DIY & Done: Create an Outdoor Entertaining Space With String Light Poles

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Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse
Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

No patio? No problem. These DIY string light poles instantly transform any spot outside into a well-defined room with the illusion of four "walls." Just arrange the stylish succulent-filled planters in a square, string some lights between them, and your entertaining oasis is good to go. Those warm-weather nights are about to get extra sparkly.

Things You'll Need

Step 1

Drill a pilot hole an inch down from the top of each dowel and screw a cup hook into the hole. Make sure the opening of the hook is facing upward.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Step 2

Wrap sisal rope around each wood dowel, starting at the portion that will be visible above the planter, and work upward. Hot glue every other row in place. Stop when you've wrapped 1 ½ feet of the dowel, cut off the excess rope, and glue the end down.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Step 3

Center the wood dowel inside the planter and either have a helper hold it for you or lean it against something. Pour fast-setting concrete mix in an even layer around the dowel followed by the amount of water recommended by the manufacturer (we used a ratio of 25 pounds of concrete mix to 5 cups of water).

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

*TIP: *Fast-setting concrete mix is handy for this project because you don't have to mix it. You just pour water on top and done! But regular concrete works, too.

Step 4

Quickly position the pole upright and use a level to make sure it's plumb. Hold the pole in place for two to three minutes while the concrete sets, and then let go.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Step 5

Place painter's tape around the dowel to create a brace around it, and then let the concrete fully cure for 24 hours.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Step 6

Add packing peanuts or air pillows (or even empty plastic bottles) to the bottom of the planter until it's ¾ full. This will cut down on the amount of soil needed to fill the planter and make it much less heavy.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Step 7

Fill the rest of the planter with potting soil, and plant an assortment of succulents on top. Be sure to use potting soil specific for succulents.

Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse
Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse
Image Credit: Trisha Sprouse

Laurie Gunning Grossman, Hunker’s editorial director, caught the California boho minimalist bug. So, she bought a cream-colored couch. And she also lives with two kids and two dogs, so we’ll see how that decision pans out.

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