10 Creative Backyard Projects to Enhance Your Outdoor Living

Everyone loves a unique backyard space that they had a hand in putting together. Completing do-it-yourself (DIY) backyard projects can be both rewarding and practical! Things like outdoor lighting, a fire pit, backyard pathways, and even a garden pergola are all fantastic ways to put your own touch on the space, and they can all be done with little to no experience!

Join us here at Shepherd’s Hardware on a journey of 10 different creative backyard projects that you can start working on this weekend! 

1. DIY Outdoor Kitchen

Building an outdoor kitchen can be a transformative backyard project! Take your barbecuing, entertaining, and family time to the next level with just a few simple additions. Try adding to your basic grilling setup by installing a countertop, building a small serving area, or designing a patio space where all the action can happen. Weather-resistant materials are key here to help withstand seasonal conditions.

Material Tips

  • Opt for treated wood (protection + aesthetic appeal)
  • Pick stainless steel appliances 
  • Get creative with stone/masonry products

2. Fire Pit Installation

One of the best and most desirable DIY backyard projects is a fire pit. Create a cozy atmosphere for you and your family by following these 3 simple steps:

  1. Choose a suitable location: You’ll want to ensure your fire pit is away from any trees or structures. Ensure it’s on a flat, non-flammable surface such as a cement pad or prepared in-ground base.
  2. Materials: Choose fire-resistant bricks or stones to build something you love to be around. Metal fire rings are also available in all sort of decorative options to suit the theme of your house and yard.
  3. Safety: Always check with your local authorities (fire hall, city council, etc.) to see what the requirements are for fire pits in your area, and any permits you might need to obtain before installing one on your property.

Turn your backyard into a warm (both literally and figuratively!) and inviting space to be enjoyed year-round. A fire pit is one of the easiest ways to do so.

3. Garden Pergola

Add shade and style by building/installing a garden pergola this summer—the perfect backyard project! Choose materials like cedar or redwood for their durability and resistance to insects. You can also customize your pergola with hanging plants or the addition of fairy lights for that extra hint of warmth in the evening hours. 

Pergola Tips

  • Choose a design that complements your home and garden style
  • Use treated wood or metal for durability and resistance to bugs/wear
  • Get custom with hanging plants, fairy lights, or even outdoor curtains for added charm

4. Vertical Gardening Setup

Vertical gardening is perfect for urban living and small spaces of every type. By using upcycled materials like pallets, containers, and old lattice sections, you can create a unique and charming vertical garden feature in no time at all. It saves space, can increase privacy, and at the same time adds a touch of greenery and functionality to your backyard.

5. Water Features

One of the more impressive backyard projects that is guaranteed to make your guests swoon is the addition of a water feature! A small pond or fountain setup can tie together big lots and give any space a feeling of tranquility. It’s within your reach, too; kit options and endless decorative, all-inclusive recirculating water features are available and ready to be installed.


  • Provides a soothing ambiance to any outdoor environment
  • Creates a focal point in the yard
  • Attracts birds and adds life to the space

6. Outdoor Lighting

There is no better way to enhance the look and security of your backyard than by adding in some outdoor lighting. Use it to strategically highlight key areas like pathways, seating areas, and more notable points in the garden such as trees or garden beds. There’s so many lighting options on the market today, here’s a few to consider.

Types of Lighting

  • Solar: Eco-friendly and easy to install
  • LED: Saves money; efficient and long-lasting
  • Landscape: Ideal for highlighting ground features

7. DIY Outdoor Furniture

Now we’re really getting handy! Building a simple bench, table or chair that will last for years is something you can easily do if you have the right tools and materials. It looks great, and is a fantastic talking point for visiting guests. Refinishing old furniture is another great option, and gives your backyard that old-cottage/rustic charm that makes us all feel at home.

8. Backyard Pathways

Creating a new pathway to traverse across your property can be one of the most rewarding backyard projects. The feel of new stone, pavers, or even just some gravel beneath your feet, knowing you laid it there and put in the work to make it functional is something that cannot be described! It looks incredible, too!

Pathway Design Tips

  • Use a curved path design for a more natural look (think creeks, riverbeds, etc.)
  • Combine different materials like stone/mulch, bricks/gravel, etc.
  • Consider adding a layer of landscaping fabric and/or border material definition and neatness

9. Treehouse or Play Area

It’s time to get those kids away from the iPad and out into the backyard! Building a tree house or dedicated play area can fill all the childhood years with fun and laughter; to be enjoyed with and by the whole family! Focus on safety features like railings, soft landings, and secure fixtures to help mitigate accidents. You can try out creative themes like pirate ships or fairy castles, too!

10. Sustainable Practices

There are so many creative ways that you can turn your backyard into a sustainable space to benefit both yourself and the environment as a whole. Backyard projects like adding in a compost bin/area, installing a rainwater harvesting system, or creating a bee/butterfly garden are all day projects that can be done solo or with the family. Use it as an educational time, as well!


Creative backyard projects such as the ones we’ve detailed above can add a whole new layer of life to your home and property. Start your next DIY adventure today by visiting Shepherd’s Hardware and telling our expert team about what you want to achieve. We have the tools and materials to make it happen. Serving Armstrong, BC and the greater North Okanagan region.

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