Up Your Curb Appeal With a Stunning Retaining Wall

8 Materials
When we bought our home, high on our priority list was improve our curb appeal. Our front yard was seriously lacking life and needed some serious love and attention. With our yard on a slope, I was a little stumped what to do. After a few hours of Pinterest perusing, we decided to build a retaining wall as a statement piece in our yard. Here's how you can make your own.
- Paver sand
- Retaining wall blocks (we used 100 of these blocks from Lowe's and knew we could return what we didn't use)
- Concrete adhesive (optional)
- Sledgehammer
- Level
- String
- Stakes
- Shovel
This what it looked like before we got our hands on it. Old and beat up. This thing needed some serious lovin'.
We started by pulling our all the old edging and tilling the dirt.
We used stakes and string (well, twine, because let's get real folks, that's what us crafters have on hand) and mapped out in the yard the shape of the new garden space.
Once you have your shape, chisel our your shape with a sledgehammer and shovel. Then put a layer of fine paver sand down so the stones have something to settle into so the wall is sturdy. This doesn't have to be a thick layer. About an inch deep will do.
This is the best picture I have to explain it, but if you are building the wall on a slope, you'll need to measure out where the stones will go so that your wall will be level. As you can see, the stones closest to the walkway only have two levels. Then we had to make a step down where we had three levels, and then again around the tallest point we had to step down again for four tall.
After that, go crazy with your level and put down your base row making sure each stone is level along the whole way. Each stone needs to be level side to side and front to back. This may seem tedious but it's better to level out as you go rather than having to redo it once you finish if they don't even out. If you choose to use concrete adhesive, be sure to have it ready once you start stacking to hold it all in place. Honestly, we didn't use any to cut down on costs and we haven't had any problems. Once we filled the bed with soil it helped to hold the wall in place and make it secure.
For less than $200 and a few days of grunt labor, I'd say this was a super DIY success! For more detailed information on how to build your own retaining wall, head to my blog.

Amanda Garvin
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 17 questions
  • Sue Gov Sue Gov on Apr 27, 2018

    Question, when you build brick wall what do put so dirty won't come out of down bricks. Cause I'm building a slope.

  • Michelle Pratts Michelle Pratts on Apr 27, 2018

    Could you tell what type of bricks did you use? Awesome job😉

  • Whi1131057 Whi1131057 on Apr 27, 2018

    Where did you start from? Highest point to lowest or vice versa


Join the conversation

2 of 133 comments
  • Carolyn Carolyn on Jun 02, 2021

    Beautiful job......lovely improvement! Enjoy!!

  • Ida9464 Ida9464 on Jun 03, 2021

    Night and day! Labor intensive but well worth it & you saved loads of money by DIY