If you’re lucky enough to have a little outdoor space, you probably want to make the most of it, from finding the right outdoor furniture to keeping the lawn nicely manicured. Many who have backyards may feel that there’s more they can do to improve their space but that these things are too expensive or time-consuming. In reality, there are many small and easy changes you can make to your outdoor space that can have a huge impact, transforming an ordinary yard into a cozy, atmospheric, and beautiful area to spend time in. Here are some of our favorite simple ways to upgrade your backyard.
Outdoor space endures a lot of wear and tear from the elements, from wind to water to whatever else comes its way over the year. Adding a fresh coat of paint to your outdoor furniture, your deck, or even the back of your house can miraculously transform your area, sprucing things up and making things feel more like new. Changing up the color of your outdoor furniture can completely alter the energy of your yard. Painting your lawn chairs a fun color like red, yellow, or green or adding a finish to your teak outdoor furniture is an instant mood booster, making you want to spend way more time in your outdoor space. Make a day of it, inviting the family to tap into their creative side and help paint a piece of furniture or a particular area. They’ll be proud of the work they did and enjoy the fruits of their labor every time they come outside to relax in the sunshine.
The power of mood lighting is not to be underestimated. You can see the effects in each room in your home—yes, we know you tried arranging lamps seven different ways in your living room until you found the right mix of light and shadow (we have too!). But have you tried adding a little lighting design to your outdoor space? Of course, once the sun sets, some lighting is necessary to enjoy the outdoors. But ditch the harsh fluorescent floodlighting that’s installed in many yards and go for some delicate hanging string lights. You can get super creative with the placement of the lights, stringing them across your space to create a tent-like shape above you, mimicking the brightness of the stars in the sky. Throw some candles into the mix, offering a soft ambient touch and delicious smells to your gorgeous new lighting plan.
Planting flowers, shrubbery, and other plants has an astounding effect on the overall look of your yard, adding color and dimension to an otherwise flat-seeming space. Whether or not you have grass in your outdoor space, adding some flowers will beautify the area and boost your mood when you step outside. Choose bright, fun flowers that make you happy when you see them, mixing in some gorgeous shrubs and plants in between. You don’t have to go overboard—a few pots and plots throughout your yard will add small but powerful accents, making you feel like you’ve done much more than you actually have.
This tip is especially effective for urban yard space, which is often nestled right next to the neighboring yard. In fact, many neighbors share a single fence between their yards. Some varieties of fencing offer more privacy than others, and while we’re all for neighborly love, sometimes we need our space. Adding your own fence in a material you like will make you feel like you’re miles away from anyone else’s yard and transform your outdoor space into an area you’ll enjoy being in. Bamboo fencing is particularly attractive, with its natural fibers and soft material. You can also get creative with shrubbery and vines to add an added layer of privacy, and natural beauty, to your fences.
Once you’ve begun transforming your yard, you may find it difficult to spend time anywhere else. However, if you plan to enjoy the great outdoors during daylight hours, it’s important to remember to protect yourself from the sun. This can be done with sunscreen and SPF clothing , but you may also want to add some outdoor umbrellas and awnings to be extra sun-safe. Finding the right umbrella for your backyard can be a game-changer for your space, deflecting the blazing hot sun and allowing you to enjoy some shade no matter what. Every outdoor space needs one. If you want to take things a step further, you can install an awning on your yard, though this is a bit more of a project.
You’d be surprised at how easy it can be to transform your outdoor space one small step at a time. All it takes is a little creativity and some elbow grease.