’s large front porch. On nice days, when she can open up both sets of double doors, fresh air flows through the shed and butterflies that were hatched inside the shed will flit in and out of the building. With the beautiful garden right outside the doors, it really is an idyllic Ozark setting that Mrs. Spidel should be proud of.
And she’s still not done with this She Shed project. She recently got a grant from the Beaver Watershed Alliance to install 6 water barrels to collect rainwater off the shed’s roof, providing the water she needs to keep her garden happy. The latest projects were building a greenhouse attachment out the back of the shed and adding a high-quality spray foam insulation to the floor. The addition of the greenhouse will provide a natural source of heat to the entire building in the winter on sunny days when the back door is opened. The new insulation makes a real difference in the noise level when walking around in the shed and also helps make the building easier to keep warm.
Mrs. Spidel has become much more than just a customer to us. She is a Crestwood friend and a raving fan of our sheds and service. We’re proud to have one of our sheds being used in this way and proud to serve great people like Mariette here in Northwest Arkansas. If you want to read more about Miss She Shed and learn more about the organic products and handcrafts that Mrs. Spidel sells, please go check out her business and blog at goodacreslife.com. Since Miss She Shed also doubles as a work space for the business, you’ll likely find more about this unique shed on their site in the future.