The weather is warming up and the sunshine is out! It’s the time of year to spruce up your outdoor seating areas, preparing an inviting space to welcome your family and friends. If you have ever imagined of creating your dream gathering space but just didn’t know how to pull it off then you have come to the right place. A few weeks ago, Dixie Seating Company partnered with professional stylist Kathryn Godwin of Studio Cultivate to put together a styled shoot to bring you tips and design advice so you can style your porch like a pro.
Start by taking a good look at your gathering place and thinking about the needs you have for seating. Measuring the space to see what furniture and seating pieces you can accommodate is a must. You will want to measure the depth and width of your porch or seating area and then can work on a layout to imagine where each seating piece will fit.
It is ideal to utilize pieces of furniture that have multiple functionality. For example, footstools that can function as seating and benches that double as tables. Pulling in multi-functional pieces will create a more utilitarian gathering space making it more practical for everyday use and more operational for when you have larger groups of guests.
When looking to introduce color to your space, look to adding cushions and tie in the color through an outdoor rug and even flowering plants. If you have red cushions, find a rug that has a hint of red in the weaving, a couple red pots, and add red geraniums potted and gathered around your seating area. Carrying a color through all elements on a porch helps to pull it together and create an inviting, cozy space.
Decide the style of vibe you want your porch to have. Do you want a touch of rustic? Then look for lanterns that have rope handles, add a woven rug and straw baskets. Add wildflowers and softer green plants like lavender, daisies, and trailing vines Feeling a little more modern? Find contemporary lanterns with clean lines and minimal decor elements, chose and outdoor rug that has a geometric pattern. Perhaps look to plants that can be trimmed clean and have a different vibe- boxwoods, mondo grass, add white gravel stones to pots or surrounding the patio area, or go with succulents if you’re in the right climate!
Sticking to these professional style-guides and design tips will help guide you as you begin to work or update your outdoor space. Still feeling stuck? Godwin suggests making your porch or patio area feel like an extension of your interior home.
“As Spring turns to Summer, this is the best time to prep your outdoor space for entertaining or even al fresco dining just as couple for a simple little romantic evening. Simple ways you can make your space feeling cozier and want to be outdoors more are by adding textiles and soft elements- consider adding cushions to your seating. Find a complimentary outdoor rug. Neutral throws always make a great addition for evenings when the temperature dips. Add candles or string lights for a glimmering warm glow as it gets dark. If various insects are a concern, think of adding some plants that are natural insect repellants like lavender, marigolds, peppermint, and chrysanthemum.“
Photography by: Laura Sumrak
Styling by: Studio Cultivate
Furniture: Dixie Seating Company
Plants: Oakdale Greenhouses