Summer is right around the corner and that means warm, sunny weather (hopefully soon for us in New Jersey). We take pride in our homes inside and it most certainly should not stop there! Why not create beautiful outdoor spaces where everyone will want to hang out?!

I’ve come up with some DIY projects, tips, and rounded up some budget friendly pieces to transform your outdoor space into a cool oasis (WARNING ⚠️: cleaning and some elbow grease may be required).

So before we get into all of the fun DIY projects, styling, and accessorizing, we have to talk about some things that might not be fun for many of us (I personally don’t mind getting my hands dirty, but that’s just me).

And that is…cleaning and weeding.

The moss on your house is not a good look. Period. The dirt and grime on your patio or deck is also not a good look. The solution (in most cases) is power washing! You’ll be amazed at how clean and refreshed your house will look. Google a local company in your area if you don’t want to do it yourself. But man oh man, what a difference it will make!

Also, as far as cleaning goes, make sure to dust away any cobwebs and throw away any old planters (with dead plants) and debris.

If you were one of the many who took advantage of the fact that we’re stuck at home in quarantine and did your spring cleaning/landscaping, then lucky you! But for those who did not…please don’t be mad at me! This is crucial to creating that inviting backyard and it’ll be worth it- trust me.

No one wants to hang out in an overgrown jungle of a yard. This may be obvious to most of us but make sure to cut your grass, trim your shrubs, and remove/treat any weeds. But if you’re not up for the challenge, just hire a landscaping company for that initial spring cleanup and then just make sure to maintain it after.

Let’s be real here, no one wants to hang out in a yard like this!

ARE YOU UP FOR SOME DIY PROJECTS?

Once your backyard is clean and tamed, it’s time to start thinking of some different ways to make your space look less…bland. I’ve come up with a couple of ways to spruce up your backyard with some DIY projects!

Stencil your patio/deck

Stenciling as become increasingly popular over the years, so for this post, I’m going to focus on stenciling your patio/deck area. Okay so how amazing do outdoor rugs look?? I find many clients are afraid to invest in an outdoor rug so that’s where the stenciled area rug comes into play. Yes, a stenciled area rug. Cutting Edge Stencils has THE coolest designs with tons of videos and tutorials on how to stencil pretty much anything! Their blog also has tons of useful information.

Add a privacy wall or screen

Nobody wants to have their neighbors peeping over to see what you’re up to. That is, unless you’re really close with your neighbors. But most of the time, we enjoy our privacy while in the comfort of our own backyards.

Fencing in our entire backyard might not be feasible for a lot of us. By adding a privacy wall or screen to your patio or deck will make a world of difference. If you’re not up for a DIY project, then check out websites like Wayfair for privacy screen solutions. I’m drooling 🤤over this cozy, private deck by The Fresh Exchange.

Hang some outdoor string lights

Finally, we’re looking for a little bit of ambience, amiright?? We’re gonna achieve this by some outdoor string lights for those late night hangouts. Houzz has a great article on how to hang outdoor string lights in your backyard.

Lighting is truly that finishing touch that adds such a cool, cozy feeling in your outdoor space!

NOW, LET’S DECORATE!

So now it’s time to talk about the fun stuff! 🤗Styling your backyard to bring the space all together. I’m gonna break it down for you to make it as simple as possible. You first have to think about how you will be using your outdoor space and what are your needs.

Do you have a small deck or patio where you host BBQs?

Do you have a large patio where you hang out, eat, and have a fire pit? If so, keep in mind, you must create separate, yet cohesive areas.

Maybe you have a reasonable sized deck and towards the far side of your yard, you want to designate a fire pit.

Once you’ve determined how you will be using your backyard, make a list of everything you will be needing to shop for (table, chairs/bench, sectional, fire pit, lounge chairs, side tables, palm trees, candles/lanterns, etc.) That way, you won’t be overwhelmed with the entire design process. It’s also very important to think of storage bins. If you buy furniture that has removable cushions, it’s best to store them so they won’t get waterlogged or fade in the sun.

A lot of retailers offer furniture sets so be on the look out for some of those options! I’ve come up with an outdoor design to give you an idea so you can get started on creating your outdoor oasis.

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