When Zen Meets Balcony

One of the things on my creative “to do list” was my daughter’s balcony.

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balconyrightLooking at her plain ordinary balcony brought back memories of the days when I was still a kid watching my dad redesign our patio.  He was always doing something new to it.  I watched our simple everyday concrete patio turn into a green room with a brick-red painted balconyleftfloor surrounded with latticework  which my mother then decorated with greenery, and of course some of her starched doilies. You know those doilies found a way into every room in our house then.

Of course I didn’t want the balcony to mimic my parent’s patio.  I was going more for a quiet Zen-garden ambiance.  The LA sun would beat down so heavy on that balcony, and I thought privacy was an issue I had to address, as well. Not to mention, the family dogs would also love having a nice place to sunbathe.  I thought if I could make it more private, the drapes could be left open more in the day and the night.

So, I went to work. I needed to find a way to cover the cement floor without damaging it, since it was an apartment.  Also, anything I put out there had to be temporary so it could be taken apart without damage, should my daughter have to move.

I researched and found all the items I wanted to work with. The total amount came to a little over $260.00  and the total number of hours to do the whole job, including laying out the deck tiles, screen, potting the plants, and placing the river rock was about 3 hours.

My daughter and I shopped for all the materials and flowers and completed the entire redesign on a Sunday afternoon. We found everything at Home Depot and Ikea.  We got the screen, dirt, plants, rocks,  and containers at Home Depot; at Ikea we picked up the Platta Decking for $34.99/9 pack (we used 2 packs).  You can cut the pieces to fit around corners or fit your space.

balconytileI didn’t want to go all the way flush to the walls or the edge of the balcony, so instead I used blue river rock to surround the tiles which gave it more of the Zen outdoor garden look I wanted.  I used the rock for the difficult areas where the decking tiles could balconywallnot fit into or where the concrete was not flat enough.  I added a string of outdoor mini lights and my daughter added the lanterns.  I love how it just opened up the living room and makes the living room and the balcony flow into each other.

balconyrocksWell, that’s one project off my creative “to-do-list.

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