Spring and Summer are on their way, and warmer weather means time enjoying the great outdoors. If you live in a house with a beautifully landscaped backyard, you are probably all set. But everyone, regardless of the size of their yard–even if you have no yard at all!–can create a beautiful outdoor space thanks to the idea of a patio garden. When my husband and I were first married, we lived in a condo with a tiny balcony off the kitchen. We outfitted it with a small bistro table and a pair of chairs, and lots of outdoor plants in pots. It was a lush and lovely way to enjoy being outside.
Setting up a picture-perfect patio garden is simple. First, you need potted plants. If you have a large patio, try to find large-scale plants and appropriately-sized pots to put them in. Even small trees look great in pots on a pretty patio. If the plants you want are really, really big, make sure they can stay outside year-round, or be ready to lug them in when the weather turns cold. And if your patio is smaller, you can fill it up with fun potted plants that are on the more diminutive side. Next, you need some fun seating and a cute table. A big patio can fit a big table with lots of seating, but a smaller patio still has room for a cozy bistro table big enough for two. After that, you just need some fun finishing touches and your patio garden is ready to go. Pretty lighting like candles on the table, or a string of patio lights, and decorative planters or plant stands add to the warm and inviting atmosphere. Here are some of my favorite elements of a picture-perfect patio garden…
1. GRÄSMARÖ Tool Set
2. SOCKER Watering Can
3. ASKHOLMEN Plant Stand
4. JACKFRUKT Herb Scissors
5. ÄPPLARÖ Drop-Leaf Table and Folding Chairs
6. HIMALAYAMIX Potted Plants
7. KRYDDNEJLIKA Gardening Gloves
8. BITTERGURKA Hanging Planter
9. ÄGGPLANTA Planter
10. ÄPPLARÖ Bench with Panel and Shelves
11. JACKFRUKT Pruning Shears
12. INGEFÄRA Plant Pot with Saucer
13. SUCCULENT Potted Plants
For more inspiration, visit the IKEA Spring brochure.
I don’t know if there’s anything better than sitting around a bonfire eating toasty marshmallows and listening to crackling wood. My unlucky soul, however, lives in an apartment and can’t enjoy such pleasures unless someone else is throwing a party. I’ll keep dreaming though. Here are just a few inspiring fire pits I can’t keep off my third-floor-living mind.
1) Do you have a unique landscape feature that goes unused? Convert it into a fire pit! Lucy couldn’t keep the fish in her koi pond because of predators. Instead of constantly restocking, she let the water-feature dry out. Now it makes a beautiful addition to her patio.
Image via: Lucy’s Lampshade
2) This DIY brick fire pit saved blogger Jim a pretty penny, costing only $1.35. Most of the materials were leftovers scrapped from project sites. Check out Jim’s step-by-step guide on how to create this unique inground fire pit.
Image via: The Perfect Garden Hose
3) This tabletop fire pit is so neat. Karen shows us the detailed steps for making this portable fire pit on her blog, The Art of Doing Stuff. She goes as far as creating the glass enclosure and teaching us a cool trick with a spaghetti noodle.
Image via: The Art of Doing Stuff
4) If you aren’t afraid to get your hands dirty, this project is for you. From Man Made, a postmodern male’s hands-on creativity blog, Chris shows readers how to create a concrete fire pit from scratch. Those who take on this project will really enjoy Chris’s detailed explanations and images.
Image via: Man Made
5) Morgan Satterfield of the Brick House needed to replace a failed attempt at a DIY cinder block fire pit. Testing out a new skill she picked up from friends, Morgan explains a basic welding project to create this sleek, square fire pit.
Image via: The Brick House
6) This artistic DIY mosaic fire pit is perfect for the bold-color lover. Kristy O, of 3 Peppers, provides detailed steps of laying the pavers, creating the pit, and choosing the mosaic tiles for her Florida backyard project.
Image via: 3 Peppers
7) Giving old items new purpose is an art form. Sarah, creator of House and Fig, has that art mastered. She shows us in just seven steps how to turn a washing machine drum into a DIY fire pit. Talk about an upcycle.
Image via: House and Fig
8) Making a fire pit multipurpose isn’t something you’ll hear too often. Robin and Mike from All Things Heart and Home had a stellar idea to use their fire pit for not one, not two, but three purposes! Check out the how-to on this fire pit/tabletop/game board.
Image via: All Things Heart and Homes
Greet the heat and get started on building these DIY fire pits so you can enjoy their flames all summer long and well into the fall. Have a marshmallow or two for me!
Until next time,
Just as the first signs of spring appear, I can be found getting my patio ready for the upcoming months of relaxing and entertaining. This is the best time of the year to prep your outdoor space to ensure it can be utilized to its fullest potential during the warm days ahead. IKEA offers affordable outdoor pieces that are key to livening up any space, while also being mindful of practicality and space saving options. Check out these tips for personalizing the space that sees the most action during the spring, summer and fall months.
- Create zones! A lot of activities happen outdoors; everything from roasting marshmallows to relaxing with a book to grilling up a meal for friends and family. Outdoor rugs and patio tiles are a great way to visually add warmth and to divide the spaces by function.
- Set the mood! Sprinkle table-top lanterns around your surfaces, patio and yard. Lanterns paired with decorative string lighting overhead are the perfect combination for a romantic dinner for two or an entire yard full of friends and family.
- Create the ultimate outdoor kitchen by combining your grill with storage carts and cabinets. The cabinets are ideal for on the spot entertaining; keep them stocked with all of your favorite outdoor dining pieces, textiles and servingware. By setting up a secondary kitchen outdoors, the chef can continue to be in on the entertaining action.
- Utilize caddies to easily tote items from your indoor kitchen to your outdoor cooking station.
- Add privacy and life with greenery. A combination of planters, trellises and tabletop green houses are a fantastic way to add earthy character while also providing fresh vegetables and herbs to add to your nightly meals.
- Select smart seating options. Weather can change at a moments notice; one day it might be hot and humid and the next it could be raining cats and dogs. Outdoor furniture should be able to withstand the changing moods of the sky, yet should also be comfortable enough that you want to use it every day. Not only do outdoor cushions provide comfort, they come in a variety of patterns and colors to add a splash of personality to any seating area. A throw blanket or two is always a nice touch for chillier evenings.
- Another fun way to add color is through your tabletop settings. Don’t be afraid to select runners, trays and dinnerware from different sets and product lines, to add character and color through mixing and matching patterns and finishes. Another way to amp the table display is to transfer beverages to glass carafes and foods to serving dishes and even decorative jars.
- Nothing warms up a space better than a nice, toasty fire. Bring in a portable fire pit to be sure everyone at the party has a blazin’ good time.
For more inspiration, visit the IKEA Spring brochure.
Trend: 20 Creative Lighting DIYs
Bad lighting can really make a nice home feel dull and boring. Don’t let that happen to your house. There are a TON of great ideas out there to make your own Creative Lighting DIYs, so I explored the internets and found some of my favorites that I think you will all love. There’s something for everyone and each skill level. Ready?
1) This DIY Neon Letter Light is amazing! Found on I Spy DIY.
2) This Brass Chandelier DIY looks like a lot of work, but the end result is worth it. Found on One Kings Lane.
3) Do you know what those pendants are made from? Old camper stands! I love how they turned out. Found on The White Buffalo Styling Co.
4) These hanging lanterns are so cool. Made with rice paper lanterns from Ikea, then adding fabric triangles or spray painted paper strips. So cool. Found on Decor 8 blog and from the Danish BoligLiv magazine.
5) If you’d prefer an easier paper lantern DIY, this ombré hanging lantern is perfect! Found on Remodelista.
6) I could totally see this DIY Mod Twig light hanging over my dining table. Make it for under $10! Found on Curbly.
7) I’ve shared this lighted headboard in the past, but I love it so much I wanted to share it again. Found on A Beautiful Mess.
8) Yup, these pendant lights are made from recycled cardboard. Found on Sugar and Cloth.
9) This cool lamp is made with lightweight flexible wood and wire mesh. Found on Infarrantly Creative.
10) Sputnik chandeliers are out of my price range, but this Sputnik inspired IKEA light hack might just work for me. Found on Little Green Notebook.
11) How appropriate is this? A clothespin lamp I’m a laundry room. Found on Young House Love.
12) There are a lot of bubble lamp DIYs out there, but this one is my favorite. Why? This DIY is very user friendly and the lamp turned out great. Found on Small Notebook.
13) These hat lights are so much fun. Found on Paper n Stitch.
14) Transform Ikea’s Leran basket lamp into these pretty two toned creations. Found on Chatelaine.
15) Are you up for a fun paper folding project? Check out how to fold some paper into these cool lamps! Found on Curbly.
16) Yes, this is a vase turned into a light. I love it, especially the bright pink string wrapped around the wire. Found on My Pattern of Life.
17) This light would be so easy to make, made from a decorative metal sheet. Found on Cleverly Inspired.
18) I have to tell you guys, I’m still into ombré projects and these glass ombré pendants are lovely. Found on Design Love Fest.
19) This pendant light was made from two baskets! Found on Design Sponge.
20) If you’re not up for a big lighting project you can always purchase a DIY light. This light box is always a DIY. Change out the words daily if you’d like. Comes in different sizes. Found on Design Life Kids.
We want to see what you’re crafting! You can share a link to what you’ve made in the comments below, or tag me on Instagram with a photo (my user name is @thepapermama).
- Chelsey, The Paper Mama
It’s a common known fact that summer is traditionally the perfect time to refresh just about all the areas of our lives—from our outfit staples and gardens, to our organization routines and hair dos. After months of living under winter’s blustery shadow and thawing out throughout spring, there’s nothing quite so invigorating as summer’s timely excuse to ignore our obligations in lieu of quality rest and relaxation under the sun’s warming rays.
While you’re kicking back this season, why not spend a bit of time considering ways to add a little life and personality to your walls with brand new art arrangements? Although it may sound like a small change, refreshing your gallery walls and framed prints has the power to completely transform a space into the oasis you’ve been dreaming of. Scroll on for a few seasonal tips that will have you feeling like a professional curator in no time!
Before even thinking about your art, first while away some time wondering about frames. A cohesive collection of all-white (or all-black, or all-pink) frames will make your collection feel united and intentional. Anything from children’s art to black and white portraits will look natural alongside one another when set inside matching frames.
Are you a renter or chronic rearranger? There’s hope for you yet as an at-home art collector and stylist! Instead of peppering your walls with semi-permanent nail holes, try leaning your summer artwork on top of a surface, such as a buffet table or nightstand.
Choose a variety of frame sizes to maximize this layered look, and don’t shy away from the idea of including an empty frame or two to turn the collection into an eye-catching focal point. Leaning the art rather than hanging it allows you to rearrange the look and prints in a flash all throughout summer as you make new memories.
In case the idea of a gallery wall is a little too chaotic for your contemporary, minimalist taste, try incorporating a single statement piece of art or just a pair of prints. This modern look allows you to put your absolute favorite piece or two front and center in your home, and really sets the scene for the colors and patterns in the rest of the room.
As you think about your summertime space, consider choosing a light, bright, and airy piece of art that will bring the outdoors in and encourage a bit of longing for adventure. A vintage inspired city map or whimsical winged portrait, for example, gives you a visual excuse to venture out and properly celebrate the season.
For more inspiration, visit the IKEA Spring brochure.
Decorating your walls can be scary, I should know, I am a big time procrastinator when it comes to putting together a gallery wall. I am a visual person but also someone who likes to be sure before I dive into a project. There are so many ideas out there to curating your walls & it can be a bit overwhelming. Not sure why putting a nail hole in the wall for the first time seems frightening, but it does. Lucky for us there are some easy ways to get creative and work your walls. Whether you are someone who likes continuity and balance or someone who prefers to mix and match your wall space, this post has something for everyone.
1. Get Personal. You will never regret crafting a wall that tells a story of your family with memories. This does take time but it is well worth any effort put into this project. Black and white photos are a beautiful way to display these treasured pieces, plus it makes it easy to blend with the decor in any room. Mix and match frames sizes and colors for a stylish compilation.
2. Add Dimension. Think outside the box when it comes to your walls. Adding dimension to your vertical space can give interest and character plus it is playful and & a bit unexpected. Be on the look out for items that aren’t necessarily meant for walls, anything with a shortish depth can be hung. You can use dimensional art alone or to compliment your existing pieces.
3. Layer in Vintage. There was so many cool ideas for adding vintage details to your walls, from old maps & blueprints to oil painting, signage and photographs. You can add vintage with new or go strictly with items that have an aged history. Either way they give an authentic texture unlike anything you can buy new and of course each piece is embedded with a story.
3. Create Function. No matter how much space we do or don’t have, making the most of your wall space is key. We can easily forget that the vertical space is just as important and bring added function to any space. Displaying jewelry, hats, scarves and bags can make for a beautiful and purposeful art installation. You can also hang cutting boards, crates for storage, boxes with herbs and/or a grouping of mirrors, just to name a few.
5. Make it Yourself. In a day in age where 3 little letters can be found spoken in just about every household, it surely does makes the idea of DIY less frightening. Plus, you can find the directions to make anything online. Whether it is a simple sign, a palette clock, an abstract painting or faux taxidermy it can all be done, so why not try it. Adding pieces you made or maybe your children made can only enhance your walls and give them an added bit of sparkle.
Have a fantastic week,