Bringing your Inside Space Outdoors

One of Studio J Architecture’s favorite challenges is creating an illusion of outdoor spaces that look and feel like a continuation of indoor spaces. We have mentioned creating an outside room as a solution to increasing your space in our Small Home Blog and thought we would revisit the idea and supply some tips on extending your indoor area into you outdoor area.

Making your outdoor area a continuation from your indoor area can be done on any scale. Larger budgeted projects might include new doors, windows, fireplaces and flooring to create a feeling of similar or seamlessly transitioned space between outdoors and in. This project is a perfect example. The flooring in the house was chosen because it was effective both inside and out. Floor to ceiling glass doors disappear into the walls and the railing was designed to literally blend in to the scenery. Can you see the balcony railing below? It is there.

Making this project look simple and streamline is extremely difficult. Water proofing was our toughest challenge because everything needed to be hidden. Making something look simple is very difficult.

Everything in moderation so find the best balance that suits your needs. No need to completely bring the world in or your world out. Don't you think this is a bit much?

It is also possible to create an outdoor room on a budget. If floor to ceiling remodel is not what you are looking for to bring the inside out (or the outside in) here are some low budget tips.

The first thing to take into account is the climate of the area. No use creating an open area with couches, plush rugs and beautiful items when you have extreme weather conditions and have to worry about storing the furniture at the first hint of rain or snow. Keep in mind where you live and create a design idea around that. If you are in a hotter climate think of misters or built in fans and of shading. If you are in a colder climate think of heat lamps and fire pits. Take into account the materials of the furniture you want and how they will fade and wear in certain climates.

Remember that the area will be an extension of your home so try using the same color scheme and style to blend it in with the house. Usually keeping the flooring the same, or even extending the wall colors to the outside, creates a flow from room to room. The next step is to think of what the space will be used for. Will it be for entertainment, an outdoor work space, a relaxation nook or a combination of all three? Make a list of all the details and items you want in your ideal space and set a budget to stick to. Getting creative can get pretty expensive when you just go out and buy everything that catches your eye.

Don’t forget to think of the small details. These will personalize your space. Water features will help deaden traffic noise, mood lighting, lanterns or candles create a cozier area and can be set up to highlight beautiful accent pieces.

If you have an open patio, using the walls of the home, trellis with vines and potted plants will create a sense of enclosure. It will also give you an opportunity to display unique treasures and object d’art. Use mirrors to make the space seem larger and cast more light into smaller areas. Create space by using different levels. Steps off of the deck or even different height containers will help. Container gardening is very helpful in small spaces. Grow some herbs for your garden and bring fragrance into your space. They also create a sense of lushness and there are a lot of varieties of plants that are low maintenance and beautiful. Containers themselves are designed to be eye-catching and unique and add to any room.

We love the idea of creating outdoor rooms and with summer around the corner it is a great project to take on. Don’t forget the margaritas… cheers!