Tag Archives: outdoor dining

deck makeover.

Hey all! I’m slowly but surely getting around to showing you some of the bigger projects we’ve completed around the house the past several months. (Check out the “small closet turned master walk-in closet” project here in case you missed it.)

Today I’m showing you our recent deck transformation! (View previous deck updates here)

deck before

A few years back we stained our deck with Behr’s weather-proofing deck stain. It looked pretty good for about a month, but it unfortunately didn’t take long for it to start wearing/peeling off (it actually happened so fast that I never even captured a decent picture of what the fresh stain looked like before it started coming off!)

We are not sure if it’s because it was simply bad stain or we did a poor job with proper prep prior to applying it (or both?), but either way, we knew the next time around we were going to hire it out to avoid the chance of it happening again. In addition to the discoloration on the deck, there were several boards closest to the house that were rotting and in need of replacement.

I did some inspiration-seeking on Pinterest and opted to go with a two-toned paint look rather than your typical stain. (See a few examples I liked here — 1, 2, 3). I figured it would give the deck a more custom look and also be easier for making touch-ups down the road.

Once I had a concrete idea of what I wanted, I hired a local business to do the honors! (If you’re in the Rochester area, check out Sean Krudwig Remodeling!) Sean power-washed, sanded, replaced 80 ft. of rotted boards, and painted two coats of white on the rails as well as two coats of gray on the base, and all within 4 days. While I am all for DIY-ing most projects, the combination of being pregnant (avoiding fumes) and the thought of painting all those spindles (yet again) made hiring this particular project out a no-brainer.

deck - before and after

deck - before and after 2

deck - after

deck - after2

Once all the painting was done, it was time for the fun part — the finishing touches! I had the hubs cut, paint & reinstall our trellis/lattice panels along the back of the deck to match the newly-painted white rail. We also added back our tiki torches, outdoor hanging lights, and some hanging plants + deck planters. Lastly, I decided the space was lacking color so we painted the back door red to match our front door for a pop! I love how it turned out.

Here are a few more “after” pictures:

deck planter - herb garden

Our herb garden is doing great!

deck - after

The ground cover I planted in this space is really thriving. I had to transplant the other items I previously had in this spot because of how much it was taking over. (You can see what this little area used to look like when it was just filled with landscape rock and got a much-needed garden upgrade.) For $10, I also replaced the lattice that you see there with a white plastic piece cut to size. The previous strip was wood and no longer matched the deck colors, plus it was starting to fall apart.

deck - after

outdoor entertaining

outdoor space

outdoor entertaining

outdoor entertaining

outdoor space

The deck went from being an eyesore to a place people actually want to hang out!

Down the soon-ish road I’d like to swap out our current high-top dining set for built-in benches and an actual dining table to be able to a) add storage and b) seat more than four people (see inspiration below). But that’s for another day ;)

inspiration{find sources for above photos from my Pinterest board}

Until next time!


Filed under DIY, House & Home

deck progress + DIY privacy candle wall

With the majority of main projects crossed off the to-do list for inside the house, I’ve been focusing more of my attention outside recently. I love the concept of “outdoor rooms” and am trying to make our deck feel like one, essentially an extension of the house — inviting and purposeful, kind of like this. Here’s a run-down of how the deck has progressed this past year:

1This was when we first moved in and our deck was bare except for a set of lanterns that I had picked up at a garage sale for $10.


A few months later the deck finally got some furniture! We waited until fall when patio furniture went on sale and picked up this dining set (complete with cushions) for around $300 from Menards (orig. $519).


Fast forward one year. I added lattice panels to the back of the deck (original inspiration taken from here) and turned mason jars into tea light holders to hang on them. And oh hey – does that cart look familiar? It’s currently holding  a basil plant, but it has served as a great outdoor entertaining cart to hold drinks, glasses and the like when guests are over.

Here is a closer shot of the panels:

outdoor privacy panels

The ball jars were less than $1/ea from Hobby Lobby and I used picture-hanging wire (and this tutorial) to hang them on the lattice. I considered growing vines up the back of the panels (and maybe will in the future) but opted for the candles as a quick and easy way to upgrade them. Plus, it gives a really nice ambiance for dining when they’re all lit up!

mason jar tea light holders

Next on the list of things to do is stain the deck (happening this week). I’d also like to add an outdoor rug and maybe some cafe lights to string along the railing.

What are some things you’ve done to make an outdoor space feel more inviting?



Filed under DIY, House & Home