Subscribe to Newsletter

The Great Outdoors

A good outdoor space can greatly enhance the experience of living in a house. It is a place to entertain family and friends, for the kids to play in and a tranquil retreat to read the paper on a Sunday morning.

But what makes a good outdoor space?


1. Planning
First decide what the area is going to be used for, whether that’s an entertainer’s paradise, a tranquil retreat or a kids’ play area. This will help you plan and decide how to use the space and what plants and furniture to fill it with.

2. An Invitation
Make your outdoor spaces inviting so that family and guests actually get outside. Have a variety of comfortable chairs to suit different ages, tables or stools to rest drinks and food on, and both sunny and shaded areas.

3. Establish Walkways or Pathways
Having your garden and entertaining area set out as distinct spaces or outdoor rooms creates a sense of mystery to be discovered and allows for different parts of the outdoor area to be used at the same time.

4. Have a Centrepiece
Perhaps a grouped planting of flowers, outdoor art or a water feature can give the eye something to land on and helps you build off that one design element.

5. Add Colour
Pots of all shapes and sizes, in a variety of colours and textures can add an interesting element to a courtyard and provide a burst of colour during the winter months.

6. Storage
A storage container or shed to pack up gardening tools, hoses and lawn mowers is a must to not only keep everything in good order but also to have them out of sight. Consider benches with storage space underneath to tuck away cushions when they aren’t being used.

7. Privacy
If your neighbours are looking directly into your garden you might want to consider shielding the view using hedges, trellises or even hanging pots.

8. Affordable Updates
Spend your money on buying good quality and durable outdoor furniture but keep your cushions and accessories on a budget that way you can update them quickly and cheaply.

9. Paving
If you are using paving within a small backyard, be sure to keep the design simple and free of strong geometrical designs, which can often make a space seem smaller.

10. Consider The Kids
Younger children love digging up pot plants, so they are probably best hung up or up on tables. A cubby, sandbox or even a children’s veggie patch can mean hours of entertainment outside.

by Tanya Demello on 18 July 2014

Filed under Places