How to create an outdoor balcony dining area

Looking for something different than the average café table with a couple of chairs for your rental apartment balcony? Make the most of it for outside living by creating a truly cozy and private outdoor eating area with DIY wood privacy panels and DIY outdoor wood benches that maximize seating on a small balcony. It’s outside living at its best: you’ll be expanding your usable square footage by adding an outdoor room perfect to entertain friends on a hot summer night. Not to mention you’ll be the envy of all your neighbors!

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Other sources for materials:  Home Depot, Ikea

34 Comments

  1. chiara

    hi isabelle! i want to recreate your balcony idea, just want to ask you what were the dimension of that balcony because i think it is similar to mine. thank you so much!!!! cant wait to get started!!!!

    • Isabelle

      Hi Chiara, My NYC balcony was 5ft x 9 ft. I would love to see pictures of your balcony when you’re done. Have fun with the project!

  2. Kyril

    I have completely fallen in love with the way you approach these projects! Simple, stylish and inexpensive. YOU, young lady, are going places. I’ve dabbled with these concepts forever without knowing how to pull them off. It is in the simple explanation of the heretofore ‘difficult’ concepts that set you above the rest. Kudos! Out of 5 stars, you get 10!

    • Isabelle

      Thank you so much for your message and your kind words Kyril! That’s exactly what I try to do with all my projects, make them affordable and explain them in a way that makes it easy for anyone to understand and replicate, so it really makes my day to hear that this comes across!

  3. Alyssa

    Hey Isabel I am absolutely in love with their website and as a person that has moved around town almost every year for the past 15 years your ideas of giving me so much inspiration! I absolutely love the deck video and I’m hoping that you will do more videos of other apartment decks that you decorated to give people ideas of different kinds of options that they can do. Would love to see how you can repurpose things from craigslist or other secondhand stores like Goodwill and thrift shops to get people thinking creatively about how to reuse and recycle materials when they decorate as opposed to buying everything new.

    Thanks again for all the work you’ve done and you truly are an inspiration I look forward to following you and your site!
    Alyssa

    • Isabelle

      Hi Alyssa, Thank you so much for your kind words and your suggestions! You’ll be happy to know that I’m working on my LA apartment balcony which is very different than my NYC apartment balcony so that will many new ideas. And I’ll definitely keep in mind repurposing or reusing thrift store finds – it’s a great way of helping reducing what goes in landfills. Thanks for watching! Isabelle

  4. kyril

    Hi Isabelle,

    I am building my benches to your specs, and it’s going well (I’love post pics if ya wanna see them). Question: Where did you get that pedestal table? I want one like it that telescopes for adjustable height so it can double as a dining table or a lower ‘coffee table’ type deal. Any thoughts? You rock!

    • Isabelle

      Hi Kyril! I would love to see pics of your benches – please share! I couldn’t find a pedestal table that fit my small balcony so I ended up making it from a wood pedestal I had found on the curb and a sheet of plywood and some molding. If I come across something that might work, I’ll pass it along!

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  8. Alma

    Hello Isabelle,

    I am so happy that I found your channel on youtube. You are soooo creative and it is great because I found that some of the things that I need to do in my apartment, someone already did it and they look great. You are an inspiration!!

    I have a question about your balcony. Is it winter friendly/proof? I live in Boston and I am a renter too, so I want to make sure I invest in the right solution for my balcony.

    Best,

    Alma

    • Isabelle

      Hi Alma, Thank you so much, glad you’re finding some ideas that are helpful to you! As long as you weatherproof the wood with outdoor stain, it will hold up in the winter. Hope that helps, Isabelle

  9. Kiran

    Hi Isabelle, its really amazing what you have done to a balcony which is 45 sq ft.
    I am from India and I have always admired your work and the DIY stuff that you post.
    I have a balcony which is 3ft X 9ft. This is really small when compared to yours. Are there any tips that you can provide for such a small balcony.

    • Isabelle

      Hi Kiran, Thank you so much, happy to hear you like my work :) I’m working on my LA balcony now which is a similar size to yours (42″ x 9ft) so stay tuned for that episode which will be out shortly and hopefully you’ll find some ideas that you can use for your balcony! Isabelle

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