Bring the outdoors in!

Bring the Outdoors In, and the Indoors Out 
Bring the Outdoors In, and the Indoors Out - Part 1
The wonder of the great outdoors and calming effects of nature abound outside the home. In this installment of a two-part series, you'll learn eight easy, delightful ways top designers bring outdoor touches to interiors.

Fibers and textures made from burlap, wicker, rattan, hemp and jute are coming back in fashion as modern designers rediscover how inviting they can be. Baskets, rugs, table runners, placemats and lampshades are popular items to feature these textures.

Colors inspired by nature are a given. Get earthy with greens and deep browns. Take flight in light blues or dive into sea greens of all shades. Get fired up with sunshine yellows, oranges and fresh-flower reds. Overall, neutral whites and tans make interiors feel clean and ready for pops of color on accent walls or with window coverings, decorative pillows, bedding and knick-knacks.

Natural floor coverings in wood, cork and bamboo are warm, feel natural under foot, and are easy to keep clean.

Seashore décor from your travels is meaningful and soothing. Rocks, seashells, jars of beach sand, wood and dried florals or foliage can bring visual interest and something to talk about.

Food, like longer lasting lemons, limes, mint or dried herbs, inspire both visual and aromatic journeys for the senses.

Sunshine and fresh air can breathe life into a room. Weather permitting, open windows often to elevate your mood. Replace heavy window coverings with light fabrics or sheers.

Unobstructed views also bring the outdoors in. Trim overgrown landscaping to enjoy the view of trees, ponds or even a freshly mowed lawn.

Scents and sounds are cues from luxury spas. Use candles with floral and other soothing scents to relax and release your cares. Tune into nature by playing sounds of gentle rain and wind or the beach.


Bring the Outdoors In, and the Indoors Out - Part 2
Everyone loves spending time outdoors for weekend barbecues, nature watching or just enjoying the fresh air. Create a retreat by bringing some of the comforts of home to your outdoor spaces. In this second installment of our two-part series, you'll learn seven easy ways top designers bring the indoors out.

Layout matters just as much outside as it does inside, so carefully consider the view, traffic patterns, ease of conversation and symmetry. Circular layouts often work great outside because there are no constraints of four walls.

Ambiance abounds in successful outdoor design. And bringing a unique feel has as much to do with your personality as your layout—whether it's hanging string lights for a romantic feel, using Tiki torches and fountains for a tropical oasis or adding hidden wireless speakers to set the mood with music. Think about how you want the space to "feel" before you buy anything to get a sense of what should be on your wish list.

Throw down a throw rug made of weatherproof or natural materials to define your space, and make outdoor areas feel cozier underfoot. (Just make sure you dry the rug thoroughly after a rain so mold won't develop.)

Plenty of pillows can add color and comfort to any outdoor furniture.

Think tables when you want functionality to meet design. Provide a place to set your coffee and newspaper or rest your feet, and your family will be more apt to spend time there.

String a chandelier above an outdoor dining table. Even if it can't be lit, it will add a touch of elegance to the space.

Old sideboards make a perfect place for potted plants and knickknacks. And, weathering will increase a sideboard's beauty with time.

Sources: Pottery Barn, Good Housekeeping

Sources: Freshome, Barn & Willow, Homedit
Karen Glaser

Karen Glaser

Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker & Team Leader
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