6 ways to create an outdoor living space – News – Wilmington Star News


Spring is here and with it comes warmer weather and more daylight, which means more time outside. Now might be a good time to think about “bringing the inside out” while at home. Here are six ways to create an outdoor living space.

Dreamy deck ideas

For homes that already have this added feature, a deck can provide the perfect space for outside dining or additional seating. A row of evergreens can be used to form a natural privacy wall. Outside furniture should look and feel comfortable; wicker furniture is relatively easy to maintain and neutral, waterproof fabric allows for fun accent pillows to give a pop of color to any space. For areas with too much direct sun, a wooden lattice is an easy, inexpensive way to defer light. Finally, adding a water feature, such as a small fountain, can bring the tranquil sounds of running water to your deck oasis.

Bring warmth to a space

Create a focal point for any patio or backyard by adding a fireplace or fire pit, which will allow for year-round enjoyment of any outdoor living space. Bring in texture with stone or brick elements that are both inviting and relaxing for your family and guests. Be thoughtful with seating (Adirondack chairs or even wooden benches are great.) to make sure everyone has a place around the fire, and be sure to stock up on s’mores supplies.

Extend your home

A pergola or gazebo will allow your outdoor space to become a true extension of your home. Surround the structures with small shrubs and flowering bushes for extra privacy, shade and a natural element. Add ambiance with string lighting so your family and guests can enjoy the space after dark, and make sure to keep citronella candles on hand to help repel mosquitoes.

Porch living

Have limited space in your backyard? Even a small porch can provide a relaxing outdoor getaway. Nothing says the South like drinking a glass of freshly squeezed lemonade or homemade sweet tea while relaxing in rocking chairs. Or if space allows, opt for a larger wooden porch swing or even a hanging daybed for the perfect summer nap spot.

Hidden garden

Gifted with a green thumb? Incorporate benches and other small seating options throughout the fruits of your labor for a tranquil getaway. Add a birdhouse for even more character and whimsy, and select flowering plants such as a butterfly bush to bring nature directly to you.

Private bar

Even the smallest of outdoor spaces, can be transformed into a place for entertainment and relaxation. A built-in bar beneath a window or in the corner of a patio helps bring the party outside. Opt for a mix of seating options to give a fun, eclectic feel where your guests can sit back and enjoy the spring weather.

This story is also published in the spring edition of Port City Life magazine, available to StarNews subscribers in the March 25 issue of the newspaper and available to nonsubscribers for $6.95 through April 6 at the StarNews offices, 1003 S. 17th St. in Wilmington. After that, copies will be available for $9.95, while supplies last.

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