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Ideas & Inspiration

Spruce Up Your Backyard: 18 Decorating Ideas for a Beautiful Outdoor Space

by DecorMatters|Jun 02, 2023

As warmer weather approaches and outdoor gatherings become a priority, it's time to focus on transforming your backyard into a stunning outdoor oasis. You don't need a hefty budget or professional landscaping skills to achieve a beautiful space; all you need are some creative decorating ideas up your sleeve. So, while you may be tempted to prioritize interior decor, it's crucial to make the most of your outdoor oasis for enjoyable moments in the sunshine. If you need help figuring out where to start with accessorizing and decorating your backyard, fear not! With these 18 backyard decor ideas, you can easily jazz up your outdoor living space and create a captivating haven for your guests to enjoy.

1. Bring the Heat with a Firepit

firepit design for an outdoor and backyard space 

📷 Jenna Sue Design

Fire pits are a great way to create a cozy, welcoming atmosphere that encourages people to gather, share stories, and make memories. It provides warmth, William & Iain mention that having an outdoor fireplace allowed them to use their “garden in the early spring and late autumn, along with the chilly summer nights.” Plus, they're perfect for stargazing! Spend your evenings under the open sky roasting marshmallows and watching the stars twinkle. "Fire pits are one of the best ways to add warmth and aesthetic appeal to your space,” shares Zara O’Hare of Land of Rugs. “They are excellent in sitting areas, and with a wide variety of different fire pits available online, there's one for all budgets and styles."

2. Swing in a Hammock

hammock decor for backyard and outdoor space 

📷 Sara Toufali

The hammock is a classic symbol of relaxation and leisure that is essential for any backyard decoration. It's easy to imagine yourself swaying gently in the breeze with a cold drink in hand, either lost in a good book or enjoying the warmth of the sun. Setting up a hammock is simple - hang it between two solid trees or use a hammock stand for convenience. To create a cozy and welcoming atmosphere, try adding bright, colorful cushions and throws. The natural materials of the hammock fit perfectly with the outdoor environment, providing an earthy, organic feel to your backyard.

3. Design an Outdoor Kitchen

outdoor kitchen design for backpard 

📷 Cindy Mead

Bring the heart of your home outdoors, and create a culinary oasis by adding an outdoor kitchen. From built-in grills, sleek countertops, and pizza ovens, outdoor kitchens offer a seamless blend of cooking, dining, and socializing in a single space. Cindy Mead of Reno Diary designed the stunning outdoor kitchen above. “At the forefront of our minds throughout the whole build and landscaping process was the importance of creating a holiday feel at home,” she says. Let the flavors and scents transport you to a blissful vacation-like experience right at home!

4. Incorporate Vintage Items

vintage furniture and decor for outdoor space 

📷 Lisa Piddington

For a charming aesthetic, add some vintage touches to your backyard. Vintage items take us back to the past, instilling a sense of awe and timelessness. Plus, decorating with vintage pieces and repurposing them is a sustainable approach. Embark on a treasure hunt to discover one-of-a-kind vintage items that not only look stunning but also tell a captivating story. Home stylist and vintage collector Lisa Piddington says, “Buy things that resonate with you, and don’t be afraid to mix and match trends for a more eclectic look.”

5. Go Vertical with Greenery

hanging plants for outdoor backyard decor 

📷 Fesi Djojo

Enhance the visual appeal of even the smallest nooks and crannies by incorporating greenery of different heights. Picture a stunning wall of thick foliage or a charming arrangement of hanging plants dangling from trees and pergolas. “Trellises are a particularly great option,” says Ben McInerney of Home Garden Guides. “But pretty much any type of vertical garden can help give your backyard a natural, mystical atmosphere.” Carmen Johston of Trex Company emphasizes, “Simple potted plants and greenery paired with pretty linens, pillows, and throws add visual and physical softness to make an outdoor space cozy and welcoming.”

6. Create a Bird-Friendly Backyard

bird-friendly fountain for your backyard 

📷 Wayfair

Attention all nature enthusiasts and garden lovers! If you love the sound of birds singing in the morning while enjoying your coffee, you can create a bird-friendly outdoor space by adding bird baths, bird feeders, and birdhouses to your backyard. “Birdbaths make a beautiful addition and can act as the focal point of your garden, but they also attract all sorts of feathery friends,” shares Zara O’Hare of Land of Rugs. By adding these features to your backyard, you improve its appearance and invite a diverse range of wildlife, creating a peaceful sanctuary for those who appreciate nature.

7. Hang String Lights

backyard decorated with string lights 

📷 Dani Sandels

Enhance the charm of your evening hours by adding string lights that can create a magical and dreamy atmosphere. Hang them above your outdoor area to create an enchanting ambiance. You can also use small lights, lanterns, solar-powered lights, or even candles to create a symphony of warmth and glow. Let your imagination soar, weave those twinkling strands through tree branches, drape them along fences, and watch as the atmosphere transforms into a whimsical wonderland.

8. Design a Throw Pillow-Filled Oasis

cozy corner designed with throw pillows 

📷 Fincadelica

When it comes to creating a cozy and secluded space, piling on an assortment of colorful throw pillows is the way to go. Mix and match patterns, textures, and sizes to add a vibrant pop to your outdoor seating area. Imagine yourself lounging in your own tropical resort, surrounded by a sea of plush pillows that invite you to kick back and relax. Whether you prefer bold and bright hues or soothing pastels, the options are endless. Don’t underestimate the power of throw pillows. Pile them on, and create a cozy pillow-filled oasis.

9. Have Fun With Umbrellas

umbrella decor for backyard and outdoor space 

📷 Leopard Print Stairs

Transform your outdoor space into a colorful, stylish oasis with unique shade solutions. Express your creative side by choosing from a variety of colorful umbrellas or combining bold patterns for an eclectic feel. Add a touch of bohemian charm by experimenting with textured umbrellas like fringed or tasseled options. With these eye-catching shade solutions, you'll feel like you're lounging on a tropical beach or relaxing in a paradise in the comfort of your backyard.

10. Use Woven Pieces

woven furniture design for backyard 

📷 jedynytakidomek

Incorporating woven pieces in your outdoor area can significantly enhance the atmosphere, adding a lively and warm touch. Whether it's rattan chairs, woven planters, or a beautiful handcrafted rug, these materials offer both aesthetic appeal and practical benefits. These items possess both beauty and toughness, making them resistant to weather and capable of maintaining their appeal and charm throughout every season.

11. Color Your Backyard

colorful backyard design with colorful outdoor furniture

📷 Samantha Klein

To liven up your backyard, try using unique color combinations that add cheerfulness without making the space feel too busy. You can add personality with colorful accents such as throw pillows, outdoor rugs, or painted plant pots. Don't hesitate to mix and match different patterns and textures for an eclectic interior design style. Since outdoor decorating is the time to have fun, don't be afraid to use bold colors and create a backyard that reflects your personality and is as lively and captivating as you are!

12. Bring Your Living Room Outdoors

bring the indoors outdoor with an outdoor living room in your backyard 

📷 Mindy Gayer Design Co.

Why limit the comfort of your living room to the confines of your home when you can embrace the beauty of the outdoors with an outdoor living room? Elevate your living space this season by creating a seamless transition between your indoor and outdoor living areas. Bring all the familiar elements of your indoor living room outside - a cozy sofa, stylish rug, potted plants, fire pit, coffee table, and gorgeous lighting fixtures - and bask in the warmth and charm of nature.

13. Reflect Light with a Mirror

mirror decor to brighten up your outdoor space 

📷 Natalia Rowe

Mirrors aren't just for indoors anymore. By strategically placing a stylish mirror in your outdoor oasis, you can instantly transform the ambiance and make your space feel brighter and more inviting. Mirrors have a magical way of reflecting light and creating the illusion of a larger area, making even the coziest corners of your backyard feel spacious and airy. As the sun dances across its surface, watch as your outdoor area transforms into a radiant paradise. Hang a beautiful mirror on a garden wall or fence, or even prop it up against a tree for a whimsical touch. Think outside the box and let your backyard shine like never before!

14. Relax on Lounge Chairs

decorate backyard with lounge chairs 

📷 Randi Garrett Design

Transform your backyard into a luxurious resort-style retreat with lounge seating. Not only does it provide a relaxing atmosphere, but it also gives you the feeling of being on vacation without leaving your home. With a variety of styles available, including sleek and modern or rustic and bohemian, you can easily find reclining lounge chairs that suit your taste.

15. Add a Stylish Outdoor Rug

outdoor space decorated with a stylish bold rug 

📷 Alicia Murphy

Who said rugs were just for indoors? Bring the comfort and style of your living room to your outdoor space with this simple yet effective idea. An outdoor rug serves the dual purpose of making your area more inviting and comfortable and adding a touch of personality. Choose a rug that complements your existing furniture and color scheme to tie the seating area together seamlessly. And don't worry about spills or the weather! Look for a weatherproof and stain-resistant rug that can withstand the occasional mishap without losing its charm.

16. Soak in a Hot Tub

hot tub design perfect for an outdoor space 

📷 herzenstimme

Hot tubs are the epitome of tranquility, where stress melts away and pure bliss takes over. The gentle jets massage your muscles, releasing tension and leaving you in complete serenity. Installing a hot tub in your backyard is an excellent idea. It offers a wonderful opportunity to unwind and savor the long evenings. Whether you prefer to enjoy a solo soak or host a laid-back gathering with friends, a hot tub adds a touch of luxury to your backyard.

17. Create a Cozy Outdoor Corner

cozy outdoor corner design for backyard 

📷 s.u.s.a.p

A cozy outdoor corner offers a great space to relax and unwind during the warm seasons. You can enjoy reading a good book, sipping refreshing drinks, or spending time with friends and family. Interior designer @s.u.s.a.p recommends “think outside the box; often old wooden chairs still get a second life in the garden, and cushions from inside can be used outdoors in the summer as well.”

18. Use White Furniture

White and neutral backyard furniture

📷 Joanne Welsh

Simplicity is beautiful, especially in the summer. Bring elegance to your backyard by adding white pieces that reflect sunlight, keeping the seating cool and comfortable. White-colored furniture is an excellent option for those looking to design an outdoor area that emits cheerful vibes and a refreshing atmosphere. White acts as a clean canvas that allows colorful and bold accessories to stand out, making your backyard oasis more vibrant and refined.

With these 18 decorating ideas, you now have a wealth of inspiration to turn your vision into reality. But wait, we have one more trick up our sleeves to make your design process even more seamless and enjoyable. With the DecorMatters backyard design app, you can simply snap a photo of your outdoor space, and with a few taps, you can experiment with different furniture arrangements, colors, and decor styles to see what truly brings your space to life. So don't just imagine your dream backyard – design it with the help of the DecorMatters app.

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