If you’re lucky enough to have an outdoor space at home, then make the most of it by creating a beautiful area that soothes the mind and body.
Frightening statistic: For every hour we Aussies spend outside, we spend over seven in front of the TV or glued to the Internet, with one in three spending less than 18 minutes a day on outdoor activities. Who’s guilty?
While “the great Australian backyard is part of the larger psychological package called the Australian dream” as noted by environmental planner at Griffith University, Dr. Tony Matthews, it seems that less and less of us are making use of these tranquil spaces.
Which is crazy when you think about it given that people living in so many other cosmopolitan areas around the world never have the luxury of outdoor space to begin with. Backyard space in Manhattan? Not happening. An outdoor pool in London – unlikely.
One of the keys to making better use of our outdoor spaces at home is by enhancing the look and amenity of your garden. Ideally, our outdoor spaces – no matter how large or small, will tempt us leave all gadgets aside and enjoy a morning coffee while reading, planning out our days, or simply enjoying the serenity.
Making your outdoor space more appealing for summer involves thinking of the types of activities you enjoy, and designing the space to cater to these activities. Nothing beats a picnic-style lunch by the pool or romantic candlelit dinner for two, and it’s made all the more luxurious when you can enjoy these moments privately at home.
From a beautiful wooden decked pagoda to a resort-style terrace, small changes can be just the ticket to entice us to head outside to unwind or connect.
Keep reading for outdoor space inspiration that’ll transform any area.
Make it a place to unwind
Think of what would prompt you to step outside your living room and into the outdoors. Your project can be as small or simple as budget and time permits. For instance, if you have a large garden, structures like pagodas, or a plunge pool can greatly increase your garden’s appeal.
You should also consider what hobbies or activities you like to do, which can be enjoyed outdoors at home. For instance, yoga – which is ideally practised outside during scenic moments such as sunrise and sunset, is the perfect activity to do at home.
Your outdoor yoga deck can contain an outdoor sofa and chairs, and any other furniture you can relax in when you’re not engaged in stress-busting pursuits.
Alternatively, if you like to cook, then why not create an outdoor space that’s perfect for alfresco dining.
Make it like a resort
If you’re lucky enough to have a pool or a terrace you would like to use to full advantage, you’ll need to install some stylish sun-protection to go with it.
There are many modern pergola or sunshade designs on the market that will instantly make any outdoor space look more chic. Installing a pergola adds shade and comfort in summer, but if you enjoy the sunlight during cooler months, then opt for something retractable that lets you allow as much sun as you wish.
Shaded terraces and patios are ideal for furniture items like hotel-like sunbeds or, if space permits, a large Balinese bed that more than two or three people can lounge on.
Make it romantic!
Nothing speaks “romance” quite like a path lit up by candle lanterns, or a simple wooden table graced with natural candles and flowers. If you have steps or a stone path in your garden, then why not highlight this feature through the use of candles as well.
Outdoor lighting is so important for setting the mood on balmy summer nights outside. Illuminating your dinner parties with a combination of fairy lights, festoon lighting and candles, makes any outdoor gathering feel more special.
Make it colourful!
Inviting spaces always feature a pop of colour inspired by the season’s trending colours. For the Summer 2019, top hues will range from orange red to gold, mango, royal blue, yellow-green, and neutral hues like soybean or cream.
To incorporate these shades into your outdoors, pick a couple of items in these shades this year – think easy-to-find accessories like planters, cushions, or decorative candles.