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22 Outdoor Decor Ideas to DIY a Summer Sanctuary

These days, nothing excites people quite like the opportunity for fresh air. And since we’re not exactly going anywhere anytime soon, outdoor decor ideas can help transform your open-air space into a makeshift summer sanctuary.

Whether you’re lucky enough to have a private backyard, or routinely squeeze onto your balcony for some vitamin D, this summer is about al fresco hangs—even the CDC agrees. If you’ve never thought about outdoor decorating, you don’t need much to turn your space into a functional hangout spot. From small bistro tables and planters to patio furniture and collapsible lawn chairs, there’s a lot you can do with a few square feet. Ahead, 24 outdoor decor ideas to help you make the most of summer.

Communal Roof Decor

Many city dwellers have communal rooftops at their disposal, which require furniture and accessories that you can easily disassemble and store in your apartment. This particular outdoor space calls for comfy collapsible lawn chairs (the REI x West Elm collection is calling our name), a breezy linen blanket, and a picnic basket–and don’t forget your masks and hand sanitizer.

Modern Melamine Dinnerware

West Elm x Rei

$10

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Kesslyr Dean Block Print Linen Throw

Verishop

$125

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Low Lawn Chair

REI x West Elm

$60

$42

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Wine & Cheese Picnic Basket

Kohl’s

$80

$72

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Balcony Decorating Ideas 

Despite the limited room, balconies have a lot of design potential. Makeover your space and go the entertaining route with a three-piece bistro set (wine and cheese sold separately), or create lounge vibes with a reclining chaise (just make sure to measure before making any purchases). Spruce up the concrete floor with easy and affordable decking, then complete the look with decorative railing planters and cushion covers. If you’re looking for more DIY ideas, consider installing a wall planter or vertical garden for trailing plants. 

Foldable Outdoor Table + Chairs Set

Buy Now

Cabana Outdoor Seat Cushion

Target

$20

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Happy Trails Collection

Bloomscape

$65

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Small Marble Cheese Board & Spreader

Verishop

$28

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Runnen Outdoor Decking

Ikea

$25

$18

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Outdoor Patio Ideas

Falling somewhere in between a balcony and a backyard, your front porch or backyard patio is perfect for cozy yet compact outdoor furniture, like cushioned lounge chairs or a small loveseat if space allows. Set up a proper seating area by investing in a sturdy side or coffee table for food or books, and tie your outdoor living room together with statement lanterns and a scuff-resistant rug. Greenery wouldn’t hurt either, but opt for low-maintenance plants, like succulents—just make sure you use terra-cotta pots when giving them a home.

Tula Lily Lounge Chair

Article

$229

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Outdoor Wooden Loveseat with Cushions

All Modern

$256

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Footed Terra-Cotta Planters

Food52

$25

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Tile Painted Outdoor Side Table

Urban Outfitters

$149

Buy Now

Skagerak Bell Lantern

Goodee World

$175

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Beige Patterned Outdoor Rug

Jungalow

$189

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Backyard Decor Ideas

If you have a private backyard or patio, you don’t need us to tell you to take advantage of every square inch. Use large planter boxes to line the perimeter with insulating foliage, and add texture with an outdoor flat-weave rug. Make an outdoor couch or sectional the focal point of the space, and drape cozy blankets and throw pillows over it for color. Since you’ll be using it frequently this summer, invest in outdoor lighting, or for a budget-friendly solution, decorate it with string lights to transition the space from day to night. Add some flourishes, like a fire pit if you have the room, an umbrella if you don’t have tree-cover, and pepper citronella candles throughout to keep bugs at bay.

Christopher Knight Home Outdoor Wood Loveseat

Overstock

$256

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Galvanzied Charcoal Planter Box

Buy Now

Hand-Woven Flat Weave Rug

Wayfair

$64

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Julie Throw Pillow

Food52

$275

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Water-Resistant 6′ Round Umbrella

Pottery Barn

$199

$159

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66′ Copper String Lights (200 LED)

Amazon

$12

Buy Now

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