Designers love neutral shades such as gray, beige, and cream for a home’s interiors because they create a calming atmosphere that’s just right for when you come home from a stressful day and simply want to binge Netflix on the couch.
But when it comes to your outdoor space, things should not be stuck in neutral. Well-placed pops of color are the ideal antidote to a boring backyard.
Don’t want to slog through the rest of the summer with a case of the backyard blahs? Here are the easiest, most creative ways to add color to your outdoor space and transform it into a summertime fiesta.
1. Upgrade to colorful flooring
Outdoor flooring can often be an afterthought. But it doesn’t have to be.
“It’s easy to cover up ugly, outdated, or cracked patio flooring that usually comes in dull gray or 1970s khaki,” says Erica Leigh Reiner, owner of interior design studio E. Leigh Designs, in Los Angeles.
Say goodbye to the drab slab of concrete that came with the house, and welcome a whole new vibe outside, with easy-to-install colored wood or plastic patio tiles.
2. Pick pillows in every color of the rainbow
Patio furniture tends to come clean and traditional, with your choices limited to something teak in dark or light. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun with the fabric, says Lauren Visco, an interior designer at DesignBridge in Chicago.
“The simplest way to incorporate color outdoors is with your upholstery,” she says.
3. Add a cheery container garden
Flowers are an obvious way to bring some vibrancy to your outdoor space. But who really wants to deal with pruning and weeding a large garden when you’re trying to enjoy your summer? That’s why a container garden is a perfect solution to add pops of color to a patio, says Kyle Varona, general manager at Fahey Pest and Lawn Solutions in Sarasota, FL.
A container garden “can brighten up your patio or balcony, without some of the pains a normal garden might bring—no weeds to pull, and no soil to test,” Varona says.
As for what to plant in your petite new garden? Varona recommends cheery petunias and flowering Scaevola, which might attract some butterflies.
4. Give your outdoor fireplace a bold makeover
If you’re lucky enough to have an outdoor fireplace—and you’re willing to tackle a more involved project this year—you can fire up a brand-new look. Retile it in a bold hue or slap on a vibrant coat of paint to revamp your entire patio.
But before you begin tiling, she cautions, “be sure to plan this out carefully or consult a designer to avoid mishaps.”
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