Rock the Block, S1: Great Room and Backyard

Rock the Block, S1: Great Room and Backyard

Project Overview

The Rooms: 

Great Room and Backyard


The Budget Breakdown: 

  • Total Reno Budget: $175,000
  • Main Suite: -$25,800
  • Kitchen: -$35,150
  • Great Room and Backyard: -$55,300


The Plan:

When you walk in the fount door of this house, what do you see? Straight through the great room and into the backyard. These two spaces are what’s going to make the first impression in this house, and I wanted to make sure this impression was as impactful, emotional, and captivating as possible. In order to create a space that would impress appraisers and homeowners alike, I needed to add value in ways that were simultaneously fun AND functional. I had to add character to this home while also adding value. My strategy for this involved a cohesive, purposeful design with lots of defined spaces for casual gatherings. 

Great Room and Backyard Design Board

Great Room and Backyard Color Story

Before & After Photos

RTB Great Room Yard BA
RTB Great Room Yard BA
RTB Great Room Yard BA


This week’s room design was by far the craziest thing I’ve ever embarked on. Building a pool this quick was no joke, and neither is designing and staging an entire backyard and great room space simultaneously. The risk was huge, but the reward was well worth it: my house ended up being the only one with a pool, resulting in a big WIN for Team Jasmine!! Alongside the pool, check out all of these other design specs that added to the overall, winning effect of this home’s great room and backyard:


Luxury Vinyl Flooring

This luxury vinyl flooring has been a huge value-add in all of the other rooms of the house, and continues to be add value in this room, as well. Imagine, not having to freak out if you spill a glass of wine on the floor, or if your bulldog tries to dig a hole in it, or if your kids run inside, soaking wet from the pool (because, yes, this house DOES have a pool!). You can be as cool as an organic, homemade popsicle, all California Zen like, to go with your new California Casual decor. I can see it now, a new book, titled: Zen and the Art of Luxury Vinyl Flooring. PRODUCT LINK


Statement Lighting

In the great room, I used this large, modern, and striking 15-bulb chandelier to center the room, and draw your eye to the antique elm ceiling application. PRODUCT LINK

On the patio, using a large, woven pendant feels luxurious, and makes the outdoor space feel less like a regular, ol’ patio and more like an outdoor living room. PRODUCT LINK


Ceiling Application

Ceilings are so often ignored, it’s no wonder they all suffer from the ever present, well known Floor Envy Syndrome (FES).  (Ha!)  We wanted to give this ceiling a much needed boost of confidence, in turn adding value to the entire space by offering the buyer custom carpentry detailing in the form of an Antique Elm, concentric square ceiling treatment. Now, the floor is complaining about no longer being the star surface, but everyone knows flooring can be a bit of a prima donna; not the most grounded of the housing material celebrities, if you catch my drift. (And I won’t even mention the fact that the ceiling treatment is continued out onto the outdoor patio, as well.)


Stacking Glass Doors

In California, indoor-outdoor living is KEY. Buyers want to be able to seamlessly shirt between indoor and outdoor living areas, making entertaining a breeze and outdoor living easily accessible. These doors immediately draw the eye when someone walks into the front door, offering unencumbered views of the backyard and the beckoning pool.


This pool was our Hail Mary, piece de resistance, double or nothing play to take home the win. It fits in perfectly with the home’s indoor-outdoor living scheme, and is the centerpiece of the entire backyard. It is manageable in size, while still offering room to play, cool off. Not just for play, it is also sparkling and beautiful, with automated fountains and lights turning it into a landscaping water feature, as well. Functional art in the form of a pool! We hope our pool and the appraiser get along just swimmingly.

Outdoor Kitchen

I included a sink, beverage center, and television in the covered outdoor patio area, so you can hang out here just like you would in any other room in the house. No “roughing it” on my watch! Comfortable seating and a view of the pool might just make it the favorite hang-out spot in the entire house. Extending the interior antique elm ceiling application from the living room out onto the patio makes it all feel like just one, big great room, although in the evenings, it’s hard to compete with the ultimate ceiling application just a few steps to the left: the wide open night sky.


Stylish Storage

Built-in nooks and shelving on either side of the fireplace, and a set of vintage lockers, offer lots of options for turn-key storage solutions.


I added a fireplace to the great room, making it feel grander and more sophisticated. Using luxury materials like a marble fireplace surround and an Antique Elm mantle give the feel of a piece of heirloom furniture…that also just happens to light on fire with the flick of a switch!

RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery
RTB Great Room Gallery

This project could not have been made possible without our amazing vendors as well:

Custom Cabinetry: B and D Cabinets | Ceiling Application: B and D Cabinets | Marble Fireplace Surround: Virginia Tile Co.   

Antique Elm Accents: Mr. Timbers | Lighting: Filament Lighting & Home | Pool Coping: Pacific Stone Design

Pool Sealing: Miracote Products | Pool Contractor: Mike @ 949-412-1382 | Art Prints: Juniper Print Shop


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