4 Easy Ways to Upgrade Your Outdoor Area
October 18, 2018
If you’ve got an outdoor area you’ve long neglected, it’s time to take up the tools and give it a face lift. With little effort, you can turn a tired alfresco space into a genuine sanctuary set up for play, rest and relaxation. Here are some easy ways to add some fun and function to your outdoor area.
Pull up a Seat
If you look at your outdoor space and there’s nowhere to rest and take in the trees, to read a book, sit with a cuppa or have a chat with friends – supply some seating.
Think about who comes to your backyard, if you only hang out with your nearest and dearest, or you like to have loads of people around. Whatever your social sphere, you need to design your seating so everyone has a place to relax and enjoy.
Having your alfresco area ready to go means you can always welcome your guests without having to drag extra furniture outside. Your best bet is to go with a classic style that won’t be outdated next month and add in a bench or two so you’ve got some extra places to place your people.
Arrange your chairs to stir up a conversation; make it easy to chat and share some nibbles. For your poolside pursuits, put out some lounge seating so you can lay out your towel, stretch out and forget your cares.
Dining Does It
Think outside, and you’ll most likely picture outdoor eating; barbecuing, summer salads, sweet treats and a cold beer. The hub of your outdoor area will likely be the dining space, so it’s crucial to choose the right dinner setting for your alfresco area.
As the hosts with the most, you’ll be coming and going to keep your guests fed and watered. So, make sure you position your dining space with easy access to the kitchen and barbecue.
If you’ve got a tight space, pick a compact table which you can shift around to suit your occasion. And if you’ve got a larger area, choose a hard-wearing table that can seat all your people.
If they’re comfy, guests will relax and take their time, so if you go with aluminium. In summer, it’s all about shade; there’s nothing worse than squinting in the sun and sweating it out, so position your dining setting under a tree, pergola or umbrella.
When it comes to adding the trimmings, keep your floral arrangements low so your guests don’t struggle to chat through your blooms. Add candles for cosy evening dining, and create an intimate space using walls, hedging or screens.
Get the kids off the screen and out to have fun in the sun. There are ways you can entice the little ones into the outdoors and create designated places to play the day away. If you’ve got paths, let them draw on them with chalk or set up a teepee in a garden corner.
Get the kids involved by building a cubby with them from scratch; let them pick the colour to paint it and pot some herbs for the windowsills. If you’ve got grassy space, set up totem tennis, soccer goals and have a blow-up pool ready to go when it gets warm.
If you’ve got the room and you want to go all out, you can set up a sandpit using timber sleepers, and make a hopscotch using some concrete blocks.
Provide older kids with their place in your outdoor space. Set up a fire pit where they can hang out with their friends while sitting on logs. Turn your alfresco area into an outdoor cinema with a projector, a white sheet and some bean bags and string out some lanterns or fairy lights for a whimsical touch.
Light it Up
When the sun goes down, keep your outdoor area inviting by illuminating it. Make your garden marvellous after dark by playing around with ambient and highlight lighting, as well as keeping your stairs and levels safe.
You can’t go wrong with dome lights on poles along your pathways, and for your dining spaces, choose wall or pendant lights to create the right mood.
If you’re getting festive, rows of festoon lights have a fantastic effect when strung between trees or poles. For a more whimsical feel, fairy lights are enchanting in any outdoor area – make sure you check them to see they’re IP rated for outdoor use.