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5 ways to enhance your outdoor room

Metricon

When planned well, your outdoor room can be an extension of your home's existing floorplan. Advances in furniture construction, screening, outdoor lighting, and heating and cooling mean that you can comfortably use your outdoor space in winter as well as the warmer months.

Whether you're planning your outdoor room from scratch or doing some easy DIY, here are some top design ideas to get the inspiration flowing for your makeover.

Greenery is good

Foliage adds ambience to any space and is particularly useful at seamlessly integrating your outdoor space with your garden. Planter boxes or dwarf trees in pots are a great idea, as you can shift them to suit the seasons or the placement of furniture. Even if you don't have much of a green thumb, you can hardly go wrong trying out some succulents in terracotta pots.

Flowers in hanging pots are also a lovely, budget-friendly way of adding colour and movement to your outdoor living room. If you have only a small area to work with, you may like to try a vertical garden – herbs grow particularly well this way and are useful as well as ornamental. The Chelsea and the Fortitude show how greenery can be incorporated into an outdoor room using a vertical garden.

Decorative screening

Privacy screens are the perfect way to create separate spaces within your outdoor room, such as a conversation circle or dining area. They are also handy for hiding unsightly fences or stopping the prying eyes of neighbours. Screening may also be used cleverly as a shade option in the roofing structure.

There is a range of beautiful decorative screening options available on the market now, in various materials such as bamboo, timber and metal. The Meridian 54 provides an excellent example of how you can use screens to provide shade.

Comfort is king

The patio furniture you use in your outdoor space must be selected for comfort and durability — not just aesthetics — if you want to get the most out of it. Australian conditions can be harsh, so choose products that will withstand the weather conditions but are also comfortable, especially if you intend to spend a lot of time lounging and entertaining 'alfresco'. Think daybeds and plenty of soft furniture.

If the furniture looks fabulous but is harsh on your body, you won't use the outdoor room. It also works well to have your outdoor furniture reflect the styling you use in your home's interior, so the spaces flow effortlessly. The Bayville exemplifies this styling.

Accessories and accents

As with any other living space, you will use an outdoor room more often if it feels welcoming and relaxing. A big part of making rooms feel that way is in the accessories used to decorate it. Consider throw pillows, art, plants, string lights, water features and fire pits when creating your outdoor room.

You may want to consider a theme to tie all the accessories together – nautical, Moroccan, provincial. Don't be afraid to add bold accents to your space to provide a focal point and make it a standout room of your home. Who says chandeliers are only for indoors?

Cooking with gas outdoors

An outdoor kitchen is beneficial for your family, as well as the value of your home. An integrated BBQ and outdoor sink will see you cooking more often outside, which means no more fishy or meaty smells in the kitchen, and it's a great way to cook for the crowds! Built-in pizza ovens have also become a popular addition to outdoor kitchens and are a great entertaining option. Being able to cook and eat outdoors maximises your space and makes catering for large groups a breeze. The Santorini 28 has a fantastic outdoor kitchen.

Thanks to our love of the family barbecue, a lot of consideration goes into the classic Aussie backyard. From landscaping to hardscaping, pergolas to outdoor rooms, there are no limits to what you can achieve in your little piece of paradise.

When executed correctly, these home improvement tips will make your outdoor room much more livable year-round, as well as adding massive value to your investment.

For more outdoor room inspiration, take a look at the Metricon outdoor room gallery.