In case you missed last week’s Instagram post, I am officially participating in this spring’s One Room Challenge! If you’re unfamiliar with it, One Room Challenge is when a group of 20 designers and influencers makeover a room or space in 6 weeks… documenting the progress each week with a huge reveal at the end of it all! The last time I participated, I made over the bathroom in my rental loft, but now that I’m a homeowner, it feels like the stakes are higher! I am so excited to announce that we will be making over the mudpit we call a backyard and turning it into an incredible oasis, perfect for summertime entertaining.
Let’s start with some before photos and notes on the space, shall we?
This is what our backdoor looks like — a jumble of random stuff, Lacroix cases and giant trash containers. As a household, we don’t generate much trash, but require two massive recycling bins. The city only collects every other week, so it tends to stack up. Finding a way to conceal the bins would be amazing and definitely keep them from being an eyesore. Also, I want to powerwash the house so the siding looks fresher and then get new lighting and maybe even a new backdoor. Maybe we should paint the steps, too…
Once you round the corner, here is the view. Our fence is quite sad and all of the vertical boards need to be replaced. They are pretty soggy and rotten. The wider 4x4s that hold the fence boards in place are actually still in good shape, so the plan is to keep those and work around them. I also really hate the lattice along the top because people walk by and always look into our yard! Even though we are in the city, I’d really love for our backyard to feel more private.
As you can tell… nothing is really growing back there. Or at least nothing is growing nicely! The chickens have done a number on the yard, but it’s also just always been so. incredibly. muddy. I’ve spent the first two years of homeownership (year 1 recap + year 2 recap) removing dead tree stumps and anything overgrown, so now it feels like I am finally ready to plant some good stuff! Nothing will grow under the massive cedar tree, so I want to put in pavers and convert that area to a lounge space that will be perfect for entertaining around a fire pit.
The neighboring building is also quite tall and quite… ugly. They have gnarly overgrown bushes that drive me NUTS… and because it’s an apartment building, the bushes are never trimmed! I am going to check our local laws, but I have visions of putting a simple reed fence that’s 10 feet fall behind our actual wooden fence so that it provides a bit more privacy and camouflage for their overgrown situation. At this point, I’d rather look at a wall of reed fencing like this instead of their mess.
Isn’t it just so sad looking??? This side of the yard has been neglected for so long, especially after we got the chickens.
As for the deck, I want to convert that into a dining area because we grill practically every night during the summer and into the fall. Having usable outdoor space is crucial to us because it makes the house feel SO much bigger!
And last, but not least… a new chicken coop! The ladies definitely need a new home, plus I would love to add a few more to our flock. We plan to relocate the girls to another portion of the yard so that we can take over their yard and have more space for ourselves! They will still be allowed to free range, but just in another part of the yard.
In terms of the design plan, here is a moodboard of what I am feeling:
I have been obsessed with Meg Pflug’s backyard since the first time she posted about it — from the black fence to the foliage… it’s perfection. We also really need a new chicken coop and new fire pit (our was stolen out of the yard not too long ago!). I also really want to have more greenery so that the space feels more lush. And finally I want a super chill, hangout space with bluestone pavers so that we can entertaining all summer long.
image sources, top to bottom, left to right:
- Megan Pflug Designs
- Terrain on Instagram
- DigsDigs — I know this isn’t the original source of the image, but can’t find the original. If you know, please let me know and I will update!
- Carey Ezell
- Hej Doll
There are so many incredible sponsors giving product for One Room Challenge, so here are a few of the pieces I definitely want to incorporate into our makeover. There a few more surprises coming, but I don’t want to give it all away at once!
- copper LED string lights
- taupe & ivory outdoor garden pot
- black and white striped outdoor pillows
- Stori Modern Graphic loveseat
- black outdoor wall sconce
- Jill Rosenwald vase
- Pom Pom At Home Newport throw
- firewood storage
- rock LED landscaping lights
- concrete side table
- wood burning fire bowl
- Rock Ridge Stone irregular thermal bluestone
- blue moon outdoor pillow
- woven stool
So that’s the plan! What do you think??
Be sure to follow along with the other designers participating, too: