Design & Decor: The “Great” Outdoors

Design & Decor: No longer just a backyard, our outdoor spaces have become open-air great rooms, meant for everyday enjoyment and entertaining far beyond the summer pool party.


No longer just a backyard, our outdoor spaces have become open-air great rooms, meant for everyday enjoyment and entertaining far beyond the summer pool party.

KEEP IN MIND this fancy new title will require a little more than the old lounge chair and flower bed act of the past, but just think of all the additional square footage you are gaining…building permit not required.

Creating an outdoor space that invites not only a great party but also everyday utility requires a keen landscape design, the appropriate shelters and furnishings, and of course a great sense of style. We talked to some of the best from landscape designers to event planners to help you create your open-air great room.

“Our clients find that their outdoor space becomes their new family room year round—it’s fun to spend family time outside, even when it’s raining, and especially when you have a comfortable setting with a nice warm fireplace!”

~ Jason Jarvis Terra Bella Landscape Development ~ 

We asked San Diego designers, retailers, and event planners for their tips on creating a livable, social, and beautiful outdoor space.






“Do not be afraid to add a little drama. These pieces from the Nomad collection by Gloster are bright, fun, and funky. Best of all they are generously sized but super light so they are easy to move around for parties or if you want to follow the sun.”

 Doug Wheat, Hauser’s Patio








   “As an expert in private estate events we have the opportunity to see amazing outdoor spaces perfect for entertaining. One of our favorite features are Pocket Doors like the ones in this La Jolla modern estate. These sliding glass doors disappear when open and create a seamless indoor and outdoor entertainment area, increasing your event space and letting guests mingle freely inside and out.”

 Jamie Ehrsam, Co Founder & Executive Director, Estate Weddings and Events, Inc.   





 “Bring the inside out, pillows, throw blankets, seating to make the space feel cozy and inviting. For evening entertaining, use lots of candlelight!”

Melissa Anderson and Betsy Bracken, Bixby & Ball





 “San Diego coastal homes are the perfect setting for indoor and outdoor living and it shows. Whether designing for clients or staging a home, we decorate the way we want to live and that includes repurposing materials whenever we can, indoors and out!”

Stephanie Malcolm

Room by Room Inc.





“There is no reason why your outdoor furnishings should be bland or boring. In fact, there is absolutely no reason your outdoor furnishings should look like outdoor furnishings at all. Some of my favorites replicate in style and design the look and feel of vintage French antiques. Paired with a great sun-worthy fabric line such as Perennials Outdoor Fabrics, one could easily have a patio that looks no different than their living room…Save for the lack of roof.”

Brandon A Smith, LED AP PRINCIPAL D.Coop





“These wall planters are living tropical art. Clients have been requesting them like crazy.”

Jason Jarvis

Terra Bella Landscape Development   





 See previous Post:>>>Design & Decor: ART, Your walls are your most valuable design real estate…

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