Have you dreamed of having a beautiful outdoor space? Since I’ve been spending all this time at home during quarantine, I’ve been really intentional about getting outside and enjoying the sunshine and fresh air. We don’t have a back patio or deck, but I’ve tried to make the most of it with what we have. I won’t share any pictures at this point, because it’s nothing pretty to look at! But it’s left me planning a dreaming for a nice backyard area some day! If you mix a little time, energy, and ingenuity into any project, it can pay off in dividends! Here are some things that I’ve come up with to create a beautiful outdoor space on a budget!
As with any project, the first thing I do is gather inspiration. Scour Pinterest, Instagram, your favorite catalogs or websites. Create a Pinterest board with anything and everything that strikes you. Then come up with a budget. The great thing about outdoor spaces is that they can be mix and match. Come up with a look or color scheme that you like from your inspiration, and then you can find items by thrifting, yard saling, searching Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. Don’t forget to shop your home, too! Maybe you already have some things that can be tweaked or painted. A little spray paint goes a long way to create a cohesive look!
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Look at this beautiful outdoor space that my friend Tammy @cottagecozyhome created! Everything was thrifted, handed down, or found on Facebook Marketplace. The key to making it all look cohesive is coordinating pillows and rug, and spray painting it all the same color. I love how this space came out!
1) Identify Your Wants/Needs
Think about how you want to use your outdoor space. Do you want a separate seating area and eating area? Do you want a fire pit? How many people do you want to seat outside? Would you host large gatherings, or just use it for your family? Would you just use the existing patio or deck that you already have, or would you use yard space?
2) Make a Space Plan
Once you have identified how you want to use your outdoor space, make a space plan. Measure the area/areas you will be using. Sketch out how you want to place the furniture, fire pit, or whatever else you would like in your outdoor space.
3) Select Furniture
Once you have identified your wants and needs, and measured out your spaces, you will now have a better idea of what size and what kind of furniture that you need. Make sure to include the amount of chairs or seating that you want. Begin thrifting, shopping, or looking on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. Be sure to make a list with the item and measurements you need and keep it with you if you are out! Neutral or black is always best! You can add in fun colors in the next step.
If you are handy, you can build your furniture! Look at this amazing sectional! Ana White has the best FREE furniture plans! You can also google free furniture plans, there are 1000s out there!
Once you have all of the big items that you need, it’s time for the fun part-accessorizing! This is where you can add fun colors or patterns. A rug is key to defining the space and setting the tone and color scheme. Be sure you get one large enough that at least the front legs of all of your furniture can touch it, but not too large that it is bigger than your patio or designated space! Here are some great outdoor rugs:
Pillows are also key to setting the tone and defining the color scheme! Pillows seem to be on clearance often, just be sure that they are outdoor pillows. Ross, Home Goods, At Home, and Target are great places to find outdoor pillows. Walmart has an amazing section of outdoor pillows that are really affordable. These are the ones I’m currently crushing on, all under $13!!! You can find them here.
Occasional furniture like little end tables, coffee tables, and stools are so much fun to add. They are readily available at garage sales, thrift stores, and Facebook Marketplace. Occasional furniture seems to often be on sale or clearance too, if shopping new. I usually see good deals on them at Michael’s, Joanns, and World Market during the summer.
Does your space need shade? Here are some great options.
Don’t forget the string lights! Lighting is so affordable, easy to put up, and sets the mood in the evening. String lights can be found just about anywhere. Here are some great options.
Creating an outdoor space doesn’t have to be complicated, or really expensive! Be creative, find things over time, tweak or paint them to match your look, and before you know it, you can Create a Beautiful Outdoor Space on a Budget!