Though it’s tough to imagine warm weather when it’s 20 degrees Fahrenheit outside, winter is the best time to consider sprucing up the patio in time for spring. Why not write down and plan out what needs to be done while sitting by the fireplace or the space heater? Planning in winter also lets a homeowner know how much they’ll probably have to spend on their ultimate refurbished patio and that they’d better start saving up for it. Here, while it’s still frosty outside, are seven simple ways to redecorate the patio:
1. Add Adirondack Chairs
Adirondack chairs are popular because they go with just about any outside decor. Originally made of wooden slats, they have roomy armrests, straight backs and slanting seats for maximum comfort, even though seat cushions can be added. Named because they were first made in the Adirondack mountains of New York in 1903, they are the essence of simplicity. Nowadays a set of Adirondack chair can come with a matching coffee table for dining al fresco.
2. Add a Chess Set
This wouldn’t be a chess set that is put on a table, but one with a board etched in chalk on the patio floor and played with oversized pieces. How big the board and the pieces depends on the size of the patio and the whims of the homeowner. Guests can keep a casual game going all weekend.
3. Add Potted Plants
Pots allow gardeners to grow their favorite plants in near ideal conditions as the type of soil, amount of sun and amount of fertilizer and water can be controlled. Pots can be placed groups around the patio, at the edge of the steps or can be lined up for a more formal look. The gardener doesn’t have to stop at terra cotta pots either. Glazed ceramics, barnwood, wicker and galvanized metal also make decent containers for potted plants.
4. Cover it Up
Awnings can be fixed or can be retractable to control the amount of sunlight the patio gets. A fixed awning can also serve as a support for climbing plants such as morning glories, roses or clematis. A pergola is a permanent structure that extends from the roof of the house and is made of slats of wood or metal on supports. It allows dappled sunlight to fall onto the patio, but if climbers or vines are allowed to grow all over it, the patio might end up being in the shade for much of the year. If plants such as roses, honeysuckle or jessamine are allowed to grow over the pergola, the patio will be deliciously fragrant as well.
5. No More Plain Concrete
A well-installed floor made of plain concrete does its job, and that’s about it. No one notices it, and now and then the homeowner hoses it off. But now, people may be surprised to know that concrete can come in a wealth of shades and textures. It can be stamped with patterns, dyed, stained and polished to resemble natural stone, wood, brick and tile. Pebbles, seashells, sea glass and even the family crest can be imbedded in it. The days of the boring concrete patio floor are over.
6. Add Slipcovers
There is now indoor-outdoor fabric that is just as colorful and easy to care for as anything found inside the house. The homeowner shouldn’t be afraid to dress up chairs and settees in beautiful, seasonal slipcovers or pile them up with comfortable, colorful throw pillows. At the end of each season, take off the slipcovers and the shams, toss them in the wash, air dry them, fold them, and put them away for next time.
7. Light It Up
Lights are not only festive, but they enhance security around the property. Patio lights can be as extravagant as thousands of fairy lights twined around every pillar and rafter for a party, or very subtle, such as a candle in a hurricane lamp for an intimate dinner. Lights for the patio can also be humble but attractive, such as a few wires hung with mini Edison lightbulbs.