Designing for your new outdoor structure
Now that you have a new structure, it is time to place your personal fingerprint on it. This is your chance to express your personal style through design. The question is...how does one design an outside space?
When organizing or designing a space, it should have a focal point. A focal point draws your eye to that feature in the room. What should be the first thing people see, when entering the outdoor space? The focal point should be the anchor of the design. Often times people use a new fireplace or the outdoor bar as a focal point to anchor their design.
What’s the purpose?
When you design think of the purpose of the outdoor space. What will it be used for? Does it need a sectional or dining table for seating? If so, think of making it separate for their specific purposes. Do you entertain? If so, think about grouping your furniture in conversational groupings. This creates an intimate space for your friends, family, and guests.
An outdoor space needs movement
Think of it as breathing space. When laying out your furniture and accessories, consider movement. Will your guests be able to circulate throughout the outdoor space? You want a space that is not only easy to move around but not visually cluttered (ex: too many accessories). How do you know if your space is lacking good movement? Just watch your guests move throughout the space for the first time. Are there bottlenecks in your flow? The guest gets to one point and waits for others to move through so they can move again, is an example of a bottleneck. Are they tripping on anything? Awkwardly placed furniture and accessories will create movement issues. Think of how you want people to walk through your outdoor space.
Make it Inviting!
Consider an outdoor space as an invitation to your guests. What do you want the invitation to say? Warm and comfortable? Light and whimsical? Conversational? Things that create an inviting space is a color theme, furnishings, and set-up. Earth tones and candlelight can add intimacy and warmth. Bright colors, various pillow patterns, and furniture can show your playful side. Make it an invitation to join!
Think of comfort
Again, consider your space as an invitation. Ensure that your furnishings are comfortable. Get pillows for seating and make sure it is comfortable to sit on. Make your outdoor area free of clutter! Clutter creates stress in an outdoor space when the intention should create relaxation and enjoyment. One sign of clutter is a guest trying to sit down a glass and nowhere to place it. It also will be a nice place for shade to get away from the heat and sun. Consider an EZShade Canopy to give you shade or privacy.
Break up spaces
Have a kitchen, bar or grill? Create a space specifically for just that activity. Think of movement and safety? Don’t try to cram as much into a small space. It will make you and your guests uncomfortable to not only move around in but it could be a hazard if you’re grilling. Don’t be afraid to change your initial furnishing concept if it does not work for your space. Create areas for that specific activity. An example is grilling area for only grilling.
Group your décor and de-clutter:
Adding accessories is a dynamic way to create a theme. Example, adding whimsy and fun items can make the space playful. Grouping your décor into sets of three using theme and height, can create visual appeal.
Think about the objects you want to make a statement plus add to the theme. Avoid too much! Clutter creates stress. According to Psychology Today, “Clutter bombards our minds with excessive stimuli (visual, olfactory, tactile), causing our senses to work overtime on stimuli that aren't necessary or important.” Your space should be your style but create a place for relaxation.
Remember, this is about creating an outdoor space for you or your family. Find inspiration, have fun, and use this as a way of expressing yourself!
Photographer Name: Jason Rineer