amy azzarito

summer ready: outdoor decorating

by Amy Azzarito

I don’t have my own outdoor space (unless a fire escape counts), but I have big plans to spend all summer parked on Grace’s porch with a tall glass of iced tea. Outdoor space in any city comes at a pretty big premium, so we’ve been spending a lot of time talking about exactly how the porch should be decorated. I picked two themes for these round-ups — a colorful version and a more rustic one, and I don’t know which one I like more. (Maybe if I had my own outdoor space, I might just do a little mixing-and-matching!) If you’re looking for some outdoor decorating inspiration, I rounded up all of our favorite outdoor spaces from the sneak peek archives. — Amy A.

*Click items in the post images to go directly to their shop pages. We finally learned how to image map the links!

This post is brought to you by Lowe’s. Find inspiration and encouragement as you plan, begin and complete do-it-yourself projects at Lowe’s Home 101.

CLICK HERE for some outdoor decorating tips and another roundup of outdoor decor after the jump!

1. Create an outdoor living room — In the summer, your outdoor space probably functions like an extension of your living (or dining) room. Consider creating a flow between the inside of your house and the outside by carrying through some of the same colors or style of decorating.

2. Lighting — Just as you’d consider the placement of a lighting fixture in a room of your home, think about how you want your outdoor space lit. I love the effect of string lights, but if you plan on eating outdoors, you might want to consider more direct lighting. An outdoor chandelier could look pretty fantastic, if you have a covered area.

3. Create a focal point — Use an oversized planter or large piece of furniture to create a central focal point in your outdoor space.

4. Create conversation zones — If you like to entertain outdoors, create zones where different groups of people can gather to chat — two or three chairs placed next to each other, seating around a fire pit or a taller table for someone to rest their drink on while talking to the grill master!

5. Decorate for comfort — Outdoor pillows and throws can do more than just add pops of color to the space! They’re also perfect snuggle material if your summer nights are a little on the cool side.

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  • while the new way of displaying the rounded-up items is definitely cleaner, i prefered being able to see the prices of things. having to go to the website of each item to slog around finding that info requires too much committment (so i’ll probably never do it). just an FYI.

    • thanks, emma – we’ve just been experimenting with ways to display the round-ups. i agree, it’s nice to have the prices there too – we’ll see if we can’t figure out a better way.

  • amya – i didn’t realize that those were clickable images until seeing the comments, and i was annoyed that there were unlabeled product shots :) it does look tidy but it doesn’t seem like there’s an entry point for the readers. cute post though!

  • … apparently i missed a line about that in the post, so oops. but i’m surely not the only one who skims for the photos in these roundups :)

    • amy

      can you click on the image? each image is tagged so you can click and have it pop up in a new window where the price/buying options are :)


    • Hi Danielle – Just click on the images and you’ll be taken directly to the site that sells item… -AmyA

  • I like being able to see the price too. Because if it is a $3000 wooden box or whatever, I’m not going to bother. :) But the mapped images are great!

  • I agree with the other posters that I miss the caption line identifying what things are and their prices. I like that you can click on the images to go to the sites, but I can’t even tell what a lot of things are–it would be nice to have photo IDs and prices rather than having to click through on everything.

  • I have this Donna Hayes cookbook and it is the best. I suggest trying the eggplant, and feta meat balls, so yum and great on picnics.
    Makes me miss summer and wish this winter would hurry up in NZ.

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