It’s finally here! Outdoor dining season! Being able to utilize your outdoor dining areas as an extension of your house is such a great investment and we pride ourselves on being a resource for folks looking to up their patio game with tasteful, classic hard and softscapes. Entertaining outside during our brief but beautiful Minnesota summers is one of the many reasons we live here after all! Whether you’re looking to create an expansive, grand area for large gatherings or a quaint, intimate nook for your alfresco time, we know how important it is to have a space that reflects your personal style. Creating a seamless flow from indoors to outdoors might seem tricky, but it is incredibly rewarding and we’re here to help.
Unless you have a true summer kitchen, you’ll likely be making several trips to and from your indoor kitchen, so when you’re planning your outdoor dining space you will want to make sure you have a clear path and that the impediments are removed as best as possible. This is a great opportunity to create useful walkways where you can utilize lighting and thoughtful softscapes. Guests will appreciate easy access to a bathroom as well, so consider that when choosing whether your patio area will be off of the basement sliding doors, on an elevated deck off the main level, or in a side yard with easy access to an entrance. Thoughtful placement of your lighting and outdoor entertainment system will be important as well. You don’t want to disrupt the neighbors… or your baby sleeping in the nursery, so place light fixtures and speakers accordingly. Once you get the logistical considerations out of the way, the fun of designing and decorating your outdoor dining space can begin!
Whether you’re leaning towards a cobblestone patio, a flagstone courtyard, or a grassy knoll on which to throw a picnic blanket, the aesthetic should tie into and enhance your existing home design. If you have a water feature or pool, the chance to dine near water is one that many find extremely serene and memorable. Do you tend to do more intimate family dinners or are you likely to host several large-scale, seasonal dinner parties? Having the tablespace and comfy chairs to accommodate your guests will be something to plan for if this is the case. Setting things up in a way where guests can easily move around the table or even relocate to an outdoor lounge for after-dinner drinks will make everyone a little more relaxed. Some folks are limited on space however and would do well with a small, mobile dining area that can be utilized for other activities, like morning coffee and yoga for example. There are all sorts of modular furniture designs available, which can be stored discretely and set up quickly, making them ideal for those limited on space. A quaint and elegantly designed outdoor dining area can be just as effective as a large one. Versatility is the key in these situations!
Having an outdoor dining space where you can grill, enjoy a bonfire, sit under a gently lit pergola, or take a post-dinner dip in the pool are opportunities that we don’t generally take for granted here in Minnesota. We know that summers are fleeting, so we tend to want to capitalize on the chance to create ideal outdoor spaces for summer food and fun. We would love to help you incorporate all of your ideas into a design that you and your family can enjoy for years to come.