It’s summertime, and many of us long to spend more time outside. Creating an outdoor living space can make it easier to take advantage of wonderful weather, and bring some simple joy and serenity to daily living. Here are some things to consider when planning an outdoor living space, and how to begin the process.
Have a goal:
Before you get started, take time to reflect on what you hope your outdoor space will be used for, and how often you plan to use it. Will it be for entertaining friends and family, cooking, or simply reading, writing and hanging out on your own? Answering this question will help you decide what’s really essential.
Stick to a budget:
Remember, an outdoor space is meant to help you spend more time outdoors–it doesn’t need to be fancy or expensive to do the job. So figure out how much you can reasonably spend and decide which elements are most important to your vision. Shop around (including online), visit your local thrift shops and garage sales, and be patient: you may find what you’re looking for at half the price.
Designing an outdoor living space:
Here are 6 things you might include in an outdoor living space:
- Foundation: Some outdoor furniture might be perfectly fine on the grass; or you might consider a simple deck or concrete foundation to stabilize a table or grill.
- Umbrella or shelter: If you’ve decided to create an outdoor living space, it’s probably partially because you want to be able to spend time out in the mild air but protected from intense sun, mosquitoes and other insects. Options here range from a simple umbrella and a bug light to a more substantial shelter with netting.
- Furniture: You may just need some decent lawn chairs and a small table to make your vision a reality. Or perhaps you’re thinking about a full-size dining table, outdoor couch, hammock, or other super-comfortable seating.
- Heater or Fire Pit: If you live in a cooler climate, you may want to consider a small fire pit or an outdoor heater, so you can continue to utilize your outdoor space when the weather is not quite as mild.
- Lighting: Twinkle lights, lanterns, or torches will provide a lovely glow and enough illumination to see your friends’ faces at dusk or nighttime. If you’re planning to play games or work outside, check into LED lights that can be charged and taken outside without having to be plugged in.
- Fencing: If your yard is not already fenced in, you may want to consider some sort of boundary that will give you and your guests some privacy in your new outdoor haven.
Making your dream a reality:
Chances are, you already have a vision of what your perfect outdoor living space could be–but don’t let that dream keep you from getting started if you can’t do it all at once. Pick one thing to work on or purchase and enjoy it: slowly but surely you will be able to make your outdoor living dreams come true.