One of my most popular posts last year was my 5 minute home decorating and styling tips, which I shared some quick tricks that I use around the house and when I layer client spaces. With July 4th celebrations coming up this week, I thought I would do the same version of that post but 5 minute outdoor decorating tips and tricks that can save you time, money and help you beautify your outdoor patios and porches very easily.
If you’re entertaining outside this week, these little tips and tricks are a great way to kick up your outdoor decor a notch!
Pillows are the easiest way to instantly add a pop of color and layer an outdoor space, BUT did you know that you can use indoor pillows outside by spraying pillows with a couple layers of Scotchgard Heavy Duty Water Shield?
This is a great way to widen your pillow color/pattern options AND indoor pillows are can be a lot cheaper than outdoor pillows, especially if you look through clearance aisles. Scotchgard instantly protects the pillow and really works well! I have used this product for many years and my indoor pillows do not fade or bleed over time outdoors.
Another quick trick is to use pillows in chaise lounges and dining chairs, not only for a quick pop of color and pattern but for comfort as well.
There are so many creative ways to incorporate plants into your outdoor decor and my favorite way is to elevate them with tall planters, which brings plants/greenery to eye level! If you elevate them, they become a backdrop and ambience, which is so nice. It’s especially nice if you want to camoflauge an ugly wall or anything.
In the picture below, you can see a palm on the left side-behind the sofa that is elevated in a tall planter that helps break up my stucco wall.
I look for these tall planters on clearance every year at Target when they are 60-75% off and now I have about 10-12 of them that I have purchased throughout the years. I slip in ferns, grasses and palms into them and put the planters in corners and around my patio and it gives my outdoor areas pops of greenery at eye level.
Another easy plant tip for you is to buy asparagus ferns!! I do NOT have a green thumb and you pretty much can’t kill an asparagus fern and they quickly grow and are so lush. By the way, I only water them about once a week.
I use Asparagus Ferns everywhere outdoors because they are lush and full and can make it through anything! On my fireplace, I slipped in one into a black bucket.
One last thing! Slip inexpensive solar lights into your plants so they glow at night. More patio ambience!!
Trays, Trays and More Trays
Trays are another easy and quick way to layer outdoor spaces; on coffee tables, countertops, side tables, etc.. I look for trays deeply marked down on clearance at Ross, Marshalls and Kirkland’s. I also use trays taking up space in my junk closet.
I especially love wood trays because they just make an outdoor space feel more indoor-ish and I love the look of wood tones outside in trays and planters. You can spray wood trays with a light layer of clear matte sealant to protect from humidity and moisture.
Trays are especially nice to have outdoors when you’re entertaining when making bar set up or a buffet for food.
Flowers and arrangements are not just for the indoors, I use various sizes of vases outside around my outdoor patio areas (on coffee tables, countertops, side tables, etc..) and keep them filed with plant/flower clippings from my yard. It’s especially a fun touch if you’re entertaining.
On one of my coffee tables, I sprayed an old vase with CreateFX Chalkboard Spray Paint that was in my junk closet matte black (see that post here) to give it a more modern touch and I keep flower/plant clippings in it all the time.
Even one or two little flowers is a pretty touch!
I also don’t limit the vases to small ones. I LOVE the look of tall vases filled with flower clippings (or even leaves on branches) on my patio.
By the way, outdoor console tables behind sofas/sectionals or on the side of a patio are another great way to elevate decor such as lanterns (for evening light, vases filled with yard flowers and outdoor candles). Outdoor console tables are also great for entertaining to use as a bar, buffet, etc.. I have four outdoor console tables throughout my patio area and use them in so many different ways.
Below is an inexpensive outdoor console table very similar to mine above from Overstock here.
One last outdoor flower trick is to choose hanging baskets for your outdoor flowers in container pots rather than traditional flowers. The reason for this is flowers in hanging baskets are fuller and already growing down the side and they look so pretty and full in pots!
Outdoor String Lights
Of course, hanging string lights are more than a “5 Minute” decorating trick BUT, it doesn’t take long to drape or hang one or two strings of lights to add ambience to your outdoor areas.
Even hanging one string in a tree or large plant can make a pretty difference at night.
A couple weeks ago, I shared a post on how to hang outdoor string lights and the best bulbs to use here. Check that out for all my tips.
Umbrella’s are another quick an easy way to dress up your outdoor areas instantly and they provide that much needed shade. I do not put umbrella’s in holes in tables but instead, I use stands so I can easily move them around and use them in other areas like shade for my chaise loungers.
Poufs and Ottomans
Every year at the end of summer, I look through clearance aisles for great deals on outdoor poufs and ottomans. This is another beauty meets function decor item that looks pretty but comes in handy when entertaining.
I place small ottomans in front of coffee tables for extra seating.
A couple years ago, at the end of summer, my local Target marked their ottomans down 90%!!! I purchased six of them (navy, tan and a navy patterned set) for something like $6.00 each! They have held up beautifully because they are outdoor water-resistant fabric.
Last year before we built out outdoor kitchen/pool house, I used the navy ottomans also in front of a coffee table.
There are so many ways to create and layer a beautiful outdoor space. The best place to start is by looking in your junk closet to see what accessories you already have and incorporate those pieces. Also, now is the time to start looking for outdoor furniture/accessory markdowns since the stores are already getting into fall.
For more ideas, check out my quick 5 minute decor tricks for the indoors.
Thanks for stopping by today!