north london terrace garden

Design an Outdoor Living Space

north london terrace garden

A garden allows you to enjoy your own, private outdoor haven, so it’s vital to make the most of it. By incorporating an outdoor living space, you can increase the versatility of your garden and make it even more functional. However, turning your garden into another room is about much more than simply incorporating outdoor furniture or spending a few hours in the sunshine. To find out how to design outdoor living space, take a look at these top tips now:

1. Split Your Garden into Zones

Depending on the amount of space you have available, splitting your garden into zones can be the best way to transform it into a multipurpose environment. You may choose to use some of your garden as an outdoor living space, another area as a place for homegrown fruits and vegetables, and a separate space for a rolling lawn or play area for younger members of your family.

By considering all the different ways in which you plan to use your garden, you can decide whether splitting into designating zones is the most effective way to carve out an outdoor living space. While these zones needn’t be distinct in design or have clear boundaries surrounding them, they can help you to identify your goals and priorities throughout the design phase.

2. Create a Multi-Level Space

Having a multi-level garden adds excitement and intrigue in an instant, which means it’s a great way to design an outdoor living space. If your garden isn’t on one level, trying to flatten it can be a costly, time-consuming, and ultimately futile task. By using retaining walls and designing steps, stairways and slopes, however, you can take advantage of a multi-level garden and use it as the basis of your outdoor living space.

Of course, you don’t have to miss out if your garden happens to be flat and even. With a little landscaping, you can create your very own multi-level outdoor idyll too. Earth can be added to incorporate different layers into your garden, for example, or patios and decks can be raised to achieve a multi-level aesthetic.

3. Combine Hard and Soft Landscaping

Both hard and soft landscaping can be used in a garden environment but combining them enables you to achieve a balance between the different elements. Paving over a large proportion of your garden to create a large patio might leave the space feeling devoid of nature, for example. However, filling the space with blooming potted plants and using climbing flowers as a backdrop helps to balance the hard landscaping of the patio with the soft landscaping of the plants, flowers, and shrubs.

When you’re looking for outdoor living room ideas, remember that you’re likely to use a selection of furniture in the new space. This can enhance the visual impact of hard landscaping, so be sure to balance this with plants, trees, and shrubs to create a tranquil environment and stabilise the aesthetic.

4. Evoke All of the Senses

There’s no doubt that you’ll want to create a visual impact with your outdoor living space, but why stop there? When it comes to outdoor living room ideas, aim to evoke all of the senses with the features and design themes you choose.

Installing a water feature ensures you can listen to the rippling water as you relax in your garden, for example, while planting fragrant herbs and plants, such as lavender or lilacs, means you’ll be surrounded by enticing aromas every time you step outside.

Similarly, using a range of textures in your outdoor living space can add depth to your design but it also satisfies your sense of touch. From the fabric you choose for outdoor seating to the materials used in sculptures, there are a variety of ways to ensure your new outdoor living space evokes the senses.

5. Extend Your Home

Once you know how to design an outdoor living space, you have the potential to extend your home, but not in the way you might think. This doesn’t involve obtaining planning permission or constructing extra walls and ceilings but rather extending the interior of your home into the great outdoors.

When your outdoor living space continues the flow and feel of your interior design, you enhance the sense of fluidity that should already be present in your property. Not only does this cater to your personal style and tastes but it also allows you to create an outdoor living space that perfectly complements the interior of your home.

By using bifold, trifold, and sliding doors or panoramic windows, you can blur the lines between indoors and outdoors even more, and create a stunning, versatile space.

6. Think About Practicalities

An outdoor living space should enable you to spend more time in your garden, but you’ll want to ensure you have the practicalities in place if you’re going to make the most of the space. This might mean extending the range of your router to ensure you can access the internet from your designated outdoor living space, for example. Alternatively, you might choose to have power outlets installed in discreet locations so that you can incorporate entertainment into your outdoor living space.

Although modifications can be made in the future, it’s easier to include these practical extras from the outset. When you build them into your design, you can use spectacular exterior design to hide wiring or fixtures, for example.

7. Use Outdoor Fabrics

Many people shy away from using fabrics outdoors, which is understandable when you consider how much rainfall we get in the UK! However, fabric is an important way of increasing comfort and helps to make a space feel more welcoming. Choosing fabrics that are designed for outdoor use, such as outdoor seating or outdoor rugs, ensures you can enhance your outdoor living space with stunning designs and textures while still selecting decorative pieces that are suitable for use outside.

Bring Your Outdoor Living Room Ideas to Life

When you increase the functionality of your garden, you effectively transform it into another room. Whether you plan on spending your days soaking up the sun, working from home, or enjoying time as a family, an exquisite outdoor living room will enhance the function, style, and versatility of your home.

shalini misra founder the design buzz

Creator and Founder of The Design Buzz: Shalini Misra

shalini misra founder the design buzz

Already well-known for combining interior design and architecture to create spectacular environments, Shalini Misra’s latest project involves bringing exquisite designer homeware & luxury home accessories to an audience of homeowners, designers, and creatives.

Founded in 2020, The Design Buzz came about in response to regular enquiries from friends, family, and clients who were eager to know where to source the best pieces for their own homes.

While working as an internationally acclaimed interior designer, Shalini Misra and her team came across an array of talented artisans and craftspeople. Building a network of suppliers in the UK and overseas, Shalini routinely sought out spectacular furniture and decorative pieces to enhance designs and add the finishes touches to a client’s home or workspace.

Curating up and coming talent, and making their work available to the public seemed like a natural extension of Shalini’s work and, thus, The Design Buzz was born. Using her expertise and unique insight, Shalini has selected a range of artists to showcase on the site. Featuring the highest quality home items, furniture, and accessories, The Design Buzz brings artists and homeowners together.

"The Design Buzz is a celebration of the characters and companies that we know that bring wonderful items of all kinds to our homes"

Having trained as an architect at the Delhi School of Architecture, the University of Colombia in New York, and the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, Shalini’s unique experience and expertise ensures she is perfectly placed to recognise up-and-coming artists, designers, and companies that can deliver exquisite quality, optimal functionality, and spectacular aesthetics.

Furthermore, her award-winning work around the world, combined with a raft of accolades, makes Shalini well-placed to meet with burgeoning craftsmen and women who are often overlooked by the mainstream. As a result, you’ll find a unique, eclectic, and enticing range of furniture, home items, and accessories at The Design Buzz that’s hand selected by Shalini and her team.

Already named one of the top 100 interior designers in House & Garden, Shalini continues to offer her services as an interior architecture and designer while taking an active role as the Creative Director of The Design Buzz.

As well as being a British Institute of Interior Design (BIID) committee member, Shalini sits on several boards and acts as a trustee and mentor of the Vahani Scholarship Trust, a UK non-profit organisation that works with underprivileged children.

Dedicated to creating inspiring spaces that optimise well-being, promote sustainability, and enrich lives, Shalini brings her energy, creativity, and talent to the fore via The Design Buzz and looks forward to helping people find fixtures, furniture, and accessories to enhance their surroundings and bringing lesser-known artists to a new audience.

pool table in residential property

Design The Perfect Entertainment Space

pool table in residential property

Your home is your sanctuary, which means it should fulfil all of your needs and provide you with an enriching environment. Designing a space for entertaining ensures that you have a dedicated place for escapism, fun, and relaxation.

Additionally, designating a particular area of your property as an entertainment space allows you to incorporate new design ideas and themes into your home. To get started, take a look at these top tips for designing the perfect entertainment space now:

Identify Your Entertainment Goals

Before you start planning your new space, think about what type of entertainment you enjoy and what type of events you plan on hosting. If you’re known for hosting elegant, formal dinners, for example, the dining room may be a core concept in your design. Alternatively, if you prefer more informal gatherings, you might want to create a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere elsewhere in your home.

Similarly, remember to differentiate between entertainment spaces you’re likely to use as a family or with close friends and spaces that are more suitable for larger events, such as parties. A home cinema can be a great option for families and small groups of guests, for example, whereas a home bar might be ideal for larger parties.

Designate a Space

Dedicating part of your home to entertainment is always worthwhile, so don’t hesitate to reserve part of the floorplan purely for fun. Of course, this can be tricky if every area of your home already serves a distinct purpose. If you’re designing a space for entertaining, a basement conversion and extension can be a fantastic option. Not only will you increase the square footage of your home, but you can also play a role in designing every element of the space you’re creating. With stairs leading directly from the basement area to your garden, you can even design an indoor-outdoor environment that’s perfect for entertaining.

If you want to use existing space for entertaining, consider which areas of your home you’re willing to share with guests and which spaces provide the best atmosphere. A roof terrace with a stunning view can be an ideal location for cocktail parties or drinks before dinner, for example.

Increase Fluidity

Even when an entertainment space is distinct from the rest of your home, it should never feel cut off or distant. By increasing fluidity, you can ensure that there is a natural transition between other areas of your property and your new entertainment space. You can achieve this by choosing a design and style that complements the existing interior of your home and using creating a balance between each part of your property.

If the more public areas of your home, such as the dining area, kitchen and living areas, are open-plan, it’s particularly important to ensure that new entertainment spaces enhance the fluidity of the environment, rather than diminish it.

Maximise Versatility

Entertainment trends change all of the time and there’s a good chance you’ll want to use your new space for more than just one type of event. To make this possible, focus on maximising versatility when you’re designing a space for entertaining.

Use large rugs on the floors ensures they can be moved easily and transferred to other areas within your home, for example. Similarly, portable lighting, such as floor standing or table lamps, can be transported from one area to another in seconds.

You’ll even find that some furniture designed for entertainment spaces is created with versatility in mind. Choosing a home bar that features hidden wheels or casters allows you to increase the functionality of your home and modify your entertainment space at any time.

Use Warm Hues

You want people to feel welcome, relaxed and at ease when they visit your home for entertainment purposes, so make sure you factor this into your decision-making when you’re designing a space for entertaining. Warm shades help to make a room feel more intimate, which is ideal when you want your guests to get to know one another. Furthermore, warm colours tend to convey excitement and even exuberance, which is exactly what you want to achieve when you’re creating a space for escapism and fun.

Incorporate Varied Seating

The right seating is integral when you’re creating an entertainment space, so be sure to consider this early on during the design stage. Ideally, you’ll want to incorporate varied seating options into the area, so that people can naturally gravitate to what suits them best. Sofas, chairs, and benches are ideal in an entertainment space, but stools and statement seating can work well too.

Although comfort should always be a top priority when you’re designing an entertainment space, think about the flow of traffic if you’re hosting larger events, such as parties. If you want guests to move through the space and get to know one another, choose seating that’s comfortable but that doesn’t entice people to stay in one place for too long.

Use Lighting to Create Ambience

Lighting is a core component of any room and it's particularly critical in an entertainment space. Subtle lighting wired into shelves or bookcases can increase the impact of your interior design and take a room from day to night, for example. By using a range of different options, such as lamps, wall lights and ceiling lights, you can create a layered effect that lends itself to any type of entertainment. Similarly, choosing lights that can be easily adjusted, such as dimmable bulbs, will give you total control over the atmosphere and ambience.

Enjoying Your New Entertainment Area

Once your entertainment space is complete, all that’s left to do is enjoy it! While it can take time to design the perfect space for entertaining, your hard work will be well worth it when you experience the end result. Whether you plan on hosting large-scale events or friends and family are a permanent fixture in your home, a bespoke entertainment space will provide all the fun and escapism you need.