Small Space Makeover: Back Patio

There's nothing like having your very own outdoor oasis in the middle of the city. Can I get an amen from fellow city-dwellers? Outdoor space was pretty high on our priority list when we moved to Philadelphia a year ago and I was thrilled that the 1850s row house we settled on had a 10'x12' patio in the back. We decided to spruce up this space this summer so we could enjoy being out here as often as possible while the weather is nice (it practically doubles our living space), and I'm so excited to (finally!) share the before and after today!

Here's what we started with:

Nice, huh?

This hodgepodge of furniture previously lived on our covered balcony in DC and it was perfect for that space, but since it wasn't really meant to be exposed to all the elements, it didn't survive the harsh Philadelphia winter. We knew it was a placeholder when we put it out there last summer, so we weren't terribly sad to see it go. We also created a temporary bike storage area on the right, but as you can see, it has no roof. The former roof blew off at some point in the spring and we never replaced it. Poor bikes.

But enough of the sad before, let's get to the pretty after!

After what seemed like months of research and deliberation, we finally settled on this outdoor wicker seating set from The Wicker House. Some of you may remember this post about the furniture options I was choosing between, and I ended up having to start the search again because the set I wanted was suddenly no longer available, sigh...back to the drawing board. After a bit of searching, I am so glad I found this one because a) it's classic and beautiful and b) it ended up being the best deal cost-wise out of all the options I was considering. Hooray!

The wicker look will never go out of style, and I can see us using this set for many years to come - no matter what house we're in next. The size is great, and I'm very pleased with the quality so far given the very affordable price. I was a little bit concerned about that!

The white seat cushions came with the set and they're pretty thin, so I may end up replacing them with something a bit more plush, but they're perfect for now and the fabric has held up beautifully to water and spills. We do bring the pillows and cushions inside when we aren't using them to ensure they stay in great shape for a long time.

I bought the aqua and tan pillows from Target on clearance ($11 each!) about a month ago. Sadly, I don't think they're available anymore, but check your local store just in case if you're interested in getting a few yourself.

Lastly, the rug. I was recently contacted by Mac from DFOhome offering to send an outdoor rug for me to try out. The timing couldn't have been more perfect considering I was in the middle of this outdoor makeover!

After the he said/she said post from a couple of weeks ago about outdoor rugs, I just decided to take a chance and go for it. Having a rug really pulls this space together and gives it a finished look. The Sea Oats Natural rug seems to address the concerns we had about the general yuck factor of a having a rug that lives outside based on the material and how it's made. It hasn't rained since we've had it out there, so I'm planning to give a full report after we've let the weather take its toll for a little while. A big thanks to DFOhome for letting me give this rug a shot!

The pattern is even more beautiful in person than it is in photos. It's super soft to walk on, and Jackson has already decided its his favorite spot to lay on out there!

I'm thrilled with the way this space has turned out. We've already had several gatherings of friends and family out there, and it might rival my office as my favorite spot. At night, it's almost magical out there when we turn on the string lights (*affiliate link), play some music and sip a glass of wine...who wants to come over? ;)

Cheers to outdoor living!

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  1. WOW!! That patio set is absolutely *gorgeous* - and I cannot get over how inexpensive it is!! I like to make a game out of guessing prices when bloggers post furniture pieces or whatever (because typically things they post are WAYYYYY out of my price range! Like $800 for a nightstand?! I think not!!) but I SEVERELY overestimated the price of that set!! I guessed around $850 and I was pretty much dumbfounded when I clicked on the link and saw the price!! Wicked score!! Thanks for the link - I've been looking for something like that for my yard but I've never found anything that looks so nice that wasn't over a thousand dollars!! That whole space looks fantastic, you did a really great job!! I love the rug too, it's beautiful and it really does pull the whole space together!! Hope you are out right now enjoying your hard work with a glass of wine!! :)

    1. Thanks girl! I like to play the price game too with blogs and am almost always sad that so many things are out my price range. Needless to say I was thrilled with the price of this set! It looks much more expensive than it is :).

  2. This looks so great, Chaney! What a nice space to have!

  3. What a beautiful outdoor space, Chaney. It looks so cozy and inviting. Enjoy every minute being out there!!

    1. Thanks Sherri! We are definitely soaking up time out there and plan to use it well into the fall!

  4. I love the set you chose -- and Oh My Goodness the price. That is incredible compared to what I've seen for similar sets. Also, I have really wanted to buy some of those target pillows but I just don't have the spot. So I'm glad you were able to buy some! :) Lovely space.
    - Lora

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