Arnod, who described himself to us as a "loyal reader" of Apartment Therapy, sent in photos of an amazing transformation of a super small utility balcony into an outdoor retreat. It went from a drab spot for storing cleaning tools and garbage to a charming outdoor dining spot in one weekend. Here's the story in his own words:
I'm 25 years old and live in Belgium with my boyfriend in a 100m² apartment in the lovely old city of Ghent. We've been living here for over 5 years. Because the weather has been lovely for over a month now (and it promises to be a very nice summer) we decided to create a small outdoor retreat.
We had a tiny terrace for garbage and cleaning tools, some spare paint, the willingness to spend about 70 euro and a free weekend. So we thought it through, bought some wood and plants and spent a day and a half doing some painting and handywork.
We managed to get it all very sturdy using heavy hinges and heavy duty shelf supports from the hardware store. Everything folds flat to the wall, so we can easily reach our recycling I've managed to get into the square meter behind the black little fence - using shelving. (Luckily we also have a garage downstairs, so we can always store some garbage there if needed).
It's tiny, it's ridiculous, it's a hassle to get stuff from inside once you're comfy, but it's lovely. It seats up to 3 people, catches direct sunlight from 3pm, and stays sunny the whole evening. Ideal for breakfast, coffee after work, light meals, late drinks or even some writing or reading. We're so happy to be able to just step outside so easily now. And so is Cartouche, our indoor cat.
(Re-edited from a post originally published 6.23.10 - NM)