Summer Must Haves for the Outdoors

Nowadays people are turning their outdoor space into extentions of their indoors. They realize it gets them so much more square feet to enjoy and so it becomes another room to decorate. I’ve scoured online to pick out some of my favourite & easy DIY ideas, to turn these areas into cozy and comfortable retreats, along with a few neat ideas to put in your garden. All non-specified photos are from bhg.com.

Swap Out your Cushions:

Swap out your Cushions

You should pick furniture for your outdoor rooms that are durable and of quality that will last you for many years. Then simply swap out cushions whenever you feel like a new colour scheme. Try some bold colours if your furniture is neutral.

Mix Elements:

Mixing Elements

If colour is not your cup of tea, then use several different types of materials to create visual interest. A metal table pairs well with the dark wicker furniture, porcelain garden stool, and worn wooden oars propped up in the corner.

Paint your Brick:

Paint your BrickTo instantly lighten and brighten any outdoor room, consider painting out the brick white. Wicker furniture and the substantial amount of natural light streaming in give the space a light and airy feel. However, take note that once brick is painted, you will need to repaint every few years depending on your climate.

– Pattern for Porches:

Another way to inject interest if colour is not your thing, is to introduce several different patterns in your cushions. Even the woven chairs enhance the scheme though additional patterns. Add in some placemats and a rug, and voila… you’ve got one stimulating room!

Paint your Wicker:

Photo by SET For Design

Photo by SET For Design

Photo by :  SET For Design

As someone who has done this themselves (see photo directly above for my own front porch), painting wicker couldn’t be any easier! Keep it neutral and bright or go crazy and pick a fun colour. It’s only paint and can be swapped out again.

Create a Hanging Garden:

Hands down this is the best use for an old unwanted shower caddy! Spray paint it out in whatever colour you like. Line the baskets with preserved moss to hold soil and plants while allowing excess water to easily drain away. Creates an interesting focal point for your fence.

– A New Use for Terracotta:

Rather than discarding that assortment of terracotta pots, consider using them as in-ground planters. Tuck the planters in among other bedding plants to add dimension to your garden.

– DIY Terrariums:

Decorate with Terrariums

Terrariums are not a new concept, but lately they’ve experienced a big surge in popularity. Create a simple terrarium all on your own using no more than a wooden tray, a collection of small potted plants, and a large glass dome.

Once you’ve mastered these easy makeovers, here’s an easy beer cocktail recipe to enjoy in your new improved space (even the title works well!):

 Sublime Design

  • 3 oz Molson Canadian 67 Sublime or your favourite beer with lime
  • 3 oz pink lemonade
  • 1 tsp of frozen raspberries thawed
  • Fresh raspberries or other berries of your choice

To a wine goblet filled with ice, add the beer, pink lemonade and thawed frozen raspberries. Stir and garnish with the fresh fruit on top.

All that’s left to do is sit back and enjoy 🙂

 

 

 

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Easy Weekend Summer Projects

Want to try some easy summer decorating projects you can comfortably tackle in a weekend or less? Here are some of my favourites that I’ve come across recently:

–  Summer Shimmer:

Summer shimmer

Summer shimmer- photo by Jennifer and Kitty O’Neil

Give an occasional chair a modern makeover with metallic silver spray paint and combine it with sherbert colours in yellow or green.

Remove the seat and spray the chair with several coats of metallic paint. Recover the chair with lattice or other nature-inspired prints.

Tribal Motifs:

Tribal motifs

Tribal motifs- photo by Jennifer and Kitty O’Neil

Go tribal by incorporating a few natural accessories in wood, bone or ebony; set off by strong graphic prints. Add small doses in neutral browns, whites and blacks which can blend effortlessly in any room.

– Vacation Finds:

Vacation finds

Vacation finds- Photo by Ore Studios

Why not add that great vase or Mexican statue that you picked up while on vacation this summer? These bold pieces will instantly add some pizazz and is a great story as well.

– Book Backdrop:

Book backdrop

Book backdrop- photo by Style at Home

Add a bright, bold or unexpected colour to a neutral room by painting the back of a bookcase in a hot hue. This is a fresh yellow-green hue, but how about coral or aqua as well?

– Stylish Storage for Kids’ Toys

Kids' storage

Kids’ storage- photo by Style at Home

With summer here, toys are everywhere! Reclaim the space by putting toys into inexpensive, galvanized buckets labelled with different categories. Use chalkboard labels so it can be changed up. Then place them in cheap and cheerful, open bookcases!

– Table top Coverlet:

Table top Coverlet

Table top Coverlet- photo by Jennifer and Kitty O’Neil

Take a solid colour table runner. Stamp it with a pattern that evokes long grasses or some other nature-inspired print. Drape it over contrasting bedding and you’ve got an instant new look for your bedding.

– Nautical-Inspired Lamp:

Nautical lamp

Nautical lamp- Photo by Style at Home

Breathe new life into a tired lamp by wrapping natural hemp around a lamp base and shade trim. This couldn’t be any easier or inexpensive and absolutely screams “summer”!

I made my own birch log lamp last summer (see pic below), so in comparison this will be a piece of cake 🙂

Birch log lamp

My own birch-log lamp creation