OUT­DOOR LIV­ING IDEAS

Take life out­side with these prac­ti­cal tips and bar­gain shop­ping finds.

Homes+ (Australia) - - READERS’ TRENDS -

TLC FOR FUR­NI­TURE

The best way to main­tain out­door fur­ni­ture is to min­imise its ex­po­sure to the sun. Reg­u­lar main­te­nance will keep it look­ing good, too. Clean tim­ber with a gen­tle hose and wipe down, then ap­ply a prod­uct suit­able for the tim­ber. Hard­woods need a spe­cific hard­wood cleaner then seal­ing oil – tinted oils have more UV pro­tec­tion than clear oil.

Metal fur­ni­ture may rust in a shady damp area – re­move rust and touch up with paint. Brush or vac­uum dust and de­bris from wo­ven items and wipe clean with a damp, not wet, soapy cloth. Treat up­hol­stery with fab­ric pro­tec­tor, store cush­ions in­doors and hand­wash if nec­es­sary. Plas­tic fur­ni­ture con­sis­tently left in full sun may de­te­ri­o­rate.

THE POWER OF A SHOWER

The most ba­sic out­door shower op­tion is to con­nect a shower rose to a hose and stand in a large tub. A kit from a hard­ware store will in­clude a tap, shower head and pipe; you con­nect it to a gar­den hose and let the sun warm up the wa­ter. Make sure there’s ad­e­quate drainage. More elab­o­rate set-ups can in­volve con­nec­tion to hot wa­ter and drainage sys­tems, but you will need a plumber and pos­si­bly lo­cal coun­cil per­mis­sion. If the shower is next to your home, wa­ter­proof its ex­te­rior to avoid dam­age.

NOOKS & CRAN­NIES

Smaller spa­ces ben­e­fit from cre­ative think­ing. For ex­am­ple, a bench with built-in stor­age does dou­ble duty as a lounge-about daybed and din­ing seat­ing. Add an eas­ily por­ta­ble ta­ble with strappy or wo­ven fur­ni­ture for a cosy din­ing area, which can then be re­ar­ranged or re­moved when more floor space is re­quired. #

COM­FORT PLUS Vi­vian out­door lounge set­ting with cof­fee ta­ble, $2299.95, from Su­per Amart. COOL COLOUR Hud­son wire side ta­ble in Mint, $30, from Tar­get.

Grand scale Solid and chunky fur­ni­ture works best in a large area.

FLOP ABOUT Coastal lounge bean­bag in Stone, $79.95, from Life!

GROW­ING UP potato ivy, $15.99, from Spot­light. SWING SEAT Macramé hang­ing chair, $260, from Down That Lit­tle Lane.

HANDY SUR­FACE Aca­pulco replica side ta­ble, $29, from Kmart. EX­TRA PAD­DING Mi­co­nia fu­ton cush­ion, 45cm x 45cm, $59.95, from Kas. WHEELIE GOOD Vin­dalsö out­door trol­ley, $149, from Ikea.

Ver­ti­cal gar­den,

Gear off! Wash away sand, salt, gar­den grime – even clean up the dog – al­fresco.

Making room See how to style and cre­ate an out­door liv­ing area on page 98.

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