One of my favourite things about summer in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is time on an outdoor patio. Whether it is working on my laptop, relaxing with a cool beverage or chatting with friends, a summer patio can be a welcome retreat and an extension of your home. Here are seven design tips to help you create a great summer patio retreat:
1) Light it up!
A couple strings of patio lights can really warm up a space in the evening and during the day. It is an easy and inexpensive way to create some extra lighting and welcoming ambiance. Also a quick way to add lighting is with tea lights in glass jars and candles. Or I love these trend setting torches.
Accessories help bring an area together in any space. I often start with a neutral palette to blend into the surroundings and add pops of colour for interest. These yellow accent tables are sure to brighten up your space and mood!
3) Add some container plantings
Create some instant patio pizazz by planting flowers and greenery in pots. For some on the spot satisfaction, purchase pots already put together at your favourite nursery. Colourful blooms will add accent to the space, while white will be more visible in the evenings.
4) Find an interesting fire pit
Adding a fire pit or outdoor fireplace to your patio will extend the amount of time you can enjoy right into the fall. In addition to providing warmth, they add drama to a space and are another light source. Bring out cozy throws to warm up on chilly evenings.
5) Combine shade and sun
A combination of sun and shade is important for enjoyment throughout the summer to suit the weather and your mood. Recharge your battery by reading a good book in the shade and enjoying a cool breeze. Similarly, for those who enjoy some tanning time or soaking up some sun on a cool day, include the option of a sunny spot on the patio. An umbrella is an easy solution for a small space. A gazebo or some shade trees in one section can work well as more permanent solutions.
6) Find an outdoor statement art piece
Art objects, wall hangings or wall accessories are not only for indoors anymore. I love the way this oversized print wakes up this patio to make a statement. Then the designer has tied in the colours from the art with accessories. Lovely!
7) Build a summer kitchen
Can’t afford a high-end outdoor kitchen? You can still enjoy preparing food and eating outdoors this summer. How about this inventive and stylish outdoor kitchen? A great option if you are renting too!
Do you have a patio that needs some tender loving care? Then take a weekend to utilize some of our tips on your outdoor patio.
For more outdoor patio ideas visit our Pinterest board.
Jo-Ann Capelaci is president and principal interior designer of Colours & Concepts. The award winning company specializes in model homes and colour and upgrade selections for builders. They have been helping new home buyers choose finishes for their homes for over 20 years. Jo-Ann is dedicated to helping new home buyers create a model home feeling in their new home. Look for future articles on other topics to assist in decorating and designing your new home.