Tag Archive 'patios'

Jun 21 2012

Patio Problems: How to Turn Your Outdoor Living Space into an Oasis

No matter if you live in a sunny climate or one that is predisposed to bouts of chilliness, everyone likes to have an outdoor living space that is usable for entertaining and cookouts. The only problem is that for those of us looking to spend our money wisely, outdoor decorating can seem daunting and unnecessary considering the amount of time the space may be used.

You may be surprised how often you would use that abandoned deck or backyard of yours if you just put a little love into making it appear like the outdoor oasis it is capable of being.  If you are short on cash or short on time, here are a couple of quick and easy ideas for turning that backyard into a gem! 

Never Underestimate the Power of Plants 

Your yard may seem like an overgrown field with no shape or purpose, but with a quick clean-up, a good mow job and a couple of carefully placed plants- whether potted or planted- you can make any backyard go from lackluster to lush. If you do not have a green thumb, then do your research on the type of plants which will do best in your yard year round and which will come back year after year. Perennial such as ox-eyed daisy’s or Purple Coneflower’s will always pop up the following spring, so for a few dollars you can count on a burst of color to enhance your backyard’s beauty.

However, if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, season after season, a lot can be said for choosing exotic or interesting annuals to spice up your yard no matter the time of year. Pansies make for an excellent pop of color even in the cooler months, and you can always invest in groundcovers in all shades of green to add freshness to an otherwise brown backyard.

Think of Your Backyard as a Rec Room 

Even outdoor living spaces should be approached with an indoor design style. When you are choosing patio furniture choose something that won’t overwhelm your yard, but that will be inviting. These days you can purchase beautiful outdoor furniture that looks like something you could put in your dining room, living room, or rec room and no one will blink an eye.

Don’t fall victim to the temptation of throwing your old furniture or cheap yard sale patio set on the back deck. No matter how much time you spend outside, your backyard furniture will never get as much love as your indoor furniture, so you want to choose a quality set that can stand up to the weather no matter what the conditions are or how the climate may change through the seasons. There is nothing sadder than a moldy or neglected patio set on your deck- not to mention anything less inviting.

Set the Table 

Do you have a mix matched set of china in storage, or a fun plate setting that just never went with your indoor décor? Setting your outdoor table is the best way to bring a little life to dining al fresco. In your outdoor living space you can dare to have more of a bright and exotic design personality than inside.  Have fun with setting the table from time to time, besides, now you have an excuse to break out that Hawaiian printed glassware set you’ve never used!

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Feb 29 2012

Transform Your Boring Patio in to An Outdoor Room

Published by under Patios & Decks

Most patios are quite boring – a concrete slab that is void of decoration and color.  Spring is coming up soon, and barbecue’s will be firing up all over the neighborhood.   Why not transform your patio in to a charming “outdoor room”, perfect for entertaining guests or just relaxing?

Here are a few tips that will help you create a warm, inviting space that offers privacy and relaxation.

Natural elements create a beautiful and relaxing atmosphere

Two things you need to consider when creating your outdoor room from an existing patio – natural stones and plenty of greenery.

Consider paving the concrete with natural stones, or creating “walkways” through your patio using stone.  Set greenery around the perimeter of your patio in clay or ceramic pots, or consider two or three trellises filled with climbing vines to help seclude your patio from the outside world.

Think of your patio as an “outdoor” living room

In order for your patio to be its most beautiful and relaxing, the right furniture is a must.  Wicker is a good choice if you like a natural garden atmosphere.  Webbed or plastic lawn chairs just won’t do when you are creating a showplace!

You can also find many styles, fabrics, and designs which will help create any decor theme you like.  Bold stripes, bright floral patterns and vibrant solid colors allow you to design any look you like.  Most outdoor furniture is constructed of weather-proof materials, so you won’t have to worry about moisture damage or fading.

Rugs offer additional color and texture

Rugs are another element of decorating that help add a warm touch and contribute texture to your patio.  Unlike the old outdoor rugs that were mostly constructed of rubber or looked a bit like Astroturf, the rugs available for outdoor use today range from hand knotted oriental rugs and contemporary styles to braided rugs.

For a striking look, arrange the largest pieces of patio furniture around a large area rug.  This makes for an intimate, cozy setting that is perfect for guests.

Room “dividers” separate areas of larger patios

If your patio is large, you may want to create separate areas; one for cooking and barbecuing, the other for relaxing.  To separate one area from another, consider old wooden shutters that are on the tall side, or even decorative screens.  The wooden shutters can be painted any color you like, or even stenciled for a dramatic effect.

Accents are what really set the look apart.  Consider hanging lanterns and candles for an ambient atmosphere.  Lanterns can also be set on tables or wooden benches or anywhere that provides the right amount of light and is out of the reach of small children.

Outdoor fire pits and chimineas are another great idea for the patio.  Not only are they beautiful and decorative, they will provide a bit of warmth on those chilly early summer evenings.

It’s easy to transform your patio into a beautiful extension of your home.  Try some of these ideas, and use your imagination to come up with a few unique ideas of your own.

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Jul 18 2011

Easy Ideas to Spruce Up and Add Life to a Boring Deck

Published by under Patios & Decks

Is your deck just a deck, bare of any color or personality?  Many people forget about their decks when decorating their homes, but your deck is actually an extension of the interior.  If you relax or entertain outdoors frequently, why not make your deck as enjoyable and appealing as the inside of your home?  These tips and ideas will help you transform your deck into one that stands apart, and offers privacy and appeal.

Add a quirky or personal touch

If you like a look that leans toward quirky or classic, add a whimsical touch with a monogram on the wall of your home that adjoins to the deck.  A large letter in a bold color that complements the rest of the deck decor is interesting and unique.

Drape a large vinyl “curtain” along one side, pulling it back with a tie crafted of wood or other rugged material for a unique look.  Hanging light fixtures and greenery add further to a setting that is relaxed and private.

You can also consider building walls made from lattice and allow plants to grow up and over, creating a natural curtain which can be adorned with interwoven mini LEDs.

Is elegant your thing?

If you prefer a look that is out of the ordinary, think outside the box.  A table and chairs made of wrought iron and topped with shatter-proof glass is beautiful and elegant.  If there is a tree limb or pergola nearby, hang a chandelier from a limb or rafter to further enhance the look!

Continue the wrought iron theme with candle holders and other accents.  You may want to consider an outdoor fireplace which will add a warm ambiance on nights that are cool and crisp.

Create a warm glow – and a cozy setting

If you enjoy your privacy and prefer a setting that is intimate or romantic, create the look with lighting!  Scattered lighting creates visual interest and intimate spaces.  Hang lanterns if you have a roof over your deck, or buy lanterns that are built on a stand similar to floor lamps.  Scatter candles around the perimeter of the area.

For additional privacy, consider a rock or brick wall along one side of the deck to help block the view from the outside.  Build the wall about waist high; it is the perfect place to set clay flower pots, greenery and candles!

While it may seem impossible, you can actually create a room outdoors that is just as comfortable as those inside your home.  Add comfortable furnishings such as a sofa, chair and tables; hang curtains from rafters.  You can even add throw pillows and comforters, as long as you remember to bring them indoors when weather is bad.  Make sure the fabrics you select for curtains and furnishings are weather-proof.

There are no limits to what you can do with your deck.  Depending on your style preferences and budget, you can achieve any look you like.  Flip through magazines and you will find that there are hundreds of things you can do to make your deck anything but average.

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