Did someone say party barn?

By Grace Haynes
Updated May 13, 2021
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Ol' Man Ginn's Barn (SL-1997) is a popular choice for Southern Living House Plans shoppers lately because it's the perfect rustic retreat. Throughout the pandemic, we've seen a spike in interest for accessory dwelling units, sheds, pool houses, and other backyard escapes. We're right there with you—after a year cooped up in our homes, we all need some extra room to spread out. A small outbuilding can be a practical addition to your property. These versatile structures can be turned into art studios, offices, or independent apartments to accommodate multiple generations living at home.

Take a look at Plan SL-1997. Residential designer Mitchell Ginn drew up a two-story barn that offers ample amounts of storage along with covered outdoor areas for relaxing. (How fitting would it be to have a charming little barn sitting behind your farmhouse?) You don't need a sweeping pastoral field for this outbuilding—just enough open space for its 870-square-foot footprint. The exterior showcases hallmark farmhouse features, such as a standing seam metal roof, wood siding, oversize sliding doors, a functional pulley bracket, and a cupola with a weather vane. Inside, you'll step into a central enclosed storage aisle, with access to the spacious sheds on either side. Take the stairs up to the loft, which feels extra expansive and airy thanks to the pitched roof. A pair of windows flood the loft with natural light, while a Dutch door can be opened for some fresh air. Use the upstairs space for additional storage, or turn the loft into an office, craft room, music studio, or secluded hangout spot. The sheds can double as covered parking and alfresco entertaining areas. Did someone say party barn?

Who wouldn't want to embrace country living with their very own barn? This plan's open, informal features make it feel so inviting. Build Ol' Man Ginn's Barn as a companion to another popular plan, American Farmhouse (SL-1996).