Build an Easy Backyard Fire Pit and Fall Decorating Ideas

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Outdoor Fall Decorating Tips and Ideas

This week I’ll be sharing how we built an easy backyard fire pit and some outdoor fall decorating tips and ideas from Sunflower Designs. This is the first fall season in our new home, and I’ve had so much fun decorating! Full disclosure: I took a minimalistic approach to outdoor decorating because the big project was building a backyard fire pit described later in this blog. However, I didn’t want the front of the house to be décor-free.

Decorate Your Mailbox for Fall

One of the quickest ways to give your home some fall décor is to add something to your mailbox. There are plenty of options: corn stalks, hay bales, pumpkins placed around the mailbox. I opted for a fall mailbox swag. It was quick and inexpensive to make.

deco mesh and ribbon swag on brick covered mailbox
deco mesh and ribbon mailbox swag on a brick covered mailbox

Decorate Your Front Porch for Fall

This year I took a simple approach to our front porch décor. A vase of fall blooms, a pumpkin, and a Sunflower Designs Halloween wreath. To give the wreath a little punch, I added a strand of lighted, battery operated autumn leaves.

porch decor with pumpkin
wreath on a chair sitting outside the front door
porch at night with a lit up wreath on a chair

Adding a Backyard Fire Pit

We have been in this home less than a year, so we are still adding our touches to the property. Having a backyard fire pit has been on our wish list for a while and we made it happen! I’m giving you details of how we added ours, and some general tips.

Before we began the project, I spent some time on Pinterest finding some inspiration for what we had in mind. We started by marking the area and making sure that it worked well with the slope of the property.

flags marking an area in the backyard for fire pit. shed in background

While you can buy fire pit kits at your local Ace Hardware or big box stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot, we went with a completely original design. Once we identified and marked the area, we began by creating the border of the area. We used the same paver stones that we used in the spring to create a garden area in our backyard. By using the same pavers, we achieved a blended look. 

man setting up concrete pavers to make an outdoor fire pit

Once the border was complete on three sides, we laid down landscaping cloth and covered with pea gravel.

man standing in a truck unloading gravel into an outdoor fire pit space

Working with the slope of our property, we built the actual fire pit on one side of the area, instead of placing it in the middle. Digging the area for the actual pit on a more sloped incline, meant that the area needed to be level so that the stones would be level when finished.

truck loaded with concrete paver stones and fire pit being loaded with gravel

The pit uses the same pavers and is built up higher than the border. Space was left between some of the pavers to help with the draft of the fire. Once all the pavers were in place, the remainder of the gravel was added to fill in the entire area.

man unloading concrete paver stones into a fire pit area

We added solar battery powered landscaping lighting around the perimeter of the area to provide lighting for safety and to add character. The final step was to add a table and patio chairs. We have enjoyed using the fire pit many nights since it was finished, and it is a great place for family and friends to gather.

outdoor furniture set up by an outdoor fire pit
outdoor furniture set up by an outdoor fire pit
fire burning in a backyard fire pit

Tips for an Easy Backyard Fire Pit

We did our research before beginning the project and gathering the materials. Here are some of our tips you may find helpful. 

  1. Prepare for the project, making sure that where you plan to dig will not impact any buried lines.
  1. Design your project by sketching it out on paper and measure the area to be sure you have allowed for enough space to accommodate the number of people you anticipate having around the fire. 
  1. Dig, dig, dig. Because we did not sink the entire area, the only area that required digging was the actual pit.
  1. Fill the hole. We used pea gravel to fill not only the hole, but also the seating area.
  1. Make sure you have the materials you will need before beginning. Here’s a list of materials you will need:
  • Fireproof stone, such as the concrete pavers we used
  • Gravel or sand
  • Fire-resistant mortar or adhesive. We opted not to use these materials, preferring to allow for some space between stones to allow the fire to draw oxygen.
  • Shovel and rake
  • Tamper
  • Level
  • String or twine
  • Tape measure
  • Spray paint or garden trowel
  • Rubber mallet

In my next blog I will share with you decorating for Halloween and ideas for Halloween 2020, during a pandemic. I hope you will join me on this crazy journey of life, and we can discover some things together.

Helping you create a beautiful home is what @Home with Sunflower Designs is all about. Each week we offer suggestions on ways to add beauty and simplicity to your surroundings, so that you and your family can enjoy your home. Until next time… #livecreatively!

Don't forget to save this project to your favorite Pinterest board and share with friends.

Sunflower Designs helps you create a beautiful home one wreath and one space at a time.

Ann Bryant, Owner & Designer
Follow our blog @Home with Sunflower Designs| Sunflower Designs 2018 on Etsy

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