Saturday, August 7, 2021

Make yourself a welcoming outdoor space

It's easy to make cheap changes to your outdoor space. We have a small patio in Philly and a super small shore porch. Making both spaces welcoming for us and guests was easy, with no need for big renovation projects either. With a few little additions (and some subtractions when applicable), you can  transform your small yard or patio into a haven of warmth and tranquility. 

Let there be light - string lights and lanterns
If you want to create an instant magical feel then decorate the space with solar-powered string lights or solar lantern. They charge using the sun’s energy during the day and automatically come on as it starts to get dark which feels like magic even when I know the why behind it. String lights are perfect for outdoor spaces and give off a warm, flattering light. I have the solar string lights and lanterns in Philly and two lanterns on our tiny porch at the shore. 

Eat outside
Get yourself a little table and make it a point to eat outside on nice days. I like to do this the easy way with cheese and crackers and a little relish tray, which has a selection of delicious pickled treats. Add a bowl of nuts and maybe some strawberries and you'll be gold. I

Add warmth in the evenings
When the evenings begin to get cooler again, I always want to be able to stay outside for as long as possible. I have porch blankets now - do we all have porch blankets now? Throw them in a suncast outdoor box and call it a day. If you want to spend a little, you can invest in outdoor heating - we had a little table top jobber that used the small propane tanks in Philly but we don't have one anymore. Last year there was a huge run on outdoor heaters and with the way the delta is going, there may be another. If you don't like the propane component you could always opt for a small, portable fire pit. They are usually not too pricey either and add to the atmosphere.

DIY your own bar cart
I like the convenience of being able to roll all of my crap in and out at once without having to carry things. You can buy my favorite IKEA cart, be more sustainable and upcycle a second-hand cart, or if you're handy you could upcycle a second-hand cart or use recycled wood or a pallet to build your own. Check out these DIY bar cart ideas for inspiration. You can wheel the cart in to serve yourself food and drinks and to keep your candles, books, whatever on. 

Declutter the space
It’s not necessary to entirely renovate your home before you yourself can enjoy it or you feel comfortable having guests come over, but a little wipe up here and there and some minor decluttering goes a long way instead. Through the course of daily life things tend to pile up around us as we get lazy here and there and don't put things away, or bring something new into spaces without properly clearing out old. It happens to the best of us. Before jujing up your outdoor space, get rid of any old or unused items. Do a spot of weeding. It's worth spending an afternoon on this. With a quick tidy up, you can really transform your yard into a lovely little place that serves as a respite from the world. 

Happy Saturday!

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