Before & After: A Gorgeous Retreat Emerges from a Modest Back Yard


After working in my basement studio and peering out the door that leads to my backyard, I know exactly how it feels to be at this before stage…although I must say, the photo above does still look like a place I could relax and enjoy my morning coffee without feeling uneasy. But since this is a Before & After column, let’s focus on the awesome yard it’s been transformed into…

before and after, backyard, patio, shrubs, perennials, makeover

Donaleen put a lot of work into her tiny 18′ x 27′ yard after she moved in and it really shows! I love how all the layered greens look so lavishly vibrant…it feels just like stepping out into a space you’d see only on a travel photography blog. The gorgeous blue planter is spectacular and the collection of bird feeders remind me to do some shopping  for my own feathered friends. Here’s another photo of her yard from a different angle:

lush, green, leafy, vibrant, yard, landscaping, plants, patio, small yard

She makes her garden look so effortless, doesn’t she? I’m especially in love with all the tiny dots of color spread across the varying textures and shades of green. Nice job, Donaleen! –erin

If you have an awesome landscape transformation you’d like to share with the Studio ‘g’ community, send us an email with a few pictures!

Images from: Spit & Vinegar.


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  1. Debbie Feely on August 16, 2013 at 10:39 am

    I love this column! Thanks, Erin, another great inspiration. We are in the dead leaf doldrums stage of summer and this makes me want to get out and make things look as happy. Lovely!

  2. donaleen on August 18, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    Well, thank you for your kind words. How very cool.

  3. Maya Bartolf on August 18, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Wonderful transformation! Inspiring!

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