When summer is in full swing, your outdoor spaces become an extension of your home. Doors open out onto the garden; the balcony becomes a second dining area; and the verandah a perfect little place to sit and unwind. It’s no wonder, then, that we are decorating our outdoor spaces with as much care as our indoor rooms. For some colour and decorating inspiration, try these tips for creating an outdoor living area that you can enjoy all year round.
Whatever the Weather
With soft furnishings being produced in some fabulous new weatherproof materials, you don’t have to worry about taking in your cushions and bench seating when the weather turns bad. Some outdoor soft furnishings are completely waterproof, so even torrential rain won’t destroy your outdoor setting. And waterproof fabrics are often less prone to fading in the sun. So whatever the weather, your outdoor furniture will still look fabulous come rain, hail or shine.
A Place in the Sun
Don’t get caught out in the sun. Spending time in your outdoor living area means soaking up those UVA and UVB rays. If you don’t have a built-in pergola or verandah, a sail or market umbrella is just as effective for providing shade in the summer months. From classic white to brightly coloured, umbrellas and sails come in a range of patterned fabric to suit your taste.
Dining outside means you are exposed to the elements, so breakages are more likely. Instead of bringing out your finest china when entertaining, have a set of enamel crockery and plastic cups to serve your outdoor feast. And the latest outdoor dining sets are so gorgeous you may even want to use them indoors as well!
If considering purchasing an outdoor lounge or dining setting, make sure you have a good idea of how the setting will fit into your outdoor space. If you have a large garden you’ll want to leave room for outside play or the family dog; if you have a small balcony, you might be better off with a little Acapulco ensemble with a small table that won’t take up too much room. Whatever your requirements, ensure your outdoor living area isn’t completely consumed by your gorgeous new furniture!
Get the look…
• Waterproof fabric on outdoor lounges and chairs will endure the sun and rain and will allow you to keep your setting outdoors through all kinds of weather
• Make sure you include an umbrella or sail when decorating your outdoor space, especially in the summer months.
• Outdoor plates, bowls and cups will help you to avoid breakages, which are more likely outside.
• Do your research and buy furniture appropriate for the size of your balcony or garden area.
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Katie Evans - Milan Direct