Whether you’re looking for new skills, friendship, or a place to practice a hobby, women’s sheds around Australia have open doors for women of all ages.
Here’s what you should know about women’s sheds, from how they work to how to find one near you.
What are women’s sheds
Like men’s sheds, women’s sheds meet regularly to learn new skills and work on projects. Women’s sheds are not-for-profit, inclusive spaces, just as much places for community connection as they are for learning and creating.
What do you do in a women’s shed?
Some women’s sheds, like Women’s Shed Canberra, focus on giving women handy-work, trade and home-maintenance skills, and even upskilling for new jobs. These sheds are complete with power tools and experts… and, in the case of the Canberra shed, regular sustainable flower-arranging workshops. Brisbane’s Women’s Shed at Ferny Grove (WSFG) is one of several Australian women’s sheds that focus on wood and metalworking.
Other women’s sheds are centred around art and crafts. Playford Women’s Shed in South Australia has a weekly timetable of workshops and activities and describes itself as “a safe space for women of all ages, ethnicities, cultures, income, religion and backgrounds. We offer meals, activities or just somewhere to have a coffee.”
Most women’s sheds share a space with a men’s shed or rent a community space. That’s why they often charge an annual membership fee, and the challenge is often finding a space to suit a growing membership.
How to find a women’s shed near you
Many women’s sheds are back open in 2021. Australia’s first thee women’s sheds opened in 2010. Now, community sheds expert Professor Barry Golding lists 51 active women’s sheds around Australia in an online database. According to Golding’s list, there are 32 women’s sheds in New South Wales, eight in Victoria, eight in Queensland, five in Western Australia, four in South Australia, and one in Tasmania.
Australia’s newest women’s sheds are:
- Brisbane’s Women’s Shed at Ferny Grove (opened September 2021)
- Bendigo Women’s Shed (opened November 2021)
To find a women’s shed near you, look up your state in the database or have a Google. Or you might consider starting one yourself…
Alex is a journalist and freelance writer who loves bringing you inspiring stories. Have an idea for a story? Let her know at firstname.lastname@example.org