Our top 5 tips when designing your outdoor room.
Part 2: THE TECHNICAL STUFF!
Now that you have your plan with actionable steps completed, it is time to get onto the technical stuff. I know, I know, it doesn't sound exciting but trust me, it is a vital step in constructing the most amazing outdoor area for your family.
Measure twice & get it right!
The jumping off point for this lesson is to measure and measure correctly!!
I am surprised by the amount of clients who go shopping for furniture without measuring their area. With such a huge variation in patio and veranda sizes in Australia, there is no 'normal' and it is really hard to pick furniture based on a measurement of 'maybe this big'.
Drawing a little mud map of your outdoors is really important to be able to work out your plan for furniture and zones. Ensure that along with the width and length of your space, you also take note of the following:
- any posts in and around the area
- windows and their height from the ground
- doors and the direction and area of the swing
- garden edges or falls from the main area
- any walkways that are currently in place
One thing to note about your current walkways, is if they work efficiently or not. Can they be changed depending on your zones? If the walkway is the only way through the area, to get to another door, or gate for example, mark it on your map and measure the space between.
We talked about the importance of zones in Part 1: From Dreams to Plans! and worked our lifestyle into our plan we made. Now is the time to look at your mud map and see where these zones can fit in.
If your area is small you might find this a bit harder, but hopefully after assessing your lifestyle and your needs, you can work something out for your family. A tip here is to assess the most common activity likely to be done in the area and accommodate that. For example: if you would like to be having family dinners than a dining area is more important that a lounge. On the other hand, if you have a TV outside and will be having friends over to watch the big game than you will need a lounging zone with a possible outdoor kitchen of some sort.
If your patio or deck is larger, you may have room (and the need) for 2, 3 or 4 zones. Entertaining style, family members and their ages and activities, and dreams will all come into play here. Find a happy balance and write your zone wish list onto your plan.
The key with zones is to be flexible. You can have your ideas, and some temporary plans, but once you start shopping you need to have a degree of flexibility so that you can accommodate the furniture you love.
OK there you have it, lesson 2 is done on my end, now it is time for you to do your homework.
Your homework is:
- Measure everything correctly and make a mud map
- Decide on the zones and temporality add them to the mud map
- Have a drink - you deserve it