A mum turned her tiny garden into a floral paradise – using Facebook Marketplace bargains costing just £3.
Rachel, 39, created a pergola and pallet furniture with a floral macramé theme.
Her partner and brother got building using free pallets that would have been thrown away.
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She saved £140 on pergola wood and picked up décor from B&M, IKEA and Facebook Marketplace.
Rachel Fowles, 39 from Stockport who is a nursing sister and mother to one daughter, 17, told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk : “I have the smallest seating area in my tiny garden and I wanted a pergola to make it feel more cosy. Around 10 years ago my brother and partner added some gravel, patio slabs, decking and wooden garden furniture to make it look better. It was so simple and just what I needed back then. However I was ready for something more and my budget makeover started there at the beginning of lockdown last year.
“I can’t stand to throw things away and I try to upcycle things on a budget. When I shopped for supplies I managed to pick up plenty of bargain buys. For example my garden tables are from Facebook Marketplace and I picked them up for £20. They are IKEA glass over sofa tables, and they’ve lasted 2 months in the garden and withstood multiple rounds of rain.
“When I’m entertaining the two tables push together, and when I’m not they slot under the pallet furniture in such a way that the top forms a little side table. I couldn’t find any garden furniture that fitted this way and obviously I love a bargain so these were perfect.
“I bought the wood for the pergola from our local timber merchant, it cost just £66 – most of the kits I saw were around £200! The pallets used for the furniture were free from a man who was throwing them away.
“The flamingo cushions from TK Maxx were £20. The welcome cushion was £6 and the floor cushions were £15 each, all from B&M. The lanterns were £35 from Lights4Fun and the globe lights were £30 for three from eBay. The festoon lights came from B&M for £15 and the chill sign was from Facebook Marketplace. It was £3 per letter and it’s made from artificial grass.
“The green cushion on the hanging chair came from Home Bargains for £6, and the white seat pad cushions were gifted. The stop lights around the fence came from Asda for £8 and the large bulb lights from eBay were 3 for £33. The pallet cushions came from eBay. They were pricey, but the cheapest I could find of a good quality came to £122 in total.
“I made the pink and grey cushions and I made the macramé lights using solar bulbs from B&M – they were 3 for £5. I learnt basic macramé knots off YouTube. I do need to redo them this year though as the lights have filled with water!
“The hanging chair came about because I’ve always wanted one. However, my space is far too small for an egg chair and I couldn’t afford most of them. When I started doing macramé I came across a chair which I thought would be perfect for my garden and go well with the macramé pieces I made. I found the chair itself on Amazon for £36.99 and the stand on eBay for £79.99, so all in all it was £116.98. This is about average pricing, it pays off to buy the chair and stand separately and shop for the best prices because I’ve seen sets going for as much as £250 online.
“My partner Tom built the pallet furniture and he and my brother Jay built the pergola. My partner found a DIY tutorial on YouTube for the furniture. He cut out some planks on the top pallet to slot the slating back pallets in. The pergola has cut outs so they can slot together, screwed to the wall and floor with metal brackets.
“I’ve also added a mirror wall and decked wall. With the decked wall, my brother was redoing a client’s decking and the boards were just going to waste so I asked if I could have them and she kindly agreed! I was looking for something to cover the wall and hated the idea of more trellis as there’s no sun there and the flowers die!
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“I bought the little herb boxes, the white herb trays and the large glass jars from Poundland. The white herb trays were £3 each. The silver utensil caddies were from Poundstretcher for £1.99. The solar lights were from Home Bargains for a fiver and the ivy came from B&M for £1.99 each. The small glass jars at the top and fake plants at the bottom were from IKEA. There’s no sun here so real plants tend to die! It was really cheap to do and it has stood the test of time. It’s also easy to change for different seasons.
“The other feature I’m proud of is the mirror wall. I decided to add some mirrors to my wall to try and make the space feel bigger and improve the aesthetic! The idea was inspired by holiday pictures. I liked the look of lights on water and wanted to try and recreate that. I found the mirrors in B&M for £6.99 each.
“All the lights are also from B&M. The top ones were £1 each and the bottom ones were £10 for a pack of four. The trough was built by my partner with leftover scaffold boards from his allotment! The mirrors are not designed for the garden but they are on a wall that gets absolutely no sun and there are very few birds in my garden as I live in a built up area….I’ve had no problems so far! I spent £45 on this feature and it made a huge difference. I love it, especially at night!”
Tom Church, Co-Founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, said: “Rachel has done a great job, along with her partner and brother, at transforming her garden. As more people turn to DIY in a bid to cut costs, it’s interesting and inspiring to see how people turn pallet wood into furniture and decking into feature walls. Hopefully this story inspires other aspiring DIYers to give their own transformation a go!”
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