While large backyards are certainly dreamy, small outdoor spaces are often the reality, yet equally able to provide a place to entertain, relax and frolic in the sun (or shade if you prefer). Take these tips and a healthy dose of inspiration from seven tiny backyards that demonstrate myriad ways to maximize your time outdoors.
Built-ins: Above, Desanka has a wood banquette that keeps to the sides of the small outdoor area. Benches that tuck under tables, are also good options.
Outdoor Vertical Garden: This newly revamped space, featured on Sugar & Cloth, takes advantage of vertical space with a green wall.
High Fences: There something about Smitten Studio's tall dark walls that make her backyard feel cozier and more private. It’s counter-intuitive for an outdoor space but it works.
Flexible Furniture: Erin Loechner found a fire pit with a wooden lid, which lets it serve two functions in one piece.
Fold Down Features: Martha Stewart showed this wall-mounted shelf, which can be folded down when not in use. The same idea works for benches and tables.
Reflective Surfaces: Just as they work indoors, mirrors spread around the light and make spaces feel larger than real life. Megan Pflug redecorated her backyard and included a couple (along with tall, dark walls).
Smaller Substitutes: Even if you don't have tons of room for a full garden, huge water feature, or an outdoor fireplace, you can still have a small fire pit or container plants — like Jess did in her backyard in Australia.