Creating My Outdoor Oasis
Since having a baby, it's fair to say we spend a lot of time at home. I've always been a homebody, and a being true tropical weather kind of girl, I'm especially fond of lounging outdoors. That being said, I really wanted to create an outdoor space where I could hang out with my family and friends, sit and eat comfortably, and even work on my blog. A sofa or bench was a must for lounging, and a table large enough to set down food, drinks, and my laptop was also at the top of my wish list. I didn't want to break the bank, so I spent some time browsing catalogs and websites for options that might work for my space. I finally settled on a seating set from World Market which I assembled (quite easily) myself. A few throw pillows, citronella candles, and other accessories added a punch of color to the neutral seating set and black and white outdoor rug. I absolutely love my new space, especially having come in under $500 for everything! The assembly part may not be everyone's cup of tea, but I actually enjoy it and find it relaxing. Assembling the furniture yourself reflects the lower price on items where you might be spending more for a fully assembled set that would otherwise require the added fee of "white glove service".
When it comes to purchasing furniture, indoor or outdoor for that matter, here are my tips:
1. Get out your measuring tape! Measure how much space you actually have for pieces. Keep in mind room for walking around furniture and pulling out chairs.
2. Budget. Come up with a budget that fits your personal needs and stick to it. If you tend to go over budget on projects, maybe underestimate your budget, that way if you do go over, you end up actually where you expected.
3. Do your research. If you can, go to the stores to actually sit in your furniture. Make sure its comfy and to your liking. If you're looking online, read the reviews.
4. Find your style. Look through magazines, Pinterest, Instagram - there's plenty of ideas for inspiration. IMHO, keep your outdoor style relevant to the style of your house and your interiors. That way, it feels like a good flow and an extension of your living space. You can always spice up the overall look with inexpensive trendy accessories that will change with the seasons, and spend the bulk of your money on good, solid foundation.
My go-to for decorating is starting with a neutral base, and adding color in accessories. Inside, I have all white walls and cabinets, with really colorful artwork, throw pillows, and gold accents. Outside, I kept the same theme with wood and white furniture, and a black and white rug as my base, to which I added fun, colorful pillows and glass vases. A few green placemats and cool toned woven coasters complete the look while being completely functional.