Backyard Retreat

We are in the process of decorating our backyard deck so I pulled these pictures from Pinterest for inspiration.* Outdoor spaces can be tricky but I’m applying my design philosophy (see Decor Secrets blog post) to help me figure out what to do. First up, is to decide how we want it to function. Mainly, I want it to be a quiet sanctuary where we can sit with a cup of coffee or glass of wine and relax. Because of our busy schedules, we need a peaceful retreat but we also like to entertain, so it needs to work for more than the two of us.

Next, I have to settle on a style so I can decide what furniture and accessories we need. Fortunately, I like shabby chic and cottage style so nothing has to match. I started out with a teak bench and a round metal table and a few metal side tables. To that I have added a mish mash of furniture from a wicker settee and chairs to an old door and a chiminea, all scored at yard sales. I just found a funky distressed red shelf with a chicken wire back which adds a pop of color.

The color scheme is based on red and bright green outdoor pillows that I already owned. To tie it all together I spray painted the small side tables apple green and bought a matching umbrella. I also spray painted the large round metal table espresso brown. The wicker furniture is tan and white and I’m leaving them as is but at some point I will give them a coat of clear varnish to protect them. Most of my other outdoor cushions are off white so everything works together nicely.

To create an entertaining area I decided to re-purpose one of my potting benches into an outdoor bar by adding a bottle opener and using the drawer that holds the dirt as an ice bucket. And for now, I’m using the old door to hang signs and bird houses because that works best in the space but it can be changed out later. The large round table is in the corner of the deck near the potting bench and it can be used for dining or set up as a buffet.

So the current arrangement is the teak bench with the settee on one side and the two wicker chairs and a side table on the other side facing each other. There is a small coffee table in front of the bench and a side table next to the settee. It’s important to have a table near each seat so you can easily set your drink down. The potting bench and red shelf are on either side of the teak bench. I am still working on where to put the chiminea but it will become a focal point once I fill it with outdoor candles.

Plants and the rest of the lighting are still to come but I wanted to share the inspiration and thought process behind creating our backyard retreat. We will keep you posted… in the meantime, happy Spring!

*Note: Flea Market Gardens 2017 also gave me lots of creative ideas for using junktiques outdoors.

Resources: outdoor pillows (Pottery Barn), Apple Green and Espresso Brown spray paint (Ace Hardware), Citron umbrella and stand (Pier 1 Imports), potting bench and outdoor candles (World Market), Flea Market Gardens 2017 magazine (Lowes).


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