Flowers are blooming, birds are singing, and there’s a gentle breeze that can only mean one thing… spring is (almost) upon us! With warmer days fast approaching, it’s time to start sprucing up our decks and patios for outdoor living

Many of us focus all our effort and creativity on the inside of our homes, then just throw some outdoor furniture on the deck and call it good. As a result, the outdoor space lacks that cozy, homey “feeling” of our indoor living spaces. Then we wonder why nobody spends time out there!

So what’s the solution? Think of your deck as a second living room. You wouldn’t just stick a couch in a bare, empty room and expect people to gather comfortably.

When you design any space– indoor or outdoor– it’s all about LAYERING. Build depth and visual interest by including a variety of elements. Here are 7 outdoor-living essentials you might not have considered:

  1. Outdoor area rugs
  2. Outdoor cushions and pillows
  3. Lighting: outdoor lamps, candles, lanterns and/or string lights
  4. Plants: lush potted greenery and flowers
  5. Outdoor fan or ceiling fan for comfort
  6. Outdoor drapery (for a covered space)
  7. Centerpieces for tables and outdoor appropriate decor

But how do you put all this together? One layer at a time! Start with a clean, attractive deck or patio (covered or not) that creates a comfortable environment to lounge. Anchor your space with an outdoor rug. Place your furniture next. Then add your lighting, plants, and accessories (weather resistant, of course). And… voila! 

Grab your favorite snacks, drinks, or the makings for s’mores (YUM) and get ready to enjoy the great outdoors with your people. As with any room in your house, it’s the little details that elevate it to a true living space!

If sun is an issue, but you don’t want to go all-out with a custom covered patio, you can add an outdoor pergola or ready-made canopy from your favorite outdoor store. If you add an overhead structure, be sure to install an outdoor ceiling fan for ventilation. Semi-covered spaces can be enjoyed through the fall with the addition of outdoor space heaters.

Yes… your blah deck can easily be transformed into a three-season outdoor living room. Now you’ll never feel guilty for staying inside on a beautiful day, because you won’t! Your only challenge might be getting your family to come in for supper! Oh well, alfresco dining is never a bad idea.

What’s your favorite way to cozy up your outdoor spaces? I would love to hear! Drop a comment below and let me know.

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