Almost exactly one year ago, the deck as a structure was complete! It’s been a wonderful addition to our home and we can barely remember life before it. But I figured it was time to check in on it again (before the stars come out, that is) since we’ve had a few new additions this year and have one more big project to do out here.
The photo above is the “before” angle of the first photo. We never spent time out here when it was in that state, so it feels like we gained a lot of square footage by adding on this outdoor area. A few weeks ago, we added the cedar planter boxes and filled them in with strawberries, peppers, miniature asparagus, and some decorative grasses up top. Furniture-wise, we finally found the perfect coffee table for the main seating area.
This round concrete table (on sale!) took a couple weeks to arrive, but it was worth the wait. The size is just right and we really needed something round to soften all the squared-off edges we have out here. Our DIY fireplace is made to look like board-formed concrete (full tutorial of the fireplace in this post) and this coffee table really plays off it well. It’s pretty heavy and has already been rained on twice and dried like new–whew!
Our deck is large and basically divided into three sections, with the fireplace right in the middle and the dining area on the other side. We had thoughts of maybe one day adding french doors leading from our bedroom out to this side with a hot tub over here (really, really grand-way-down-the-road dreams, you can see), but when I spotted these hanging chairs on sale, I scooped them right up. We don’t have a structure to hang them from, so we also got the chair stands. They have been such a casual, fun spot to hang (har, har) the past few weeks. Plus, it’s nice to have a little smaller, more intimate seating area, too.
Neither of the throw pillows are outdoor, but the pretty navy cushion in the seat is, as well as the pouf I picked up at Target. From this angle, you can see we left ample room from the back of the couch to this seating area so it didn’t feel like anyone was hovering over the people sitting on the sofa. We also added a few potted plants around the swings to help define the area.
Perhaps the least exciting addition for you readers (but a very necessary one for us) was this deck box to store throw pillows when rain is about to come. Our furniture covers when it’s nice and sunny. It also houses our pressure washer, a few balls and bubbles and games the girls like to play outside. Our big basin for drinks we pull out for parties. It’s actually kind of wonderful to have! We keep it on the far edge of the deck (kind of behind the hanging chairs) so it’s out of the way, but still handy.
Here, you can see how everything is laid out from this angle.
Aaaandd the view looking the other way:
As for what is coming next, we’re getting ready to start on our outdoor kitchen! There’s a space, right outside the kitchen window, and adjacent to the outdoor dining area, where the deck juts back and creates a nice little L-shape that was always designed for an outdoor kitchen one day. It’s really going to be more of a built-in outdoor cooking area.
It’s not a huge space, by any means. But will be perfect for a built-in grill, some drawers, a stove-top and nice counter-space. We’ve also toyed around with the idea of building some sort of small pergola over the area since Chris grills year-round. I’m really letting Chris take the reigns with this project, since he has been dreaming of it since we moved in. He drew this simple sketch of how everything will be laid out and we’re still sourcing a few materials for the finishes. We’re leaning toward doing a dark green tile base and maybe a gray concrete counter to tie into the fireplace–but nothing is nailed down, yet.
In fact, the only thing we do have is the grill top and all the drawers and burner–they have been in our garage for over a year!
Last summer, when Chris was still writing for Charbroil on the side, Saber (Charbroil’s luxury sister brand) sent us the built-in grill when they caught word we’d be doing an outdoor kitchen one day. He has been dying to use it! We ended up running out of time last year, but after a magazine reached out to us to see if they could come shoot our whole house this September (and wanted an exclusive of our new outdoor kitchen area), it lit the fire under us. The space under the counter in the drawing will be for a smoker. The side drawer will be for paper towels and the other drawers will be stocked with grilling utensils (that currently take up three drawers in our actual kitchen), plates and pans and I’m sure a few things that Chris is dreaming of. We really wanted to add a small sink out here, but unfortunately, it’s not recommended in our area because the winters can get around -20 and the pipes would likely freeze and burst. But we’re excited to move forward with everything else ASAP! I feel very lucky Chris makes such good food day in and day out for our family and for all the time he dedicates to the task, it’ll be fun to see him in his element out here.
So that’s where we’ve come from, where we’re at, and where we’re headed this year. Now we just have to find a way to get all of you here for a big bbq! :) I’ve included a full source list below!
White Rattan Lounge Chairs | Tall Basket | Area Rug | String Lights (similar) | Wood Sofas | Black Sofa | Concrete Coffee Table | Outdoor Blue Slash Pillows | White and Black Tassel Lumbar Pillow | White Pinstriped pillows | Tall concrete planter (similar)| Black planter | Small concrete planter | Dining Table | Black Dining Chairs | White Wire Dining Chairs | Black and White striped umbrella | Firewood Storage | Hanging Chairs | Hanging Chairs Stand | Navy Seat Cushions | Outdoor Pouf | Deck Box | DIY Fireplace Tutorial | DIY Tiered Planter Boxes Tutorial
We designed the Charly line of sofas, chairs, and ottomans with perfect proportions for comfort — with wide arms, a loungey depth, and stylish and practical lumbar pillows. Available in 70 kid-friendly, pet-friendly fabrics, this line was created with families in mind.
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.
Once upon a time, I fell in love with a coffee table. Money was a little tight, but we saved up the $1,085 to buy it because once I saw it — no other coffee table would do. It was my first furniture splurge, and I was so nervous and excited. When I arrived, it […]
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