easy flooring and lighting for outdoor “rooms”


Balcony season will be here before you know it (promise). You don’t have to settle for cold concrete floors and overhead porch lights! It’s easy and relatively inexpensive to add warmth, charm and style to your small outdoor space and turn it into more of an outdoor room.

Start with the floors! Try these simple suggestions:

· Tile “rug”: Interlocking tiles can look like wood or ceramic, and they interlock or stay put with a light adhesive. An added plus is that they can be made out of recycled materials.
· Weather-resistant rugs: Made of polypropylene, they can look like more expensive oriental or floral area rugs, and they come in many sizes and colors, like these Terra Mats spotted at ThisNext.
· Reed mats: For a more organic feel, anchor these lightweight mats with carpet tape. These should be used in more protected areas, but they’re also available in woven plastic for those preferring the organic look but need a more durable material.

Lighting is an often overlooked feature, both inside the house and out, but it’s one of the quickest ways to add ambience and warmth to any space. If you have a balcony or patio, one of these ideas could do the trick for you:

· Chiminea: Perfect for small spaces. If you aren’t allowed to have open flame on your balcony, add a string of white Christmas lights for a beautiful glow.
· Lanterns & Lamps: Hang colorful and inexpensive Chinese lanterns from your ceiling, or add a lamp on a small table. Floor lamps also work well in tight corners. Check out this DIY for the great-looking dotted tissue paper lantern at The Swell Life. For plug-in lighting, look for an IP rating of x3-x5 for maximum safety.
· Solar Lights: Place inexpensive solar lights in your planters for added subtle lighting.

Paying attention to a variety of lighting sources can really add a finishing touch to your outdoor decorating and create coziness to your seating area. And trust me, it’s easy, quick and inexpensive! — Jenny P.

From our partners

The TerraMats are inspired! Here in my wet Seattle area climate, this is one of the best options I’ve ever heard of and so sustainable! Thanks for sharing. :-)