July 2, 2012
Outdoor living may be one of the hottest trends in home décor, but that doesn’t mean you need to spend a fortune to extend your home decor outside.
In fact, a can of paint and a little imagination can easily and cost-effectively transform any backyard into an oasis, say the experts at CIL® paint.
“When dreaming up an ideal outdoor living space, people tend to automatically think of a beautifully stained wood deck and upscale furniture, but there’s so much more that can be done to quickly and economically spruce up the exterior living space of a home,” says Alison Goldman, CIL marketing communications manager.
How do you make the most of the outdoor patio season? Consider painting existing outdoor furniture, walls, fences and planters, suggests Goldman, and complete the look with accessories and flowers.
“Adding color and interest to exterior décor makes the space noticeably more inviting and relaxing," she says.
Goldman offers these tips to get started:
Frame the space. With no walls or ceiling, an outdoor area can be made to feel like a room by adding the illusion of boundaries. Paint a wooden trellis or lattice supported by posts, and border the space with painted planters to help define the walls. A large umbrella also creates a ceiling over the area, and provides added shade to boot.
Scheme about color. Study your home's surroundings as well as your interior décor and select paints that extend the look and feel into your outdoor living area.
Take note of the landscaping. Are there trees or water nearby? What color is the roof, brick and siding of your house, and those of your neighbors? While you want to add life and interest with color, be careful not to overdo it. The outdoors should still provide a calm and relaxing haven.
Use stain alternatives. If you have a raised wooden deck, where air is easily vented, consider giving it a terra cotta look by choosing a combination of earthy paint shades. Painting an outdoor floor with a faint color – such as CIL’s Billowing Clouds (10BB 65/094) sky blue, Farm Life (90YY 72/225) meadow green or Bali Sand (90YR 72/159) light coral – also creates a warm living area.
Improvise with furnishings. Why invest in expensive patio furniture when you can use long-lasting exterior paint to make old pieces look new? Have an indoor table you can do without? Looking to make better use of old mismatched kitchen chairs? Sand and repaint them with a durable semi-gloss exterior paint for outside use.
Be thrifty. You’d be amazed at the treasures you can find at thrift shops that make ideal pieces for your outside space. If it’s an outdoor bar you’re after, buy a used cabinet and paint it a stand-out color. Stock it with plastic bar wear and you’re ready for entertaining.
Paint old wooden chairs with bright, jewel tones or pastel shades to add to the bar for seating options when entertaining.
Use your imagination. “The sky’s the limit when it comes to outdoor decorating,” Goldman emphasizes, suggesting using outdoor art, mirrors and colorful accessories such as tea light holders, weather-resistant cushions and planters as finishing touches.
For more outdoor decorating ideas, visit www.cil.ca or CIL’s blog at talk.cil.ca.