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The Heat is On: Turning a Cottage Garden SheShed into a Sauna

As we continue to learn about the numerous health benefits of regular sauna use — such as improved cardiovascular health, boosted sleep quality, and increased relaxation—it's clear why more Australians are turning to this age-old practice to enhance their wellbeing. In the scenic Blue Mountains, Justin has turned his Cottage Garden SheShed into a personal sauna, perfectly blending relaxation with the serenity of his natural surroundings, all in the comfort of his own backyard.

Bringing an Idea to Life

Justin's transformation project began with the removal of an old, less functional shed, replaced by the charm and versatility of the Cottage Garden SheShed. Positioned on a sturdy concrete slab, the structure was elevated on pavers to enhance stability and moisture resistance, a crucial step for any sauna setup.

Utilising the inherent qualities of the SheShed, including its Kiln Dried Nordic Spruce walls and a pitched roof, Justin modified the original design to better suit sauna requirements. "We added a second floor from the kit onto the roof for extra insulation and opted for a powerful SAWO heater to achieve the ideal sauna temperature," he explains.

Material Considerations

Choosing the right materials was essential for the sauna’s functionality and durability. "We had to find a balance between quality and budget", Justin explained that he chose the Nordic Spruce timber “due to its thermal properties and affordability compared to Cedar," says Justin. The addition of a double-glazed window installed in the space, allows the natural light to flow in and frames the views outside, enhancing the overall sauna experience.

When a Small Shed Becomes So Much More...

Since the conversion, Justin's outdoor space has transformed into a daily wellness retreat for himself, his wife, and visitors. "The ability to start the sauna, take a leisurely walk, and return to a cozy, warm environment is truly revitalising," he shares. This daily ritual has become a cornerstone of his wellness routine, proving that a little sanctuary at home can have substantial lifestyle benefits.

Technical Adjustments and Lessons

The journey brought valuable insights. "Initially, we overlooked insulating the floor, which would have greatly enhanced heat retention," Justin reflects.

To address this, he plans to add an extra layer of insulation and flooring, which will help eliminate draftiness and enable the sauna to reach its optimum temperature.

For those looking to build, adding insulation underfloor during a cabin build is easy, you can find out more about insulating a SheShed here.

A Reminder of Possibilities

Justin’s project showcases the versatile potential of SheSheds, transforming a simple garden shed into a sanctuary that supports him to live a healthy life in line with his priorities. Not only has Justin created a space that enhances his well-being, but he has also found a cost-effective way to bring this vision to life, demonstrating that personal health enhancements can be both affordable and stylish.

This personal sauna enhances the charm of his property while serving as a daily reminder of the benefits of slowing down and prioritising personal health.

"The SheShed team was incredibly supportive throughout the process. The setup was straightforward,
taking just three days to complete, with clear instructions and great ongoing support."

– Justin M

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