Sunday, December 28, 2014

Great Things About Hot Tubs in Winter

Among outdoor furniture and functional fixtures for backyards and patios, hot tubs are extra beneficial for the well-being. It offers health benefits in which you can get in a fun way especially in winter. Despite the chilly weather, still enjoy the outdoors soaking comfortably in a tub.

When you are soaking in a hot tub, you are actually doing aqua therapy, a health practice that benefits the body.

Modern lifestyle, poor diet, and stress are factors that we accumulate toxins. The warming effect detoxifies, helping our body to sweat out the toxins. The hot water also makes us thirsty so we take more water to cleanse internally.

Colds and flu are common in winter. Soaking in a hot tub is a great natural relief too.

Cold temperature gradually lowers body heat until blood flow is reduced and muscles will have difficulty to contract. Soaking in a hot tub is a great relief than just staying curling in bed. The hot water keeps the body warm and relaxes veins and muscles. So take a plunge into the tub stretch those muscles, and condition your body.

Relaxed Mind
Hydrotherapy, soaking in a hot water is great for mind relaxation and to rejuvenate the soul. Immersing comfortably in the soothing hot water can help unwind or clear one’s mind. You don’t need to depart from home for a spa treatment, relaxing after an exhausting day can be done with a hot tub in the backyard.

Mind relaxation and relieving stress can also be attained by having a bonding time with family and friends. Sharing the moment in a hot tub helps bring everyone closer together. Having fun, sharing the best memories, and enjoying the fresh outdoors puts the mind away from the pressures of life or work.

Just like other patio furniture and fixtures, a hot tub is a great investment. It is more than just a functional addition to a patio, it is also advantageous for our well-being. It lets you have fun and a better life.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

How to Maintain Outdoor Garden Furniture

Outdoor garden furniture goes through all the cruelty of outdoor elements. Thus, they deserve proper care and maintenance. Apart from tidying and giving a brand-new look, the primary goal is to retain their prime condition and last longer.

Regular check up determines the condition of furniture pieces so that repairs and improvements can be done at the early stage of an issue. Consequently, the furniture’s functional state will be preserved to guarantee a peace of mind that nothing unfortunate can happen to the people who use it.

Normally, the first maintenance routine is cleaning. Garden furniture get more dirt from the garden elements such as from insects and animals. This is the simplest step, but, if done correctly and regularly, would save your furniture from harm.

Outdoor furniture have different maintenance requirements due to the materials they made of. While some just need cleaning and providing covers, some needs more like repainting and resealing.

Although plastic outdoor furniture are resilient to nearly all outdoor elements, they are not impervious to the scorching sunlight. Plastic can be well maintained if stored when not in use, long periods of exposure to sunlight results pitting and fading. Some high quality plastics are meant to last longer but still they eventually degrade. Though the effect is not immediate on them, still will surely make troubles little by little. Maintaining plastic is easy with just cleaning with soapy water and brush if needed.

Metal furniture are the choice for sleek designs and are sturdy considering that they are heavier materials. Different types of metals casted to make furniture pieces. Each have their strengths and weaknesses and have different maintenance requirement.

Wrought Iron
Wrought iron is a strong and durable material. Outdoor furniture made from this heavy metal is naturally sturdy. However, this metal needs the most care and maintenance because it can easily rust and corrode. Aside from cleaning, it’s paint need to be maintained. Occasional repainting and refinishing adds protection and resistance to rust and corrosion.

Aluminum do not rust and fade resistant depending on finishing coat. Outdoor patio furniture made from this particular metal is resistant to outdoor elements which make them great for backyard patios and garden. The only maintenance requirement is cleaning with soap and water. To make it look brand-new, touch it up with car wax.

One of the reasons why not all people buy aluminum outdoor furniture is its price tag, way more expensive than other types. The other reason is esthetics which depends on the outdoor design intention..

Wooden furniture like ipe, cedar, redwood, are resilient to the outdoor elements. The only effect of the outdoors is the change of color and texture. But this change does not mean they are degrading. In fact, types of woods like these just beautifully turns to gray. However, to maintain the original color and texture, all that is needed is staining and sealing.

Take note, you still need to clean these wood furniture, dirt especially from insects and animals will leave undesirable blotch if not removed immediately.

Other types of wood should be maintained with paint as they rot faster. They should be kept dry as much as possible.

The key to make furniture always in shape and keep them look new is proper care and maintenance. It can be done effectively if you know what your pieces are made of. Find out or ask for care instructions upon buying and do some research on each materials used.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Choosing Between Patio Heater and Fire Pit

Building an outdoor living space is a popular trend these days. In conjunction, production of diverse outdoor heating equipments is also on the rise. However, patio heaters and fire pits are still the foremost means of outdoor heating. Their purpose is identical but, they are different in various ways. Knowing their differences, including their similarities, provides helpful insights to determine which will be the right choice.

Let’s go over the similarities first.

Both patio heater and fire pit can give off heat on all sides. While creating a cozy area, the heater makes an attraction in the midst of the outdoor crowd. The outdoor living space design becomes more like a campfire setup in which everyone around it can equally enjoy the comfort.

Although a wood burning type of fire pit is prominent, more versions are the same as patio heaters that uses propane and natural gas for fuel. Thus, with the same fuel, they should nearly equal in operating cost.

Having these outdoor heating tool roughly equal in operating cost and effects, the criteria for choosing will be then based on the impression.

Now for the differences.

Patio heaters and fire pits are similar in their purpose but, they differ most in heating system and operation, and the form is very distinctive from each other. Patio heaters can stand tall in full height while a fire pit stands in lower platform and it is a pit actually.

A fire pit that burns wood makes an intriguing difference and is actually less expensive. The flame behaves unpredictably in an organic fashion that is entertaining to watch. Contrastingly, patio heaters which uses oil based fuel, has the flame that seems in controlled behavior. Some versions just do not have visible flame.

The fun factor of wood burning is that it is ready for roasting marshmallows. A really lovely way for bonding with kids and the kids at heart.

Which Should You Choose?

A beautiful patio can certainly make a difference in the overall outlook and value of your home. Whether you choose a patio heater or fire pit, it should depend on the character you want and the money you want to spend.

Monday, December 1, 2014

How to Keep Trees Safe over the Winter

Winter is a tough time specifically for the trees which are normally exposed all the time. Thus, they need a boost to survive the tough outdoors and ensure they flourish in spring time. On top of keeping the trees safe, the precautionary actions safeguard properties and people also.

There are several consequences that may afflict  the trees when the temperature goes down and snow starts building up. Overtime, they will weaken and become risky. As the snow builds up in the tree tops and branches, it becomes heavier for them to bear. Weak branches will then start to break or suddenly fall apart without warning. If a tree is having a weak foundation, it will start to lean with the weight, then breaks and falls apart.

Weak trees are unsafe and a potential element of disaster in the backyard. Definitely act on it before it can take damage to the patio, your outdoor furniture, your car, your house, or even the people around.

Misfortune can be avoided by getting trees ready in the following simple steps.

Check the base of the tree starting from the roots to the trunk. If it is in poor condition and may probably fall, then it is best to remove it. Safety is worth considering first than saving a tree. It is necessary to remove the remaining stump, it will attract more bugs and unwanted insects around the house when starts to decay.

If you cannot remove trees yourself or you think you don’t know how, call an expert remover. they know the proper way and they have all the tools and machines needed.

Then, if the base of the tree is still in great condition, then check the branches next. Check the branches thoroughly, hence, we might never know if some branches are close to breaking away which will cause damage, it might be too late. Remove dangerous branches that may fall anytime soon. Trimming and pruning helps reduce the weight of a tree and the weight of the snow that may add to it.

Do not just dispose off the tree cuttings, the wood can be used to fuel your outdoor heater or fireplace.

If you want to decorate your patio or outdoor room for Christmas, perhaps, preparing the trees has benefits. You might be surprised to find out that your tree can be a perfect decoration.
The safety of the trees is also the safety of the things around it. Have a joyful and safe holidays.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Best Natural Woods for Constructing Fences

Constructing fences with wood is prevalent because of several reasons. One reason is that wood is apparently simple to install. With just basic carpentry tools and skills, anyone can begin it as a weekend DIY project. The versatility of wood is also a great ground why it is preferred. Any design can be made and any color can easily be painted on. Imagine how nice it would seem sitting in your backyard place, lying in a beautiful wooden furniture under a patio umbrella while being guarded by a pretty fence. Lastly, the cost effectiveness of building fences with wood is another major factor why people choose it.

Redwood is a softwood popular for outdoor use. The term softwood should not be mistaken since this wood is resistant to rot and insects. The color of the wood is typically deep red tones and turns into a pleasing gray as it ages. The wood must be sealed for a long-lasting color. Otherwise, the color can be renewed by restaining.

The natural color and texture of cedar influences it to be attractive for building fences. The wood contains natural oils and acids that repel insects and made it durable against decay and warping. These great properties make this wood also favorable for outdoors, it lasts long and costs less than redwood.

Cypress is an excellent wood alternative to redwood and cedar. The good news is that it is much cheaper, especially if you live in the southeast of the US. The color is reddish, just a bit lighter than of redwood. It has the same properties to repel insects and prevents decay like redwood and cedar.

White Oak
White oak is a hardwood, meant to last long in an outdoor situation. Although it can warp or bow a little as it ages especially in outdoor, this wood actually lasts and stay solid and strong even exposed to the harsh elements.

Tropical Hardwoods
Tropical hardwoods are literally rocklike that they need to be drilled first before you can drive a nail through it. Typical hardwoods are Greenheart, Purpleheart, Brazilian Cherry, Ipe, and Red Cedar. Majority of them come from tropical South America. These properties make these wood a bit expensive. However, the quality is at its best.

Building fences is primarily for protection and privacy. Though it does not need to be sort of high security structure, still, fences need to be sturdy and long lasting. How awful it is to see that the fence we built with money, time, and effort will just fall apart after a few months.

Using these top wood choices, fences serve will their purpose longer, and that they make a valuable part of a home with the quality. Keep in mind that because of their great properties, these woods are also among the top choice in making outdoor patio furniture.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Ways To Perk Up Your Patio this Christmas Holidays

Christmas is typically associated with cool weather and snow. People often do the get-togethers and parties indoors during this season. But we can also use the patio even if it is cold outside where the snow, the cool breeze, and the view is brand-new. With a little tweaking and preparation, a party can happen in the patio.

To perk up a place like patio for the Christmas holiday, it has to be transformed to be relevant for the season. No major renovation is required, just some patio decorating and rearranging is needed to make a patio another great place for this once a year celebration. It isn’t hard to do, and it can be a rewarding project in the end.

Wind Chimes
A wind chime makes captivating tinkling sound with just a gentle breeze. As the soft wind continues to blow, it creates soothing and interesting music even when not in rhyme. The gentle kiss of nature make an unexpected melody that captures our attention even to the subconscious. Though wind chimes are not meant for Christmas, but the tinkling sound can be heard as a music that adds to the spirit of the season.

Wind chimes are also decorative, so in addition to the sound they make, they can also be a great addition to the decor.

Statues are the best accent for gardens and so as to patios. These figurines can be in any fashion but the most popular are in the form of animals, angels, and gnomes. To make a Christmas theme, you just need to add Santa Claus, reindeers, and don’t forget Mister snowman.

Topiaries are shrubs or trees clipped to form various ornamental shapes. It is a type of art that produces unusual geometric shapes and animal structures. To add to the Christmas theme, you have to choose cone shapes to resemble Christmas trees. Reindeers may also be available, so you better look for them.

Topiaries are a good decoration themselves, yet, they can also be a great companion to your existing decorations and statues. You can create a beautiful focal point using them as decorative accents around a centerpiece and along with your patio furniture setup.

New Potted Plants
Talking about plants, adding a new set of potted plants would be so much beneficial. For the season, potted pine trees are the perfect choice. This tree can serve as your outdoor Christmas tree. Perk it up by adding colorful decorations and lights.

Perhaps, lighting is a must in decorating for Christmas especially in an outdoor area. There are many types of lights and you might need most of them. Spotlights are to highlight your focal point. You can also use this light to highlight large decorations such as statues and trees.

Then there are string lights which are perfect decorative accents. Other than that, Christmas lights are also popular for the season. just make sure you pick the ones that can be used outdoors. Christmas lights are also string lights. The difference is the blinking behavior and the colors.

There you go, these are just simple ways to perk up a Patio for the season but it’s worth doing. Just don’t forget to prepare your outdoor furniture and secure your patio umbrellas as winter comes.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

How to Prepare Your Patio for a Party all along Chilly Days

Are you planning for an outdoor party on chilly days and nights? Do you want to extend the summer’s excitement in winter time? There is no stopping you. In fact, winter can be a great time for outdoor parties like for Christmas. There are so many proven ways that can help you in making your plans of having an exciting party, even in a bit frosty outdoors.

Talking about staying outdoors during chilly days, the very first thing to consider is to have an outdoor fireplace or a patio heater. We need it to make the outdoor comfortable.

There are many types of fireplaces and outdoor heaters to choose from. Portable patio heaters, available in propane or natural gas, are great for mobility; allows you move them from place to place. Sizes can range from full standing to table tops. Another patio heater option is an infrared patio heater, they are also powerful and convenient to use. They are fully electric so you don’t have to take the hassle of refueling.

If you wanted to enjoy the sight of real fire that dances and sparks, then portable fire pits and fire bowls come in handy. Portable fire pits are designed to let you enjoy the warming real flame of wood, safely in your patio. They have a screen cover to protect you from sparks and flying embers. On the other hand, fire bowls usually are fuelled with gel fuel or propane gas so you can instantly enjoy fire with in less time.

The good thing about fire pits and outdoor fire bowls, is that they make outdoor parties a bit more exciting. Imagine sitting around a fire that looks so entertaining. With a fire that is suitable and safe for cooking, it will be much more enjoyable when you have some mallows to roast.

Here are important winter reminders for your patio furniture sets.

Before bringing out or letting them stay outside in winter, be sure you have them prepared to endure the harsh outdoor condition. We cannot totally avoid water, that may come from spills and snowmelt, from getting into the furniture pieces. The water will make metals corrode or rust. The water stuck in the furniture will make damage when freezes back.

As some wood furniture types are not suitable for winter, they should be treated and sealed well. Sealing makes them protected from moisture before being absorbed then make a damage to the wood. Iron made furniture are also vulnerable to winter especially when getting some moisture. They easily rust which leads to deterioration.

A good tool to make extra care for your patio furniture is to buy them covers. Choose those that can protect them from snow and water. Any type of furniture design or set has corresponding covers to fit.

These tips are very important to keep your precious furniture stay in good shape.

After you have prepared the heat source and secured the furniture, then you can add whatever that makes your patio look interesting and make the party a fun experience. Add some outdoor lighting that can make the surrounding festive. Good lighting will also emphasize the best of your patio. Throw in some cushions and huggable pillows as these will add comfort and minimizes the cold feeling.

If Christmas is ahead, then it will be a great time to design your patio for the holiday season. Add a Christmas tree, decorate your patio with wreath, Christmas garlands, and lights.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Design Tips for Small Patio Spaces

A small outdoor room or patio would give only a limited space for room improvement. It can only accommodate the basic items we need for home outdoor leisure such as a little patio heater and a small table coupled with a relaxing seat. It would mean that we may not be able to spoil ourselves with extra stuff that pleases our senses. However, there will always be better ways. A small space should not be a problem and there are ingenious solutions.

The key to creating a relaxing, interesting, and beautiful small patio room is choosing the right items to put in. Knowing what you need and choosing the right design would make a big transformation which will satisfy your needs and wants.

To have a better perspective, we will identify the needs according to the factors that a perfect patio would have, beauty and comfort. Beauty which pertains to the design and decoration. Comfort is to the feel and ambiance of the place. This can be achieved with the design, materials used, the furniture you put, the appliances, and the decoration you add. Thinking all of these would make us think that we cannot make it in a small space. The good news is, all patio furniture and decorations have versions or design that are just perfect for small spaces.

Convertible and Multi-Purpose Furniture
Convertible and multi-purpose patio furniture items are the best solution for small spaces. The best example is a bench that can double as storage for other stuff like cushions when not in use. There are chairs that can be converted into lounge chair so that you can stretch when you wanted to. The list goes on. Any type of furniture you can think of, there will be multi-use and convertible versions.

Shade and Cover Options
With a limited area, it might be impractical to build a pergola, or gazebos for some sun shade. Well, all you need to be protected from the harmful and hot sun is a protective cover which you can get from a patio umbrella. The best part is that there are outdoor umbrellas designed for small spaces. An offset umbrella is a perfect example, available in many sizes and colors, the design is sleek while the post is on the side instead of the conventional which is in the center. Offset umbrellas also are esthetically pleasing. For a more space saving type of umbrella, use a wall mount outdoor umbrella. you will no longer have worry about any post.

Another solution is using a shade sail, a very simple no more sophisticated mechanism, but just the fabric and connecting strings to attach in your wall posts, and even the trees around.

Fireplace Alternatives
Though you can build a small fireplace to accommodate a small patio space, there solutions around that are ready to use, and are really space saving. Like portable patio heaters and table top heaters, they only take a little space on the side or on your table. The most space saving are the infrared patio heaters which are available in wall mount, hanging, and even the ones that have post can save you a lot of space. But the sleekness does not affect the heat output, these are compact and can give you substantial warmth for a small group of people.

Decorative Features
The ideal decor features for a patio include water features and garden plants. These features add a fresh ambiance to the room. When in outdoors, we expect to experience the goodness of nature most of the time. For a little space, there are space saving ways that allows us to create that experience.
Water features can be a pond, a waterfall, and fountain. There are little version of these in which you can add the of the effects with a little difference. A little aquarium is a great alternative to a pond. The great news about waterfalls and fountains is that there are table top versions which you will enjoy personally. Wall mount versions are also available so you can put them on walls to create a focal point..

Gardening is very much possible even in very little space through planters. Another version are the hanging and wall garden versions which are very popular these days. Many are actually using recycled materials and in DIY manner, going green. You can find many cool and creative ideas in the internet.

These are simple tips, but certainly will make a big difference.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

How to Safely Store Your Outdoor Furniture

There will be times that we have to store our precious outdoor furniture. In fact, some of the patio furniture items need to be stored during winter and rainy seasons. Though many of us don’t like moving indoors after the joyful summer, moving in and getting the furniture to safety is a great step to prepare a fresh start right away when spring returns.

To safely store your outdoor furniture, you cannot just directly move them to storage or indoors. The following tasks are necessary to keep the pieces in excellent condition.

Clean and Completely Dry
Cleaning is the most important but completely drying is a must. Dirt and moisture both invite mold and mildew that can infest your furniture. Moisture also causes corrosion and rust to metal and steel furniture items.

All you need to clean a patio furniture are basically soft brush, cloth, mild soap, and water  patio furniture.

By the way, the same task of cleaning is good for an outdoor umbrella. Make sure to completely dry the canopy fabric and frame before getting to storage.

Stain and Seal
This step applies to wooden outdoor furniture. Staining is similar to painting but with different result. Unlike painting, which leaves a thin layer of paint on top of the wood surface, staining colors or enhance the color of the wood by absorbing the stain. Colors are limited to wood tones but it is extremely great at bringing back the original color of your wood furniture without affecting the texture. If you want to bring back the original beauty of your wood pieces, staining is the best option.
After staining, it is best to apply a wood stain sealer. This preserves the stain color and protects the wood from the elements. Some sealers makes the wood furniture waterproof.

A good furniture cover adds more protection for your outdoor patio furniture against dust and dirt. Also, there are furniture covers specially made for outdoors that protects furniture even in winter. Every types, sizes, and forms of furniture have a corresponding cover for outdoor protection. Even large outdoor market umbrellas have an umbrella cover that you can use to secure them outdoors or in storage.

When you leave your furniture covered outdoors, check them day to day. Remove snow before it accumulates and makes a large mass on top. Melted snow may make its way into your furniture, be sure to remove and prevent it. It will make damage once it freezes again.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Deck Finish - Paint Or Stain

Applying a finish is a must for every woodworking project such as a wooden deck. It will provide color, enrich texture, and protect the wood from rapid corrosion and decay.

There are two types finishing touches that can be used, paint or stain.

Paint and stain are technically very similar in composition. Both have the same purpose which include providing color and protection. Their difference in on how they work on wood, and on how they are applied.

With paint, any color can be made so you won’t have a problem with matching your deck to your house and to your existing outdoor furniture and fixtures. You have a freedom to choose a color theme you like for your outdoor room.

Wood stains have fewer color choices. It usually just include wood tones and dark colors. However, this is a great choice if you love to preserve the texture of some great woods. Some wood stain can just accentuate the wood texture.

Paint and stain works very different when applied. The paint just sits on the surface of the wood forming a thin layer while stain is absorbed into the wood. This is the reason why paint easily chips and peel off making the surface look unpleasant after its lifetime. The stain just kind of fade in the long run. Both does not really differ in how long they last and they should be renewed. The renewing of the finish is a job that makes another considerable difference between these two.

When you need to renew the paint, the existing paint coating must be totally removed which will require a lot of work. You cannot just paint over an old paint layer, it will make a terrible outcome. You may need to spend on paint strippers and a powerful pressure washer.

Restaining on the other hand just require a minimal effort of cleaning and stripping of old stain if necessary.

Price is another significant difference between paint and stain. Paint is generally more expensive than stain.

Now you have some ideas how painting and staining your deck differs. The choice is in you and you just have to consider what is best so you can make and maintain a beautiful outdoor room where you can relax in comfortable seat under a patio umbrella.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Easy and Inexpensive Outdoor Room Idea

Everyone wants an outdoor room for relaxing, having a fine time alone, and a fun time with family and friends. Creating a perfect place outside the house is not always expensive. There are many simple ways that you can do yourself. In other words, there are DIY or do-it-yourself ideas to make your very own patio or backyard space.

Here is a very simple outdoor setup idea that you can easily implement with minimal work and cost.

Assuming you have already determined an area where you want to build an outdoor room. Then let us build a fireplace first. There are many ways to do it and here are some.

The quickest and easiest is just by digging a hole and build the hearth by forming a ring using bricks or stones. That’s all, you can start making a fire in it. While this is very quick and easy, it may look less pleasing.

If you want a better option, then build one with a platform or base in which the fire pit sits on. First, create the platform with some bricks in the ground with a diameter larger than the size of the hearth. Fill the brick gaps with gravel and sand. Then build the hearth using bricks, stacked stones, or stucco.

But if you don’t want this additional hassle, you can just purchase a pre-made fireplace or fire bowls. Quickly makes fire and less hassle in maintenance.

There many choices of seating patio furniture. The best option for easy maintenance and comfort are the wrought iron and resin outdoor furniture. Woven or wicker seats are naturally comfortable, but you can also buy comfortable outdoor cushions if you have other type of furniture.

Garden Plants
Garden plants provide natural beauty and freshness to the outdoor room. But you can avoid the hassle of gardening in the backyard. You can just buy already healthy potted plants to add to the greens and instantly see and feel the wonder of nature.

Setting up outdoor lighting should not be a hassle because there are ready-made outdoor lighting set that you can just install. Lighting posts and string lights are already available in the market.
On the other hand, solar lights are popular these days because they are convenient and safer. You can just stick these anywhere in the outdoor room without any wiring.

But if you want to save some bucks, there are DIY torches you can easily make. Plus, torches look more interesting and makes a good companion to the fireplace. This setup will make a great outdoor experience with family and friends.

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Great Experience of Tilting Patio Umbrellas

Getting a patio umbrella is the quickest and easiest way to have a great sun protection in your patio, deck, and garden. This type of shade comes in a wide array of styles and in a variety of colors to add a classy and versatile cover. Talking about versatility, one of the best styles that offers versatility is the tilting patio umbrella.

What is it?
Tilting patio umbrella is a style of outdoor umbrella that tilts to a certain degree. Only the upper portion tilts and you can rotate it at the same time. The materials that make up this style varies just the same as other patio umbrellas. The pole and frame can be made of wood, metal, fiberglass, or a combination. The canopy fabric also varies and can be made of canvas, suncrylic, olefin, or the popular Sunbrella.

What are the Benefits?
It has all the benefits of a regular patio umbrella with the addition of tilting feature advantage. The ability of tilting and rotating of the canopy to any point or angle enables the blocking of the sun at any time. When tilted, the umbrella transforms into a unique yet classy structure which adds an interesting view in the area or outdoor design.

How to use it?
The mechanism of the tilting feature may seem complex, but its operation is very easy. Tilting umbrellas have a crank handle accessible at the middle of the pole. All you have to do is crank it to fully open. To tilt the canopy, just continue cranking it until you get the tilting position.

That’s it, the tilting patio umbrella will let you enjoy outdoors longer and with style.

Monday, August 18, 2014

How to Start a Container Garden in the Patio

Gardening has been part of every home. The plants add color and life to the place, adds freshness to the surroundings, and allows you to grow your own food safely. The practice has become part of life, even in cities where gardening space and requirements is very limited.

Cultivating plants in urban areas is handily done through container gardening and there are so many ingenious ideas around. All you need is get to know the necessary requirements and basic steps. And It is never too difficult to get started.

Your patio will get even more interesting and you’ll get a better relaxation sitting under your patio umbrella surrounded with green life.

One of the essential requirements for plant to live is a sunlight. They need it in order to make their own food. You have to determine how much direct sunlight your patio can get. You need to be sure you get the right measurement of how long your patio can get exposed to the sun.

Too much or too little sunlight is not a problem because not all plants require the same amount of sun exposure. The key to being successful in container gardening is choosing the right plants for your patio.

You may be asking about what if you have favorite plants and are not suited to your patio. Well, we can do a little to nothing about it if more sunlight is needed. But if lesser sunlight is required, we can easily adjust that by adding some shade sails and sunscreens.

Container gardening usually involves the use or pots. But the popular practice is more creative. Anything that can hold soil is used for planting such as teapots, vases, cans, and even shoes. Serious gardeners reuse barrels, crates, and built boxes.

Any container will do just as long as the size is suitable for plants to thrive.

Plants in pots or containers have limited reach to nutrients because their roots are confined in the container. The solution is by supplying with appropriate fertilizers. Be sure to ask for the right type for your plants and ask about how to use properly.

Water is also a vital element for plants to live. You have to pay special attention to container plants because their soil does not hold water or moisture much longer than on the ground. You have to routinely supply your plants with water. However, there are ingenious ways if you are a busy type of person and routinely watering your plants is not possible.

I found a clever way to keep your plants hydrated even you are not around for several days. Fill a bottle or bucket with water and place it a level above your plants. Then get a string, preferably fabric type, put the other end soaked in the water reservoir, and extend the other end to the plant base. The water will be carried slowly through the string down and continuously water your plants. This is just one of the many ways that you can do yourself.

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Guide to Modern Patio

Have you ever planned to recreate your patio to look modern? Or, are you considering to create a contemporary designed patio?

Regardless of how your patio looks like, it can serve its purpose. A well made patio will always be a great place for get-together activities and for relaxing. You may also use it for gardening through pots and garden plant containers. In fact, a garden patio is a great setup. The plants make the colorful setup and add freshness to the environment.

But, it would also be great if the patio looks fitting to the architecture of your house. It would also be much more interesting to be in an outdoor room with a fresh design.

What makes a patio look modern?
Just like any other design disciplines, modern patio design has been about simplicity. The variety of shapes and colors should be minimal and the texture is smoother. There should be an almost precise alignment, and that there is uniformity of elements.

On the other hand, traditional design appears natural in nature. The form is random or irregular, but in a beautiful way.  In short, traditional looks organic and looks natural while contemporary looks more of artificial and sleek.

Creating a patio with modern look starts with the choice of flooring or paver. Smoother and finer texture denotes simplicity and modernity. Then how you lay and build the patio follows. You must lay the pavers in almost perfect alignment or pattern.

However, the shape of the entire patio is not necessarily a perfect shape. You can get creative with its edges. Try to combine another type of material such as sand or gravel. It will act like a highlight that separates your patio from the backyard landscape.

As patios will not be complete without a set of patio furniture, don’t forget to update your patio furniture as well. Traditional outdoor furniture and fixtures will just cancel out the new patio. Synthetic and most metal-made outdoor furniture are the perfect choice.

Don’t forget about the outdoor shades, they should be updated too. Recreate or create a pergola in contemporary form. You can also get a good shade from a modern patio umbrellas especially the cantilever umbrellas. They instantly add a touch of elegance and modernity.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Restoring Teak Outdoor Furniture

Teak is one of the widely used wood for patio furniture for good reasons. First is that it is one of the most durable and stable hardwoods. The wood naturally has oil which makes it more resistant to a few outdoor elements. These characteristics allow you to enjoy your outdoor furniture for many years.

Some information would help you know if it is your preference to restore your teak furniture. Be warned that some toxic chemicals will be involved in this job like teak oil and stain. These will have effect to your teak pieces.

The natural oil of the teak wood has important functions. First, this is what makes a new furniture appear smooth and in vibrant natural color. Second is that the oil gives the wood strength and durability to last long in an outdoor situation. A quality teak patio furniture can be left in your backyard, patio, or deck all year long with less maintenance.

After several months, a teak furniture will naturally transform into silver gray. The rate at which the appearance transforms depends on the intensity and frequency of the sun exposure and rain. The tiny cracks on the surface will gradually appear, the grain will roughen until the surface becomes silver-gray.

In the surface, it does not look bad at all. From the inside, it is still really in great shape. But once artificial chemicals are introduced, it will forever change the composition of the wood. The change is somehow not for the better. Once treated with artificial chemicals, it will always require maintenance of the same.

Now, if you really need to restore your patio for good, then here is the way.

Cleaning alone is a good start. The removal of dirt and oxidation helps reveal the true color of the teak. All you need is a brush, a mild detergent soap, and a warm water.

Teak Oil
Applying teak oil is the best solution for restoring an outdoor teak furniture. Do this after the wood furniture is thoroughly cleaned and dried.

Before applying teak oil, you may need to sand to even the surface and remove hard stains.

Teak oil is toxic, so be sure to wear face mask. Make sure you are in a well ventilated area when applying the stain. Using a paint brush, apply a thin and even coat first, then let it dry for an hour. Do more coats until the original teak color is achieved or until you get the desired darkness. However, you should allow it to dry for about an hour before applying the next coat and always apply thinly for consistent and even coating.
You will need to seal in the oil after you have restored the teak to its original look. A few coats of polyurethane sealer will add protection to the new look and from surface damage.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Money-Saving Tips for Creating a Backyard Oasis

It does not need luxurious outdoor fixtures and features to create a fantastic haven in your backyard. Just a few cost-effective and carefully chosen outdoor additions, you can very well create your own backyard oasis.

The best way to make sure you save money, is planning ahead. Star by visualizing how would you want your patio to be, how will you use it, and what features you need. Creating a sketch or a plan will help you determine what you need and what you do not need. You can simplify to just satisfy your needs.

At the very beginning of the project, you build a flooring or a platform in which your outdoor room will be created. Building with pavers and stones is considerably the cost-effective way. Easy to build your own, and does not need technical skills and tools. A good combination of pavers and stones of different color would add interest to the setting.

A swimming pool is undeniably a great feature for your backyard. However, building a pool is exhausting and really expensive. If you really love to dip in the water, pretty sure you’ll also love a portable hot tub. Though not a real alternative to a pool, at least you’ll get a similar sensation. A great benefit is that you can enjoy it all year round because of the hot feature. You may even place it in the ground to make it look like a little pool.

The best cover alternative to a pergola and roofing are outdoor umbrellas and shade sails. Obviously, building a pergola or a roof is much more expensive and a tedious task. Whereas buying an outdoor patio umbrella is cheaper and you can get a good cover form that sun and even rain quickly.

Fire Features
Building an outdoor fireplace is expensive, but you can build a simple fire pit which also gives heat you need and the dancing flame you want to see.  It can be built using stones and bricks only. Please read this quick guide on building a fire pit.

Another alternative is a portable fire pit or fire bowl. You can choose either gas or wood fuelled. It is a great alternative in many ways. First, you don’t have to build anything or change your setup. Second, its portability allows you to place it anywhere around your backyard. And lastly, you can save on maintenance.

Friday, July 18, 2014

How to Choose the Right Patio Furniture for a Purpose

A patio or deck will never be complete without patio furniture. However, we have to select the right set and there are several setup aspects that is worth to consider. These include the size of the area, the location, and the type of environment. The sun, the wind, and the humidity are just a few of the factors that affects the durability and the longevity of the furniture. Alongside of these, the purpose of your setup is also an important thing to remember. Whether you want your patio to be relaxing place for leisure, entertainment, or dining, there are furniture types that are just right for the purpose.

If your purpose is to have a peaceful space for relaxing on the patio, a deep seating set or a lounge chair is a perfect choice. Complete the setup by adding an end table and you will enjoy your time outdoors like a king sitting comfortably while sipping tea and reading a book.

For having a great outdoor dining at home with family and friends, a large dining set is definitely the best patio furniture. You may also consider an expandable dining table. You can expand it to accommodate more seats for unexpected guests and turn it back to regular it’s size again for everyday use.

You can create a great outdoor place out of a little space. Setting up your little patio with a bistro table and a couple of chairs cause it to become a lovely place for a private conversation or just relaxing and enjoying a cup of coffee or tea while breathing some fresh outdoor air. A deep seating set or a lounge chair coupled with an end table is also ideal for small spaces.

It is easier to create an outdoor place for any purpose if you have a large outdoor area. Combine it with a modular seating set, your patio or deck will become more versatile. The purpose of this particular patio furniture set allows you to arrange and rearrange easily as you desired to fit any activity.

There are extra things that make your patio more comfortable and safe.

Outdoor Cushions
- They provide comfort and an easy way to dress up your patio. A quick way to change the looks of the set.

Patio Umbrella - A patio will not be complete without a shade from the sun. An outdoor umbrella is a great addition to provide a quick shade and it also adds personality to the patio design. You can easily move the shade around to fit in any desired setup. In turn, your outdoor space becomes more versatile. Additionally, a great outdoor umbrella can give a protection from the harmful UV rays from the sun.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Buying Guide for Outdoor Umbrellas

Outdoor umbrellas or otherwise commonly referred to as patio umbrellas are another popular option to make outdoors cool and safe under the sun. They are a great addition to design an outdoor place. With the best choice, you will find it safer and nicer to relax and unwind in the freshness of outdoors.

Before buying, you should measure the space you want to cover. Patio umbrellas are generally measured in feet. The umbrella should cover an entire setup including the patio furniture and outdoor seats for everyone around. The height should be enough to have a comfortable space for everybody.

Patio Umbrellas have different types and styles. They are made for purposes unique to each one of them.

Market Umbrella
Market umbrellas, the standard type of umbrella for outdoors, are typically made of wood. They are naturally pleasing for residential outdoor spaces. Even though made of wood, market umbrellas are durable to withstand the elements of your backyard, patio, or deck. In fact, you can also find them used in some commercial spaces like cafes and bistros.

Beach Umbrellas
Beach umbrellas are specifically made so you can easily set up a little comfy space along the coast. Designed with pointed pole end to easily stick them in the sand. Seashore atmosphere is naturally harsh and add to that the strong wind blows, it is the worst environment for an outdoor umbrella. Be sure you pick one that is durable and resistant to the elements.

Tilting Umbrellas
Tilting umbrellas are useful if you want to stay in the outdoors for a longer period. The design allows it to tilt in an angle to block the sun from hitting you. From sunrise to sundown, you can be covered from the sunshine.

Offset Umbrellas
Offset umbrellas are unique in form and are so versatile. With its post on the side rather than at the center, it can be placed at any angle and spot. You can arrange your setup in any way you like and still be covered by its canopy.

There are some accessories needed or required for your umbrellas to be functional.

Stand or Base
Do not forget about the umbrella base or stand, outdoor umbrellas from the stores do not include it. The reason for this is so that you can choose one that fits well with the type of outdoor setup you create.

There is a type of umbrella base called sand auger that enables you to use other types of outdoor umbrella as a beach umbrella. It also provides a better grip to hold the umbrella aground.

Patio umbrella lights are not required, but will provide a quick and easy lighting for a night in the outdoors.

Patio umbrella covers keep your umbrella safe when not in use, especially for a longer period. Though not required, but it helps keep your umbrella in good safe.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Quickly Renew Your Concrete Patio with Paver

Feel bored with your outworn concrete patio? Here is a solution to quickly renew your patio without even destroying your existing concrete flooring. It costs less and all you need is time, maybe a day or two.

We can renew the appearance of a patio by upgrading its flooring with paver. Choose a paver you like or better if it matches or complement with the existing materials of your home. Your outdoors will completely look fresh and classy. This is gonna be a fun and rewarding weekend project.

First you need to clean and clear your patio. Begin by moving away your patio furniture and fixtures. Then sweep your patio and remove any debris. Washing and thoroughly clean the concrete is not required to consider that we just lay the pavers on top.

Second, make sure the flooring is flat and level. Grind and remove bumps away and use leveling compound to fill the low spots. Leveling compound will also fill the cracks. Since we will be laying pavers on top of the concrete patio and it will not be having a vehicle traffic, just a paver base is needed. Spread it directly all over the flooring and even out the surface.

Then, start laying the pavers. Arrange them accordingly to create a beautiful pattern. Leave a perimeter space for the edging. The width of the perimeter should be enough to accommodate a single line of paver. Take note that the perimeter should be without paver base. Prepare mortar to be used for the edging paver. Spread a thin layer and press the paver on. The perimeter paver affixed to the concrete will make the pavers secured in place.

Finally, when the laying of pavers is complete, spread polymeric sand using a push broom. Ensure all the gaps are filled and covered. Sweep off all the excess, spray it with water and you are done. Let the new paver set before stepping on it.

That’s it, your patio has now a brand new look. Put back the outdoor furniture sets, open up the patio umbrella and chill.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Outdoor lighting Tips

There are many types of light which are intended for different purposes. There are, for illuminating so it is easy for you to see things especially during outdoor activities. There are, for ambient lighting especially useful for setting a mood or ambiance. Others are for adding decorative accents to your patio or deck design.

Aside from the types of light, lighting fixture or form also come in several variations. Their form is intended for different purposes and application.

Ceiling Lighting
This type of lighting is usually hung or fixed above the center of a patio or deck. There are two main purposes of a ceiling light fixture, for illuminating and for ambient lighting.

Wall Lighting
Wall lights are primarily intended for highlighting some spots in your patio or deck. These are usually placed at the entrance and at some architectural features you want to highlight.

Path Lighting
Path lights are for illuminating or highlighting pathways, steps, and stairs. In the garden, they serve another purpose which is to highlight plants and fences.

Some types of light are made for special purposes such as the following:

String Lights
String lights can be made of many color combinations. They are specifically made for adding decorative accents to the setup. Special occasions at night can be very colorful at night.

Patio Umbrella Lights
Patio umbrella lights can come in many different forms such as string, series of bulbs, and even single bulb. Of course, they are specifically made for patio umbrellas and other types of outdoor umbrellas.

Spot Lights
Spot lights are usually used for emphasizing trees and plants at night. It greatly enhances your backyard making your plants visible at night, and in different but amazing way.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Top Outdoor Cushion Fabrics

Outdoor cushions are made for comfort. It makes a great place for relaxation and an impressive space for your guests. Because of their fine and colorful covers, they are also made to help decorate your patio or deck setup.

An outdoor environment is very different. There are elements that are hostile to your cushions, especially their covers. Make sure you get the best cushion fabric so you can be assured that the cushions on your outdoor furniture would still look great in the long run.

There are many types of fabric for cushions, but only a few are recommended for outdoor use and not all are created equal. Before buying a new cushion or cover, do some research and analyze which one is right for you and your budget. Spend some time to figure out so that you don’t fall for the wrong type of fabric and see them fading and tearing in just weeks or a few months of use.

To help you get started, here are the top fabrics for outdoor cushions.

Cotton Canvas
In general, this is a popular fabric for cushions. This fabric is relatively cheaper, but is very durable and will stand up to excessive wear. Although naturally water resistant, it retains water that will cause mold and mildew problems if not taken care of immediately.

This fabric is not recommended to be left in an open outdoor area. But surely, you can take necessary measure to prevent them from getting wet. You should not have any problems in outdoor space with a roof or cover.

A woven polyester with PVC coating, this type is specifically made for outdoor use. It can be seen used in sling seating, sun shades, and other outdoor furniture. It can be used in an open area and poolside because it is guaranteed waterproof and fade resistant. Another best thing about it is flame retardant.

Olefin is a synthetic fiber, also known as polypropylene. This type is also famously used in outdoor furniture. Well known because it’s a weather resistant fabric in fact, it is considered a plastic fabric.

Vinyl also known as Polyvinyl chloride or PVC, is a very common material found in many products. This type is the least expensive among the fabrics and is very easy to clean, easy to acquire and easy to maintain. However, it does not stand up to heat well and may face in the long run. Well, a sun shade will be just enough to save it from the sun. It can be safe under a shade sail or a patio umbrella.

Solution-Dyed Acrylic
A solution-dyed acrylic fabric is usually soft, breathable, durable, and water resistant. This fabric dries fast when got wet, so it prevents the growth of mold. These superior characteristics make it the top choice for outdoor applications including sun shades and patio umbrellas.

Marine-Grade Fabric
A specially made acrylic fabric to be used in heavy outdoor use. It is made to withstand sun, wind, and salt water. Made with a tighter weave and heavier finishing, it is primarily made for seat cushion on a boat.

Sunbrella is a popular fabric, but it is more of a brand. It is 100% solution dyed acrylic and made from a variety of synthetic and cotton blends.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Easy Guide To Build an Outdoor Fireplace

An outdoor fireplace is one of precious additions to homes. It makes a great ambiance for your backyard or patio. A well designed one will add an eye-catching focal point to your outdoor setup. Aside from these interesting benefits, you can also design your outdoor fireplace to function in cooking something.

Regulations and restrictions
Building a fireplace has some regulations in some places and conditions. You have to consult your local community and government before building. Get to know the ordinances and acquire permits if necessary, it is for your safety also.

Also, check with your insurance agency if it has effects and restrictions on your policy.

Determine the Location
Determining to perfect location is not only for the sake if your backyard or patio design but also for your safety. Make sure your fireplace is at a safe distance from combustible and non-heat resisting things like wooden parts of your home, patio, or deck

The fireplaces  should also be at a safe distance from barns, animal coop, trees, or plants.

Design and Style
Fireplaces are not only for creating a great ambiance, but can also make a beautiful spot. The basics of making a nice focal point is to make sure its design goes well with the design of your outdoor setup or with the existing patio furniture. You can search for design inspirations in the internet.

Traditional wood-burning fireplace can also function for outdoor cooking, from roasting mallows to grilling. You can stylize it to serve as a barbecue station, a pizza oven, and other outdoor cooking activities.

Building and Materials

An outdoor fireplace is nothing more but just the same as an indoor fireplace. Basically also it consists of a hearth, a chimney, and a mantel. But it should be built suitable for outdoors. The materials to use should resist the beating of outdoor conditions like sunny, rainy, and snowy days.

First, build the platform in which the fireplace sits on. The platform should be made of concrete and built on the ground. It’s size should also be larger than the desired size of the fireplace hearth.

Next, build the hearth. There are a few materials that a fireplace hearth can be made, but the popular choice are bricks, stacked stones, and stucco.

Then, optionally add a mantel and other decorative finish.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Pergola Roof or Cover Options

A Pergola in one of the popular shade structures. Aside from patio umbrellas, awnings, and shade sails, pergolas are also best for patios and backyards. This type of structure provides a good shade in the beating sun and even from the snow and rain. It also provides protection for your patio furniture and fixtures from outdoor elements to keep them in good condition so you can enjoy them for months and even years.

Building something like a pergola in your backyard is a great weekend backyard project. You can physically exercise, enhance carpentry skills, and exercise your creative mind. But if it’s just far too complex for you, or you may have no time for it, it is a good idea to hire a carpenter.

The most important part of a pergola is its roof or cover. It defines how well you are protected and how the structure looks. With regards to the looks, choosing the right type of covering depends on what is the best for the design of your home and the appearance of your surroundings. It should blend well with the colors, structure, and materials around it.

Wooden Roof
Pergolas are traditionally built with spaced wooden roofing. Even if it is the old style, wood covering is still the best practice. You can easily get created with it as a wood can be arranged and easily formed or carved according to your choice. Since homes are mostly built with wood, then it can easily blend in.

Spaced wooden roof is only for places that rarely rains. Enjoy the sunny outdoors under the shade of a pergola. Just get a patio furniture cover when it rains, it is sufficient to keep them safe.

Bamboo Roof
Bamboo covers are famous because they are unique and attractive. It makes a cool patio that feels like you’re in a tropical place. This type is easy to make with just little carpentry skills.

Using bamboo is an eco-friendly practice. Many trees will be saved because a bamboo can grow and regenerate quickly so we can have another supply in the next season. By the way, a bamboo is not a tree, but a type of grass, the tallest grass.

Reed Roof Cover
Much the same as bamboo, reeds provide a tropical feel. In its natural beige color, a reed cover would blend well in your backyard patio design or garden. This material is lightweight, which requires minimum support. Great for beginner do-it-yourself project.

Fabric Type Covers
Fabrics or textile for covering is great for adding exciting colors in your patio or backyard. However, they are used more for a temporary shade. They can be placed loosely or tension stretched over the rafters on the structure.

Some fabrics like canvas, Sunbrella, or Olefin, which are also widely used for outdoor umbrellas, can protect us from the harmful UV rays of the sun. It is the best choice for use during hot summer days. If you want a protection from the rain, there are water-resistant fabrics too.

Louvered Roof

Louvered roof types are technically more advance but of course, a bit expensive. They can be adjusted by tilting the louvers from fully open to enjoy the sun, into fully closed for a full protection. That is  the great advantage if this type.

Whenever you build a pergola, always keep in mind to choose the best type that fits your need, your area climate, and the type of surrounding you have.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Easy Patio or Garden Walkway

Building a patio or garden walkway requires time, effort, and money. It can be a tough job but, there are easy ways to accomplish. It can be done whenever you have time and is a great task during weekends. A great do-it-yourself project.

Just like any other projects, you need to have a plan beforehand. Determine how wide your walkway is, which way it should go, and how should it forms. Take note that you have to sacrifice a good amount space and good growing grasses if you want a wider walkway. It is better to choose areas that are not suitable for growing grasses and plants. Then form your walkway according to your landscape no matter what shape you would come up. In fact, irregular walkway forms look great in many cases.
Tools and Gears
It does not require sophisticated tools and gears to make this task easy. Just a few backyard and garden tools needed to get the job done.

Make sure to use work gloves for your safety. Your hands do not just get dirty, but would also suffer from the work. Your gloves will protect them.

You need garden pruners if you need to remove hard grasses and large roots. Make sure you also remove any debris to avoid problems like sagging.

Spade is needed to repair ground holes and spots. You will also need it for shaping up the landscape. Then, use a garden rake to level the ground.

For an easy patio or garden walkway, use stones or bricks. These pavers make building your walkway fast and easy. All have to do is lay and arrange them on the ground and you’re done.

When arranging the stones/bricks lay them in patterns. You can find many design ideas over the internet.

Add some nice features for your walkway to make it more look inviting which leads towards your patio area. Add some lights on the path for easy access during the night. Edging would also add a highlight along the way and that there will be a nice separation. If your walkway is large and long, you can line up some patio furniture such as benches and small patio umbrellas along the way as a nice stopover feature.

With simple steps, your walkway shall be completed without stress. You can add anything you want to it. Use your imagination and creativity, and use the internet to search for design inspirations.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Building and Decorating a Porch

A porch is another well known outdoor room to extend your house area. It is a great outdoor place to pause and relax before getting in and stepping off.

The structure is similar to decks, but is having a more finished appearance. The looks is the same as the house and generally becomes part of the entire house building.

Start by planning the size and layout of your porch. Typically, the layout should be based on the structure of your house. The structure can be built either in the front or in the back side of your house. A porch structure has a flooring, posts, railing, roof and ceiling.

The porch flooring is usually built on wooden floor joist on top of support beams over a concrete foundation. The type of flooring depends on you, however, it is better to match it with the materials of your house. You can use wood, composite, and PVC floors. If you want masonry floors, your flooring foundation should be made of concrete slabs. Take note, it is important to make sure that the floor should have a little slope that runs away from the house to easily drain away rain and snowmelt.

Porch posts are intended to support the weight of the roof and ceiling. Since porch don’t have walling, the posts are barely visible. So this becomes an opportunity to make them decorative. You can use turned porch or even create an elegant porch columns. The number of posts depends on the size of your porch area and they should be equally spaced.

Railings play a big part when it comes to the porch decoration so you have to choose the best style and type to make a good looking porch. Railings are made of different materials such as wood, metal, stone, and synthetic. Choose the materials that can be best installed on your type of porch materials. Don’t get too excited with beautiful designs you find on display in stores or you might end disappointed to find out that it doesn’t match with your house design. Remember, a porch becomes part of your house, decorate it to complement with your house’s exteriors.

The materials, finish, and form of the roof and ceiling should match with the house. No matter how unique, if they look different, your design would look off.

Setting up and decorating a porch is the same as other outdoor rooms.

First, you need comfortable seats. A couple of reclining chairs are good for relaxing on a small porch. But if you have a large porch space, it is great to place a set of outdoor furniture. You can put a sofa set, lounge chairs, and a center table for a great conversation.

Second, freshen up with greens. You still can enjoy a little gardening in your porch. Add some potted plants and hang some plants on the sides. Then add some accessories such as carpets or rugs and framed decors.

The last thing needed for a great porch is a heat source so we can enjoy it even during winter and on cold nights. You can build a fireplace for your porch. The fireplace would also be a great focal point for this outdoor room. Another option is a portable patio heater which is easier to use and more practical for a modern home porch.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Vertical Gardening and Benefits

Growing herbs, flowers, and vegetables come easy with vertical gardening. It doesn’t matter how small and how inaccessible your area, gardening possible with simple innovation. Some garden lovers find it really easy to do with just a little carpentry skills. I can be done by hanging plants in pots and baskets on the walls, by placing them in racks or shelves, and by making a trellis.

Vertical gardening has benefits.

First, it is space-saving which is very helpful for small spaces. You can easily incorporate gardening in a small backyard or patio for a better atmosphere.

Second, vertical garden is easier to manage. You can tend them with ease, from growing to harvesting.

Third, they add an attraction to your outdoor space design. Healthy growing flowers and vegetables are like gems in your backyard.

Fourth, they can serve as a privacy screen alternative. More household owners and landscapers prefer this structure for privacy because it is not so obvious and look great.

Lastly, they provide a good sun shade. Plants are great at absorbing sunlight and block UV rays. Setting a patio furniture set under a trellis is a great idea. You enjoy a fresh outdoors while being protected from harmful UV rays. A trellis with a bunch of plants is a great alternative for patio umbrellas.

With some research for inspiration combined with imagination, any beginner will find it easy to get into vertical gardening. The tools and materials needed are really easy to find in many hardware stores.

If you are fond of recycling and reusing, that’s great because gardening using recycled materials and repurposed household items is popular these days. Countless materials have been used and they look great when properly reused, these include:
  • Plastic beverage bottles
  • Plastic containers
  • Tin cans
  • Empty barrels

Other materials that you might not expect of being used include:
  • Shoes
  • Cups
  • Mugs
  • Casseroles
  • Teapots
  • and many other kitchen containers

And take note, using these items is very popular these days.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Alternative Ideas for a Backyard Patio

A patio is a great addition for your home. But you might also be wondering what are other alternative outdoor rooms. Actually, there several options that you can build in your backyard. These are also well-known structures for similar purposes. The options below are mostly the popular ones.

This pavilion structure is commonly seen in public places like parks and beaches. But you can have one right in your own property. You can build it at the heart of your backyard space. If the size of your area is limited, a gazebo can also be attached to a wall in your backyard.

A gazebo at home is a great place for small occasions and for relaxation. I can provide a shade or shelter anytime you need.

A porch is another great structure to extend your house area. You don’t have to get off of your house building to relax and take a breath of fresh air. The area can be a great extension to your house in which you’ll have a great place to pause and relax before getting in and stepping off.

If you want to just enjoy the outdoor scene or landscape from the comfort of your home and not being exposed to the outdoor atmosphere, then a sunroom is perfect for you. It is more like just creating a room with all the furniture and fixtures you need. Then the walls are see-through, made of glass panels or clear PVC. Even the roof can be transparent to have a full view of the sky.

Enjoy the scene while being protected from the outdoor elements, even from snow and rain.

The most common alternative to a patio is a deck. The setup is very similar and the main difference is that it is elevated and typically made from wood. Usually, an outdoor umbrella is used to provide a shade. If the deck is closely attached to a wall, using an awning is also a great option for a shade. Then you can put some outdoor patio furniture in a comfortable setting.

There you have it. Just choose what’s better for your residential area and the type of climate you have to make a great outdoor space.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Tips: Deciding the Right Patio Umbrella

There are different reasons a person is encouraged to buy a patio umbrella. It could be alluring design and color that catches the attention. Maybe the inspiring outdoor setup with an outdoor umbrella seen on beaches and restaurants. It might also be basically the need of a shade against the sun and rain. Whatever the reason behind your eagerness to get an outdoor umbrella, you should know that you could not just pick whatever that looks good enough.

Picking the right patio umbrella isn’t just about the impression you have. There are some factors that should be considered such as durability and practicality, then follows beauty. These points will make sure you’ll get great relaxing moments and will guarantee your safety while having a refreshment during hot summer days.

Remember the following simple points so you can get the right patio umbrella.

Canopy, The Covering Material

Most patio umbrella canopies are made of fabric, and they are not made the same. Some fabrics are best for sun protection while some are just colorful. When you buy one for your safety, buy those that can block most of UV Rays. Ask the seller about it.

Frame materials
Patio Umbrellas are specifically designed for outdoors, but not all are made to withstand the torture of high winds and outdoor elements. This goes for the materials they are made.

Wooden frames are elegant and can also be sturdy depending on how they are made, but they should be treated and maintained well to avoid mold.

Iron steel umbrella frames are sturdy depending on thickness, but you should keep them dry always because they rust with moisture especially in beaches.

Aluminum and Fiberglass umbrellas are sturdy and weather resistant. They are a bit expensive, but a worthy investment, especially if you are in an area with high winds and hostile to outdoor umbrellas.

Form or Design
There are other forms of patio umbrellas, the offset umbrella otherwise known as cantilever patio umbrellas, and the tilting patio umbrella. These are made for special purposes and design uniqueness comes with it.

Offset umbrellas are made so that center pole is moved to the side. You can then have an ease of space for a better conversation.

The tilting feature is made so you can tilt your umbrella into position so it can block the sunlight in an angle you need. It allows you to enjoy a longer sun protection.

Choosing a color is not much of an issue, especially that patio umbrellas come in many color choices. You can choose according to your liking. However, it is much better to choose the one that goes well with your outdoor setup or patio design.

These are the basic points to remember, but should help you get the right patio umbrella.