Transforming Our Balcony

Ever since we moved to Fargo, we’ve had a balcony patio. In our first apartment, we overlooked a strip mall parking lot. Winter that year ran long, and we were only there until the end of July, part of which we were out of town getting married and on our honeymoon. Before that we were so occupied with finishing wedding plans that we never got around to making the patio a pleasant place to hang out.

balcony in our building, photo from

In our new apartment we face north on a residential, tree-lined street. It also has a balcony patio, and is dominated by concrete. As you can see above, I found a picture online of another condo’s balcony in our building. Need to get better about remembering to take before photos.

My husband, Travis, and I were up for the challenge of transforming our patio. We were going to make it an inviting space somehow on the cheap.

We had to start by sweeping up the dead leaves and dirt that accumulated over the winter. We already had a wood patio table and chairs, but they needed a good cleaning.

Then we spent a few hours at Home Depot, picking out plant boxes and finding a way to attach them to our railing. We found cedar boxes that match our table and chairs. Travis rigged up a way to keep them secure so they didn’t rotate with weather stripping and zip ties.

We found the cutest strip of mini-lantern lights at Target and hung them up across the space. They made everything look suddenly cheerier. Also, simple cushions made the chairs a little more comfortable.

Yesterday we went back to Home Depot. Together we picked out some pretty pink double impatients. They are supposed to do well in shade, which is good cause that’s pretty much all we get facing north. I think they look like little roses.

We covered the drainage holes in the bottom of the flower box liner with little rocks to keep the soil from washing away. Then I placed the plants equal distance apart and filled the liners with potting soil.

I gave them each a little water with the cute green watering can from Target and swept/vacuumed up the fallen dirt on the balcony.

The patio is complete and is ready for summer living.


  1. Love it.

    I also love your look of concentration when watering!

  2. Erin says:

    That patio is super cute! You guys did a really good job with it.

  3. Maggie says:

    This came together so well! Love the pretty pink flowers with the neutrals. Awesome lights, too! Makes me miss the balcony we had in our old apt. (though it never looked so spiffy).

  4. Jo says:

    You’re adorable and I want to come have a drink on your patio!

    I love those lights!! And now I want to cute up my porches.

    • jacqueline says:

      You totally should give your porches a little TLC. Totally worth the effort if you ask me. Any time you are passing through Fargo, you are definitely invited for drinks on the patio.

  5. Esther says:

    How beautiful!!! Definitely inspiring to do that some day.

  6. Terri says:

    What a lovely little renovation! I especially like the planter boxes.

  7. Lizzie says:

    I see many summer evenings on the balcony in your future. Cute!

  8. Caitlin says:

    What an awesome transformation! I love the lights especially– that will be so SO nice on warm summery evenings. I’d love to steal that idea (really like the lights you chose!), but we don’t have an outlet on our deck… such a bummer.

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