With warm weather, cool drinks, and blooming flowers, it’s hard not to be drawn outside during Summer. It’s the season to kick back, relax, and enjoy some fresh air. Whether you have a large backyard or just a small balcony, it’s rejuvenating to have a cozy place outside to read a book or gather friends and family together for a visit.
Let’s kick off patio season and find some inspiration for décor, activities, and fabulous outfits to wear. Check out our ideas below and find more ideas on our Pinterest board.
Outdoor Living Space
Your yard, deck, or balcony can be an extension of your indoor living space, so why not make it as comfy and welcoming as your living room? Here are some ideas to help make your outdoor space a go-to spot for relaxation this summer.
Keep the Pests Away
Adding certain plants to your patio pots or garden can deter pesky bugs. Lemon balm, citronella, mint (including spearmint, catmint, and peppermint), lavender, flossflower (ageratum), oregano, thai basil, lemon thyme, and marigolds repel mosquitoes. Many of these plants also keep wasps at bay. A wreath of eucalyptus is not only chic and pretty, it also will deter pests from your party.
Citronella scented candles and tiki torches also do the trick. Position them around the gathering area. Hurricane lamps protect candles against the wind and accidental encounters. Whenever there is an open flame, be sure to let all the guest know so they can take care not to get too close. Fuel or battery repellants such as Thermacell are also a good options when there is a lot of activity or children. These devices have a contained heat source so there is no risk of an open flame.
Make it Welcoming
Make your outdoor space a place that is inviting to guest and where you would like to spend time. Gather friends and family around a patio table and share a meal or drinks. Or create an outdoor living room with patio couches and cozy seating. Make it comfortable and inviting with cushions and pillows. Bright colors and fun patterns are having their moment in the sun (pun intended). Or add color with bright flowers or decorative pots to make your space bright and cheery.
Peace and Quiet
Create white noise by adding a water feature to your outdoor space. Almost everyone loves the tranquility that trickling water brings. It adds a pleasant sound to counter act street noise or neighbors. There are many sizes and styles available to suit the size of your space and budget. Even a small fountain or reflecting pool can add some peace and tranquility to our busy lives.
Have Some Fun
Games are a great way to bring people together and stir conversation. Even your non-competitive friends like to toss bean bags. There are a lot of yard games available such as cornhole, croquet, and bocce ball, but you could take any game outside to enjoy with some friends. Create your mini golf course, paint dots on the lawn for Twister, or set up empty cans for make-shift lawn bowling. Games are not just for children and a great way to have some fun outside!
Cool Looks for Hot Days
You’ve been invited to a grad party, neighbor’s BBQ, or baby shower. You want to look fabulous but it can be overwhelming to take in the amount of fashion information that is out there. We have done our research and are sharing it with you! Here’s a run-down on the hot looks of Summer 2018.
Few things are more comfortable on a hot summer day than a shirt dress. Loose and breezy, they can be dressed up or down. A classic button-down or off-the-shoulder style looks fantastic with statement jewelry (tassels look especially fresh) and heels. Particularly hot this summer is a vertical striped, belted shirt dress. Wear with espadrilles and some bracelets for a clean, casual look. Tee shirt dresses are the ultimate in comfort. Throw on a baseball hat for an easy hair day and add definition by tying a plaid shirt or a cardigan around your waist.
Bottom silhouettes are trending wider and summer is a great time to try out these new styles. Straight leg, cropped flare, or boyfriend jeans are both comfortable and slimming. High-waisted or paper-bag waistband are worth the investment: we will be seeing more of these styles in the future. Look for vertical stripes, subtle tropical leaf or camo print, or sun-bleached bright colors for this season. Remember, as bottoms become more voluminous, tops will be slimmer. Wear any of these silhouettes with a simple tucked in fitted tee and add wedge heels to elongate the look.
Go with the Flow
Bell sleeves, loose peasant blouses, and wide tops are not only fashionable right now, but also comfortable on hot days. Frills and gathers, embroidery, and retro floral prints add a relaxed, feminine feel to otherwise classic tops. These pretty styles can dress up a simple knit skirt or shorts. Or, look fresh and cool in a calf length, loose dress in an allover floral print. Pull your hair up and add some fun earrings to complete the look.
Woven and Natural Fiber Accessories
Along with tassel jewelry, hand bags and purses in natural fibers are having their moment. A round or circular shape is particularly hot right now in the crossbody bag style and the perfect accessory to to hold your keys, phone, and sunglasses at any outdoor event. Basket or bucket styles are another way to change things up for the summer. It’s only summer for a few months, so why not have a fun, summery bag!
It may be hot during the day, but don’t forget to grab a layer just in case the weather gets cool or you find yourself in overzealous air conditioning. Jackets or cardigans can instantly dress up a casual outfit which is especially helpful if you have many stops on your busy day. A light colored denim jacket or neutral, light-weight cardigan or sweater can be thrown over almost anything in a pinch. Neutral color can ground a colorful print or choose your layer to be a pop color to an otherwise achromatic outfit.
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