23 Small Backyard Ideas That Pack a Lot of Punch - My Home Designs

Thursday, October 3, 2019

23 Small Backyard Ideas That Pack a Lot of Punch

Not all of us can have a sweeping rose garden or Olympic-sized swimming pool in our own backyard—but a small backyard is a still a backyard (and even rooftop terraces and modest balconies count in our book). Indeed, you don't need acres on acres to create a charming space conducive to al fresco entertaining, gardening, romance, and pensive solo hangs in the great outdoors.

We gathered a plethora of beautiful and small backyards to prove it. So keep reading for small backyard decorating and landscape design ideas that'll help you get the most out of yours.

1. Embrace the Coziness
The best part about a tiny backyard is that its inherently cozy. One well-designed sitting area is all you need for a dream backyard situation. Get inspired by this fire pit area in a property designed by Alexander DB.

2. Make It Multi-Purpose
If you can't fit a separate garden, greenhouse, and dining space into your outdoor area, design your backyard in a way that makes all of them possible in one contained spot. Take notes from this patio designed by Studio Ashby. This terrace is a dining space, a romantic hang out spot (hello, swing chair), and a garden all at once.

3. Break Things Up With Levels
A multi-level landscape design can create the illusion of a larger backyard. It breaks things up visually and allows you to designate each level to a different purpose. In this 2LG studio-designed yard, the bottom level is a dining patio with eye-catching sculptures, while the shrubbery helps transition to the upper yard.

4. Compromise, Compromise, Compromise
So you would love a swimming pool, but there's not enough room... You'd love a big green garden, but simply don't have the space... A well-designed deck and tasteful freestanding hot tub can be just as covetable, as proven by this outdoor area by Regan Baker Design.

5. Be Resourceful and Get Scrappy
When your backyard is actually a small balcony, you'll need to get crafty. Turn it into a small garden with plenty of plants, but leave space for a coffee table (or bistro table if that won't fit) and a small settee or stool with throws to warm things up.

6. Don't Overdo It
In this backyard designed by Arent & Pyke, a sleek garden bench under the trees is enough to complete the look. If you have a nice shady spot, simply pull up a bench, add a colorful throw pillow, and call it a day.

7. Hang String Lights
It doesn't take much to make a backyard feel magical, no matter the size. Even a small city patio can transport you elsewhere if you hang romantic string lights. Rustic wooden furniture becomes cozy when surrounding a fire pit and layered with pillows and sheepskin throws.

8. Build a Small Fountain
Consider building a small fountain that beautifies the area without taking up a ton of room, like this one designed by Amber Interiors. As you can see in the patio in the distance, the small concrete fountain introduces style and has a calming effect despite its modest size.

9. Incorporate Greenery
Transform every little space that isn't being used on your back patio into a gardening opportunity. It won't take up much space, but it makes a big difference. Case in point? These flower beds on the stair ledges. This also helps break up the sea of bricks.

10. Opt for Gravel
When you have a small backyard, it's better to create an outdoor area you'll actually use, which may mean forgoing grass. Consider setting up an al fresco dining room on a bed of gravel instead. This space is edgy, sleek, and sophisticated while still being approachable—better yet, it fits into a petite space.

11. Make It Party-Ready
Blogger Alicia Lund spruces up her backyard with a well-styled bar cart. Extra perk: Since it's on wheels, you can easily roll it back into the kitchen for refills. The brick ground also adds an English garden feel.

12. Hang a Hammock, Trees or No Trees
If you have a tiny outdoor space, you can still take advantage of the fresh air in style. Hang a slim hammock and then make it pop with a jute area rug, fun throw pillows, and floor cushions for extra seating—no trees necessary. That DIY fence addition contributes to the island vibes while also enhancing privacy.

13. Add Some Statement-Making Chairs
This patio is both approachable and design-forward, laid-back and put together. For a similar vibe, opt for sling chairs that make a statement. Or, if you have some affordable sling chairs like this, get crafty and paint the canvas yourself.

14. Indulge Your Hobbies
If you love taking care of plants, build a tiny greenhouse in your backyard. This will make sure you actually spend a lot of time out here, which makes it worth it, even if it takes up the entire yard.

15. Keep Architecture In Mind
Use the architectural elements of your home to your advantage. For example, in this house designed by Arent & Pyke, an indoor bench extends outside, thanks to the large windows. This opens up more room for tiles and greenery instead of taking up space with patio furniture. It's also a great way to create flow.

16. Make the Most of It
Though this backyard is tiny, it feels like a practical and stylish space the homeowners will actually be able to spend time in. The heat lamp promises warmth on chilly nights and the floor cushions are great for extra lounge seating. The whitewashed wood deck keeps the tonal color story alive and well.

17. Focus On Landscaping
The backyard is your space to reconnect with nature and unwind in the fresh air. So instead of saturating it with furniture and d├ęcor, focus on landscaping and florals.

18. Lay Colorful Tiles
An eye-catching tile on the patio can make all the difference in tiny backyard. Choose a whimsical pattern with bright colors and then use more timeless and neutral furniture that won't overwhelm the eye or take up any valuable real estate.

19. Create a Pathway
In a small or narrow city yard, introduce greenery with a pathway surrounded by planting beds. Then use your vertical space by bringing in slim and tall trees, like in this Brooklyn home designed by Elizabeth Roberts Architecture and Design. A neat will keeps our eyes focused on the architectural details of the townhouse ahead and makes it feel like a little green oasis in the middle of the city.

20. Treat It Like a Living Room
Consider a small back patio another fun design opportunity, not an annoying challenge. Treat it like a small porch and hang a swing bench, then set it up like an outside living room with stylish accent seating, a carpet, and side table.

21. Cultivate a Garden
Use your precious outdoor space to cultivate your very own garden if the climate allows. Grow flowers, herbs, and produce to beautify the yard. Plus, a garden will give you a reason to get outdoors more often.

22. Don't Leave It Empty
A small patch of grass can look awkward if it's empty, and if it's too tiny to play games on or you don't want to hire a landscaper, just use it as an extra lounging area. As seen in this Arent & Pyke-designed yard, all it takes is the right sofa, chair, and coffee tables. And the tall hedge functions as a makeshift fence while also adding a whole lot of greenery.

Coordinate your throw pillows to the florals and hang a timeless pendant light to polish things off. Plus, swapping out your pillows is the easy (and cost-effective) way to upgrade your patio each season. Source: 1

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