Outdoor Dining at its Best
With summer in full swing, there’s no better time to take advantage of your outdoor spaces. And what better way to do that than by dining al fresco right in your own backyard?
What makes outdoor dining so great? It’s a chance to connect with nature, and it’s an opportunity to share a meal with your loved ones while taking in the beauty all around you. You get to enjoy the hot days, cool evenings, summer breeze, and the sound of birds chirping from the comfort of your very own outdoor dining suite.
If you’ve been thinking about adding an outdoor dining area, we’ve got a few ideas we think you’ll love.
Outdoor Dining Area Design
Think about your outdoor dining area as an extension of your home. Make it its own room, one complete with all the design elements of your indoor spaces, plus a few extra. Bring your aesthetic outside, and show everyone that your personal style doesn’t stop at the door.
You want to make sure that everything in your dining area looks like it belongs. The design should be cohesive and intentional and give you what you want from an outdoor dining experience.
The most important thing is to create a beautiful space that you’ll want to spend time in. This means going beyond practicality and cultivating a warm, welcoming atmosphere for family and guests alike.
It doesn’t matter how big or small the spot you’ve chosen for an outdoor dining area; the key to perfection is proportion. If you’re working with limited real estate, go for a table that complements the shape of your space and a minimal number of chairs to seat your regular diners. If you’ve got a balcony, a small, round bistro table with a few folding chairs can look ultra-chic while still being space appropriate.
If you’ve got a large, sprawling backyard, don’t be afraid to space things out or plan to accommodate larger groups. Use long benches or mixed-and-matched chairs for seating extra guests when they come to visit.
Open Air Planning
Make sure that when you make your selections, you choose materials and furniture that will hold up outdoors. Most items intended for decks and patios will be marked for exterior use. Some choices are more durable and better able to withstand the elements. You want your investment to last, after all!
You’ll also want your kitchen to be accessible from the dining suite location. If you’re not planning to add a barbecue or an outdoor kitchen, at least make sure that you can move between the kitchen and the table with relative ease.
When choosing your location, think about the amount of sun and shade you’ll get, and at what time of day. Make sure to consider available shade when creating your design. For afternoon dining, an umbrella, a sunshade, arbor, or even a stick-built structure will help keep the sun off your face.
Dressing Up for Dinner
Once you have the fundamentals in place, it’s time to spice things up with all the bells and whistles. The right decorative items can instantly transform a space, and it gives you a chance to play with different looks.
Buy some new, extra-durable dishware designed explicitly for outdoor use. If melamine isn’t your thing, try stainless steel, enamel, wood, bamboo, or tempered glass.
Don’t forget about the table dressings! If a tablecloth feels a little too high-maintenance, woven, or cork placemats make a simple, stylish substitution. Instead of paper napkins, which are prone to fluttering away in the wind, go for fabric for a cottage-y feel. They are eco-friendly, and it’s easy to accessorize with the seasons or at your whim.
Keep your space well-illuminated with overhead lighting installed in the soffits, or try standing lamps. For a fun accent, try strings of lights or lanterns. Put a fiery twist on things with torches, a propane standing heater, or a metal fire basin.
Depending on space and budget, you might want to invest in a bar cart, side tables, footstools, or a fancy standing ice bin. Make your chairs extra comfy with a few throw pillows, or padded cushions on the seats.
Finally, you can ensure that your table is far from ordinary with candles, centerpieces, and other assorted tabletop decor.
If you’re looking for more tips and tricks for creating the ultimate outdoor dining lounge, Winthorpe Design & Build is always ready to help. Connect with us today to get started, and let’s see what the summer has in store.