I'm finally getting around to sharing our Fourth of July pictures. I meant to share last week, but I had lots of photos to upload and edit for this post so I am just now getting to it.
If you remember, we wanted to have friends over for the Fourth of July, but our outdoor space was a bit lacking. We set out to make it as inviting as possible on a very small budget. Here is the before.
It was a big mess. We just kind of threw stuff back there. It didn't get used much at all except to store stuff. In case you missed it, you can see my design board inspiration and when I spray painted "all the things" here.
We started by clearing off the patio and started adding things back in to make designated areas for our barbecue. I'm sure you've probably seen the pin floating around Pinterest on how to make a bench from cinder blocks. We decided to try it since we already had lots of cinder blocks on hand. All we had to buy was the timbers. The tutorial online had double the width that we did for our "benches." (As shown above.) But once we had it four timbers wide it was too deep and my feet couldn't touch the floor.
So, we halved it and swung the other section out like an "L" shape. That worked much better for us since we were putting a table there for people to eat on. I only had to put chairs on two sides. (We had about twenty people over and three to four people sat on a side of the bench at a time and it held up really well. It was very sturdy.)
Here is the bench after I added lots of throw pillows.
This was our beverage and paper goods area. The red shelves and the console table are both made of pallets. My husband made them for me about three years ago. I just gave them a fresh coat of paint.
I used the shelves to house decor. But I also thought that if I ever needed, it could house supplies for barbecues or just outdoor needs. That area could be used as a potting bench. You may recognize the printables that I made for the holiday. You can download those here. (I already had all of the items I used for decor in this area...the frames, mini chalkboard pots, fabric bunting.)
I used a wagon to put all of the kiddos drinks in. It was easy access for them, right on their level. And the ice didn't melt too fast. It kept them cold long enough for them to drink just about all of them.
I mostly used spray paint to make pots and othe decorative items coordinate. There are a lot of pictures so I am just going to interject ever so often.
I found this red chair, which is very sturdy and heavy, already painted red for $5 at a flea market.
This swing was one of the only new purchases we made for the outdoor space. It was a natural wood and I painted it white. For the party, I brought a lot of my indoor pillows outside just to make it more cozy.
We had a potluck style barbecue. Everyone brought sides. I set up a table to house the food with a cute paper medallion backdrop. We hung a temporary light above the table so everyone could see once it got dark. I put all of the condiments in a metal bucket of ice to keep cold.
The kids enjoyed playing on a water slide. (Thanks to Stefanie for letting us borrow it.) We also had a couple smaller pools for the little ones. It was unseasonable windy and cool that day, so I think they were freezing!
The guys played a couple games of horse shoes.
Then we did some small fireworks. I tried to get one of those cool photos with the sparkler leaves a squiggly line and this is the best one I got, which isn't too great.