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It’s that time of year again to pull out all the swimwear and towels, have sunscreen at the ready, and have all the friends over for BBQ in the backyard. Preparing your outdoor space this summer can be decorated to look beautiful and functional with these cheap and easy hacks.

Make your own side table with storage

If you’re looking for a place to store miscellaneous pillows or blankets, you can DIY it with a wicker or rattan basket and a same sized wooden board or tray. This allows for storage space and also doubles up as a side table!

Hanging storage

Whether it be swimming accessories, gardening tools, or other outdoor items, having hanging storage makes it easier to see and grab whatever you need. A garden trellis makes for a nice wall base, nothing too fancy is needed. Grab some S-hooks and some cheap small to mid-sized baskets as well and you’ve got yourself a beautiful looking storage solution. An alternative is also to get a decorative wooden ladder as the wall base; this could work well to hang towels or spare clothes.

Outdoor Curtains

For backyard patios, having a curtain solution helps when it starts to get too bright or a little too hot. There are different material types for curtains, and most advertise as ‘outdoor curtains’, but it’s best to know the materials to look out for is anything synthetic: Olefin, acrylic, or polyester/poly blends are all outdoor safe fabrics; they repel water and will last longer. DO NOT go for natural materials like cotton or jute as those will degrade and rot quicker. For a budget friendly way to hang the curtains, get a 1-inch or thicker wooden dowel, wall mounts, and some S hooks or curtain hooks/rings.

Lights for the Outdoors

For those with a pool, having a lighting solution would be nice for evening swims. One option would be to get some cheap outdoor solar light fixtures. If you have an above ground pool, they can be attached to the frame.

Another option is to also make your own solar light posts with PVC pipes, glue, 90 degree brackets, some cheap garden planters, and rocks. Simply glue the solar light to the PVC pipe, give it a quick spray of paint if needed, attach a few 90 degree brackets to the end of the pipe, secure that to the planter, and fill it up with rocks. Adding flowers in or around it would also give it a nice splash of color.

A third lighting option would be to use cafe string lights; mount some 2×4’s around the area and attach some cup hooks to the top, then string the lights around however you like!

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