So, one day the sun may return to the Pacific Northwest. Until then, my mind is obviously obsessed when that is and to be so ready.
I have a corner in my yard that has been plagued, literally, with doom, since I moved in. The amazing neighbors (*sarcasm), built their deck right up to the fence so, looking over down into my yard was as easy as putting their annoying elbows on the top of it. Yeah…No. I don’t know about you but, I enjoy my backyard privacy. I don’t really care for a creepy neighbor dude looking in and asking “what’s up” all the time.
I tried the idea of planting bamboo, to create more privacy in that area. Fail. Then tall bushes. Whatever it is about that spot…they died. Fail. A small chicken coop has resided there for awhile and boards were added to the top of the fence line for privacy. And, a sad empty patch of dirt. And, sorry to say this has been the most successful scenario. Not very attractive.
I have been a firm believer as a designer and backyard lover, to create spaces within your outdoor area, albeit big or small. What do I mean by this? Have a place to sit and conversate, have a space to eat, have a place to sun, and have a fire pit if possible to enjoy evenings. Having places to maximize your outdoor experience and get the most enjoyment out of every day and space. You can create these with the help of chairs, tables, rugs and pillows. Home Goods, Craigslist even places like Grocery Outlet have small, cheaper pieces to pull together charming areas. Make a plan for what you need and chip slowly away at it if necessary.
Which brings me back to this current project. My place to sun. I have been chipping away at this lame area for awhile now. Be aware that the neighbor has also, built added an otrotious arbor that scales way up over the top of the fence now. I’m not sure if this is plan keeps involving looming over my backyard but, again, weird. They finally two years later have just now planted a plant to grow on the thing. A solution created was to put up linear panels attached to two planter boxes below. Then I don’t have to look at that darn thing lurking over my fence. That’s to come. Then in the middle would be an outdoor day Bed in the sunniest spot. Wa-la! Now, I will eventually add lush, greenery with propensity to lots of sun and hope for success once and for all. I’m also going to plant something fragrant to: 1. Help mask the chicken smell and 2. Deter mosquitos (we have a mutual hate for each other). I will have an area to sit and nap or read and I’m still working out the details of creating shade. So here it is so far…
The boxes were already made when out of the blue, I started thinking of something I had always loved as well…a low table that could be moved out to the grass and used as a dining area. Why couldn’t the daybed and the table serve as doubly functional?! Now, I would be able to create an additional dining area more boho casual spot for al fresco eating. This my friends, would be my “two birds with one stone moment”! Actually, four. Sunning, smell, cover and dining/seating. But, you get it, I’m sure.
I finally had enough of not being able to see what I had for the seasons! This was a quick and easy DYI project that will get me back to seeing what I already have. And, more importantly what I can add!
I personally looked on Craiglist for any of the items I had to gather. The wood was here and the casters were a successful Craiglist find. The rest is at your local hardware store. The piping exists in different sizes and can be cut and threaded to easily screw into your elbow pieces. Truth be told there was 3 Home Depot trips to find out the cutter/threader was broken and I’m suspecting because someone ran the machine untrained and broke it. 3 stores! After a return Lowes finally got it done. I suggest calling ahead. Save yourself all the driving and frustration.
There is a lot of screwing together and down. Easy for someone moderately handy. The casters at a discount cut the total project cost quite a bit.
Overall, the cost to make this should be roughly between &80.00-$100.00 depending on where you get and gather your materials.
What you will need:
4 casters- 3″or 4″
2 pipes galvanized or black @ 60″
1 pipe galvanized or black @41″
2 matching metal anchor discs
4 1×5 wood planks 44″ in length. Your width will be roughly 20 3/4″. You can modify all of this by shortening you planks and cross bat accordingly.
2 1×5 20 3/4 cross planks
Assemble your platform with your boards and cross planks by screwing down 2 screws per board. Once solid, flip over and screw down your 4 casters. This is not a skateboard. Don’t be silly. Now flip back over and screw on anchor discs. Your ready to add your vertical threaded pipes. Secure these and twist in tightly. Okay, screw in your cross bar. And, you have your new industrial chic clothing rack! You could get even more creative by adding a shelf at the top or I the platform. Modifications could be awesome.
I think it looks more extensive and more expensive then it actually is! What do you think? Would you have one of these in your space?
I can now properly get ready for my fall and winter wardrobe the right way. At least that’s a bonus. 😉
I have been looking for maps to complete a pirate playhouse in our backyard. I am still on the hunt. But, I did find a couple compelling things at a vintage shop in downtown Tacoma called Urban Squirrel. It just has opened and had an interesting assortment of items. Including, a loose globe.
I wasn’t sure I wanted it until, I came across a fantastic lamp piece. Aged and detailed, it seemed to make perfect sense to put the two together. I imagined a rod through the middle as an axis.
The shop owner agreed and suggested I head over to a little hardware shop called Lincoln Hardware.
Needless to say, she was right. They were so friendly and accommodating it was impressive. In fact, two other people came in during the time I was there for small unique projects and their questions were looked on as willing challenges by, who I assumed, might be the owners. It was wonderfully, small town refreshing.
As you can see we came up with a nice resolution and this world globe lives to see another day. And, hopefully spurn on some learning for a little one for now. And, maybe a nice little decor item for later…
For awhile now we have been working on a backyard studio for doing art, entertaining and making more livable space, outside the small home we are in. On a huge lot. This has been an ongoing process and continues to be. But, I’m excited to say that things have picked back up on the project, once again.
Firstly, you should know I have an Interior Design degree and Jay, my sons father is a carpenter by trade for 20+ years. We often don’t see eye to eye on a few things. However, projects like these bring us to a happier place.
We often don’t have a lot of extra cash lying around either for things like these so, there have been many “make it work” moments in expanding our backyard and building supplies. I have always been okay with up cycling or using “found” or the right free items, as well. Why not? The world is full of enough garbage. I think it’s great not to waste it. Because of it, I have been honing my skills for Craigslist “free” and that has helped the creativity keep going. Just a couple weeks ago, I randomly sat down and checked the site and really, really lucked out on a great couple in the South sound, getting rid of ALL of the cedar siding on their house. And, it was in fantastic shape plus, 1/2″ think, which apparently is unheard of nowadays. Serious, serious score.
The catch. It had to be de-nailed and planed down to get it looking back to fab. Okay, a bit of work. Also, three truck loads full. So, thanks to Jays perseverance and hard work with that, we won big with all that usable material. The roof shingles are a trade from Craigslist for an old iPhone and a mini projector. The door, a $20 Craigslist find. The skylight a $10 find. The windows below, side of the road free and $10. The ones above, $15 for the pair, just found the other day on offer up.
We happened to be headed to Home Depot and I caught a glimpse of a cabinet section with a sink that I’m hoping we can transform into a kitchenette, if you will. I’m thinking mini frig/freezer combo and an induction plate or 2 burner cooktop dropped in. Let’s see what I can find, right? It’s not the prettiest now. But, there’s potential, I hope. For a future post.
The plan is to get the wiring and insulting done soon. And, as you might of guessed by now, I found a dude on Craigslist, a former contractor, selling a boatload of cheaper insulation he got stuck with. It’s a no brainier, I will be hitting him up.
Now, I’m still looking for windows. One long slider for behind where the bed will go. You will be under a skylight which is exciting but, I hate the idea of it being stifling and hot while you sleep.
I still have to figure out the logistics of the bathroom. A compostible toilet sounds like a grand plan. Finding one for the right price is another story. IKEA has some interesting options for small sinks. And, I want to prepare it for once it does officially become plumbed to be a “wet” bathroom. We missing an electrician best friend is all, haha. But, I’m gonna remain optimistic that it will work out.
So, continuing to push on…
What makes it wonderful about coming to conclusions about defining your style is the money and time you will save having a direction and a plan.
First, determine your style. More modern, more vintage chic, more contemporary? There are lots of tests online to help edge you closer into your specific direction. Once you get this established, its gets easy to to center your focuses on pulling everything together.
Now that you have determined what your style is, time to go shopping in your own home. That’s right, pick and pull things that you love. It defines you. So, go with it. And, you save money on things you have already got. Those are the things that should be front and center.
Now determine the things you have but, don’t look as fresh as you would like or old and worn. Access if these things can be freshened with some easy simple ways. That old desk, sand it down and put on a new coat of stain and clear sealant, like new. Lamps might just need new shades to boost their beauty. Think of ways to improve on what you have already. It’s sexy to be self sufficient and handy anyway.
Speaking of lamps, good lighting is essential. Be it lamps, candles, or overhead lighting. It’s everything about making the mood. It enhances skin coloration, that amazing wall color and how you feel in that room. Dimmers are an easy addition to help facilitate a nice transition, between bumping up the light for either task or relaxed light.
Paint is a cheap and fast freshener. It’s inexpensive to change the whole look of your room too. If you can’t paint, there are lots of removable wallpapers to add to one wall to increase interest. If you can, there are so many gorgeous colors out there it’s sometimes hard to choose. I recommend paint samples and in a place with plenty of light. Now wait. That’s right! Look at your choices for a few days, during all times of the day, and then decide what is making you the happiest.
Now add your room “jewelry”. Yes, the jewelry of your room works just like and outfit for a man or a women. It’s accessories just like finishing of that ensemble like a watch, necklace or a sparkly ring. It adds the polish. You may wonder what this is for a room but, think about vases, candle holders, trays, foot stools and baskets. This is an opportunity to add texture and interest. And, it’s easy and inexpensive to take these few things and add a little more character to the room. 🌿
Want to know how to spruce up the boring workspace corner you have going on, on the cheap?
Easy. Just find charming little black frames and put in some favorite small art pieces that you love. You have the opportunity to use some of your favorite children’s art work. Or, find an old botanical print book at your used book shop, you can make some art easily and rotate it if your feeling artistic. Or mix them all together for a charming and eclectic look. I suggest gathering some pieces on a flat space and seeing how they play out together. Make it appealing. Do black and white but, add a pop of color. Or just go for it with color for a more modern/contemporary look and feel. This is supposed to be fun! And, the best thing is you can change the art out when you feel like refreshing or find something new…
You can find those little black frames at your local art store, IKEA, or go to the frame shop and have them made for a pretty reasonable price, out of the scrap from larger frames. You can buy or get one size or mix them up. Be sure to “weigh” them out visually. Not too many big paired with small for example. But, there are no set rules. Plan out the area by measuring and doing a little visual math for the areas for your frames and the artwork your most in love with.
You can make a plan for hanging using butcher paper, craft paper, or something reusable/recyclable by lightly taping a “map” of your plan before making holes, just to see it in theory.
Add a vintage light and cool, comfortable chair and you have just quickly and conveniently, personalized your workspace area for more interest! Simple right?
Have more questions or going to do this project? Let me know. I would love to hear how it goes!
Does music bring you as much joy as me? I confess, I am a self proclaimed music loving, tech geek. I think this audiophile would be a comfy, couch loving, cool kid that needs a place to chill and put on some funky beats. I couldn’t leave out the humor though because, come on who didn’t love an amazing mixed tape so, I guess a beatbox pillow will have to stir up those memories. Sometimes analog is better.
Like what you see? Follow me for more to come and contact me with questions, comments or oppurtunities.
FRENCH FILM STAR
Everyone has a little “diva” in them don’t they? Okay, some more than others. I am gonna jump right in, these spaces are concieved by me, for fictitious clients and the people I imagine them to be. This space for is for someone that might want to live like a diva. And who doesn’t love a little of the finer things? Luxery and sparkle with soft texures and many places to throw yourself down dramatically. It would be like never leaving your favorite fancy hotel.
You can find all the links and more information about these items on my page @ Wellfurnished.com Sonya Law, “French Film Star”