Summer is coming, and there are lots of great designs for outdoor spaces. And a big “in” in the interior design world is outside. Creating comfortable outdoor living spaces though, is more than just adding a table and chairs. Visit a flooring store for more ideas on how to go about decorating with carpets and flooring options.
Here’s the “interior”designers view of the outdoor world.
Start with the basics:
Every room needs walls, so outside, use the side of the house, the fence or create your own.
- Use movable screens to create privacy in an open area and give the feeling of more rooms outside
- Build arbors and trellises to create nooks in the back yard for cozy retreats
- Tuck a private patio into a corner framed by bushes, trees and plants to feel like you have an oasis in the woods
- Hang drapes from wires strung between poles to dress the space and give it an elegant, formal style
And sometimes you need a ceiling:
- Use a cantilevered umbrella to free up valuable table space and provide coverage for larger areas
- Build a pergola and drape fabric from the cross bars to provide shaded spaces
- Lattice work above will allow the sun to shine but also provide some relief from the heat
Now you can start to add some furniture:
- Sofas, chairs, coffee tables, bars and stools
- Loungers, dining room tables and even buffets
- Pieces that act as storage and seating make the space more functional
- Going for casual? Use pub style dining tables
- Want a bit more formal? A regular style dining table in a secluded area of the yard will do the trick
Relax and unwind by the fire:
- Extend the outdoor season by adding a fireplace like wood burning fire stove, chimney or fire bowl
- Mimic a traditional fireplace with a mantle outside to provide a real room look…..and fill the fire pit with large candles
- Use a fire bowl that can be covered and convert to a table….or an outdoor cooler for a multifunctional addition to your space
And don’t forget the floor:
- Outdoor area rugs helps define different spaces and anchor a “room”
- Select a one large enough so that furniture touches or sits partly on the rug
- Under the dining table, a rug should be big enough for chairs to move in and out easily on it
- – Create a rug in your paving, tiling or deck pattern by adding a piece of slate or turning boards in different directions.
The final designers’ touches include art and accessories:
- Hang decorative metal pieces on a fence
- Encourage vines to grow around iron arbors …. free-standing or against a brick wall
- Hang an inexpensive canvas print that will weather the sun, rain and humidity
- Overflowing painted flower pots can be set on the patio, attached to the fence or hung on the wall to act as live art
- Add a large mirror against a wall to reflect bushes, flowers
- Hang a simple mirror behind plants and bushes on the fence to create a sense of space and depth
- Add the same details you would to the inside, like candles and fresh-cut flowers
- Consider a tall hardy palm for the corner or use tall bamboo poles to add some texture
- Mount a clock on the wall, and decorate the mantle
- Colourful throws and accent pillows add to the interior design of an outdoor space
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