Something has us gravitating towards outdoor spaces lately. Maybe it’s being mid-makeover on our freshly lofted sunroom? Maybe it’s wishful thinking that summer isn’t ending? Whatever it is, we loving Stacy’s transformation of her backyard into a quaint and cozy green space. Here’s her letter:
There were several books from my childhood that affected my view on life and how I wanted my home to be when I grew up. One of them was a book titled Mandy, and another was The Secret Garden. I have always wanted a space that was all mine. A space that maybe didn’t function as anything other than a retreat and a place to image and dream. Welcome to my secret garden.
Here is what the area looked like before:
This garden took almost four months to create. Not only do I have four small children, but I was at the mercy of mother nature. Plus, I had to build the fence on two sides. It was harder to get finished that any other “room” I have ever done.
Next to the bench I have an outdoor solar powered lamp and in the corner there is a trellis. Next to the trellis is one of my favorite things about the whole garden. My moss art! I LOVE moss so this seemed like the perfect fit for my space.
I used an old apple crate for all my gardening supplies (see above). I love that not only is it functional, but super cute! There is also the ladder from my Better Homes and Gardens photoshoot that I turned into a plant stand last year. I don’t think the pictures really capture the effect this mirror has on the space. It wasn’t until I hung the mirror that it felt like a room. I got it for $15.00!
Thanks for touring my secret (okay, not so secret anymore) garden! I am so excited to have it done so can start on the next project. -Stacy
Amidst all of Stacy’s cool projects in this space (which you can find linked to at the end of her blog post about the space) I think I’m charmed most by her casual stone and moss path throughout the space. And Sherry loves those awesome arched doors in that dark chocolate stain. Very secret garden indeed. Thanks for sharing your garden with us, Stacy!
Clara has had her play kitchen for over a year and a half and she still plays with it nearly everyday, which is practically a toy miracle considering how quickly other items are dismissed. So play kitchens have a special place in our hearts. And this one is extra special because, well, Casey and Phil had a ton of fun making their own – and brought lots of new ideas to the table. They don’t have a blog, but they outlined their process here for you guys:
Much like you guys, my husband Phil and I decided to build our daughter Zoey a play kitchen for Christmas. I sketched it out to mimic our kitchen cabinets, and I knew she’d love a pretty realistic looking stove in a fun color. Luckily my husband is a fantastic carpenter, so we built the whole thing from scratch using scrap lumber from from our whole-house renovation and butcher block left over from our previous house’s kitchen renovation.
All said and done we spent an embarrassing amount of time on this, but I think the end result was worth all the work!
The cabinet building was pretty straightforward- we built basic cabinet boxes, added the face frames, then added the extra paneled detail on the sides. Phil build the doors separately and we attached them after everything was painted. The stove was a little (okay, a lot) trickier. We build it in 2 major parts- the lower half (the painted part) is all one unit, and the upper half (the stainless part) is the other half.
Phil loved the idea of dimmable “burners” so that was definitely our biggest expense in the whole project – but he was right that it takes the whole thing to the next level. Zoey loves them! For the top half we sandwiched the LED lighting in between 2 layers of wood to hold it in place. We used a 6″ hole saw to create the 2 openings where the coiled LED lighting shines through. We wrapped the top part in stainless contact paper, covered the lighting with a piece of tinted plexiglass, then we put the whole thing on top of the lower half.
And I know people love a good resource list, so here’s where we got things:
- Cabinets- made from scrap wood from other projects
- Countertops- leftover from previous kitchen (lumber liquidators)
- Sink – Amazon
- Faucet – Amazon
- Cabinet knobs – Target
- Paint color on cabinets – Benjamin Moore’s Super White
- Paint color on stove – Benjamin Moore’s Meadowlands Green
- Handle on stove – Ikea
- Knobs on stove – Amazon
- Timer – Anthropologie
- “Stainless steel” contact paper – Home Depot
- Oven rack – Dollar Store
- Flexible LED neon – Del Lighting
- Dimmers – Amazon
- Plexiglass for stovetop – eBay
- Wallpaper on interior cabinet – leftover from Zoey’s nursery, Wallpaper Direct
Hope you enjoy! -Casey
Isn’t it awesome? Zoey is one lucky kid to have such resourceful and creative parents who have so much fun building things for her. Thanks for sharing your creation with us, Casey and Phil!