16 Inspiring Outdoor Terraces for Every Size, Style and Budget

Outdoor spaces are fascinating - there are just so many alternatives and done right, they can become a wonderful extension of your living space. Whether you're influenced by the 'English garden' (my Mother's London borders are packed with blooms and you can't see the patio for pots!), the 'Scandinavian outdoor space' (more often than not: an understated, practical and comfortable affair) or the walled Mediterranean courtyard, where balmy evenings are enjoyed alfresco with a chilled glass of rosé - I hope you'll find inspiration in my round-up of 16 outdoor spaces for every size, style, budget and climate!

1. The romantic urban oasis (above)
I had the pleasure of staying at Hotel Henriette in Paris for the launch of the French version of my Lagom book and it was even more magical in real life! Do as this wonderful boutique hotel and make a feature of a back wall using climbers, a mirror and twinkling fairy lights. Add vintage outdoor furniture for a romantic oasis right there in the city!

2. The urban side alley
Make the most of narrow spaces with slim borders a simple table and string lights!

3. The built in bench
When space is of a premium opt for a built-in bench that lines the wall or fence (it can also be used for storage!). Wisteria, seen in the far right corner, is a great plant for vertical greenery, and it's hardy too. We all know the real hero of this space though: the fireplace! How very hygge!  You can see the complete tour of this little garden here

4. The wood burning stove
An old wood burner has been given a whole new lease of life in this lovely Swedish backyard. Loving the bamboo furniture too.

5. The big illusion!
Mirrors can make a small outdoor space feel way bigger. I particularly love old repurposed varieties. This one is available at Aldgate Homes.

6. The window to the world
In an urban environment it can be tricky to carve out a private space. In this pretty Parisian courtyard which once featured on the front of Marie Claire Maison, glass windows ensure a light and airy feel while wisteria and potted Japanese Maples screen the patio from view. That bar table is great too, don't you think?

7. The natural canopy! 
This easy-to-care for space is a natural extension of the house. Vines have been trained along a trellis for natural coverage. Painting outdoor walls is also a great option if you like a little colour!

8. The all-weather 'garden'
This stunning space in Holland gives the illusion that you're outside while actually being housed in a greenhouse! Check out the tiles!

9. The boho-romantic patio!
Can you also feel the warmth and gentle breeze oozing from this sun-dappled terrace? Rattan furniture and bright coloured cushions add to the vibrant and relaxed feel. Word of warning - if you live in cooler climes, make sure you opt for rattan furniture designed to withstand all weathers.

10. The comfy diner! 
It's not always possible to squeeze in a dining area and comfy L-shaped sofa - so why not combine the two. This sofa has been made from concrete and then lined with pretty cushions. I also like that this Moroccan-inspired outdoor patio belonging to actress Shay Mitchell, has been made up of mix and match furniture and lots of vertical greenery for a wonderful, relaxed vibe! See the full tour over on My Domaine.

11. The treat your feet!
In the summer it's not unusual to wonder outside bare foot - so why not treat them to something soft? Rugs are a perfect way to make an outdoor space feel cosy. If you live in a rainy place (story of my life!) select rugs specifically designed for outdoor areas. 

12. Warm Minimalist
Who said minimalist spaces need feel cold? This beautiful, covered dining area has been created using palm woven chairs and a simple wooden table for lovely, long lunches alfresco. The towels on the wall give the impression that there might just be a pool lurking around the corner... nice! 

13. The Balcony jungle
Bring 'forest bathing' to your balcony with a load of beautiful plants (look closely and you'll see they are all low maintenance perennials - hurrah!). I also love how they've painted the wall dark grey to make the space feel more intimate. A set of string lights add a magical touch after sunset. 

14 . The DIY roof terrace
Unless it's your sole outdoor space, let's face it, roof terraces are often neglected! But there's a simple way to transform them into a comfortable oasis on a budget. This wonderful corner sofa has been cobbled together using a series of shipping palettes. Just add cushions and a pretty climber and you'll have a little oasis in no time. 

15. The hammock
Hands up who else would happily swap places with the person in this picture? We might not be lucky enough to have a pool like this (isn't it lovely?!) but there's usually a place for a hammock (I like this one*) - even on a balcony. Just add a great book! 

16. The pool garden
This would never fly in our garden in Sweden - but a girl can dream, right?! Plus, there might be some of you out there with a space and climate begging for a pool like this. If so, can I come over?! Oh, and it's made from a shipping container - can you believe that?!

Roll on summer and long lunches alfresco! 

For more outdoor inspiration today, take a peek at:

My small backyard gets a cosy make-over
7 boho ideas for outdoor spaces (big and small)
A charming Swedish garden
Alfresco showers!

I'd love to hear more about your ultimate backyard -  and what you loved most from these pictures. Weigh in below if you have the time!


Photo credits in order of appearance: 1. Herve Goluza / 2. Nanette Wong / 3 & 4. De Zanderik / 5 & 6 Peter Carlsson / 7. Aldgate Home / 8. Marie Claire Maison / 9. Unknown - can you help?! 10. Yvonne Kusters Interior / 11. Gypsy Purple / Katherine Ireland / 12. Shay Mitchell / My Domaine / 13. Unknown - please help me to match this picture with the owner! / 14. Tine K Home / 15. Unknown - can you help pair this picture with its owner? 16 Unknown - great if you can help! / 17. Haciendas Tentadoras - photo by Nils Preston Schlesbusch / 18. Tanqua pools (I am not sure if this is the original credit, if not, please give me a shout below!) 

Affiliate links marked with *

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Small Spaces: Grandma Style Meets Urban Jungle in a Berlin Rental Decorated on a Shoe-string

Hej hej! I hope you had a fabulous weekend?! Mine was just what I needed - hanging out, swimming in the sea, relaxing. And it was during one of these moments, a friend made a comment while  browsing an interior magazine: 'the homes and items in this magazine are so exclusive and out of my reach that it all feels completely irrelevant." Do you feel like that sometimes too? You're not alone, my 'small spaces' archive is the most popular and viewer figures sky rocket when I feature a low budget home. And this is what inspired today's tour!

Joana Gericke is an environmental engineer masters student and lives in Berlin with her boyfriend (also a student) and two cats (does everyone in Berlin have a cat?!). The pair have decorated their delightful 56 square metre (602 square feet) rental apartment almost entirely with secondhand and handmade items. Joana shares her tips on how to create a beautiful home on a shoe-string budget - and enjoy a  ore sustainable lifestyle as a result!

This striped linen table cloth* is similar, glass storage jars*, source vintage basket* and scales*

"My home is a mix of Grandma style and urban jungle - very few pieces are new" Joana told me. "I like my home to feel personal, cosy and full of memories."

A dark blue accent wall in the kitchen helps to create impact and a vintage ladder provides extra storage without having to drill into the walls of the rental apartment. 

A stove top kettle helps to free up counter space in the galley kitchen (I so need to get one for my own kitchen - I've got my eye on one of these vintage beauties*!).

Dried flowers are a big trend this year - and of course, they last forever! Perfect!

"If you are on a tight budget, go to flea markets, especially those that aren't crowded with tourists," advises Joana. "This is a problem in Berlin - so called 'vintage markets' are expensive. I'd recommend going to smaller ones in suburban areas. I also like eBay Kleinanzeigen where you can buy and sell low cost items. I don't know if there is something similar in your country but I think so."

"If there is something you can't find second hand, think about making it yourself - there's often an easy way and it'll feel more personal and can fit your needs and style."

"If there's something you want but don't need right away, it's better to wait until you can afford it rather than buy a cheaper version that is not quite right,"  advises Joana.

 The bed is on a raised platform so that the room can double up as an office.

Isn't this space charming? There are so many lovely ideas to steal! 

It's quite incredible what an impact vintage items and plants can make to a space - and it's amazing what you can find for a song if you're smart about it. 

Is there anything you love in particular about Joana's home? 

Joana finds inspiration at: @friederikchen, @becausethereisnoplanetb_ and @doitbutdoitnow
(among others) and of course, there's always Joana's own inspiring feed

Check out more small spaces here and two beautiful homes decorated on a shoe-string budget here and here!

Have a great start to the week!


Photography: Joana Gericke

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A dreamy urban beach home

I can't tell you how excited I am about today's home tour. Located just east of Sydney, this beautiful cliff top beach house combines white washed walls and soft coastal tones with an urban feel. But it hasn't always been as fabulous. When the family of four bought it in 2010 it was a run down bungalow - soon put to right by architect Brian Bass and interior design team Hare & Klein. Today, wall to ceiling windows offer panoramic views over the sea, and the light walls allow the beautiful light to bounce around the split-level house. Curved walls, texture and layers add a softness and help the space to flow. Oh how I'd love to live in an urban beach house like this!

Photography: Anson Smart (shared with kind permission). Styling Joseph Gardner.

Could you live here?!

A few items I know and love: Ghost sofa 16, Serge Mouille floor lamp, Z1 pendant light, J39 or 'the people's chair', this bamboo pendant light is similar, pick-up beautiful stonewashed bed linen like this here.

You can see a few more pics of this lovely Australian home and a full write-up over at Vogue.

When a home as lovely as this is featured, I think it would be rude not to make it a 'beach home' kind of day don't you?! Warning - this archive will have you dreaming of an escape to somewhere warm and tropical!

Have a lovely day!

PS Two exciting announcements - don't forget to make the most of this reader offer from Abbott & Mosley and the winner of the Beni Ourain rug is now up here!

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Pretty Danish Christmas inspiration

Morning! I hope you had a great weekend? I'm on the early morning train, traveling through the countryside, the sun is sloooowly starting to rise but it's cold brrrrr. Where I really want to be is back in bed (or in this room with dark green walls - could this be the wall colour of 2016?). Failing that I'd love to be pottering around, putting the final touches on our Christmas tree (this is our home several Christmas's ago).  That's why I couldn't resist sharing a little more festive inspiration today, this time from Broste Copenhagen. The Danes really do know how to decorate for Christmas, don't they? 

Broste AW15 Photography: Line Thit Klein. Styling Marie Gravnbøl

So pretty! I love the touches of eucalyptus and washed grey linen.

All of these items can be purchased through a Broste stockist. I also absolutely love this linen tableware.

More beautiful Danish homes at Christmas include this beautiful house in the snow and inside a rustic log cabin.

A few more Christmas links I love today: 

This simple white star garland.

Christmas cards - the art of beautiful penmanship made easy. Oh yes we can!

Decorating with a personal touch using instagram / instax.

If you love the macrame wall hanging trend but would like something a little different from the white -  how about this one? Art in itself?!

10 of the best simple table decorations.

Fab Alternative Christmas trees

Pretty Scandinavian Christmas inspiration for the home.

Have a great start to the week! 

PS This is not a sponsored post, I just love the images....

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