What’s outside a house is as important to making it a home as what’s inside, and outdoor spaces both add visual appeal and make for cozy living spaces. Sometimes, though, you don’t have the time, money or space for elaborate landscaping. If your exterior space is limited, you can still create form and function without it being a major ordeal. Here are some tips on how you can enhance the area around your home.
Creating the Illusion of Space
Often, the trick to making the most of a small space is to draw attention away from how small it is. There are a few ways you can go about this:
- Use vertical steps, trellises and mixed materials to define smaller spaces within the yard that each have their own feel. Combine wooden deck tiles with grass, gravel and stonework to develop a sense of distinct parts of the yard.
- For seating and furniture, go for smaller scale and unobtrusive pieces. Chairs with slim profiles, benches without backs and tables tucked away in nooks are good examples. If you can make retaining walls, walkways or other features double as seating, that further removes clutter.
- A smaller floor plan can be compensated for by making use of height for decor. Hanging planters, vertical gardens and gallery walls are a good way to do this.
The Value of Details
Small changes and additions go a long way in enhancing the feel of an outdoor area. Experiment with the lighting you use, or simply take advantage of sunlight with an open space. Touch up old furniture with new paint. Choose plants that attract local birds and butterflies and appeal to pets you have. Add a centerpiece like a fire pit or a fountain that draws the eye towards it. Lay out stepping stones to accent grassy areas, or even collect rocks and paint them for a little extra flair.
Your outdoor space doesn’t have to be composed entirely from newly bought furniture, materials and setpieces. There are likely plenty of things in your house that can be brought outside and put into a new context. This can include old furniture that you reuse or upcycle, keepsakes that otherwise collect dust and spare throw pillows and rugs from your interior collection. If you have indoor plants, move some of them outside for your garden—make sure they’ll be comfortable with the new lighting, first.
With the right inspiration, you can transform your deck, patio or backyard even when budgeting with space or money. Don’t be afraid to check out ideas posted online or take a new look at what you have around.