Sept. 7, 2021
With the nice weather we are currently having, one would love nothing more but to stay in the great outdoors for as long as possible. Those lucky enough to have a big yard can virtually spend day and night outside, but what about the others? What about those whose homes are equipped with only a balcony or a petite deck? Should they make peace with the indoor living? Well, certainly not! Especially since there are plenty of ways to make the most out of a small outdoor space. The advice contained in this article is primarily meant to help out those dealing with tiny outdoor areas. Nevertheless, the tips are just as golden when applied to the biggest of gardens.
How to Maximize Your Outdoor Space?
Outdoor living is thought to be one of the hottest home trends, and considering the Covid-19 crisis, that isn't particularly surprising. If you want to follow the footsteps of those abiding by this trend, start thinking of your outside area as an extension of your home. And a valuable one, for that matter. You are probably not yet aware of the enormous potential of this space, no matter how small. If only you were to maximize it... Luckily, you are about to learn to do just that! Here are six ways to utilize your balcony, terrace, patio, deck, or anything else - in the best way possible!
1. Showcase Your Aesthetic Tendencies
The goal here is to bring the indoors outdoors. In terms of style and design, you want the outside of your home to match the inside. You are encouraged to enhance the area with some decor, be it throw pillows, rugs, or attractive (and functional) furniture. Rather than opt for a traditional rug, though, you would be better off with its outdoor variant, considering the latter is made to withstand the harshest of conditions.
While bold and vibrant colors will bring a bit of life to the place, going overboard isn't recommended. A plethora of colorful details contribute to a ''cluttered'' look and feel. You are advised to go with more of a natural color scheme, as these tones tend to create a sense of spaciousness, which is just what your tiny retreat needs.
2. Shop Practical
Of course, we are talking about furniture here! A large armchair would surely complement your existing decor but would it leave enough room to move around? Probably not. Since you are dealing with a small place, you'll possibly have to make some compromises. At least when the style is concerned. When shopping for furniture, primarily think about dimensions, proportions, and functionality. You should be looking at pieces that are lightweight and easy to move. And if they double as storage, all the better.
You could make the most out of a small outdoor space with, let's say, bistro or foldable furniture. Plus, if you were ever to relocate, you'd have a simpler time moving these pieces elsewhere. Furthermore, portable storage could be your greatest ally in that quest, being the type of storage you can easily transfer from one place to the other.
3. Don't Neglect Lighting
An adequately lit outside area is a must, especially if you are also using it as office space. Much like a dark home, outdoor spaces with poor lighting are detrimental to one's productivity, not to mention the eyesight! Protect your mind, your eyes, and bring a touch of warmth to the place by improving the overall brightness. If you are worried about the costs of such a project, don't be! Adding a few lanterns and solar-powered bulbs here and there shouldn't cost more than a couple of hundred dollars. Just make sure they are placed well to avoid unwanted shadows from creeping.
4. Decorate with Plants
Ah, greenery! What a way to liven up any area, even the tiniest one! Plants are always a welcome addition, the only problem being, how do you go about incorporating them when there barely seems to be enough space for a pair of chairs and a table? It is, nevertheless, possible to make them work. You'll just have to think outside the box. Sure, you can't lay your beloved plants horizontally, but what you can do is arrange them in a vertical way. Simply fasten the pots to a wall or a fence, and you'll be good to go.
5. Use Space Opening Techniques
We have already mentioned how natural tones can visually enlarge confined areas. If you truly want to make the most out of a small outdoor space, you should contemplate achieving that with light paint. Paint the facade, the deck, the gate, anything really. If you feel like the change of color hasn't opened up the space enough, adapt another technique instead - opening it up with the addition of wall mirrors.
6. Hang Outdoor Draperies
Draperies prove a great distraction from the small dimensions of a balcony or a patio. During the hottest days, they also provide decent protection from the sun. Not to mention the added privacy brought on by curtains, which further contributes to the outdoors feeling more like indoors. Ideally, your draperies should be made of waterproof, sturdy material that is essentially made to last. Of course, to hang them up, first, you'll have to install curtain rods.
And there they are! Six ways that should help you make the most out of a small outdoor space. Some of these may not work so well for you if you are dealing with a particularly petite area. Either way, since it is you that knows your home best, experiment and see for yourself what it is that works best.