Thanks to living in a condo, our current outdoor living space is a tiny deck, maybe 10 by 10 feet. Some hand-me-down outdoor furniture lives there, a table and chairs, but there’s nothing attractive about them. With the space being so small it just doesn’t lure us out there very often which is such a shame being someone who draws a lot of energy from the outdoors. Whenever my husband and I start looking for our next home, the outdoor space will definitely be something I pay attention to. We want a single family home, so at the very least we’ll definitely have some sort of yard. I also would really like to move out of the city a ways, so we might end up with a large lot.
I’m definitely excited by the prospect of having land to enjoy though somewhat ironically the outdoor living spaces that I am usually drawn to are all on decks and patios. Or in other words: no huge abundance of grass. Grass is nice to be sure, but truthfully I prefer a more “wild” yard with a hardscaped area for relaxing in the sun. Hardscape refers to all of the man-made elements of an outdoor design such as paved areas, structures, walls, pools and fountains, etc. The space above has a lot of hardscaping, and they’ve done a beautiful job balancing all the “hard” with soft plant life.
A beautiful outdoor living space doesn’t have to be overly complicated or decorated to the gills. Even with some wonky shutters and an uneven looking brick patio this space is lovely. Embrace the fact that this is an outdoor room and let the plants get a little overgrown.
This is the sort of scene I’d like to be able to wander into from our future home. Forests are my favorite. Walking paths not necessary (though welcome). Do you have a favorite outdoor setting that you find particularly welcoming or energizing? Snow-capped mountains, ocean, desert? For me it’s always the greener the better.
one | Décormag via desire to inspire
two | source unknown
three | Boston Magazine
four | source unknown
five | Nirav Patel via hellanne
six | Decoholic
You must strive to find your own voice. Because the longer you wait to begin, the less likely you are to find it at all. Thoreau said, “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation.” Don’t be resigned to that. Break out! – Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society
one | Jimmy Schönning via desire to inspire
two | Lisa Cohen and Heather Nette King for Country Style Australia via dustjacket attic
three | La Fete + Alixann Loosle via Style Me Pretty
Like many, I love Fall. The outdoors are much more appealing to me when there is no risk of becoming uncomfortably hot and instead I can cozy up in a sweater. And yet the roads are still ice free and it’s perfect bonfire weather. How can you not love that? Also this.
Guh, I want a garden. I don’t just want a line of tomatoes out back. I want a legitimate, sprawling garden. À la Secret Garden. I suddenly have a powerful urge to watch that movie again. More and more I am realizing that I think my dream home may be in the country. I have never lived in the country, always the suburbs. So I can’t really say for sure how well I’d take to it, but I’m hoping one day I will be able to give it a try. Having immediate access to nature trails, open fields, starry skies… sounds perfect to me.
Don’t you wish you could be transported to this spot right now? I sure do. A city girl, I am not.
one | via Blood and Champagne
two | Town & Country via Savvy Home
three | Michael Wee for Country Style Au via dustjacket attic
Oh man is it ever Monday. I never seem to sleep well on Sunday nights which creates quite the struggle Monday morning. An overcast sky makes matters worse. I would much rather be some place sunny, enjoying beautiful outdoor spaces like these.
I would just love to have a backyard like this. Japanese gardens are the best. Feathery trees, moss-covered stones, gigantic koi. Not much better you can do in the way of tranquility. Do you like this style?
one | Mark D. Sikes, photo by Patrick Cline for Lonny, via dustjacket attic
two | Miles Redd
three | WI BING TAN on Flickr via Twisted Sifter
It’s been a rainy few days here in West Michigan. Monday we had the freakiest thunderstorm complete with a pummeling of hail that startled the crap out of me as I drove slowly down the highway. Weather in general has been a bit of a bitch this week, what with that awful tornado in Oklahoma. If you’re dealing with less than perfect weather too, I hope these images of lovely outdoor spaces can transport you to sunnier times.
one | Skona Hem via nicety
two | House Beautiful via nicety
three | dustjacket attic
If you’re in the same hemisphere as me, welcome to my least favorite time of the year weather-wise. I like some snow for Christmas but once January starts to drag on and we get gray day after gray day, I’m thoroughly ready for Spring! Doesn’t this first picture just exude warmth? I would love to be kicking back with a fizzy drink on this beautiful patio.
Casual, ethnic, rustic, and so very calming. With a breeze behind you, this porch would be the perfect place to meditate or dream the afternoon away.
This backyard is so very stunning, don’t you agree? I love plant-life, but I tend to side with the folks that say acres of lawn is unnatural and wasteful. Large lawns require so much water to stay green not to mention all the mowing. This backyard is so green but that’s largely thanks to the vertical planting and the topiaries. I adore topiaries, so this looks like heaven to me.
one // Michael Smith
two // Photographed by Morten Holtum, styled by Lykke Foged via 79 ideas
three // Mark D. Sikes for Lonny via Savvy Home