Our homes are generally where we are the happiest, and with more of us than ever staying home at the moment, they have come even more under focus. We’re all looking forward keenly to be able to see our friends and families again and share our homes with them, and while we can’t and we’re stuck in the house, it’s the perfect time to plan a refresh of those social spaces so that they’re primed and ready for when we can reunite with those we love.
Our outdoor space is a hugely precious asset when it comes to entertaining, and it can really enhance your home as well. Reconnecting with nature is a great way to balance your mental wellbeing, so creating a social space that makes the most of your outdoor living and welcomes the garden into the house is a beautiful way to maximize what your home has to offer.
Add Some Seating
When guests come round, one way to make them feel instantly welcome is to ensure that there is enough seating for everyone to get comfortable. Catering for large groups of family and friends can be easier if you include some flexible options, such as benches or ottomans that can also provide storage or be used as occasional tables as needed. You can also create zoned seating – some more casual, low slung seats put together in a conversational group, combined with more formal seating for dining. Adding beanbags or large floor pillows can also encourage your guests to relax and stay awhile.
Create Some Relaxation Space
More of us than ever are now discovering the importance of our gardens in providing a little oasis of calm where we can escape from the pressures of modern life. So design your outdoor space with one eye on relaxation as well as entertaining. Including a quiet corner with a sunlounger or a hanging chair where you can sit and watch the world go by or curl up with a book, is a great idea. Include planters that contain aromatic plants and herbs such as lavender, jasmine or thyme and lemongrass. These can help you to relax with the power of aromatherapy, and really add an extra sensory element. You might also consider adding a small water feature to your garden, which can really help to enhance relaxation. Great gardens are ones that are appealing to all the senses – so think outside the visual box to create a garden that you can really be proud of.
Add Some Personality
Your outdoor space can be ‘dressed’ just as much as the interiors of your house, with lots of little colorful decorative touches to add something special. Consider adding elements such as outdoor textiles – outdoor rugs to add color and pattern, and large cushions in a waterproof fabric. Oversized storm lanterns filled with pillar candles also look brilliant and can add that designer touch to your space. Lighting is also a lovely way to create atmosphere, so look at adding LED fairy lights and trellising to give a beautiful atmosphere perfect for a party or for personal enjoyment. Large, sculptural plants in gorgeous decorative planters are another great idea. Simply adding some color by painting fencing, decking, and verandahs in a bright new shade can really give a fresh look or working with a specialist like Archadeck Outdoor Living to add a new wraparound deck if you don’t have one already. This is a really brilliant way to add space and value to your home. You can also use trellising and fast-growing climbers like wisteria, passionflower, or bamboo to disguise any less than visually appealing elements you’d rather not draw attention to.
Add In A Fire Pit
One modern element which can really add the wow factor to your outdoor space is including a fire pit. You can also use these for impromptu cookouts on warm evenings, and as a source of heat when it gets cooler, making your outdoor space more usable all year round. They provide a brilliant focal point when you are entertaining friends and family too. There are lots of different styles available, from ultra-modern ones with glass side panels to more traditional looking wrought iron options, so whatever your style you can find one to suit.
Create A Cooking Area
As outdoors entertaining and food often go hand in hand, think about your options for catering outside. From built-in barbecues to pizza ovens, or even a freestanding structure where you can prepare food to share, or hold cutlery, plates, and glasses such as a sheltered, repurposed armoire. If your setup allows, consider adding a small sink or a functioning mini-fridge to keep drinks cool. Stainless steel and slate surfaces stand up to the weather conditions and provide a cool, contemporary look to your outdoor space. If you want to add drama, you could even consider a fire pit. This could eke out your use of the space longer into the year as it will keep guests warm when the first chills start to creep in, and you can also use it for toasting marshmallows. With a couple of patio heaters, you could even be using your revamped outdoor entertaining space well into the autumn months.
Consider Your Planting Scheme
Introducing a fresh planting scheme can bring life and colour to your outdoor space and really reinvigorate it. Adding a variety of shapes, colours and heights creates far more impact that neatly manicured rows of begonias – seek out sculptural blooms instead if you want your plants to stand out. Think about plants such as a date palm – striking and ideal for adding a tropical vibe to drinks outside. An added bonus is that they are really easy to care for.
Adding the wow factor to your outdoor space is easier than you might think, and is a fantastic project to enhance your home. You can get started on all of the work now and have it ready for entertaining in no time.
Feature image credits: Image via Pexels – CC0 Licence