We have been blessed with two reasonable summers in a row in the UK and with climate change it is likely to be warmer here every year although perhaps with more unpredictable changes in between. But there is a shift towards a more Mediterranean style of living whereby al fresco eating is more common and people want the option of using the outside as part of their living space. This is our guide to how to ‘bring the outside in’.
With decking and patio spaces having fire pits or heat lamps more often now it is much more comfortable to sit outside even when the evenings are chilly. You can get a range of great outdoor furniture and you really can use it as an extra room. But what are the best ways to maximise this use?
Our Top Tips!
Get bifold doors – These doors fold all the way back and open up the side of your room as if you have removed the wall/windows. Perfect as an alternative to patio doors you can really open up your living area to include the outdoor space. This can increase natural light and air and give a bigger space for entertaining.
Match the colour scheme – Use similar colour palettes in your living space to the outside area – perhaps by painting a wall outside or using wood inside to match the decking, or using similar styles of furniture. When you are using both areas this will then help them blend together like one space. It is a simple idea that can be very effective.
Have great lighting and sound outside – You can now have speakers built in outside that are connected to your system inside. For entertaining this can be really useful, although you should be mindful of neighbours and keep the volume reasonable late at night or in the early hours. Lighting is also incredibly flexible now with solar lights becoming more powerful and reliable and LED lighting using a fraction of the power of standard lights. You can create a really magical atmosphere with some well-placed illumination.
Invest in cover – Permanent gazebos or awnings that are attached to your house and you can retract are both good options here. The weather isn’t always reliable, and it will allow you to continue to you use the outside space even when it rains. It will also provide invaluable shade when the sun is at its hottest in the middle of the day. This can be especially useful if you have young children and allows them to use the outside even when it is too hot in the sun.
Get storage – Don’t forget the new outdoor furniture and accessories will need storing somewhere. You may have furniture with removable cushions so only they need to be stored, but some level of storage will be invaluable whether it is an insulated shed or other specially designed storage for gardens. Also remember to weatherproof any furniture that will be left outside all year round.
At KT5 Construction we have noticed that at the top of peoples’ lists are open floor plans, natural light, and techniques to bring the outside in. More and more people are looking at their homes flowing through the ground floor to the garden, and wanting to become more like our Mediterranean neighbours who see the outside space as an extension to their homes. Why not take a look at our Instagram page for ideas? If this is something that appeals to you, get in touch and see how we can help.