BIG IDEAS FOR SMALL SPACE FRESHEN UP THE OUTDOORS
A TINY balcony or courtyard shouldn’t stop you from making the perfect outdoor space.
“It can be quite cosy if you choose your furniture well,” says Bev Mackenzie of Petite Retreat, which specialises in small spaces. BE PRACTICAL: Is the space for entertaining or relaxing? “A lot of people plan for long alfresco lunches, but that might be once a year,” Mackenzie says. Know what you do most and make it your focus. SLIM AND STREAMLINED: “Many balconies are long and narrow, so you need to be careful with furniture choices,” Mackenzie says. Slimline furniture won’t dominate a space and open-weave materials let the light in. PICK YOUR PLANTS: Small spaces can have their own microclimates, so choose plants to suit. Vertical gardens or hanging planters leave space for furniture, while flowering plants and oval pots soften harsh lines. MATERIALS MATTER: Outdoor furniture has to put up with a lot, so select something tough such as aluminium or outdoor-grade stainless steel. ART OF DISGUISE: “Balconies often feature a long, solid wall, but you can be clever and disguise them,” Mackenzie says. Lighting and outdoor art draw attention away from less appealing features, while outdoor rugs cover up ugly floors. Try decorating with the following products: MAKE IT POTTY: Pop and Scott Charlie Brown pots, $120-$340; fentonandfenton.com.au PRETTY IN PINK: Jute pot plant holders are pretty enough to show off, $9.95, applegreenduck.com. INTO THE BLUE: Slimline furniture in open-weave material like the Varese sofa, $1045, and side table, $475, petite retreat.com.au. SPOT THE DIFFERENCE: Welcome with the “Hello Dotty” door mat, $35, mattblatt.com.au. BRIGHT STARS: Amalfi “Pop” multicoloured lanterns are pretty and practical, $49.95 (set of four), zanui.com.au. OUTDOOR COMFORT: We love this palm-print number – $52, bungalow living.com.au. CHEAP THRILLS: Acapulco chairs are a design classic at a fraction of the cost, $39, kmart.com.au.
Top of the pots … Pop and Scott Charlie Brown pots (main picture); jute plant holder (inset); from top right, Varese sofa and side table, Hello Dotty door mat, Amalfi Pop lanterns, palm-print outdoor cushion and Acapulco chair.