During the “year of Covid”, after using every square inch of our house and property to come up with JUST ONE MORE ACTIVITY, there was one area that was still begging for a makeover… and that was our neglected “back patio”.

This is pretty much how it looked for two years. Just a sad patch of dirt with a lonely barn table.

I don’t know why I didn’t give this space any love…

… but there’s nothing like a pandemic to get your wheels turning and your projects completed!

I knew three things.

1. I wanted two zones… one for lounging and one for eating.

2. I wanted the space to feel European, similar to the French vibe of our building.

3. I wanted to mix modern with vintage pieces.

To get the ball rolling, we added a bit more decomposed granite to the bit that was there, and leveled it out as best as we could.

We then added cement pavers in a diagonal pattern, filling the cracks between with a moss that was very high-maintenance (if you watched my Instagram stories, YOU WILL KNOW MY RELATIONSHIP WITH THIS MOSS).

Before the moss was planted, I found and purchased the vintage settee and table pictured off of 1st Dibs, and had the settee covered in Logan Montgomery high performance fabric.

The set is Mario Papperzini for John Salterini. You can cushion the back, or leave it uncovered, which will show off the pattern of the metal work (one of my favorite details).

I bought plants and vintage pots to begin “framing” the lounge “zone”, and snagged my “bucket list”┬áribbon chairs from Nickey Kehoe.

The fire pit was a lucky find from Porch, in Summerland. My neighbor called me one morning and told me they were having a moving sale and all of the outdoor furniture was marked up to 60% off!

You bet your ass I drove the hour and half to go nab this beauty!

The fire pit is actually attached to a propane tank that is hidden in our fenced in trash area. Our handyman/contractor buried a line underneath the pavers to reach the propane tank so that everything would remain hidden and clean! It was a great design decision (thank you Jim!).

On the opposite end of the patio, against the building, is the dining area.

I scored another favorite from Nickey Kehoe, the potting table, at a nice discount because it had been outside at their previous location and had a bit of wear and tear. I flanked it on both sides with olive trees.

It’s the perfect place to store gardening items and to use as a buffet or bar for dinner parties and brunches!

The table is vintage, and the chairs are from Williams Sonoma Home.

For my tabletop, I sourced everything from my friend Joanna at Kneeland Co.. How frickin gorgeous are these blue pieces from Mexico???!!!

I also grabbed some vintage bowls… to switch in and out for an added graphic punch .

As we’ve spent more time in this magical spot, we’ve supplemented the garden with more pots and plants, and whimsical little characters like this bunny…

… and cement mushrooms (also from Nickey Kehoe).


We’ve come a long way baby (now baby’s got BACK)! Who is coming over for a 2021 summer cocktail???

(You can find more Home Sweet Deesign Makeovers here).