Outdoor Living 543 Ideabooks

Meet a Front Yard Designed for Gathering
When you live in a Southern California beach town and an ocean view is right outside your door, it makes sense to turn your front yard into a gathering spot. That was the thinking of Sacha McCrae, homeowner and principal of Living...
20 Ideas for Easygoing Summer Parties
Summertime calls for a distinctly unfussy approach to entertaining, and thankfully so — because who wants to sweat over planning a summer soiree?...
11 Ways to Get More From Your Summer Porch
Embracing easy summer living can be as simple as spending time each day on your front porch. There is something utterly relaxing about hanging out on the porch, whether it’s to sip morning coffee or unwind at the end of the day — and then there’s...
Design Workshop: The ‘Disappearing’ Guardrail
As an architect, the most common request I receive by far from clients discussing deck guardrails is, “Please just make them disappear.” It’s a tall order. Guardrails are important architectural elements with competing design priorities. For example,...
Wildlife-Sensitive Ways to Light a Coastal Landscape
A well-lit beach garden creates a place for relaxing and listening to the ocean waves in the evening. But artificial lighting disrupts coastal animal behavior in perilous ways, and coastal areas often have outdoor lighting regulations because of the way...
Make Your Own Tranquil Garden Fountain
Versailles. The White House. The Taj Mahal. Each has an outdoor space with one thing in common: a water feature. The sound of running water instantly brings a sense of relaxation to any setting. And while most of us don’t have palatial spaces...
Take It Outside! Inspiring Ideas for Outdoor Dining
As the days get longer, the temperatures gets warmer and the light gets brighter, our daily routines undergo a radical paradigm shift. Whereas just a month or two ago, we were huddled indoors eating hearty stews, roasted meat and baked potatoes, we’re...
9 Ways to Make Your Yard More Fun for Kids
Play is at the heart of childhood, and an inspiring outdoor play area can give children many hours of enjoyment. But what if your garden is compact? Maybe you would like to avoid having a playset that takes up precious yard space, or you don’t...
A Modern Backyard Trumps the Texas Heat
What a bungalow may lack in square footage, it makes up for in efficiency, functionality and simplicity. For the backyard renovation of a 1927 Houston bungalow, designer Brett Zamore...
Dream Spaces: 12 Decks That Rise Above It All
During the lazy days of summer, just give me a deck, a lounge chair, a cool drink and an umbrella, and I’m good to go. Lately, though, I’ve been considering upgrading my deck desires. Maybe it’s time to move up, to have an outdoor space...
Simple Pleasures: Beat the Heat With Water
From sprinklers, mist gardens and swimming holes, to early-morning beach walks with waves lapping at your feet, water provides some of the best, simplest pleasures on summer days. Being mindful of the joy water brings can help you get into the spirit...
See Why This Architect's Office Has a Built-In Safety Net
Every day Kevin Browne wakes up, gets ready and travels to work. His commute takes him on a scenic 10-second walk through the door to his backyard, where he then readies himself for the day ahead. Since relocating his one-man office to a studio he designed...
A Melbourne Backyard Entices Everyone Outside
Andre and Emma Roberts have been in their band, Blue Vinyl Lounge, for 15 years (she sings, and he plays bass). Their fun acid-jazz-funk sound pulls from a medley of musical styles — indie pop,...
8 Ideas for Petite Pools
If you’re an avid swimmer, or your family loves hanging out by the pool, you’ve probably fantasized about someday having a pool to call your own. But when your backyard is on...
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