By: Marcia Blake
One of the most essential activities we can do is to connect with nature by being outdoors. Studies show that fresh air, trees, plants and natural outdoor elements have a profound influence on our health and well being. When we devote more time outdoors, we can boost our state of mind, think more positively, and experience a greater inner calm and greater harmony with everyone around us. So let’s leave the stresses of everyday life inside, as we embrace our outdoor living room.
To be able to spend more time outdoors, ask yourself, “Will I be relaxing and entertaining or dining outside alfresco style with family and friends?” Once you determine the answers to these questions you can begin to design your outdoor living space, or freshen up and re-energize an existing space with new furniture and accessories. If the answer to both questions is “yes” than you can design an outdoor living room, in addition to an alfresco dining area.
The line between the indoors and outdoors is blurring as we and our guests spill outside from our interior great room. Utilizing the very same design principles that you use inside your home is the key to discovering the beauty of outdoor living. Layering appealing textural solids with captivating patterned textiles will enable you to create an outdoor seating and dining area that is just as inviting as your indoor counterparts. Accent pillows, artistic area rugs, graceful drapes, and stylized furniture are the components that will make your space comfortable and inspired.
Some of the latest trends in furniture and accessories add vibrancy, style and comfort to the outdoor living room. Brown Jordan’s Flight Collection offers elegance with casual sophistication. Its clean lines and modern flares are constructed in cast and extruded aluminum. This Flight collection is the perfect synthesis of classic style with a modern twist.
Just like in home design, it is important to create a focal point such as a fountain, fireplace, fire pit, gazebo or pavilion that will encourage your friends and family to spend quality time together. Or you can choose an existing focal point to strategically place some very comfortable deep seating arrangements or a spectacular dining area. Sometimes colorful outdoor art or an outdoor rug that defines this space is your focal point. If this is the case, utilize the colors found in the artwork or rug to embellish your outdoor room.
Outdoor furniture and accessories get their design and color signals from the traditional and fashionable interior décor. This Monterey Collection from Patio Renaissance is rich in color and design. By selecting your own fabric for the cushions and pillows you can personalize your outdoor living room.
Nature inspires the addition of colors in the outdoor room such as tranquil blue, herbal green and cheerful yellow. This season shades of pink are being tossed into the outdoor room. Different hues of orange are spicing up the outdoor spaces while brightening up our mood. In addition to adding color in the outdoor furnishings and accessories, choose colorful flowering plants to accent containers scattered throughout the outdoor living space. Place these on the dining table, coffee table, next to a club or lounge chair. Accent the outdoors with all different shapes and sizes of colorful outdoor throw pillows and a plush outdoor rug that will finish off the outdoor setting. Umbrellas also come in many sizes, shapes and colors that can coordinate or contrast the outdoor living space.
Next you want to consider adding Outdoor Drapes to add a touch of style and color. These drapes can be functional or simply decorative. There are many options to choose from with Outdoor Drapes, you can hang sheer drapes, or a patterned drape with decorative accent fringe. Now more than anytime before you have choices in outdoor hardware to hang the drapes, adjustable aluminum rods and decorative finials.
Mix and match materials in these outdoor settings, juxtapose wrought iron with glass, steel with terra cotta, wood against woven components, soft chenille textures and linear lines to get a new twist on an old world style.
Adding the finishing touches with accessories like candles, stone figurines, colorful potted plants, table trays, coffee table books and colorful vases will complete the creation of your lavish outdoor living space.
Now that spring is here, the importance of outdoor living becomes more and more apparent as we appreciate the natural beauty surrounding our homes, the clean crisp air of spring, birds singing, flowers blooming and trees budding. Time spent outside as we socialize in comfort and style will help us to leave the stress of the day behind and create a balance to our lives. Outdoor Living stimulates conversation, an unhurried pace and transports us closer to nature.
Alfresco dining and lounging on a sofa as the afternoon fades into evening, will replenish your spirit.
Outdoor living is at its best when nature dazzles the eye and nurtures the soul. Create your perfect casual environment outside and enjoy. Breathe in, breathe out. Find your center. Relax. With so many demands on our daily lives, it’s no wonder that we are all so stressed! So leave the stress inside, as you embrace outdoor living.