Take another look outside –if you don’t see a beautifully decorated outdoor room, your overlooked entertaining space could be working harder for you as a place of relaxation.
Look for these six signs of neglect and use our ideas and inspiration for an outdoor overhaul.
1. Dodgey pavers
Give them a deep clean with a borrowed or rented high pressure hose. Remove weeds that lurk between the paving stones by hand or with a shot of paver and path weed killer.
2. Mouldy awnings
Window covers that are sagging, stained or mouldy are doing you no favours to create an inviting outdoor space. Give them a clean with a solution of 1 part bleach to 4 parts water, applied with a soft brush. Rinse thoroughly after 10 minutes with cold water.
3. Dirty windows
Cleaning windows is one of the easiest ways to refresh your home and add a little sparkle – both indoors and out. Remember to wipe down the frames and window sills and to brush away any cobwebs.
4. Clutter and junk
If your deck has become a dumping ground and your courtyard is full of tired old loungers, it’s time for a declutter! Discard or donate unwanted items and look to creating a functional, tidy storage space for things you need to keep. Spend time hanging hooks and shelving in a central spot where necessary and invest in stylish tubs and containers to hide things away.
5. Faded furniture
Good quality outdoor furniture makes for a beautiful and relaxing space. Get rid of broken second-hand benches and smelly cushions and treat your outdoor zone to a new wardrobe - in the same way you would an interior space. The more comfortable and stylish it is, the more likely you are to keep it that way and therefore use it more often.
6. Forgotten plants
Banish failed attempts at potted herb gardens and dried up orchids to the green waste bin and start anew. Nurture a collection of plants to give life to your outdoor room - a lush assembly of your favourite foliage will literally breathe life into the area. Consider whether it’s in full sunlight or part shade and begin your search for the perfect plants to decorate with. Start small if your experience is limited.
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