Outdoor spaces are quickly becoming one of the most coveted home features. They expand living space without expensive renovations, offer a relaxing respite from everyday stress, provide a safe place for kids and pets to play, and create an oasis for entertaining guests. Kris Kiser of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI) offers 5 tips to create your own outdoor living room.
Declutter & Clean The first step to sprucing up the outdoor living room is to clear dirt and clutter from the space. Store lawn equipment, children’s toys, and pet play things in a shed or garage. Give the entire area a good scrub down, sweeping away dust and debris to create a fresh, clean canvas.
Invite the Outdoors In Blending interior and outdoor living spaces helps the exterior area feel like an extension of the home, not an afterthought. Ensure blinds and curtains are open to the family yard, highlighting the outdoor oasis. Make certain the indoor and outdoor décor complement one another and utilize similar colors, materials and styles both inside and out.
Create Cozy Sitting Areas Create easy traffic flow throughout the outdoor living room, while offering a number of places for people to sit – at a table, around a fire pit, or in a cozy chair configuration. Also, offer some shade by using umbrellas or outdoor curtains to minimize sun glare and maximize visions of enjoyment in the outdoor living room.
Soften the Outdoor Space Introduce a few soft design features into the outdoor area to create an inviting atmosphere. Rugs, throw pillows and upholstered patio furniture are a few ways to accomplish a “cozy” feel. Ensure these items are looking fresh and clean and not worn and dated. It’s relatively inexpensive to swap out new pillows and rugs. Create outdoor ambiance by hanging string lighting, introducing a fire pit in the center of a patio, setting up a zen-like water feature, or adding candles, small plants and freshly-cut flowers to tabletops.
Utilize Living Landscapes Nothing says “welcome home” quite like a beautiful living landscape, complete with flowering shrubs, trees, flowers, and other vegetation. Freshen up the family yard by weeding, mulching and planting flower beds and pots with colorful flowers and verdant plants. Vases of flowers can also help bring life – and a pop of color – to outdoor tablescapes.
1 Living Wall Algreen Products Vertical Garden, $139.92; loews.ca
2 Grill Attachment Char-Broil Universal Rotisserie, $50.99; loews.ca
3 Essential Oil Now Lemon Eucalyptus Oil, $12.05; buywell.com
Tip: Lemon Eucalyptus Oil may be as effective as DEET when used as insect repellent.
4 Cushions Print Indoor/Outdoor Tufted Cushion $23.99 each; bedbathandbeyond.ca
Tip: Great pattern for indoor or outdoor use!
5 Rain boot Naturalizer Natural Soul Tyler, $39.99; naturalizer.ca
6 Plant Veggies West Coast Seeds Watercress and Lemongrass; westcoastseeds.com
7 Tidy Up Garant GCR14 Pro Series Grizzly 14-Tine Double Back Level Rake; garant.com
This original outdoor living article first appeared in the Summer 2019 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.
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