The dog days of summer are arriving shortly, but there are plenty of ways that you can keep your outdoor living areas looking cool and comfortable.  With so many choices available for lighting, rugs, curtains, and furniture, we can decorate our porches and patios as easily as we would any other room in our house.

I’ve rounded up a few of my favorites to share with you today.  The bonus is that even though we’re still smack-dab in the middle of summer, most outdoor items are on end-of-season sale right now, allowing you to snap up some super bargains!  {I’ve added links to shop and/or purchase at the bottom of each photo}

Conversation/ Seating Sets

Conversation sets are so versatile!  Take a book and a glass of wine outside and curl up for a few hours of relaxation, or join friends for an evening around the fire pit or on the dock.

I chose this set by Ballard Designs since wrought iron is a material that weathers well and is easy to care for:

All-weather wicker is very durable, too (we’ve had our set for seven years and it’s still going strong).  A sectional gives you plenty of seating for a crowd, too!

 

Outdoor Curtains

Curtains can do several important things from a design perspective:  they “finish” a room (whether indoors or out), provide privacy, and shield us from bugs, sun, and other elements.  While you can certainly use indoor fabrics outside, they will fade quickly, making outdoor fabrics a much better long-term purchase.

 

A budget option is to hang these sheer Lill curtains by IKEA around your covered porch.  I’ve used them on several of my own porches and they are super–they’re inexpensive, wash beautifully, and keep bugs out.

Rugs/Pillows

Just like when shopping for curtains, you’ll want to be sure that your pillows and rugs are made for outdoor use.  That will ensure that they can get wet and will stand up to sunlight over several seasons of use.  And just like inside your home, rugs and pillows finish a space outdoors, too.

Outdoor pillows are available everywhere–I buy most of mine at Target, Ebay, and Lowe’s or Home Depot, but I also like to find a few unique accent pillows, and those I usually buy at Pottery Barn:

Accessories

Don’t forget the lighting!  Whether it’s strings of twinkle lights, an outdoor chandelier or “candle-lier”, or citronella candles burning in lanterns, your space won’t be complete without it.

 

Now, can’t you just picture yourself relaxing in one of these beautiful spaces?  I know I can!

(Some of the links are affiliate links.  If you purchase using any of these links, you don’t pay a cent more than you would otherwise)

Thanks for stopping by-

 

Final New Christy headshot 2015

 

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