Hello and welcome to my post as part of the summer #UKHomeBlogHop! If you are joining me from Season's In Colour's post and have never read this blog before, then let me introduce myself. My name is Melanie and my blog is all about doing interiors on a budget with a bit of creativity and some DIY. For those of you who have come directly to this post just to check it out, then a huge thank you for coming by! If you enjoy this post then please do have a peep at the other blogs in this summer's Hop, all about styling our homes for summer. There are 27 amazing interior bloggers taking part in total, and it all starts here with host and organiser Swoonworthy's summer style.
When it comes to interior trends, most of us claim not to follow them. We like to try and embrace our own interior style and authenticity, which in the long run is a good idea so that you don't tire of your decor too quickly. However, I'm going to hold my hand up and say I love a good trend. Yes, it can get boring after a while, but for a short period of time, it can be really fun. The key is not to invest in on-trend expensive, long term pieces. Instead, a new cushion here or there, or some paint that can be re-done easily, is a cheap and fun way to add interior trends into your home.
With this in mind, I was thinking about how to style my balcony this year. My balcony is just off my living room and is my summer retreat for warm summer evenings with a glass of wine. Those of you who are long-time readers to this blog will know that I did all the hard graft to this balcony last year. I sanded and re-painted the decking, painted railings and built a big planter. The balcony was therefore in alright condition after the winter, it just looked like this:
As my balcony will only be used until Autumn comes around, I could embrace a trend, and was trying to decide on my favourite interior trends for 2017. I had been loving all the pink & green colour combinations that kept popping up on Instagram, but it wasn't until I visited Grand Designs Live at the end of April that I got inspired for styling my balcony for the summer. Part of the exhibition was the Grand Shed Project, a brilliant concept sponsored by AXA Insurance where 5 basic garden sheds had been transformed into 'proper' rooms by different garden & interior designers. My favourite shed by a mile was the South Beach Miami inspired shed, and there and then I decided to turn my balcony into my own mini botanical Miami paradise.
OK, so now I've talked you through how I decided on styling my balcony for summer, you are probably thinking just get on with it! So here is my balcony now, all ready for summer 2017!
So as you can see, I totally used the ideas of lush greenery, palm print and pink for my balcony, just like the South Beach Miami Shed. Doing this project on a budget, I did four key DIY projects to achieve the look.
Covered my old outdoor IKEA cushions with palm print fabric:
The plain white outdoor seat pads that I had for this Ikea garden sofa were perfect for being covered in these two palm leaf fabrics from Fashion Formula. Fashion Formula sell loads of textile designs by young indie designers and I fell in love with this banana palm leaves print, which I covered most of the sofa with. I also covered outdoor cushions with a palm leaf print with added pink (and tiny bananas!)
You don't need to be an expert sewer to do this. I just turned the seating pads over, bunched the fabric together, then sew it tight so it holds in place.
Painted my large planter in on-trend pink and green:
I gave the large planter that I built last year a lick of paint, from grey to something far more vivid! I used low-tack tape to create a geometric paint design, then used exterior paint to tie the planter in with the theme.
I then planted vibrant pink Foxgloves and red and purple primulas to add height, colour, and attract bees.
Built & painted wall mounted planters:
To really add in a lot of lush greenery and add in more pink and green paint, I built some wall mounted planters. There was also a rather ugly cable going up the side of the balcony to a satellite dish, so I wanted to erase that out aswell.
I brought six pieces of decking wood and with that I was able to build three planters that were attached to the wall:
Made a super-cheap gold side table using a tree trunk and spray paint:
One of the problems that I found that I had last year was that I had no small table on the balcony to put down a drink or a book. I wanted a glitzy side table, but had no budget for one. I'd seen in interior magazines and online retailers gold side tables like tree trunks, so thought I'd make my own version for outside using spray-paint and an actual real tree trunk! The ones they sell for interiors must not be real tree trunks, or be hollowed out, as my actual tree trunk is really heavy! I went to my local log-cutting yard, where I buy my chopped wood for the log burner in winter, and they cut me a piece of tree trunk to size for the tiny sum of £4. I then sanded down the trunk so there were no flaky bits of bark, primed it with Rust-Oleum surface primer, they sprayed it with two coats of Rust-Oleum metallic gold. I also then added Rust-Oleum glitter spray so that the trunk-table sparkled in the sun.
I am really happy with my side table! Even though the table has been left out in the rain quite a bit the spray-paint hasn't rubbed or run-off in the rain. It was a really budget way to create something a bit different.
To pull the look together, I purchased an outdoor rug from Wayfair. I didn't even know you could get these until I read Kimberly from Swoonworthy's blog post on revamping her decking area last year. I chose this black and white one as it had a sniff of a Jonathan Adler pattern about it. I love the rug as I felt it was the key piece that 'brought the indoors outside' and made the balcony feel like an extension of the living room. This one absolutely loves it aswell as it is so comfy for him to lay out in the sun:
To really add the 'tropical' vibes I also got a couple of faux palm trees! Cheaper than the real thing, and will remain green all year round!
I really hope you enjoyed my balcony styling for summer, and my #UKHomeBlogHop post in general! If you want to 'shop the look', then you can do so here!
If you did enjoy this post please do come back again soon for more DIY posts! Now skip on over to the lovely Natasha from Candy Pop to see her entry for the Hop. You can find a list of links for all posts in the Hop for the week right here:
* I'd like to thank Swoonworthy for hosting this fun summer Hop. It does really take a lot of organising so thank you Kimberly! I'd also like to thank AXA Insurance who worked with me on this project. A big thank you should also be given to the sponsors of the Blog Hop - Wayfair UK & Sweetpea & Willow. I'd also like to thank Fashion Formula, LSA International and Rust-Oleum for supplying products used in this post. Please note this post also contains some affiliate links which means if you purchase some items from 'shop the look' I will receive a small commission.