Our yard is probably the most intimidating/embarrassing thing about our whole house, but after years of planning, it’s finally time to do something about it. It’s divided into, what I can only describe as, three triangles. When we were putting in our fence a couple years ago, we drew up this quick mockup of the property. We have large side yards and a pretty small back yard.
Here’s a photo of the back “triangle” I snapped a couple months ago.
We envision the right side yard being a play set for the girls and the left side yard being a garden and this backyard an extension of our indoors–perfect for entertaining/dining/lounging. We decided to turn the whole thing into a deck. Which, although it’s small for a yard, it’s turning out to be quite a massive deck, but we’re excited to have different zones. Here’s a drawing of just the backyard:
Some of these things will happen this year and some in the future, but for reference, the 9.5’x6.5′ section in the upper left hand corner will be an outdoor kitchen. And the pointed corner at the bottom of the diagram (we ended up making it larger than 4.5′ across), we’ll be putting in a fireplace. I was inspired by this photo (by Eric Olsen Design) for the idea:
Although we’re not exactly sure if we’ll do lighter stone, concrete, something taller, something super dark–that’s the great thing about inspiration–you can see something you love and make it your own. There will also be lounging zones and a dining space and we’d love to squeeze in a hammock or something like it, too. Overall, the deck will be 1100 sq ft….and it’s going to be finished by next week!
You may have heard me mention on our podcast, we decided to hire the installation of the deck out. With trying to finalize plans for the Pittsburgh kitchen we’re doing, and keeping up with our other projects and jobs, we wanted to be able to enjoy this deck before summer hit too hard. So, we forked over the cash to a guy we found on a neighborhood Facebook page. He has 10 years experience and he’s been over every morning working on it. It’s really exciting to see it starting to take shape.
We ordered the materials ourselves and had them delivered and gave him all the plans, so he didn’t have to worry about designing or shopping. For the substructure, we’re using 6x6s, 2x10s and 2x8s and the actual decking, we decided to go with Trex. A couple years ago (told you we’ve been planning this forever!), we asked you if you preferred composite or wood decking and there was really good insight on both. In the end, we love the fact that Trex, a brand of composite decking, provides us with a durable deck that won’t fade, splinter (safer for little feet and paws!), crack, rot, swell, or require any staining or painting year after year. And since this is a decent sized deck, that all is very appealing to us. We decided to go with their Clam Shell color (in their enhance line, see photo from the Trex site below). It’s a sort of moody charcoal with warm undertones–right up our alley!
If everything stays on schedule, we should have finished photos of that for you by next week. Fingers crossed! Anyone else working on a deck project? Doing it yourself or hired it out. I gotta say, our guy was $1600 and I can already say it’s been worth every penny!
Thanks to Trex for partnering with us to create this awesome outdoor space.
Our wood grain Shaker cabinet fronts were designed for busy, high-traffic homes like ours. Clad with durable textured thermofoils, this line is compatible with Sektion, Akurum, Godmorgon, and Besta cabinets from IKEA. It's the perfect, practical way to add the warmth of wood to all the rooms of your home.
We have teamed up with Loloi to create a line of rugs that are as affordable as they are beautiful. This collection houses a great mix of traditional and modern rugs, in cottage-y colorways, as well as vintage-inspired beauties that you’ll want to roll out in every room.
We partnered with Stuga on a line of hardwood floors — The Ingrid is really livable, and the color is very neutral. It doesn’t lean warm or cool, it’s that just right in-between. We have really loved putting it everywhere in our house. It’s the best jumping-off point for design, no matter your interior style. In addition to being beautiful, Ingrid is really durable — we have three kids, and we always have a home construction project going on. Ingrid stands up to it all.
Looking for our favorite things? A place to shop our home room by room, or just catch up on what Julia's wearing / loving right now? Browse the CLJ shop.
Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here.
We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen.
Even when you don’t want to rip down a wall, you can make that space in your home better. Right now.
The next project we’re checking off our 2023 project list is the mudroom! This used to be the laundry room until we built out a much bigger, better laundry room upstairs. So, in the meantime, this space has been exclusively Cricket’s room. Cricket will still have a special space here, but we’re transforming this dingy […]
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