Bigger isn’t necessarily better! A small urban back yard is transformed into a calm retreat, a sanctuary, and a perfect place for entertaining, with a limited palette of beautiful materials. A Pennsylvania bluestone patio is framed on two sides by the existing house and cottage, with new French doors for access. A beautiful L-shaped bench serves double duty as a fire pit surround and seating for outdoor dining. An ipe gate and fence wraps the space, interrupted by stands of bamboo and an exposed concrete brick wall. A bordering structure is transformed to provide an exciting and vibrant plane of bright, bold color. In front, the new bluestone entry stair enhances the entry, while a field of no-mow grass (festuca) with English lavender and tall grasses creates a soft, tiered foreground to the residence.