Published September 2019
Updated February 2022
Thank you for joining us in this series on Home Decorating.
Our hope is that these short blog bursts will enable & inspire you to refresh a room in your home.
This week we're taking you outside to create or update a fresh space as your favorite hangout.
You can create a space with flowers and plants, seating area and lighting, and where a view keeps you happy.
Water features, hedges and pergolas are a step up from a basic patio and will add to the overall flavor of your outdoor space.
Remember in these blog burst refreshes we will be choosing just 3 elements to refresh or create our area. Let’s start with the patio itself. If you don’t actually have a cement or brick patio cut out for you, then choose a grassy spot near your home that you can utilize for this refresh.
Let’s start with plants. This can be a lot of research and trial & error. Don’t be afraid to try new plants or flowers—this is only for you so who cares if you mess up. Don’t forget…if you do plant a wrong plant or flower, or plant it in the wrong place, you can pull it up. Replant it where it belongs whether that’s in a sunny area or the trash.
Check out which direction your patio faces and buy plants accordingly (Mostly Sun, Shade or all Shade). Plant perennials (ones that come up each year) and fill in with annuals (those that die out each season).
You can start small and add in every year. We are talking about a space to sit, read, have a glass of wine/beer and enjoy being outside.
Do you want color? What types? Do you want scents? Which ones? All this needs to be considered when choosing your plants.
Ah-beautiful tulips. A must to include in any seating area for a colorful feast.
Next you’ll want to figure out where to place each plant. Remember perennials will spread each year so you can start with just a small amount and space them out. They will fill in as the years go by. Annuals are perfect to fill in the gaps. That way you can change it up each season for variety.
Do you want to surround your patio with flowers and plants? Or have them off to one side? Do some googling for pictures of what appeals to you…then copy it!
It is a good idea to draw a diagram when you’re first starting out to make sure you are considering all your elements and placing them in the right spots. This cuts down on more work later moving plants and/or over spending.
A good process is to place the big items first. A water feature? Firepit? Brick wall? Seating? Once you know where those items will be placed, you can fill in your flowers in and around. Don’t forget shepherd’s hooks and pots of flowers and plants that you can place on low brick walls. You can use these brick walls as borders or to define walk ways.
Hauling brick can be tough, but well worth the ascetic. Patio brick tops finish off the look.
There is a lot of great patio seating out there. Wood, recycled plastic, or even cement. Choose the seating arrangement that works for you. Will you be sharing this space with family? Friends? Choose seating accordingly. You can always build up those brick walls to 3’ high and place cushions for additional seating.
Here are various colored recycled plastic adirondack chairs
Recycled plastic pub chairs
Painted wood adirondack chairs
Next, look into fire options. This will extend your patio sitting season.
Check out these options that are perfect as a refresh of your outdoor space to bring it up to date and usable.
If you would like a fire pit that’s more mobile there are a lot of great options—with light and sound:
It can be as simple as this….
And then add a fire pit.
When adding seating, consider…will you be eating outside in this area? Or is it just for relaxing? Choose from wood adirondack chairs, wicker, or cushioned outdoor patio furniture.
Lighting can really make a difference not only in the look of your outdoor space, but in functionality. Place solar lighting along the pathway from the house or along your sidewalk.
Use solar lighting to mark the borders of your gardens.
And if you plan on reading in this space in the evenings implement string lighting
or add character with a chandelier or lantern
Take your time and create in steps. Make the process fun. Once you’re finished you will enjoy this area for years to come.
Please share your ideas below and don’t forget to sign up to be on our mailing list. We don’t mail often and you can unsubscribe any time.
Snippets from our archives...
I wish more people would post valuable content like this one about pergolas. This is the first time I’ve been on your website, but after this, I doubt it will be the last time. https://www.monroedecks.com/
Room Refresh ideas have come from experience of ours, friends and family…and a little bit of research…but mostly desire ! Thanks for the comment CDS.
I think the ideas are beautiful. Did you come up with them yourself or from somewhere else?