Our Favorite Things List: Spring 2014

Cocoon Double-Hang Nest Chair.
We see all the articles buzzing about on the Internet about the 10 coolest things to build for your home or how to have a lavish backyard this summer. Between all those lists, and other articles we've run into, there's no shortage of "To-Dos" at Better Farm this (or any!) year. Here are our top picks for cool new ideas we'd like to employ—as soon as the there are more hours in a day.

Outdoor stage:

Half-table over trash pail and toilet paper roll in bathroom:

Stitching together gorgeous, unusual quilts:

Breakfast nooks:

Cement stepping stones rife with jewels and made in a cereal box:

A bunk bed turned into a "floating" outdoor deck:
 Hydroponics in the greenhouse:

Outdoor pizza ovens. All the time.
 Pallet benches:
Okay, pallet everything:

Hula hoop hideouts:

Using unusual items to make coat racks:

Sunflower houses:

Converted, old schoolbuses:

Turning anything at all into planters:

Outdoor kitchens:

Trellises for all climbing fruits and veggies:

Practical, easy irrigation techniques:

Shabby chic:

Inexpensive, simple, at-home transformations like white coats of paint and new hardware for kitchen cabinets:

Upcycling windows to make cold frames:

Upcycling tarps to make games:

 And upcycling bed frames to make benches:

 Outdoor tents and hangout areas:

Huge flowers:
Tiny houses:

Also tiny and great: library shares for villages, neighbors, or cities:
 Genius mudroom ideas:

After (pretty please?)
Geodesic chicken pens (particularly during late winter/early spring when predators are the scariest):

 Using skirt/slacks hangers to hang art:

Clever outdoor lighting solutions:

 Smart night-time entertaining ideas for kids (or adults...):

Got some to-die-for design or garden ideas to share? Email info@betterfarm.org.

Nicole Caldwell

Nicole Caldwell is a self-taught environmentalist, green-living savant and sustainability educator with more than a decade of professional writing experience. She is also the co-founder of Better Farm and president of betterArts. Nicole’s work has been featured in Mother Earth News, Reader’s Digest, Time Out New York, and many other publications. Her first book, Better: The Everyday Art of Sustainable Living, is due out this July through New Society Publishers.