It’s the perfect time of year to perk up your patio, deck, balcony or other outdoor space. Whether it needs a good sweep from all that pollen, you’re sprucing up your furniture with a new coat of paint or hitting the nursery for some new plants, here are a few photos to inspire you with your patio plans. Also, we’d LOVE to see your patio; please shoot us a link to a picture of it in the Comments section if you would like to share off your hard patio work!
Create a not so hard hardscape: It’s amazing what a few well-placed stepping stones and gravel can do. I just love this simple patio from Clark and Zook Architects. Border plantings are enhanced by potted plants. This is a great strategy when you want a little rosemary, mint or basil near the kitchen so you can run out and pick it while you’re cooking especially if you don’t have the space or time for a full kitchen garden.
Reuse something unconventional: Usually when we think of plumbing fixtures out in the yard, we think cars up on blocks and old refrigerators can’t be far away, but that is simply not the case with this cast iron claw foot tub full of beautiful plants. I especially love the way they cascade over the sides. Another favorite planter choice of mine is a big galvanized paint bucket or trough you can pick up for a song at home improvement stores.
Repetition and simplicity makes it modern: If you are starting with a blank slate on your deck or patio, think about doing something very simple. Evenly spaced planters with the same simple shrub or small tree will lend your outdoor space a modern look.
Treat your outdoor space like a living room: With the availability of outdoor fabrics and rugs (I have one made from recycled plastic straws myself), there’s no excuse not to get super-comfy in your outdoor space. This Barcelona roofdeck is more inviting than most living rooms thanks to soft fabrics and well-placed accessories.
Light up your outdoor space for nighttime use: My pal Supon Phornirunlit (the brains behind Naked Decor) came up with this gorgeous reflecting pool for his D.C. deck after seeing one like it in a hotel lobby in Thailand. He added inexpensive chairs, candles set right in the water, elephants with parasols and globe lights to turn up the drama at night. Whether you place hurricanes, floating candles or simple holiday lights around, getting the mood right with your lighting will make your outdoor space inviting for evening gatherings and getting your Zen on.
If you’re ready to do some shopping, check out all the great outdoor products our curators have selected.