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updated: 6/21/2013 12:49 PM

Outdoor makeover contest Week 5: Dreaming of a fiesta fabulosa

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By Amy Dawes of Aurora

Tantalizing smells, cold drinks and voices raised in happy conversations. That is how I envision my backyard, as a relaxing outdoor living space, during our annual teaching department May fiesta. I need your help to make that vision a reality! As staff numbers have doubled, my concrete backyard patio lacks space and character. There's not enough space or seating space for people to sit and chat. The patio is bordered by our attempt at landscaping that detracts rather than adds to the space. It's a blank slate to create an amazing setting full of ambiance and the wow factor. We enjoy being at a house, rather than a restaurant, but without assistance, I won't be able to hold our party for much longer. This year has been a tough one for teachers, which makes our time together even more meaningful and precious. Help us transform our backyard into a fiesta location.

for this year and years to come!

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Transformation by: World Market (Randhurst)

Mount Prospect

Budget: $2,000

This backyard has the space for entertaining but lacks the punch needed to really captivate its owners and guests. Additionally, the lack of mature landscaping leaves the yard feeling very flat and one-dimensional. Multiple areas for seating are needed as well as lighting and color to really transform this spacious backyard into an entertaining hot spot.

• Seating is key! The Solano All Weather Wicker Sectional allows the owner to create modular seating in multiple areas and with different arrangements to break up the space. Additionally, groupings of adirondack chairs can provide seating with a pop of color. Don't forget to include the red metal Lucas accent drums to provide some functionality and tie in the color.

• Lighting is often overlooked and with this spacious yard we need to ensure proper lighting is available so the entertaining can continue late into the evening. Battery-operated and tea light lanterns can provide some much needed color and illumination.

• For dining needs, try the Bali Round Dining Table, Aegean Umbrella and Bali Chairs with the interchangeable canvas covers. The Bali table collection is available in three sizes and the chairs are available in multiple color canvas options.

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