ARA – With temperatures on the rise, it's time to get outside to relax with family and friends. Today's homeowners want their outdoor spaces to be an extension of their homes, with 80 percent saying a patio or front porch are "must haves," according to a survey of residential architects by National Association of Home Builders.
"What's old is new again as the front porch is again a popular place to connect with your friends, family and neighbors," said Kathy Krafka Harkema, spokesman for Pella Windows and Doors. "Plus the patio offers a secluded spot to grill, entertain, kick back and relax."
Create an outdoor oasis
Consider these tips from design experts at Lowe's to create the coolest patio on the block:
• Mix functional furniture. Coordinate the style of adjacent indoor and outdoor rooms since you and your guests will likely spend time in both areas. Group pieces together to encourage conversation and showcase an attractive view.
• Add colorful accessories. Incorporate rugs, outdoor pillows, candles and other accessories in bright colors and fun patterns. Some of the season's top color palettes include rich reds, bright blues, soft neutrals and garden greens.
• Incorporate a fire pit. Adding a fire pit brings pleasant memories of the past. Roast marshmallows, share stories and enjoy the night. For safety's sake, keep furnishings away from the fire pit and extinguish the fire completely before you turn in for the night.
• Lightscape instead of landscape. Lighting can help show off what you already have in your outdoor space. Add depth with lightscaping from different sources. String lights provide a magical setting for guests after the sun sets. A wall lantern next to the patio door or LED garden and path lights add a soft illumination to your outdoor area.