How To Create The Perfect Outdoor Space


How To Create The Perfect Outdoor Space

A comfortable area to relax, eat, and socialize outdoors is the perfect way to expand your home's livable space, and a must for summer entertaining. Whether you have a spacious backyard or a cozy apartment balcony, read on to learn how to create the perfect outdoor space for your needs.

Modern Outdoor Space

Image via Sunset Magazine


If you have an apartment balcony or small patio, like I do, your location is pretty much decided for you. But if you have a larger yard, you have more of a say in where you would like to establish your outdoor space. Try to choose a level area, with some privacy, that it partly shaded and partly sunny. If you can't meet the privacy and shade/sun factors, you can always create this yourself, I'll touch on that later.

Simple Modern Outdoor Patio - Image via West Elm

Image via West Elm


There are a few things to think about when selecting furniture for your outdoor space; function, scale, and cost. First, how will you be using the space? Do you want to lounge, throw an outdoor dinner party, play games? This will help you narrow down what furniture you actually need. Next, how much space do you have to work with? You don't want the space to look cluttered or feel cramped, so if you have a small area choose smaller scale furniture.  On the other hand, if you have a very large area you don't want the furniture to look diminutive in comparison, so larger pieces that take up more visual space will work better. Lastly, always set a budget before starting out, and try your best to stick to it. Prioritize what is most important in the space, and spend a larger chunk of your money there.

Boho Outdoor Space With Hanging Loveseat - Image via My Domaine

Image via My Domaine

Materials + Textiles

Purchase pieces that are meant to be outdoors and can withstand the elements. When shopping for outdoor furniture look for aluminum, plastic, steel, rattan, wood, and wrought iron.

Textiles will add warmth, comfort, and personality to your space.  Look for items that reflect your style, are soft and comfortable, and are made of durable materials. Cotton canvas and duck cloth are great natural options that will stand up to the outdoors, but also look for synthetic materials specifically made to be used outside.

Colorful Modern Outdoor Space With Painted Floors - Image via Old Brand New

Image via Old Brand New


You will never want to use the space if it's in blinding sun the majority of the day, so providing shade is a must. If you have chosen a spot for your outdoor space that has good tree coverage you probably won't need to bring in extra shade. If not, umbrellas, tarps, or an open structure will do the trick.

California Modern Outdoor Living Room - Image via Hej Doll

Image via Hej Doll


When the sun goes down you will need something to brighten up the space. Hang café lights, bring in lanterns, and light candles. A soft, warm light will create a cozy atmosphere.

Cozy Modern Outdoor Space - Image via The Fresh Exchange

Image via The Fresh Exchange


Plants are awesome, need I say more? Plant trees around your outdoor space for shade, and bring in potted varieties to add life and texture.

Mid Century Modern Outdoor Fireplace - Image via Designlovefest

Image via Designlovefest


Summer nights can get chilly. Adding a heat source will allow you to enjoy your space long into the night, as well as throughout fall and into mild winters.

For tons more inspiration be sure to check out my Outdoor Living Pinterest board.

How To Create The Perfect Outdoor Space

June 14, 2017

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