Optimize on Your Outdoor Space

June 19th, 2018

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If you are one of the lucky few to have outdoor space in Manhattan, consider yourself truly #blessed. However, every blessing comes with its fair share of challenges. If you have a backyard, you’ll need to do regular landscaping maintenance. An open terrace may entail finding ways to conceal structural elements of the building. And a Juliet Balcony? Well, you may be wondering if there’s anything you can do with that space at all. (Except for stand with open doors waiting for your fellow star-crossed lover).

But fear not ~ whether you’re working with 5 or 50 square feet, you can create a space that truly feels like an extension of your home. Check out the following ways to design a beautiful outdoor oasis.

Create a Separate “Room”

When beginning to design your outdoor space, treat the area as if you’re decorating another room in your home. You’ll want to approach this project with the same detail, focusing on coordinating color schemes and textures to the overall function of your space. Before starting the process, consider how you’ll be using your outdoor area. Are you planning to host patio parties, build an urban garden, or simply need a place to unwind at the end of the day. Having a specific idea of how this space will be used, will give you a better idea on how to approach its design.

… Or Expand on a Current Room

While any amount of outdoor space is truly a treasure in Manhattan, not all terraces are created equal. If your home has a Juliet Balcony (a very shallow balcony with a safety railing on the upper story of a building), then you don’t have a ton of flexibility to play around with design. Since this particular kind of terrace is too small for furniture, consider it an expansion of your current room. Spruce up your balcony with foliage to warm the space, and place indoor furniture near the entryway. Then all you have to do is open up your doors to enjoy that perfect, New York spring day.

Hide Flaws with Decor

Oftentimes backyards and patios are accompanied with eyesores. So you’ll want to orient your space in a way that lends to the best aesthetic possible. Use different plants and lighting to conceal your building’s mechanics. Not only will this help mask any imperfections, you’ll be further enhancing your outdoor oasis.

Be Careful with BBQs

Just a reminder: New York City laws state that all barbecue grills must be 10-feet away from anything that could catch fire. This includes the side of a building. So if you don’t have the space, then you’ll have to find other means of cooking for your summer soiree.

Brace for Weather

When it comes to furnishing your outdoor space, you’ll want to consider the weather. Do you have a corner apartment that is more prone to wind? Is your terrace exposed to direct sunlight during the day? Do you have an overhead awning to protect from rain? All of these questions are incredibly important when purchasing patio furniture. If you’re having a difficult time deciding, go for darker colored, weighted furniture. These pieces will help camouflage dirt, and are less likely to blow away when the wind picks up.