How to Build a Shed – Part 2 – The Materials

In our last post on building your own garden shed we looked at the planning stage. Now it is time to make a shopping list. It does not have to be as extensive as the one I made in the picture but the more you can plan ahead the better organized you will be and the more smoothly the build will go. Believe me there are few things more frustrating than being on top of a ladder, holding heavy pieces of wood in place ready for securing only to find that you don’t have the right fixing.

If you bought the ready-made plans I recommended in part 1 this is going to be way easier because you will exactly see what you need including measurements.

If you made your own plans, again, try to be as exact as possible and also think about the supporting structure and what you will need for that.

If you are unsure it is always better to buy a little less than you need instead of having too much stuff left over in the end. Just make sure that what you need will still be in stock when you come back. That’s often not the case with special offers and promotions because everybody buys it and it might be out of stock soon.

What Material Will Your Shed Be Made From?

Most of the people will want to build wooden garden sheds because, as I said, wood is cheap, easy to work with and looks nice. When you buy wood keep an eye open for leftovers. Often you can get a great deal on pieces that were part of a bigger package. Most decent hardware stores also offer a free service for cutting wood. So, if you need 50 pieces to a given length you might save yourself some work by having them cut it with the big saw. This is another example for how it pays off to have all the measurements down before going shopping.


If you need to buy tools go for a good brand. Don’t buy the cheapest electrical saw you can find and that’s on special for 20 bucks. It’s definitely worth investing a little money here because a decent tool will just last you way longer ad you will be able to produce higher quality work. Some things can be bought cheaper on the internet, a look into the Home Tool Helper which has great reviews of most of the tools necessary for this sort of project.

Getting the right tools in building projects makes such a big difference. Having observed many professionals over the years, the main difference between the them and the average DIYer is the fact that they use the right tools for the job. If they don’t have the right tool, guess what? That’s right. They go out and buy it. It’s really that easy. In my shed build I was struggling to make mortice and tennon joints. I really just needed to get a plunge router, but did I get one. Noooo. I struggled on with a drill and a chisel. Made the whole thing much more difficult.

Anyway, lesson now learnt.

In the next installment of this build a shed series we’ll look at the construction phase itself.

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