How to create outdoor spaces with personality

The weather has finally turned in our favour and it’s time to now think about how to create outdoor spaces with personality that you will love to use and enjoy. Just like your indoor space, you want your outdoor space to reflect your personality and style.

For most of us, figuring out our interior space is stressful enough, let alone trying to create a warm, welcoming outdoor space. This is where I come in. Grab a cool drink, head outside and get inspired as you read this article.

First, let’s talk about the space you have — is it a small balcony, a deck, a porch or a larger patio area?  The size of the space really has no relation to the amount of enjoyment you can experience or the style it will be. It doesn’t matter how large or small your space is, you can make it look fabulous!


how to create outdoor spaces balcony furniture Sue Pitchforth

So many of the pieces that make a great space are shown even in a smaller space. I especially love how we leaned the canvas art against the wall. Photo: Sue Pitchforth

There are so many ways you can enjoy your outdoor space with very little money or effort. And I really do mean very little. Let’s get creative!


Your how-to tips to creating your outdoor spaces with personality include:

Front door welcome

Why not create a new type of spring floral wreath for your door? I love this one I created, which is a perfect welcome for my friends and family. To make it no stress, the tulips are faux.

how to create outdoor spaces spring door wreath Sue Pitchforth


Photo: Sue Pitchforth

Where to start to create outdoor spaces with personality

Start by removing everything from your space.

What important pieces do you need to create a space you will love? Making a list can help you to begin the process.


Questions to ask yourself:

  • What types and number of seating do I need?
  • How many tables should I have?
  • What types of accessories do I need or want?

Take a walk around your home and look in your basement, garage and shed for pieces that you can repurpose into your outdoor space. Do you have a unique antique piece? A small table? Unusual containers? Bring them out and give them new life.

how to create outdoor spaces front door Sue Pitchforth antique pump


This antique pump has traveled with me to 10 homes and has had a prominent spot in each home in different ways. It’s one of my favourite pieces. Photo: Sue Pitchforth

An outdoor rug is a must this season. A new bold rug gives your space a good visual foundation and a pop of colour.

Keep the sun at bay with an umbrella, pergola, sunshade or other structure to keep you and your guests comfortable in the hot sun.


how to create outdoor spaces backyard sitting area Sue Pitchforth lounge chairs

Photo: Sue Pitchforth

Conversation and eating areas

Will they be separate or the same space? Be sure to set up the furniture in a way that allows for easy conversation and enjoyment of the space.


how to create outdoor spaces covered patio sitting area Sue Pitchforth backyard lounge

Photo: Sue Pitchforth

Battery operated lanterns or hanging lights are a great addition either grouped on a table or beside a chair. During the day they add visual interest and in the evening they offer a nice ambient light.


how to create outdoor spaces front porch rocking chair watering can hurricane lamp Sue Pitchforth

Photo: Sue Pitchforth

Colourful outdoor cushions can add some punch to your space and really tie everything together. You can also DIY your own cushions by spraying them with Thompson’s Water Seal.


Plants, plants and more plants! Take the opportunity to surround your spaces with beautiful plants in various containers. Container gardening is so easy — containers are movable and best of all there are no weeds.

MORE: Adding personality with outdoor containers

Hang an old mirror on your wall or fence or lean it in your garden. This is such a fun way to add whimsy and make your space appear larger. I guarantee that if you hang a mirror in your outdoor space your friends and family will love it and “borrow” the idea.

how to create outdoor spaces outdoor mirror fence art Sue Pitchforth


Photo: Sue Pitchforth

I hope that by reading this you are now inspired to take on and create your own outdoor space. My wish for you is that you create a space that reflects your family’s personality and that is fun, colourful and well used.

Originally published May 19, 2019


About the Author

Sue Pitchforth

Sue Pitchforth of Decor Therapy Plus is an international award-winning designer, media personality and speaker. Sue’s approach to design is refreshing, unique and inexpensive, yet yields luxurious results. Believing the home is an expression of your life and personality, Sue is known for making design easy, fun and affordable. Sue says most people usually have a lot of what they need, they just don’t know it. Her design philosophy always includes the three E’s: edit, energy and enjoy.



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