Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Creating an Outdoor Entertaining Space

Our weather is all over the place these days with sunshine and blue skies one day followed by freezing rain and snow the next. 

Thankfully, we know it won't last forever and I'm really excited to get my deck ready for another great summer season in the mountains. 


Last year was my first season in the house and I really tried to do what I could to create a welcoming and relaxing outdoor entertaining space. 


Some comfortable seating at one end of the deck paired with a propane fire pit and a large offset umbrella made for a terrific conversation area. 


We spent many a wonderful evening by that fire pit last season!


I had various pots of flowers on the deck, making us feel as if we were enjoying time in a cottage garden, not an elevated deck. Many of the flowers I plant near our seating areas release their fragrance on a balmy evening, all the more reason to linger out on the deck into the evening hours. I also tend to use a lot of white in the areas we sit in the evenings as the brighter flowers really show up well in dusk and low light. Plus they make all the brighter colors really pop in comparison!

There is a round dining table near the conversation area where we enjoyed many lovely meals throughout the warmer months. The proximity of the table to the fire pit area made it an easy transition to and from the table to the fire pit for before-dinner or after-dinner cocktails. 


I like to set a nice table when dining alfresco - the act of gathering together around a table and sharing a meal as a family is a cherished one in a busy household and should be treated as so. 


It almost feels as if I'm up in a tree house at times when the leaves are all filled in. I feel at one with nature and a little closer to heaven out there!


I even love the view looking down from the deck into my entry garden and birdbath. 


The other side of the "L" in my "L Shaped Deck" leads to the kitchen door and smaller staircase and is far more utilitarian. The BBQ is out there, as well as a serving cart, ice cooler on wheels, watering can, etc. But that doesn't mean it has to be an eyesore. 


I planted all sorts of flowers to grow up the deck railings including my favorites - morning glories and gloriosa lilies. They were the first things I saw when I looked out my kitchen window, or when I stepped out onto my deck. What a lovely sight to start my day!


I think some of the most important elements in creating a wonderful entertaining space outdoors include comfortable seating, tables to rest drinks/food on, lighting and/or candles to extend the celebration into the evening, and flowers/plants to soften the edges and perfume the air. 

Add some good food, cocktails, soft music, and good friends and you've got the making of a wonderful evening. 







38 comments:

  1. I love your wonderful outdoor entertaining area. So many cute seating spots. You did an awesome job on your plants too. You can be proud of yourself. Blessings, xoxo,Susie

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    1. Thanks, Susie - can't wait to get started this year!

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  2. I love your gorgeous piece of heaven up in the mountains! Have you ever planted Moon Vine? It opens at night with huge white blossoms.
    Brenda

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    1. I love it, and I've tried it a few times but never with any luck. Perhaps I'll try again this year!

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  3. Beautiful! Inviting and relaxing, what a perfect place to enjoy family and friends.

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    1. Thanks, Dayle - and you are welcome any time!

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  5. My goodness, you never cease to amaze me with all of your lovely spaces inside and out.

    Happy spring ~ FlowerLady

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    1. You're one to talk with those gorgeous gardens and outbuildings at Plum Cottage!!

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  6. Hello little pretty! Oh, your deck area is so gorgeous. Your furnishings look so nice too. We are thinking about getting one of those heavy umbrellas for our back deck. We don't get much sunshine because of the huge trees but it would be nice to be able to sit out in the rain and it would hopefully protect our furniture. Your plants in the pots look wonderful. I know how you have a green thumb - that helps! ;) Your place is just so lovely, inside and out.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

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    1. If you are looking to sit out in the rain I would suggest one of those canvas pergolas instead - this one didn't do much to keep me dry when I tried it out last summer! I used to have a canvas pergola thing that I got from Lowes or Walmart or similar and it was wonderful - the only thing, you need to take the canvas off the frame before the first snow or it will collapse!

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  7. You have the perfect space there...all elements that are needed and a few more as well :)

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    1. Thanks, Deb - I hope I have a lot more time to enjoy it this year now that I'm all settled in!

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  8. You have the perfect space there...all elements that are needed and a few more as well :)

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  9. I love the view from your "treehouse"...so peaceful. I'm working on my patio in between the coughing, sneezing and rain. It's petuniaville on your porch- they are one of my favs. What a wonderful place to spend time.

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    1. Oh, poor Tina, feel better!! There's a nasty flu going around here, too. Yes, I love wave petunias - they are just so reliable!

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  10. I envy the size of your deck! Beautifully space!

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    1. I envy the VIEW from your deck! I guess we're even, huh? :)

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  11. It all looks beautiful. I love the setting - and this time of year gets me inspired to get some planting done which I haven't done yet. In our mountains the rule of thumb is usually not to plant anything until after Mother's day or it will get snowed on. I usually just do pots so I can bring things in if a freeze is coming. Loved seeing your deck.

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    1. Same here, we can't plant yet - those photos are all from last summer. Our temps are going down to single digits this weekend - the pansies are back in the garage!!

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  12. You have a lovely deck! Very well done!

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    1. Thanks! The deck itself could use a little TLC at this point but when you have all those beautiful flowers who's looking at the deck boards, right? :)

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  13. Your deck looks so inviting! The flowers are all beautiful too. I'll be right over for a cocktail!

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  14. You have a wonderful deck and it's really full of inspiration for me.

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    1. Oh, that's wonderful, Magali - it's great when we bloggers can inspire one another!

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  15. It looks so inviting. I just want to cuddle up in a chair and roast some marshmallows over the fire and then have coffee in the morning sitting out their smelling the perfume of the flowers and hearing the birds singing.

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  16. It looks so inviting. I just want to cuddle up in a chair and roast some marshmallows over the fire and then have coffee in the morning sitting out their smelling the perfume of the flowers and hearing the birds singing.

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    1. Sounds like the story of my weekends in the summer months!!

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  17. You have created an amazing space to relax and enjoy the outdoors! Wow.

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    1. I try, Kim....no pool, but there is the sound of the creek singing to me in the most peaceful way!

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  18. You are a Master! Wow, who wouldn't want to hang out there?! The blooms are breathtaking! Thanks for stopping by The Maple Hill Hop this week!

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    1. Glad to!! I'll have lots more outdoor posts for your weekly hop once the snow leaves and I can actually get outside!! :)

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  19. What a wonderful place for relaxing as the sun goes down. I love all the pretty colors.

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    1. Thank you, Betty - I am definitely fond of colors and surround myself and my garden with all those happy shades! Thanks for your visit....and your comment!

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  20. Dear Mountain Mama:
    There are so many great ideas here to create a lovely deck or patio. I love it all! Thanks for sharing and linking.

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    1. Thanks, Bernideen - I can't wait until our weather warms up and I can get back out there!

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