Make The Most of a Smaller Patio

Even if you don't have a big backyard doesn't mean you can't enjoy the fresh air. Use these ideas to make whatever you've got into an outdoor oasis.

Keep it Cheerful. On the brick patio of a tiny California bungalow, designer Krista Ewart kept the mood fresh and playful to match the decor inside. A white 1960s lawn furniture set is perked up with a pink patterned tablecloth.
Get Creative with Floors.  The owners dressed up this tiny patio with an outdoor fireplace, minimalist seating, and a few throw pillows. But that detail that really pulls it altogether is the patterned floor.

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Think Outside the Box.  This couple made free-standing walls, floating floor tiles, and furniture, all out of shipping pallets.  And, it's not permanent - all of which can be easily removed when it's time.

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Be strategic About Furniture. Invest in some space-saving furniture like folding tables and chairs, nesting tables, or two-in-one pieces like storage ottomans and benches.
Rethink What You've Got.  Don't write off a small patch of land because it's overgrown with weeds or is awkardly located. This designer was inspired by the way Parisians turn balconies or pathways into "poetic spaces for lunch, drinks, or dinner."  She transformed her tiny yard into a pocket paradise

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Hang a Mirror.  Mirrors can work magic indoors and outdoors, helping to expand a small space. Designer Dan Marty loves to entertain friends and family in the patio of his Los Angeles apartment, so he added interior accents such as a mirror, chandelier, and plenty of candles.

Add Plants. This seems like a no-brainer, but in small balconies, it's important to mix in greenery to offset the urban environment. To create a "jungalow" feel, she added wicker chairs, vibrant pillows, a leather footstool used as a side table, and a striped rug.nd colors to add visual interest.

excerpt from House Beautiful

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