Summer is finally here! After the long winters we endure—and this last one was particularly long and cold—we all love to head outdoors to enjoy our fleeting warm weather.
Entertaining and relaxing outside make the most of those hot summer nights. Creating an outdoor space that is inviting and beautiful can be so much fun. You can play with colour and materials in ways that are totally creative and even a departure from the style of the rest of your home.
Making whatever outdoor area you have (balcony, porch, garden or yard) an extension of your home gives you another “room” to call your own—and any found space is super-important, if you have a smaller city home or condo.
When designing an outdoor space, try using traditional indoor pieces to extend the interior look outdoors. As long as the space is protected from the rain and direct sunlight you can use a few of these items to really make the space feel like another part of your home. Using vintage pieces in your outdoor space is a great idea because they’ve already proven they can weather the elements. Old dressers can function as sideboards and store your outdoor linens and tableware.
Dressing up your outdoor “walls” with art is another great way to make the space feel inviting. Mirrors and wall art made with vintage and reclaimed materials add sparkle and style to any fence or outdoor wall. This great piece of art made from an old broken bench is a fantastic piece with loads of character.
[wall art from Pure Dutch]
Using textiles in interesting patterns and materials will add interest to your outdoor space too. A cushion made from an old coffee bag will work great on outdoor furniture and will withstand the rays of the sun without rotting or fading. Jute is a super-durable, natural fibre that can withstand wet and sun. These jute pouches, originally intended for indoor organizers, become instant gardens for a small space when they are planted up with herbs and smaller plants.
[vertical garden jute pockets from Avani Creations]
Try charming herb markers made from silver-plated and silver spoons. The spoons are sourced from a variety of places, flattened with a sledge hammer and then hand-stamped. They also make great gifts for gardeners and cooks. They should be brought indoors at the end of the season and can be cleaned easily with toothpaste and a rag.
[herb markers from Creekwood]
However small your outdoor area, and however short our summer season, you can create a space that is functional and interesting. Get creative, be bold and have some fun with it.
You will find all sorts of great items to decorate and use in your outdoor space at the Leslieville Flea at Harbourfront Centre this Sunday, July 6th from 10am-5pm.