This is our 3rd summer renting our house and whilst it has lots of pro’s, like being in the centre of town, walking distance from schools, shops, cafes and the park, the down side to that is that we have very limited outdoor space. We have a double garage located at the bottom of the garden which is great for storage but means not much garden. The grass that was down was more soil than anything and we’ve tried putting more grass seed down but with a dog and 2 kids, one wanting to play football and the other wanting to do gymnastics it wasn’t happening! I think it’s really important to have somewhere to relax both indoors and outdoors, Not only do the kids and dog love spending time in the garden so do my Husband and I. If I wake up and the sun’s shining I love sitting in the garden with my morning coffee waiting for the rest of the house to come alive. We also love having friends over for BBQ’s in the summer and sitting out with a G&T once the kids are in bed. Since moving to this house we haven’t really been able to do this as our outdoor space has been totally neglected and unappealing. So after a spell of hot, summer days it spurred us on to do something about it and we decided to begin operation “garden makeover!”
This is how it looked before.
My ideal outdoor space is to create something that feels like an extension of my home and almost an extra room but without spending a fortune, as we are renting after all. We are lucky that we already have some garden furniture which has been stowed away in the garage so I already had a few items as a starting point. I wanted to use lots of natural materials and neutral colour palette as I think this works really well outdoors.
First we decided to use some kind of screening for the garage to cover the wall and window and have this as a backdrop to our outdoor room. I found this Reed Fencing in Home bargains for a bargain £5.99. At 1.5m it wasn’t tall enough to run horizontally so I picked up 2 packs and decided to use it vertically. My Husband secured it to the wall with nails, it was up in no time and already made a huge difference!
Next to tackle the grass problem, we decided to lay some artificial grass. Some people might think that this is a bit of an unnecessary expense when you’re renting but the other option was to start again and lay new turf. The ground is very hard and full of rubble so we thought the artificial turf would look better. It requires no watering, no mowing, and no feeding meaning more time to sit and relax with a glass of pimms and will also stand up to pets, kids, and variable English weather.
Artificial lawns have come a long way since their invention in the ‘60s and there are hundreds of different types. You can go all out a pay a fortune for a higher grade and for a company to come out and lay it professionally or you can do what we did and choose shop bought and lay yourself. Obviously this isn’t going to look as good and realistic but it is good enough for what we need.
The one we went for was from Morrisons, it was £25 per roll and we used 6 rolls in total.
Once the artificial grass was down I could then start the fun part which was furnishing and accessorising. I pulled all our chairs out of the garage and gave them a good dust off! We didn’t have a table so I improvised and used this old crate which my husband made years ago for shoe storage in our previous home! We have under stairs storage in this house so it’s been gathering dust in the garage. I turned it upside down and voila! I’ve had the dolly tub planters for years so it was just a case of moving things around.
This lamp is one I’ve had for years from Habitat but the plastic socket where the bulb screws into is broken. I’ve been meaning to get it repaired for a while now but as my Husband keeps telling me, we have far too many lamps already!! So I decided to give it a spray job and use it in the garden. I made the shade from the left over Reed fencing. Leave me a message below if any of you want me to do a how to blog tutorial.
So the finishing touch which I think has totally brought the whole space together is these amazing Festoon lights from Lights4fun. I say this all the time but lighting is key in any space, indoors or outdoors. I love how these lights give a gorgeous soft glow and even when the weather isn’t nice enough to sit out we can still see them twinkling away from indoors. In winter it will be lovely to look out onto a another room rather than just a dark garden.
I picked up the “No hand signals” sign on Ebay.
We are totally in love with our new outdoor room. We’ve enjoyed the garden much more and already sat out several times until late sipping elderflower G&T’s which you can find the recipe for here.
Thank you for stopping by and reading my garden reveal. If you’ve enjoyed the post you can subscribe by entering your details in the box below. Also if you need any help styling your outdoor space then please get in contact, I would love to help.
Thank you to Lights4fun who collaborated with me on this post.
One last thing before I head off! There’s still time to vote for me in the newcomer category for the Essential Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom influencer awards! You can read more about it here. I can’t tell you how happy I am that I got through to this stage. The awards will be held in London in September. But there are other great bloggers in the same category so to be in with a chance of winning I really need your help. Click here if you would like to vote for me.