It’s that time of year again: time for the spring rains to wash away the mud and winter grime, and herald in flower buds and warm temperatures. As the weather improves, you’ll likely be hankering for some outdoor entertainment, and may even be considering ways to improve your outdoor living space.
Outdoor entertainment these days goes well beyond arranging a few patio chairs in your backyard and firing up the grill. You can give your outdoor living area a boost by adding some key elements and details that will make your outdoor gatherings shine.
Whether you envision a few small changes to your outdoor space, or you want to go for a major overhaul, read these 7 outdoor living room design ideas for inspiration.
- Build a beautiful fireplace
Yes, the temps are on the rise, but there could be some chilly nights in store this summer. A beautiful outdoor fireplace or fire pit can elevate your outdoor living room. Even on warmer nights, a fireplace can provide a focal point in your outdoor living room, and can be a natural gathering place for guests.
If you’re going for looks more than function, consider an embedded single flame fireplace. Or, a fire pit or fire bowl can be fun. If you’ve got kids, roasting marshmallows will be a popular activity around your new fireplace.
- Bring your kitchen outdoors
If you love both cooking and outdoor entertainment, designing an outdoor kitchen can elevate your hosting game. Instead of getting stuck inside preparing more elaborate dishes, you’ll be able to interact with guests outside while you prep the meal.
You’ll want to include a grill, stovetop, fridge or mini fridge, and plenty of storage and prep space in your design. Consider what space you have available in your backyard, and whether your outdoor kitchen will be covered by a roof or overhang. If not, choose durable elements for your design, like marine-grade teak wood and honed granite.
- Include a bar and drink service area
Whether on a hot day you love a cold craft beer, a glass of white wine, or a tumbler of tasty lemonade, including a bar and drink service area in your outdoor living room is key.
Having a dedicated drink service area (that isn’t in the middle of your main cooking area) can make entertaining easy. Guests will be able to serve themselves without being underfoot, and you’ll be able to offer a variety of drinks without having to run inside.
Complete your bar area with a mini fridge, kegerator, wine fridge, and a bar cart with glasses, napkins, and mixers. Looking to take your bar to the next level? Add a swim-up bar to your pool area.
- Offer comfortable seating
Outdoor entertainment isn’t complete without comfortable seating options for you and your guests. If you have a covered patio, pavilion, or porch, consider comfy couches, stuffed chairs, or loveseats. Outdoor fabrics for your furniture may be a good choice, so it stands up to sun and water.
If your backyard lacks a dedicated entertainment area, you may want to build a stone patio, wooden deck, or pergola to define your space and allow places to arrange furniture and seating options. You can even include some built-in seating to your design.
- Provide protection from the elements
While everyone loves a sunny summer day, you’ll want to consider how to offer shade from the sun and protection from the rain in your outdoor entertainment space.
Do so simply with big umbrellas, awnings, or contemporary shades. Or design a pergola, pavilion, or other roofed space. That way, you won’t be forced indoors on the hottest of days, or even on those pesky rainy days.
- Amp up your lighting
If lighting is an afterthought in your outdoor entertainment space, it’s time to amp up your game. Outdoor lighting is not only necessary, it can also provide ambiance. Build lighting into your seating area design, light up walkways and your eating area, and add decorative lighting touches like candles, lanterns, or torches.
- Put in a pool
If you’ve got grand dreams of what your outdoor space could be, a pool likely figures into the equation. Consider whether you have the space for a pool, then have a professional design a pool, patio, and living space that works for your home and budget.
Looking to take some fresh design ideas indoors? Read our blog on interior design and home remodeling trends of 2016.
No matter your remodel, addition, or design needs, at Cottage Industries we can help make your visions a reality. Contact us today to schedule a conversation.