Imagine an oasis surrounded by colourful, fragrant flowers. A private place to enjoy a coffee listening to the birds. Perhaps later in the day, you’ll lounge in the sun sipping sangria while the kids play quietly in their treehouse. Then enjoy an al fresco dinner under the stars cooked in your outdoor kitchen before gathering around the fire pit for gourmet Smores.
If this sounds like something you could handle, it’s more than possible with just a few pampering perks that can transform your everyday patio into a palace of alfresco living.
Top 10 patio must-haves
#1. Set a place
Create a comfortable place to gather with patio furniture that’s both fashionable and functional. Set up a small nook with a café table & bistro chairs, or two Muskoka loungers with side tables for brewskies. For larger spaces create an outdoor living room with an all-weather wicker sofa, dining table, and chairs complete with cushions for the perfect place to enjoy a backyard barbecue.
#2. Colourful Decor
Add a splash of colour with accessories that bring fresh style to your patio. Beautiful all-weather rugs define space and provide comfort underfoot. Bright patterned pillows liven up a sofa, while big Moroccan-style floor cushions add drama and an extra place to sit. From table umbrellas and canopies to planters and patio-proof dinnerware – colour is where it’s at.
#3. Go Wild!
Nothing makes a patio prettier than the beauty of flowers, plants, and gardens. Get creative with both colour and containers, from potted planters and pathways to hanging baskets and trellis vines. For those with an even greener ambition to grow food, there are many containers and vertical options for herb and vegetable gardens.
#4. Lights, candles, lanterns!
Amplify your ambience and transition your patio from day to night with a variety of lighting ideas. Traditional oil lanterns and candles create a natural vibe while a string of outdoor lights is pure magic. For those fire-averse look to LED and solar options from Tiki torches and moonlights to outdoor lamps and chandeliers.
#5. Get Grillin’
Designing a space to cook and enjoy a meal in the great outdoors can be as simple as investing in a quality gas BBQ to designing a Master Chef al fresco kitchen. There are DIY outdoor kitchen kits as well as pre-made bar-style islands that contain the BBQ, sink, refrigerator, and storage space.
#6. Get fired up
Create an outdoor gathering spot and place to toast marshmallows with a crackling fire. From beautiful stone gas fireplaces and fire tables to charming charcoal or wood-burning fire pits, pull up a few Muskoka chairs and let the camp songs begin.
#7. Moonlight movies
Host a backyard blockbuster by creating an outdoor movie theatre. Go old school by hanging up a sheet or consider an easy to use inflatable widescreen. Set up a mini projector with speakers, toss down a few blankets, and don’t forget the popcorn!
#8. OM Oasis
Create a peaceful place to practice meditation or yoga with a private Zen garden. Consider a pergola with an awning and hang a hammock for the ultimate in relaxation. Design a stone path to a Japanese rock garden, with a water fountain and chimes.
#9. Let the games begin
Create some fun for everyone with a place to play. Kids love to dig in a sandbox, climb on monkey bars, and a simple tree fort is the ultimate score. For older kids set up a badminton net, croquet or a giant Jenga. And for after-hours adult fun, glow in the dark lawn bowling promises hilarious times.
#10. The latest buzz
Enjoy your patio day and night by preparing for unwelcome mosquitoes. Lavender and lemongrass are natural repelling plants, along with citronella candles. For serious bug haters try the ultraviolet mosquito killer lamp.
Start your summer off with a place to enjoy all the pleasures outdoor al fresco living brings. From quiet time and family time to the time when we can all gather and celebrate together again.