Patio season is officially here! If you’re lucky enough to have outdoor space, you’re probably ready to enjoy it as much as possible in the coming months. But, do you have a functional layout that maximizes your space? We get questions about outdoor seating all the time, so we’ve decided to create a cheat sheet for choosing the best possible patio arrangement.
1. Choose seating based on functionality.
The first step to planning a super-functional patio is deciding how you’re planning to use the space! Will you be eating outside? Do you need lounge space or a fire pit? Do you prefer to have chairs or chaises? The key here is to buy seating that fits your lifestyle. No matter how much you think you’re going to suddenly enjoy sitting on a wrought iron bench, you probably won’t.
2. Give yourself space to breathe.
Scale is the second variable to consider. It can make or break a space! Often people think their patio feels crowded, and it’s because they’ve chosen furniture that’s all wrong for the square footage. If you have a massive deck, go for that gigantic outdoor sectional. But, if you have the outdoor space of a mere mortal, consider something more delicate. Chairs instead of sofas, a table that seats four instead of six. You’ll want to have space to move around and actually use your patio, so don’t stuff everything in!
3. Create conversation groupings
Any designer will tell you that laying out a space is always a challenge. The important piece to remember is that conversation groupings are the building blocks of any space plan. Place seating in arrangements that facilitate interaction between the sitters. Add a small table for a book or a cocktail. Try a settee with two accent chairs and a coffee table in the center! Remember that outdoor rugs are a great way to anchor and differentiate a conversation grouping even within a much larger area.
4. Add personal style.
Now for the fun part. Don’t let your patio be generic! Your outdoor spaces are an extension of your home, so let your personal style show. If you lean boho, use tons of texture and plants to create a Moroccan-inspired look. For coastal aficionados, use rattan and lots of blue and white! An outdoor space with personality can feel absolutely magical, no matter your style.