1. Deep Clean & Replace Anything Worn Down
One of the quickest ways to make a major difference in the overall look of your outdoor spaces is by doing a high-quality deep clean. Start by taking a look at your current patio furniture and decor. These items wear down over time from rain, sun, and other elements. If you’re pulling outdoor furniture out for the first time this season, it’s time to take a good look at what pieces are showing signs of wear and get rid of them!
Then it’s time to clean out the space. Remove any moveable patio furnishings and sweep, wash or treat the surface with an appropriate cleanser. Often, warm water and dish detergent plus a sturdy broom will do just the trick. Let this dry and then replace the furniture. Clean or replace any cushions or other patio decor before placing them back. If your patio space is connected to garden beds, be sure to weed and tidy the garden space as much as possible.
Now you have a fresh palette to begin updating for this summer season!
2. Update The lighting
Lighting has an immediate effect on outdoor spaces and can be as affordable as simply hanging string lights up around your patio or deck. Think about the effect you’d like to create with lighting. Would you like to highlight specific architectural features or add safety to pathways? Consider step lights, spotlights, and uplights to draw attention to your landscape’s best features. Looking to create a cozy, glowing ambiance for an outdoor gathering space? Look for overhead lighting options like outdoor chandeliers or pendant lights. If overhead lighting isn’t possible in your space, place lanterns and outdoor lamps around your patio. Place them on tables, in planters, or set them on the floor to create a welcoming atmosphere during the evening hours.
3. Get Creative With Plants
Plants don’t have to stay in the garden! Surround your seating area with big, potted plants to create a natural partition. Given the range of color options and combinations, you can fit just about any style with a well-placed potted plant. For a summery splash, choose brightly colored planters or flowers with complementary tones. To create a natural-toned sanctuary, opt for terra cotta plants and lush greenery to scatter around your space.
Plants can also be used to hide or beautify eyesores like electrical boxes, air conditioning units, unsightly fences, and more. Use large bushy plants to distract the eye from bulky items, or plant climbing plants to cover vertical surfaces and create an additional level of privacy.
However you style your outdoor space, an abundance of greenery will give your yard a lush, and cozy feel. Consider gardening with plants native to the Pacific Northwest to create an environmentally friendly yard!
4. Create Height & Dimension
If you have a covered porch, trellis, or other vertical structure to your outdoor space, this can be an excellent space to add more interest. Add light drapes to create a beachy, comfortable environment and provide some additional shade and privacy. Place hanging planters, weather-safe bistro lights, and colored lanterns to pull the eye up and create visual dimension. You can even create a ceiling with string lights if one doesn’t already exist, or hang lights and decor from trees to make an overall thoughtfully designed space.
5. Upgrade Your Grill
It’s certainly grilling season and there are a variety of ways you can make your grill more of a design highlight for your outdoor spaces.
Consider installing an outdoor kitchen for a major patio upgrade that will be sure to impress any guest. Outdoor kitchens typically add significant value to a home and, depending on the design features, can be a relatively simple installation process. For a more affordable way to create an outdoor grilling station, consider pairing your grill with outdoor cabinets and bar carts to create a kitchen-like feel at a fraction of the price. There are also countless DIY grill stations that can elevate your BBQ game and make you feel like an outdoor master chef in no time.
6. Summer Color Refresh
When choosing a color palette for your outdoor space, you want to first look at any aspects of your yard or patio that you will not be changing the color of. The color of your current flooring, the siding of your home, and any predominant colors from your yard all play a role in your overlying color schemes. Consider choosing the colors of your patio, deck, or yard furnishings, to compliment the existing tones of your property.
From there, you get to have fun! Are you drawn to fresh, splashy summer colors that will make your outdoor space feel light and bright? Consider cheerful yellows, pinks, and blue tones. To help avoid overdoing bright colors, be sure to balance them out with natural whites, wicker, and terra cotta shades. For a more subdued and natural style, consider leaning on soft greens and muted earth shades to help embrace the natural colors already found outdoors.
7. Add A Rug
Adding an outdoor rug can be just the thing to pull an outdoor space together and add a touch of coziness to a deck or patio flooring. An outdoor rug can be used the same way they are used indoors–to finish spaces, establish zones, and provide spacial depth. There are nearly limitless styles, sizes, patterns, and shapes available so you can be sure to find one that perfectly matches your outdoor space. Advances in polypropylene textiles and digital printing have seen outdoor rugs come a long way in recent years, and they are often much more affordable than their indoor counterparts.
Whatever you do with your outdoor space, be sure to create it the way that makes you happy before all else. Before being an entertaining space or a home-value addition, your outdoor space is your personal spot to unwind and escape from the craziness of the day! We hope you’re able to enjoy the many beautiful summer days to come in your newly refreshed patio, deck, or other backyard area.