Have you ever looked at your small backyard and thought, "There's just not enough space for anything"? Well, think again! In this backyard transformation project, we helped our client turn their tiny yard into a cozy oasis where they could work from home and unwind after a long day. With a combination of strategic planning, clever design choices, and a lot of hard work, we created a beautiful outdoor space that proved size doesn't matter when it comes to backyard dreams. So, let's dive into the step-by-step process of this remarkable transformation!
Step 1: Installing the Pergola
To provide some much-needed shade and define the space, we started by installing a pergola. With its elegant structure and leak-proof roof system, the pergola became the focal point of the backyard transformation. We chose a durable, weather-resistant material for longevity, ensuring our client can enjoy their outdoor haven through all of the seasons for years to come.
Step 2: Planning and Preparation
Creating a well-designed outdoor space requires careful planning and preparation. We started by excavating the area where the new patio would be installed. This involved removing any debris, rocks, and vegetation to create a clean surface. By carefully measuring the available space and considering the client's needs, we ensured every inch of their petite yard would be utilized effectively.
Step 3: Laying the Foundation
A solid foundation is crucial for any patio. To prevent weeds and promote drainage, we laid down a woven geotextile fabric. Next, we installed the base layer using 6 to 8 inches of #57 crushed gravel, leveling it with a screed. Once that was in place, we added a layer of #8 gravel and screeded it out to create a smooth, stable surface. By using this type of open grade base, we ensured a long-lasting foundation that can withstand the test of time.
Step 4: Creating the Stairs and Retaining Wall
With limited space and a small grade change, we needed to get creative. We built stairs off of the existing concrete patio and added a small retaining wall to accommodate the slope and add visual interest to the patio. Using durable and aesthetically pleasing materials, we integrated them seamlessly into the design, ensuring functionality without compromising on style. The client now had a beautiful and practical way to navigate their backyard.
Step 5: Laying the Patio Pavers
Now came the exciting part – laying the patio pavers! One side of the patio featured a circular inlay with a different style of paver (Smoked Pine Borealis from Techo Bloc), adding a touch of uniqueness to the space. We mapped out the circle using spray paint and laid the primary pavers around it. For the primary pavers, the clients opted for Techo Bloc’s Blu 60 Smooth paver in the color Champlain Grey, adding a contemporary vibe to the space. The circular inlay had a chevron design, which made the space even more visually appealing. Once all the pavers were laid, we took the time to cut and trim the inlay to ensure a perfect fit.
Step 6: Building the Outdoor Kitchen
To enhance the functionality of the space and create an inviting entertainment area, we built a small outdoor kitchen. This included an L-shaped bar inside the pergola, providing a designated space for cooking and serving. We carefully placed the pavers first, ensuring a precise fit, before cutting away the necessary space for the bar. With the addition of a beautiful countertop, the outdoor kitchen became a stylish and practical feature of the backyard.
Step 7: Landscaping and Water Feature
No backyard transformation is complete without some beautiful landscaping and a water feature to add tranquility. We incorporated the natural surroundings by carefully selecting plants such as Green Giant Arborvitae, Russian Sage, and Winter Gem Boxwood (among others), and adding two spillway bowls as a focal point. The gentle sound of flowing water added a soothing element to the space, turning our client's yard into a serene retreat.
Step 8: The Final Touches
After completing the landscaping and installing the water feature, it was time for the client to add their personal touch. From selecting comfortable outdoor furniture (don’t you just love that swing?) to choosing decorative elements that reflect their style, this final step allowed the client to make the space their own. With a little creativity and attention to detail, they turned their cozy outdoor space into a true extension of their home.
Now, let's talk numbers and break down the pricing for this incredible backyard transformation project. The water feature, with its ability to bring peace and serenity to the space, comes in at $5,000. Adding to the modern feel of the space, hardscape—which includes the patio, the retaining wall, and the stairs—comes in at $17,000. The small but inviting kitchen, with its compact grill and countertop space as well as a cozy bar top seating area where you can unwind or entertain friends—comes to a price tag of $13,000. The pergola, providing shade and making this outdoor space usable year-round, is a worthy investment at $12,000. To bring the whole space to life, landscaping is an essential element with a price tag of $7,000. Finally, don't forget about the lighting – an often overlooked detail that can completely transform your outdoor haven. The cost for the lighting in this project is $4,000. Remember, these prices are approximate and can vary based on factors such as the size of your yard and your specific design choices.
Grand Total: $58,000
From this backyard transformation project, we learned that size is no obstacle when it comes to creating a beautiful and functional outdoor space. By following a carefully planned timeline and using quality materials, we were able to transform a small backyard into a cozy oasis that exceeded our client's expectations. So, don't underestimate the potential of your own yard - with a little imagination and some expert guidance, you too can turn your outdoor space into something truly extraordinary. Get started on your own backyard transformation today and create a place where you can retreat, relax, and enjoy the beauty of your own home.
Check out the full Timelapse of this backyard transformation on YouTube!
About Easton Outdoors
We started out as the neighborhood lawn boys – a group of high school friends trying to make some pocket change. It soon became more. We realized how much we enjoyed landscaping. Over the years, we've transformed hundreds of properties, beautified countless landscapes, and made many homeowners proud. This has become our passion!