We all love out outdoor areas. With a little bit of know-how, the right outdoor furniture, and a splash of creativity, one can transform their outdoor area into the new favorite room of the house. Outdoor areas can be harder to style, as you must consider the natural elements and the effect that they could have on your decorations.
Interior decorating is much easier, as you have a huge range of items at your disposal. Wild patterns and funky color pallets can be achieved indoors that might seem impossible outdoors. This mismatch of styles between indoor and outdoor can be quite disruptive and can create a disconnect between indoor living and enjoying the outdoor areas of our homes.
Too often, I see nice outdoor areas neglected and unused, or even worse, relegated to storing junk. So, what can we do to create a flow between indoors and out? Here are some ideas I use in my work, and can hopefully bring you some harmony between your indoor areas and outdoor areas.
Sculptures are three-dimensional art forms and can have a huge impact on both your exterior and interior spaces. Soft, figurative stone sculptures add a classical feel to your gardens and an opulent luxury to your interior spaces. You can use themed sculptures to tie both outside and inside together.
When considering artworks for your outdoor area, make sure the material will stand up to the extremes, and prepare for yearly maintenance… or not! A stone sculpture left unprotected outside could develop a beautiful patina or even harbor moss. Sculptures can be made using the very earth from your outdoor area, and the idea of earth art is gaining newfound recognition.
From the 60s came an idea of a connection between humankind and planet earth. Earth art was a rejection of urbanization and mass-produced artworks. While this type of art was often made in isolated landscapes, you can bring a sense of connection to your home by exploring earth art. Oh yeah, and it’s pretty easy on the wallet too.
A premium outdoor setting
I think it is worth buying a good quality outdoor setting once, then several cheap ones. Outdoor furniture has come along way from heavy, ornate metal chairs and tables. Some outdoor settings are plush enough for indoor use, but durable enough for outdoor use too, including the odd rain shower
Forget the janky outdoor setting you might buy on special at Kmart, for furniture that will stand the test of time and look at home inside our out, get your self a premium outdoor setting like the Piera outdoor setting from Domayne.
The Piera, like all premium outdoor settings, features a sturdy and lightweight Aluminium frame and is wrapped in a synthetic rattan that is stain proof, UV fade-resistant and waterproof. This setting will happily sit outside in the elements all year round, but with premium materials and comfort, it could live happily inside as well.
Mirrors are a design staple that has been used in all manner of interior design projects. Mirrors are unrivaled in creating the illusion of extra depth, space, and light. Mirrors have long been used in small interiors to add needed visual space, as well as the cabins of yachts and similar high class, low space interiors.
But what about outside? Mirrors are quickly becoming fashionable exterior decorations too. Heavy, expensive glass mirrors can be substituted with plastic mirrors for extra protection against the elements. Plastic or metal mirrors are made specifically for outdoor use, but you might find a traditional interior mirror works even better.
Mirrors can also change the shapr of your backyard. Try attaching some mirrors on a slight upward angle on your back fence, and watch the sky expand into your backyard and the fence seemingly vanish. The possibilities for using a mirror creatively expand when we move outside.
It goes without saying that we need light in our exteriors and interiors. Designing lighting systems for your home is challenging but very rewarding, and the knowledge can be transferred over into exterior lighting designs. OF course, interior lights generally serve a different purpose to exterior lights and can be contained easier.
There is a major hardware difference between exterior and interior lights, and the two shouldn’t be used interchangeably. Exterior lights have a sturdier housing, which is resistant to corrosion, handy when exposed to the elements for lengthy periods. The globes of an exterior light are thicker too, to handle extreme temperature shifts that can happen outside.
When properly designed, lighting can dramatically enhance your indoor or outdoor space. From guide lights to help you maneuver in the dark to accent lighting that creates grandeur and excitement, the list of possibilities is endless. Themes can be carried from inside to outside for greater cohesion.
Plants have so many beneficial properties you would be mad not to include at least a few in your designs. Plants offer textural cues that no other material can provide and team well with almost any color pallet or design aesthetic. The sheer variety of indoor plants is astounding, and you are sure to find some species that compliment your design work.
Heading outside, plants come into their own. Without the limitations of filtered light and small growing spaces, plants can be grown not just for aesthetics but for utility. Hedges can be used for windbreaks or privacy screens and trees can be used for shade. Attracting native wildlife is easy with the correct plant selection.
Plants provide an opportunity to accessorize, with planter pots, stands and vases all coming in a variety of colors, textures, and sizes. For the adventurous, some varieties of outdoor plants can be grown indoors with specialized growing lights.
Don’t let your outdoor area becoming a space you avoid. An outdoor area should be an extension of your home, inviting you to spend time outside. We can achieve this harmony between our spaces with the right design., utilizing elements from inside our homes. Have fun with your designs, and bring the inside out.