Do you have a balcony and have held off on or completely forgotten to decorate that extra space? If so, then it's time to do it now!
When you start hearing about record temperatures in the news, you know balcony season is getting closer. But as a balcony owner, have you put off – or quite simply forgotten – to furnish that extra space? If so, it's time to roll up your sleeves. Here are our top tips for exploiting those extra few square metres in the best possible way!
To make your balcony really cosy, you want to be able to go out there with bare feet. But if your balcony has a concrete floor, that can be rather chilly. The easiest and most comfortable solution is to find an attractive balcony carpet. It can be difficult to find one that fits perfectly, but the carpet doesn’t have to be exactly the same size as the balcony. And of course you can always buy a made to measure balcony carpet, but they’re often a bit more expensive. My favourites are carpets in natural colours and materials. Or if you've a talent for DIY, you might find outdoor flooring a good option. It’s a bit fiddly to put together, but it looks great once it’s done!
When you’re choosing the actual furniture for your balcony, it all depends on the size of the balcony and how you're going to use the space. If you're going to eat on your balcony often, a table is a good idea. There are many variants of bistro tables and chairs that fit on smaller balconies. But if you prefer to sit back in comfort and take it easy on your balcony, a lounge set is a great alternative – although these only fit on a slightly larger balcony. If your balcony is very small, a suspended table can be a good solution, as you can remove it to free up the space when the table isn’t in use. It’s also important to think about materials when you're buying balcony furniture. Choose a material that’s easy to maintain and which will age attractively, such as stoneware or rattan. These natural materials are also bang on trend just now.
A balcony becomes a practical space when you choose the right furniture, but that’s all it is. To get it to feel like an extension of your home, you need to decorate it with the right details. The easiest thing to start with is the textiles. With throws, blankets and cushions, your balcony gets a new life straight away. But don’t forget to bring them in on wet days! If you have a large or medium-sized balcony, a patio storage box can be a useful solution. And if you cover it with a tablecloth, it can even act as a table if you have a small balcony. It’s also a good idea to have covers for your balcony furniture so it stays in good condition from one season to another.
The final detail to make your balcony really cosy is the lighting. A trend that’s been around for a few years now is strings of large round lamps. These don’t look at all like Christmas lights, but have become traditional for the summer. And lanterns are perfect for holding candles on the balcony table or floor. Why be satisfied with just one lantern when you can have several?
If you live in a flat and want to grow things like tomatoes or courgettes, you’ll probably want one large pot on your balcony. But if you’d rather grow flowers you can scatter them around. If you want to save space, there are balcony pots and boxes you can hang from the railing. If you have a bit more room, you can put your pots on a shelf unit. And if you just want one pot on the table or hanging as a decorative detail, there are lots of attractive pots to choose from. Just make sure the pots are made of materials suitable for outdoor use. And don't forget that pottery weighs a lot more than plastic, if you’re going to want to move your tomato plants around!
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