|Dot & Bo|
I’ve got the winter boho-blahs.
February in central Indiana this year came with unheard-of mild weather that disappeared yesterday. Friday reached a balmy 72 degrees F., capping an eight-day run of highs over 60, before the day disintegrated into wind, thunder and rain as a coldfront pushed its way in.
And today? Let’s just say there was snow on the roofs when we opened our blinds this morning. The predicted high may reach 35, and we’re back to gray-gray-gray before the warm-up begins again tomorrow.
Could this be winter’s last hurrah? Everyone is hoping so, even though 24 days remain until spring arrives March 20 at 6:28 a.m.
If the predictions hold, today will be the coldest day between now and the end of the first full week of March. After that, it’s anybody’s guess. I’ve experienced Indiana winters that dumped two feet of snow the last week of February and an inch of ice the last week of March, with little or no warning.
Regardless of how it all shakes out, to help count down the days, here are some of my favorite outdoor—or semi-outdoor—spaces. Use this revue as an expedition of ideas for restyling your own few square feet of heaven come warm weather, also known as “the patio.” That’s certainly what I’m doing.
Pinning fingers ready? Let’s go!
|Via Keltainen Talo Rannalla|
Never underestimate the value of a sheltered window on the world to watch winter as it turns to spring. When going outside is an exercise in discomfort, curling up in a spot like this is heaven. I’m wondering how to carve out such a space in my own home, where having only four windows total limits my options.
I love all the greenery—in the plants as well as the paint—and the mix of flower patterns in the pillows and quilt. See more photos of this home HERE.
|Via I’m Outside Looking In|
What I wouldn’t give for a sun room like this I could open to the outside when weather allowed! Daybeds are all the rage, and a sunroom is the perfect place to take a snooze. I love the textiles used here—the colorful striped throw and the geometric patterned pillows, particularly the kuba cloth one on the right.
|Leslie Lindell photo / Le Sophie|
The painted floor is what jumps out to me. I love the repetition of turquoise, even down to the window frames over the seating area. Those pillows on the chairs have been faded by their sunny spot, and there’s something warm and lovely about that. I also love the ottoman top wrapped in a pretty flowered throw. See more of this home on Apartment Therapy.
Nothing much beats the view from inside a conservatory. There’s something mesmerizing about a glass roof with framed window panes, accentuating the view out and overhead. Somehow clouds, critters, and moon and stars become even more fascinating, as if being watched through a camera lens.
If I owned THIS room I’d never leave it.
|Via Casinha Colorida|
Okay, I MIGHT leave it to hang out here. Of course I adore the bright colors and festive patterns, but how cool is that mish-mash of window frames?
|Dion Antony Design via The Grace Tales|
A roofed porch is the next best thing to a screened-in porch or sunroom. And this one, thanks to the profusion of plants, seems to be a continuum of the garden beyond. I wonder if you dream more exotic dreams, taking an afternoon snooze on such an elaborately carved bench? I’d love to find out, as long as I can take along my own bench cushion.
|Via Buddha Interiors|
This porch daybed looks for all the world like a repurposed camp-sized bed dressed up in happy, happy flowers. There’s nothing much sweeter than napping outdoors and waking up to the sun on your face. The porch itself is its very own dream catcher.
Oh my! Have I died and gone to heaven? Or awakened in the Casbah? I love the rug-upholstered, over-stuffed cushions arranged a la sectional—great for conversing or stretching out to sleep or—you know. Check out more photos of this home.
|Better Homes and Gardens|
Wow! Pow! The color here knocks my socks off! Lately I am so into orange, and I can’t figure it out. Chasing the winter blahs, I guess.
Looks like this porch is part sunroom and part open-sided—the best of all worlds! Having a fan is a must in such a space, but I like that the owner has also found room for a small chandelier, which hangs over the bench like an exclamation point.
|Better Homes and Gardens|
Who doesn’t perk up when they see sunshine yellow? Particularly when paired, as it is here, with citron green? I’ve got my eye on the checkerboard rug, how about you?
|Via Digs Digs|
This is more my style—bright colors, but a bit careworn. I love the purple paired with yellow and the plants with colorful foliage. These plants look to be mostly coleus. My own favorite patio plants are varieties of caladium. I like to mix them with laser grass and Boston ferns for a stunning shade garden.
|Denise Sabia photo/ The Painted Home|
I love how this cheerily tricked-out detached garage spills into its attached driveway-turned-patio. And what a fun use of vintage aprons, tied together overhead, like flags waving in the breeze.
Follow this transformation from garage to “she-shed” HERE.
|Lobster & Swan|
This “mom cave” is even MORE my style. Such stark simplicity! My guess is that daybed is not only perfect for snoozing but for gazing. I wish I could see what the view is. You can see more of this lovely retreat HERE and get tips for creating your own garden getaway.
|Angelita Bonetti photo|
This trailer is part of a larger home, but what a good idea for a studio or getaway—just park a small vintage trailer in your backyard! Of course, make sure your neighborhood covenants allow it, first.
Would that I’d thought of doing something like this with my balconies all those years I lived in apartments! Shoes off at the doorway, then crawl into bed!
It reminds me of old movies you see of city-dwellers taking their mattresses out onto the fire escape in summer because it’s too hot to sleep inside. But THIS “fire escape” has a lot more amenities. If the view was interesting, I’d stay there all day.
|Atelier Rue Verte|
It’s always been a dream of mine to live in a place with a roof terrace, but this is probably as close as I’ll get now. But that’s okay; gotta save something for the next life, right?
This looks like a terrific place for sunbathing. There’s even a ladder to climb to a higher level when the rays shift. Just don’t get prickled by that prickly cactus, K? Follow the link to tour this Marrakech home designed by Valerie Barkowski.
|Via Milagros Mundo|
Another daybed—you can clearly see what it is I’m wanting, can’t you? Again, I’m gaga for all those shabby chic textiles. The intricate paving is pretty cool, too.
|Via Dot & Bo|
This beautifully styled deck could be on a rooftop or merely elevated. It’s the floor pillows, pouf, and colorful covered basket that capture my attention here.
And the MIRROR! I think we forget that outdoors is a wonderful place for a mirror to reflect the beauty of nature. I do have a spot on my own patio where that might work…
|Via Kelly’s DIY Blog|
Enclosure is its own intimacy. I love how this space has multiple levels and a profusion of flowers and greenery. And how cute is that treadle sewing machine repurposed as a table?
|Mary Bryan-Peyer photo via Design Chic|
I’ve often thought it would be intriguing to live in a house wrapped around a central courtyard. I guess it’s my previous life in ancient Rome bleeding through. But seriously, it must be so comforting to see that encapsulated bit of heaven no matter where you go in a house.
|Via Clive Nichols|
This courtyard is a bit more rustic, but just as charming. I’ve been told that watching chickens is fascinating—the pecking order they establish and such—and relaxing. And as long as someone else cleans the coop, I’m all for it!
Now THERE’S a comfy bench cushion! We once owned a similar bench, and for 20 years or so I enjoyed many a summer nap, stretched out its full length on a thick cushion. Our bench, which Chris built, finally succumbed to the elements, but I still have my memories.
I love how the smaller rug in this photo is layered over the grass rug, which appears to be layered over stone or gravel, which helps smooth out the surface for walking barefoot—my favorite summer pastime!
|Via Planete Deco|
I don’t need an umbrella for shade on my current patio, but I certainly could use one for ambiance. The problem is storing it for the winter. I do miss the big market umbrella we had at our single-family home, though (where we did need it for shade). When the wind blew, it creaked, and the sound reminded me of sails and mast creaking on a tall ship.
Again, an area rug has been used over gravel to smooth the walking surface in this scene. My eye is on the hanging basket by the chair, though. Is it wired for light? A graceful accent regardless.
|Sarita Relis photo|
To relax is the thing, even if your bit of outdoor heaven is only a small square of concrete. That trellis is so sculptural, even without vines covering it. Tour this studio and its attached garden HERE.
Until spring ACTUALLY comes…
|Via Gioia de Vivere|
You’ll find me by the window, searching for signs of its coming. Wish my window on the world matched this one, even just a little bit. Oh well, I can pretend. Often that’s just as much fun.