Whether you like to dine al fresco, read a book on the patio, or roast S’mores over the fire pit, having a comfortable outdoor living space can be life changing. There’s just something about being out in nature that’s good for the soul. If you’re not inclined in the art of open-air design, we can help. Read on for ideas on how to create the perfect outdoor living space.
MAKE THE OUTDOORS AN EXTENSION OF YOUR INTERIOR
To create the ultimate cozy outdoor haven, you want it to be set up similarly to your indoor space. Of course, there are challenges associated with this due to weather. As this HGTV.com article notes, “While it’s important to make sure your outdoor room is protected from potentially harsh weather conditions, it should ultimately feel like an extension of your home’s interior.” There should be plenty of places to sit as well as a dining room table if you plan to serve meals out there.
Some people will even set up a daybed! This should be your outdoor retreat, so treat it as such. If it’s covered, you should be fine. If not, consider putting tarps over the furniture and/or protecting it with epoxy sealant in case of inclement weather.
LONG LIVE LOVELY LIGHTING
If you ever watched the show Parenthood, you know that one of the viewers’ favorite things about it was watching the Braverman family have one of their outdoor dinners. With whimsical twinkling lights draped over the large dinner table, it was nothing short of magical.
Lighting can make your outdoor dining experience the stuff of dreams. Not to mention, it’s necessary when the days start to get shorter, as it gives you more opportunity to stay outdoors.
Finding an area to hang white lights is one of our favorite ideas, but solar lights along any outdoor steps also adds a gorgeous touch. As this Huffington Post UK article notes, “Apart from providing illumination at night in your outdoor living space, the solar path lights in the plant containers also adds a soft lighting to your living area.”
If you want to go part fashionable/part functional, add torches that repel bugs that become such nuisances during the summer months.
Candles are another way to create the perfect outdoor ambiance. In fact, if you light enough of them, you can often use them in lieu of outdoor lighting. If you’re worried about the fire danger, choose the faux candles instead.
ADD A FIRE PIT FOR PHYSICAL AND METAPHORICAL WARMTH
Sitting by the fire is just one of those things that is loved by nearly everyone. Whether you are by yourself enjoying some meditation time or are the orchestrator of the aforementioned raucous S’mores session, this time by the fire is how memories are made.
Because of fire danger, these areas are often mandated by regional codes, so make sure to check the ones in your area. As this DIYNetwork.com article points out, “Ideally, a fire pit is constructed from fireproof material on a flat, level area at
least 25 feet from a house or tree.” If you’re not completely confident in your ability to create one that is safe for your family, outsource this project to a contractor. Many families are opting for the glass stones gas fire pits these days, as they are easy to light and look gorgeous to boot.
CHOOSE COMPOSITE OVER WOOD FOR YOUR DECK
Although we tend to have a fondness for wood for anything in the great outdoors, what many have realized is how impractical it is to use for decks.
Never mind the horrible splinters you and your family members have likely experienced. Wood is high maintenance since it has to be oiled, and it tends to crack and bow. Composite decking, on the other hand, does not require painting, sealing, or painting. It also doesn’t fade in the sun, so it’ll look great for years to
Use any or all of these ways to create the perfect outdoor living space and you’ll find yourself drawn to your deck or patio like never before.