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Patio Ideas and Design Trends for the Summer

Written by MS
29/03/2021 10:00:33

We are past the Spring equinox, which means days are about to get longer and warmer from now on. As lockdown begins to lift throughout April and May, we will all want access to usable and beautiful outdoor spaces we can use to entertain family and friends once again. 
Whether you have a luscious forest for your garden that sprawls on for acres or a simple and small hard-standing, creating a social patio space is a great idea. Gardens are typically hard spaces to section and zone, leading them to often feel like one continuous space. Creating a specific patio area will help give your garden some definition and a focal point for guests to gather around. 
In this latest blog from The Plastic People, we are going to discuss how you can create usable patio space on a DIY budget. We will cover all the essential design tips and tricks, and provide you with some of our own hacks to help make all your visitors get garden-envy. 
Over on our Pinterest, we have put together a new board specifically on Patio Ideas. If you are a more visual learner, it might be worth having a look. Click here to head over to our Pinterest now. 
Zoning your Patio
Interior design is primarily about flow: you want the rooms in your house to feel connected. This is easy to achieve by utilising similar colours and fabrics throughout your home, but when it comes to the garden or any outdoor space, the same flow can be hard to maintain. 
We think the best way to create a garden with added definition is through zoning. Now, this does sound overwhelming, as not everyone is an expert builder or craftsman. But, we have some ideas on how you can zone your garden on a tight budget and with only limited DIY skills. 
  • Patio Stencils: A cheap and easy way to zone your garden is with the use of stencils. Patio stencils are perhaps the simplest DIY task you can complete in your garden. You can purchase a range of different shapes and colours online and stick them to any decking, fences or walls to define a specific area of your garden. If you are feeling a little more artistic, why not design your own stencil? A mural or piece of bespoke art could easily be the centre of your garden. 
  • Patio Furniture: We are going to cover outdoor and garden furniture in-depth toward the end of the blog, but it is worth noting that furniture can be a tool to zone your garden too. Rectangular/corner sofas are great additions that can partition an outdoor space without the need of installing fencing or any other physical barriers. 
  • Rockeries and Flower Beds: If you are a keen gardener or have green fingers, you can easily zone your garden and patio with the addition of some well-placed planters or rock displays. This can also be an entirely free activity as you can reuse a range of household items for planters. 
Currently, the top garden designers are championing a new trend where your house continues to flow in your garden, creating an outdoor kitchen. Naturally, this works best when your kitchen backs onto your garden directly, but we think the addition of a BBQ and some workspace will provide you with a similar vibe.
Our customers have previously created weatherproof outdoor BBQ spaces they could use all year round. Check out their project and some other inspirational examples by clicking here.
Patio and Garden Furniture: 
In order to create a truly social and usable outdoor space, you need good furniture. Don’t fall into the trap of buying furniture that looks nice but doesn’t function particularly well. The top trend is rattan garden furniture - and this has been the case for years now. 
Rattan sofas, chairs and tables can be found online at a fairly low-cost too. If you want to make your outdoor furniture last that little bit longer, we suggest purchasing a table top protector. These acrylic panels are shatter-resistant and weatherproof, protecting your furniture from the elements and general wear and tear. You can get your table tops made to measure on our website. Click here to find out more.
Other furniture items to consider are:
  • Benches that double as storage containers
  • Fold-away sun loungers and chairs if your garden is small
  • Fire pits to keep guests warm 
  • Patio Heaters (propane is the most common fuel)
  • Soft furnishings (pillows, rugs, etc.) that are suitable for the outdoors
  • Lighting (tiki torches, fairy lights - whatever you want) 
Garden Features:
This section is exclusively for the bold designers who want to push their garden a little bit further. Once you have a patio that has been zoned and has the necessary appliances, you are pretty much set, but to truly create an enviable space you need to go further. 
Statement pieces are common inside. We all have feature walls equipped with intricate tiling or bespoke fireplaces and so on, but our gardens generally do not get the same treatment. In order to really bring some life into your patio or garden room, we have a few suggestions. 
  • Water Features: Perhaps this is too adventurous for many, but if your garden is particularly large or lacking that extra oomph, why not add a water feature? A fountain or rock display purchased from places like B&Q can really add extra depth to the garden. 
  • Colour: Colour is your best friend when it comes to designing outdoor spaces. Nature is full of bright and beautiful colours, including rich magentas and glaring yellows. Add some colour to your patio design or garden with additional artwork or simply plant some more unusual flower arrangements. 
We hope you feel readier to tackle the great outdoors after reading this blog. Creating a chic and modern patio space does not have to be time-consuming and expensive. Just remember: zone your garden as you would a house, and make the space inviting with added colour and soft furnishings. 
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