Saturday, June 4, 2011

It's patio season, folks!

If you don't have a patio, a porch works just as well.


Recently I spruced up a porch that had just suffered from the snowy winter and the rainy spring, below is how it happened.


The Porch
The main purpose of this porch is for entry into the house by the homeowners.  The porch is 12ftW x 9ftL and is two years old which serves as the entrance to a new sunroom addition. The porch is covered and has wide plank floors and railing around the exterior. The porch is south-west facing* which means it will be warm all throughout the summer. 




The porch;  thawed and ready for spring cleaning.


Post spring-cleaning and ready for a makeover.
The opposite side.


The Plan and Inspiration
Now that the homeowners have more time on their hands this season, they wanted to have an outdoor entertainment area for when they have their family and friends over.  The homeowners have a patio set with six chairs and they would like to use and the also have a BBQ that they would like to leave on the porch for easier access.  They would also love to have more colour outside.  The siding on the house is a light beige with brown shutters. The garden at the bottom of the stairs leading up to the porch is full of beautiful purple Hydrangeas and pink Bleeding Hearts that are in full bloom right now.  As a decorator, it is important to look around the environment for inspiration and to see what existing elements we can incorporate.  I chose to pull the pretty purple and pink into the colour scheme.  I also wanted to make this area a bit more formal, free from outdoor dining sets made from acrylic. The homeowners have a mature family so there wouldn't be (shouldn't be) any worry of broken dishes when being used outside.
I also kept in mind the traffic patterns in this area. The homeowners and guests would be coming up from the stairs straight to the door so there should be nothing obstructing the path.


What was needed
To be honest, not a whole lot. They already had everything we needed to make the idea for this area work. The only thing that was needed were some live plants to really pull in more texture and a natural feature.

The Finished Product
Overall, we were happy with how it turned out. We even brought out the 'good china' for the table setting!

After: The view coming up the stairs with clearance to the door.

The view of the patio table set with the good china!

The table is set using blueish-purples, white and pink.
The centre-piece; ready to serve.

Opposite the table is a sitting area with a view of the yard.

Things to keep in mind:
  • *When building decks, patios and porches for entertainment use, keep in mind what direction they are facing. If there is going to be a lot of southern exposure, which is the warmest exposure, opt for a covered deck or another source of shade.
    Sun exposure is very important with outdoor settings so consider that when space planning with where your guests will be sitting; will they have the sun in their eyes or will they be cold? will there be a glare? those kindof questions should be answered.
  • Also, keep in mind wild-life. Whether you are in the city or a rural area, some of your furniture and accessories should be brought in at night to protect them from any damage your little visitors may do during the night.
  • Are your pieces water-proof? Another thing to consider.
Have a great summer, it's going to be a warm one! 

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