An outdoor living area can be a welcoming place that offers respite from the world and allows you to retreat to your own private sanctuary. Whether you wish to create a tranquil haven surrounded by rich foliage and flowers or an area for dining and entertaining your guests, by taking the inspiration in this article you can transform your humble backyard into an outdoor living space you can enjoy all year round.
The color palette you choose for your backyard will influence how you feel there. Bright, bold colors such as reds, yellows, and oranges can inject a sense of life and invigoration into a tired-looking backyard whereas relaxing colors like creamy whites, greens, and sky blue can induce a more restful and harmonious state.
These colors can be incorporated through your choice of flowers, furniture coverings, garden décor as well as accessories such as hammocks, lanterns, and plant pots.
Whether you wish to unwind in the evenings with the sounds of nature and a good book or set the scene for a glamorous cocktail party, lighting is one of the most effective ways to transform a setting and create ambiance.
Add a magical and intimate feel to your outdoor space by draping festoon or fairy lights along with your patio, pergola, or trees, helping to bring a soft luminosity to the evening as the sunsets.
Garden lighting such as sconces and spotlights can create a dramatic effect along your garden path while helping to illuminate it for guests. Outdoor lanterns with tea lights can also be lined along your garden path to add a tasteful and decorative touch to your backyard.
As the day draws to an end and an evening chill sets in, you can still enjoy and make use of your outdoor area by incorporating features such as outdoor heaters or heated lamps. Soft, comfy seat coverings, cozy cushions, and warm blankets are another simple yet effective way to keep warm at night.
The element of fire can also be introduced by adding a fire pit or variations such as a chiminea or brazier. Not only will these serve the practical function of emanating warmth, but they can also add a visual appeal through the radiance and glow of the flames.
A fire pit can be made simply using brick, stone, or concrete pavers such as the ones at Amber or using more elaborate materials such as marble, granite, or lava glass.
By incorporating some natural elements into your outdoor living space you can enhance your sensory experience. Water features come in a variety of styles, shapes, and sizes and can range from a cascading, table-top fountain to a lavish waterfall.
The addition of a water feature such as a miniature pond, birdbath, or water fountain can introduce a sense of tranquility to your space as the sound of water flowing can calm and soothe the mind helping to induce a state of peace and relaxation, making it ideal for an outdoor oasis or place of sanctuary. To bring a little zen to your outdoor space, consider making your own shishi-odoshi water fountain out of bamboo or creating a pond to house one or two koi fish.
An outdoor space would be incomplete without a comfortable place to sit and relax while taking in the smells, sights, and sounds of nature.
Update your patio furniture with good quality, easy to care for pieces made from materials such as cedar, teak, metals, and durable wicker which will not only look great but will be able to withstand adverse weather conditions. A well-sized table with comfortable chairs can turn an ordinary backyard into a dining area for your family and guests.
If you prefer to use your outdoor space for relaxing rather than dining, consider adding a lounger with an accompanying parasol, garden swing chair, or hammock. Use accessories such as cushions, blankets and throws to add color, style, and comfort to your backyard. It is also advisable to choose fabrics that are made for the outdoors. Quick-drying and water-resistant materials such as reticulated foam are anti-bacterial and resistant to mold and mildew making them ideal for outdoor cushions.
Along with being water-resistant, ensure your colors do not fade through constant exposure to sunlight. UV-resistant fabrics such as polyester and acrylic are especially good for outdoor use and can last several years before fading.
With the inspiration in this article, you can begin transforming your outdoor space into the backyard of your dreams.