With summer around the corner, expand your entertaining area to include your outdoor deck or patio. Designing the perfect party space is no different than designing your indoor space. Define your dining, conversation and lounge spaces with furniture groupings, use containers to separate space, and use outdoor rugs to frame each area. Dedicate a place to eat, a place to relax and a place to warm up by a fire. Shop the Styleboard by Porch.com Editor-in-Chief, Anne Reagan for some stylish suggestions for accomplishing all of this.
Give your guests the perfect place to sit with high-quality, outdoor furniture. A sturdy dining table is a must along with plenty of seating. Buy as long of a table as you can: an extendable table will give you room for both your guests and your food. Be sure to purchase an outdoor umbrella if your dining area is in direct sun. Conversation sets and lounge pieces should be relaxing and situated close enough to each other to talk comfortably. Coffee tables and end tables will let your guests enjoy appetizers while soaking in your space.
Pro tip: When purchasing outdoor furniture, consider buying a matching set. The pieces not only look good together, they’ll be the correct size in relationship to each other.
Just because you’re sitting outside doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable. Outfit your outdoor furniture with soft, cushiony pillows. You can easily add color and pattern to your space with bright colors that coordinate with your garden. Or choose a neutral palette that lets your flowers pop. Quickly update your outdoor space without a huge investment by changing your cushion colors from year to year.
Pro tip: The best outdoor cushions will be fade-resistant and mold/mildew resistant. During the cooler, wetter months always store your cushions in a protected area to extend their life.
Warming Fire Pits
Installing an outdoor fire pit is not only easy, it will instantly transform your outdoor space into a warm and comfortable retreat. On cool nights your family and friends will enjoy gathering around the fire for conversation or roasting marshmallows. If your fire pit will be burning wood, consider buying a screen to keep sparks safely away from people, pets and furniture.
Pro tip: Always place your furniture at least 3 feet away from a burning fireplace to ensure safety.
Complete your impressive outdoor entertaining space with multitasking accessories. Occasional stools can be used as extra seating or side tables while adding style and color. Pots and containers filled with scented flowers work to define each sitting area as well as adding natural beauty. Be sure to add plenty of outdoor lighting so you and your guests can gather late into the evening. A mixture of lighting from candles, path lights, wall sconces and party lights will add a warm glow and create ambiance while keeping everyone safe from stumbling in the dark.
Pro tip: Be sure to hire a licensed electrician to install your outdoor-safe lights.
- Anne Reagan, Editor-in-Chief, Porch.com