Sarah's Hideaway Brooklyn Backlot

Small, Cool Outdoors Entry #3

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Name: Sarah S. Location: Brooklyn, New York Size: 192 square feet

Your Favorite Thing About Your Outdoor Space: We live in the ground floor of a corner building on an eyesore of a block in Brooklyn. My favorite thing about my space is that, while it's no Luxembourg Gardens, it is always such a wonderful surprise to everyone who sees it. No one would suspect that hidden behind a concrete wall lies our little, private, lovely spot to relax in. Having our own space to grill, drink, read and hang out with our friends and kitty in is really great. We're so happy to make of it what we can, and we enjoy it as much as possible.

Biggest Design Challenge With This Space: There is a very awkward bulkhead directly in the center of the space that leads to the basement. It's bulky and juts out almost halfway into the space. After trying a thousand ways to cover it up, we instead decided to use it as a divider, and separate the space into two parts. Behind the bulkhead we made a garden space, which worked out well because there is a great balance of shade and sun in the back. In front of the bulkhead is the "dining area" that we used to put seating, our grill, and a table.

Tips for Creating a Great Small Outdoor Space: The most effective way we utilized space was to build benches into the wall. We were able to make seating in an L shape against the wall which helped to maximize center space. Also, add color! It's amazing what a few pots of flowers will do to a small space (especially if it's made out of concrete, like ours). Also, be sure to use your walls not just for artwork, but for storage too. Shelving and u-hooks work wonders for storage so that you can have more living space.

Thanks, Sarah, and good luck!

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