Told you I was inspired! Here’s the first of my outdoor room design inspiration boards for spring / summer 2008. See below for a complete list of sources and product information.
Tips & Ideas for Decorating Small Outdoor Spaces
Even the smallest balcony or patio can be a comfortable outdoor room with outdoor furniture and accessories scaled to fit that smaller space.
Start with your floor covering and build up from there. There is more selection than ever before in the world of outdoor area rugs. No need to resort to boring old gray or beige when there are more colorful examples available.
The green, red, orange and yellow colors of the outdoor area rug shown above provided the perfect starting point for determining the overall design, style and color scheme of this outdoor room moodboard. It sets the stage for a relaxed and earthy, yet contemporary outdoor room.
Don’t bother trying to cram in an over-sized patio table and four chairs. Allow for some breathing room by using a bistro set – a petite round or square table with two chairs. Storage of your outdoor furniture is less of an issue when you choose a bistro set that folds flat.
Install outdoor lighting so you can use your room day or night. If you have an existing outdoor light fixture that is less than attractive, replace it with a new outdoor wall light, ceiling fixture, hanging light or post light that works with your new room design.
Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize!
Further enhance your outdoor room with outdoor accessories.
Soften the hard edges with decorative throw pillows.
Find an outdoor fabric that picks up and repeats the colors in your area rug. Use that outdoor fabric to make a table cloth, table runner, placemats, outdoor curtains or a sun shade.
Melamine dinnerware is the obvious choice for outdoor dining – no worries about breaking plates. Don’t want to use your good silverware outside? Find an inexpensive set of flatware and designate it as your outdoor set.
A serving tray comes in very handy for transporting food and drinks to the great outdoors. I love the modern design of the bent ply tray shown above. The green worked for me, but you may want to take a look at all the different colors there are to choose from.
Don’t forget to add some wall art. Most balconies have at least one wall that is crying out for some form of attention.
No outdoor space is complete without a little living green plant material. Fill a few flower pots or planter boxes with your favorite summer blooms or aromatic herbs. Your nose will thank you.
Although I’ve already covered outdoor electrical lighting, there’s also accent or mood lighting to consider. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to ‘highlight’ the Luau Portable Lamp. It’s a rechargeable lamp that uses energy efficient LED bulbs. Charge it up indoors and there are no cords to trip over outside.
My head is full of other ideas for creating and decorating outdoor rooms. Keep your eyes peeled – there’s more to come!
Products & Sources
- Sunburst Mirrored Wall Art – look for it under ‘Wall Art’ in the ‘Home Decor’ category at LampsPlus.com, $149.99 USD
- Bronze Grid 10″ High Outdoor Wall Light (98999) from LampsPlus, $59.99
- Richloom Outdoor Sunbrella Fabric Mod Starbursts , $4.99 per half yard USD at Hancock’s
- Salvia Flower Box Holder from Ikea, $5.99 USD
- Salvia Plant Pot from Ikea, 7-1/2″ x 7-1/2″, $3.99 USD
- American Simplicity 16-Pc Square Dinnerware Set, Gold – look for it under ‘Dining’ in Target’s Kitchen Category, $49.99 USD
- Shangri-La 20-Pc. Flatware Set – look for it under ‘Dining’ in Target’s Kitchen Category, $29.99 USD
- Luau Portable Lamp by Vessel from DesignWithinReach, $250.00 USD
- Hardwood Square Bistro Table, 27.5 In. from Home Depot Canada (online only), $79.99 CAD
- Hardwood Folding Chair, 2 Per Box from Home Depot Canada (online only), $99.00 CAD
- Urbana Design Bent Ply Serving Tray from Design Public, 14″ x 18″, $150.00 USD
- PUSS-Pussy Willows in Sherbet throw pillows from inhabitliving.com, 18″ x 18″, $60.00 USD
- Mystic Outdoor Rug – enter ‘outdoor rugs’ in the search box at LampsPlus.com, 5′5″ x 7′6″, $224.95 USD
See other design storyboards / moodboards / inspiration boards: