Summer seems to fly by in a blink of an eye. One of our favorite ways to enjoy the summer is hanging in our outdoor spaces. Although, we mostly work and talk about interiors here, we thought we’d share a few tips on how to make your outdoor space the perfect outdoor oasis.
Layer the Lighting
Lighting is one of the most important design considerations. Not only does it help create the perfect mood, it is also needed for a safe return inside after the conversations fade into nighttime. We’ll be honest, we haven’t had the best luck with traditional hard-wired exterior lighting. Instead, invest in solar lights! There are tons of affordable options out there and can be installed as easy as sticking a post into your soil. Foolproof with quick results – win, win! With your path safely lit, it’s time to add the ambiance. Festoon or string lights are a favorite, you’ll just need an outdoor power supply and some hooks placed high for install. Another great way to set the mood is with illuminated planters. Just like you would inside, layer, layer, layer your lighting!
Vary Your Seating Types
If you have the space, it’s a great idea to vary the type of seating arrangements you have. It’s always desirable to have at least one area for dining. A table with chairs and an umbrella is a basic start – kick it up a notch and make these chairs extra comfy with cushions and swivel mechanisms. It’s best to place your dining seating near your kitchen or grill, so that you can easily serve and clean up the meal. After dinner, move the party to a lounge area – your outdoor living area.
Our favorite set up is four extra cushy, extra-large, lounge chairs in a conversation circle. Finally, it sure is lovely to have that picturesque area in your outdoor space with a couple rockers and a side table. What a perfect way to enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning with your partner or friend.
Create an Outdoor Kitchen
In the hot summer months, instead of heating up the house (and the A/C bill), cook your meals outdoor! It’s more than just a grill, though. You’ll want some space to place the food while you’re cooking it, which can double as a place to serve it. This can be as simple as a small table nearby. Or, with some planning, you can build in your grill with a counter (granite is a good option). If you are building it in, consider putting in an outdoor rated mini-fridge or kegerator. You’ll really have the prime party spot when you don’t even need to go inside for your drink refill! The mini fridge is also a great place to store your appetizers or food before prepping it.
Combat the Heat & Cold
Once you create your perfect outdoor space, you’ll hate to leave it when the weather turns unpleasant. Luckily, there are tons of ways you can make your space comfortable, no matter the weather. A mister can be mounted to the underside of a covered patio. They even sell portable misting fans that hook up to your garden hose! A nice cool mist under shade can provide comfort on the hottest of days. If it’s the cold your combatting, the classic firepit is always a good choice. You can have it built-in stone or have it freestanding. There are also options with fuel type, with the most common options being wood burning or propane fueled. Just make sure you are following local fire codes and that you have accounted for space for the propane tank. If your starting from scratch, it’s a great idea to have the gas plumbed straight to your pit – that way you have no unsightly tank or hoses to trip over. To heat the space more evenly, you can also explore ceiling mounted heaters or portable propane stands. There could be a whole blog post dedicated to this topic, but these are just a few thought starters for you to consider.
WHAT ABOUT PLANTS?
Of course, one of the reasons you are hanging outside is to be surrounded by your beautiful landscaping! No one wants to stare at weeds and dirt when you’re trying to relax. While we have some personal experience in selecting and gardening plants, it is best to hire a professional. A professional landscape designer can put together a beautiful composition of plantings that will take considerations of your geographic location, sun or shade needs, and maintenance factors.
We hope our little tips help inspire you to create a beautiful outdoor space. We’d love to work with you and your landscape designer on creating the perfect outdoor oasis for your home.
If you interested, head over to our contact page to get in touch!
xxx The Speas Team