Creative inspiration to give your yard a personal touch with DIY Backyard Fence Decor. You’ll love spending time outside in your garden. #Backyard #FenceDecor
Backyard Fence Decor
Personalize Your Fence with a Creative Touch
This past week, we got a NEW FENCE! You have no idea how thrilled we are. I will be putting a post together on the subject very soon, so keep watching the blog. But, with this lovely new fence in our yard, I thought it would be fun to look at ideas for backyard fence decor. So, please, enjoy this roundup of creative and easy DIY fence decoration ideas.
Are you looking for quiet and tranquility? Perhaps you could take a cue from the Japanese culture and create a Zen experience in your garden. You could even make a small Zen garden for inside your home.
6 Ways to Create a Zen Experience in Your Backyard
Beautiful gardens are an important part of Japanese culture. When you want to create a calming, meditative space in your backyard, take some inspiration from Japanese gardens. Raked sand, stone accents, and quiet spaces bring solitude and tranquility to your garden. Adding Zen inspirations to your garden will create a retreat for the mind right on your property.
Your garden is your connection to nature in your backyard. Make sure you can walk through it and enjoy it by creating pathways. Make a plan within your landscaping, then place flat stones to craft an easy DIY path through your backyard. When you’re gardening, be sure to shape the trees and plants around the path to make walking easy.
Clutter is distracting, and it takes up space you could be using for bonsai trees, a fountain, or lovely flowers. Get any old garage junk, broken lawn equipment, or other clutter out of your yard before starting a garden project. If you’re not into landscaping, hiring someone to remove your clutter can improve the look of your backyard significantly. You’ll enjoy a calmer experience outside with a de-cluttered yard.
Japanese rock gardens, called karesansui or Zen gardens, feature raked sand on a dry landscape instead of lots of grass and plants. Create an enclosure with wood to hold your sand, kind of like a sandbox for adults. Pay homage to the origins of this practice by raking your sand. It’ll look amazing, and since you have to go slowly to rake it properly, you’ll get some quiet time in nature every time you rake.
Accent With Stones
Japanese rock gardens also feature stones placed strategically on the sand. Raking sand around the stones creates beautiful patterns and adds authenticity to the karesansui aspect of your garden. Stones are a wonderful accent for people who don’t have time to tend to plants or who aren’t skilled enough gardeners to keep many plants alive.
Make Space for Meditating
Create an open space on the grass with a bench or in a gazebo where you can be alone in silence. Whether you practice meditation or simply need some solitude, create that space for yourself within nature so you can use the relaxing ambience of the outdoors to de-stress.
Harness Running Water
The sound of running water is a wonderfully calming accent to your Zen outdoor space. Install a pond with a rock waterfall or fountain to add the soft trickle of water to your garden’s ambience. The water sounds will also help mask any noises that float over your fence from the street.
Design and install the garden that makes you happiest, whether it creates a space for meditation, helps you enjoy spending time in a beautiful outdoor environment, or simply cleans up backyard clutter. This Zen outdoor space is for you to look at and to relax in, so choose the elements that will bring you the most peace.
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Make your summer nights beautiful by creating your own outdoor ambiance with this Solar Lamp DIY project.
Solar Lamp DIY
Add Some Style to Your Outdoor Living
I have been wanting to make a solar lamp for our backyard patio area for a long time. So, I kept an eye out for the perfect base to accomplish my goal. Luke and I stumbled upon a tall candlestick with a concrete base that we thought would work perfectly.
Gather What You Need:
Since this lamp is tall and will be outside (where you may get a breeze), we needed a heavy base to support the lamp. We found our base on clearance at one of our favorite craft and hobby stores. You could also find a heavy candlestick or lamp base at a thrift store or garage sale.
We picked up a hanging plant basket, a solar yard lamp, and a long screw with a washer to complete our project needs list. Choose a yard lamp and planter basket that fit the proportions of your base stand. We already had a can of black spray paint, some fine-to-medium sandpaper, and a couple pieces of scrap wood. You will also need zip ties, a pair of vice grips, saw, miter box, and a drill.
The first step in our project was to assess our components and come up with a plan that would work the best to provide stability and durability. Make sure you measure everything, so you can be sure to have the proper length screw(s), etc. for your project. Having a solid plan helps the work go together faster.
Get Started with the Fitting Process:
We removed the glass candle holder (I used that for something else later). As you can see in the first photo, our glass candleholder sat down inside a metal dish attached to our stand. A second metal piece inside the glass allowed for a screw to hold the glass to the stand. This second piece turned over and fit perfectly over the first piece. We made a wood block to fill the space to give strength and stability to support our yard lamp and planter basket. We marked it with an “X” to find the center for drilling a hole for the screw.
Take the stem off your solar yard lamp. Measure the stub on the lamp that the stem fits over. Then, decide how tall you want your lamp to be with the planter basket shade on it. Once you have the proper height, measure and cut the stem. We used a saw and miter box.
Now, you want to find a scrap of wood that you can cut (and file if needed) to fit snugly inside the stem. This will add strength to your stem to support the weight of the lamp head and planter basket. You want to cut this wood to a length where your screw will go from the top of the wood and screw into the base of your lamp. This screw is what holds the lamp together. Make sure there is plenty of room for the screw head and lamp stub to fit easily into the stem. Drill a hole all the way through the scrap wood (length-wise). Then, shove the wood scrap inside the stem, it should be tight.
Getting the Lampshade Ready:
A wire hanging planter basket makes a great lampshade for your solar lamp (use the coconut liner for another garden basket). The one problem with the basket is the bottom wire supports. They will cut across the solar panel of the lamp. Those wires need to be removed. A pair of vice grips makes this an easy job. Just a little wiggle and jiggle, and you’re done. Watch this quick video:
How simple is that?
It is always important to test fit any project. Get the bugs out, and make any tweaks and adjustments that are needed, before you put on the final paint and polish.
Start by making sure your base is ready to add the solar lamp. For us, that meant having the wood block in place inside the metal dish. Then, take the screw, with the washer, and place it through the solar lamp stem. Tighten the screw, attaching it to the base. Notice the wood does not fill the entire stem, so there is room for the screw head and the lamp stub. Place the solar lamp stub into the stem.
Set planter basket upside down on top of the solar lamp, to create a lampshade. Decide where you will need to drill the lamp cap to place zip ties for attaching the lampshade.
Attach the Lampshade:
Since we did not paint the planter basket, we attached the lamp shade to the solar lamp cap. We had a square cap, so we drilled holes on either side of each corner edge, and threaded the zip ties through. We used white for the pictures for you, so they would be easier to see.
Time for Paint:
Rough-up the base and all pieces that need painting with some fine-to-medium sandpaper, so the paint will stick well. Spray in short, even bursts at a distance of about 12 inches. Make sure everything dries thoroughly before assembling the lamp.
You can see that we changed out the white zip ties for black ones for our finished product.
Summer and kids go hand-in-hand, and your kids are going to love these ideas from regular contributor, Megan Wild. Build a Playhouse in your Backyard!
How to Create a Kids’ Playhouse
Building Memories Your Family Will Cherish
As the weather warms, dreams of kids playing outside until dusk, chasing lightning bugs and feeling the grass between your toes begin to dance in your head.
There is perhaps no outdoor activity more quintessentially youthful than playing in a backyard playhouse. Thanks to kids’ imagination and ingenuity, the outdoor abode doesn’t have to resemble the Swiss Family Robinson’s intricate, multi-room treehouse. Heck, it doesn’t even have to be in a tree.
At the moment, however, you are staring at a bare backyard. So how can you win parent of the year and take your backyard from boring to the neighborhood kids’ favorite hangout? Creating your child’s dream playhouse is within reach, even if you don’t have the acumen for complicated DIY projects. Here are four easy steps to creating the perfect playhouse for your children.
Start by checking with your local municipality to ensure you are following any existing regulations. Some communities have rules about how large these structures can be, how close to the property line they should sit, and whether they need to be built on the ground. Some municipalities may ban treehouses altogether, and only allow playhouses in the yard.
This is also the time to check with your homeowners insurance. Some insurance carriers do have regulations about structures like playhouses, and you’ll want to be sure you’re covered before moving forward.
Select a Design
Now that the paperwork is out of the way, you can get started with the fun stuff, like picking a design. Be honest with yourself about your do-it-yourself abilities. Sure, an insulated playhouse with lighting and Wi-Fi might be your child’s dream, but is it within your budget and ability? Thankfully, there are a variety of designs and options available online that can be matched with your time commitment and level of ability.
This playhouse design, created by a loving grandfather, has something for everyone, including a mini climbing wall, slide and plenty of roofed-in play space. It’s grandkid approved, no surprise there!
A rustic fort design is perfect for families who want something other than a traditional-looking playhouse.
Some of you might balk at the idea of building your own playhouse from scratch, or you might be anxious about the amount of time and skill it takes to get this project right. If so, look for inspiration from parents who took the ubiquitous Little Tykes plastic playhouse and gave it a remodel you have to see to believe. This is also a great option for families on a tight budget, since these playhouses can often be found at yard sales or resale websites.
Tools, Supplies and Building
Now that you’ve got a design selected, it’s time to get your hands dirty! Building a playhouse is a great opportunity to teach basic handyman skills to older kids, like hammering a nail and sanding wood. You may want to do the more dangerous sawing and cutting at a time when the kids aren’t underfoot.
For a project this size, logistics are important. For example, once you purchase the lumber at your local hardware store, there’s the matter of transportation. All the lumber and additional supplies are heavy, and since this is a temporary project, you may want to consider renting equipment to help you move it. Or stock up on aspirin or ibuprofen and invite several friends to help with loading and unloading.
As for the building, follow the old adage to measure twice, cut once and follow basic safety guidelines while the backyard is a mini-construction site. This should be a fun project, not a stressful one. Finally, remember to finish the wood in a way that will protect it from the elements and is also safe for kids.
You’ll be looking out your back window at this house every day, so finish strong with a few final touches. If you want to be able to see your kids, leave the doors and windows off, but older kids might get a kick out of being able to have a more private place to call their own.
A coat of paint on the door, a flower planter or pot, or some LED lights strung across the roof could turn the playhouse into a mini-home. Pinterest is a good place to look for ideas to give your basic tree house some curb appeal.
Pee-Wee Herman shouldn’t be the only person who gets to have an awesome playhouse. Creating a playhouse for your children or grandchildren is a large project, but the rewards are even bigger. Sure, there are the moments of peace and quiet you’ll gain while the kids are out playing. More importantly, you’ll give your family countless memories of a happy childhood spent in the perfect backyard playhouse. ~Megan
Another great DIY project just in time for those Spring and Summer nights on the veranda, in the yard, or on the porch swing! Thank you, Michelle James, our Regular Contributor.
Discount Store Vases to Outdoor Lighting
An Easy DIY Project to Enhance Outdoor Living
Hi everyone! I love creating new outdoor lighting for my patio. Last year I created these hanging lights; so this year, I wanted something to go on my patio table. I headed to my favorite discount store and came up with this.
To make these super easy lights you need the following supplies:
Vases from the discount store – you can choose from the shapes and sizes but make sure the solar light will rest on the top of the vase without falling in.
Solar Lights – also from the discount store
Oil based Sharpie Markers
How to Make the Outdoor Lights:
You will need to remove the stake part of the solar light so you have just the light part.
Now you will be decorating your vases using the oil based markers. I wanted to make some dandelions. I know they are weeds and I don’t like them in my yard but I do like them in décor. I have seen some really great pins that involve dandelions.
I started with the green stem. I drew one long stem then on the opposite side of the vase I drew a shorter stem.
Now make the lines to form the “flower” by starting at the top of the stem. Draw lines coming out from the top of the stem all the way around to create a circle of lines.
After you have the lines done, use the tip of the pen and make a “dot” at the end of each line.
Now add more “dots” inside the flower. I added them on lines all of the way around and down to the stem.
Then create some fly away blooms by creating short line with a dot at the end. I had them fly up the vase so it looks like they are taking off into the air. So easy!
Once you have your painting done you will need to cure it in the oven. Place them on a baking sheet and put them into a cold oven. Turn the oven on to 200 degrees. Let them bake for 1 hour then turn off the oven and let it cool. Then remove them. I did all of this in the evening so after I turned off the oven I just left them in until the next morning.
If they need to be washed, they should be carefully hand washed.