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How to Choose Balcony and Patio Decor

July 13th, 2017


As with any home decorating, balcony decor is about identifying how you want to use your space and how you actually do. The perfect arrangement is somewhere in between. Ask yourself these questions to create your own ideal outdoor space:

How big is your balcony?

There’s no defeating reality. No quantity of clever ideas will turn a Juliette balcony into an outdoor dining destination. Measure your space, allowing space in your balcony decor plan to go through the patio door and to accommodate access to any outdoor storage.

How do you currently use it?

Is your balcony a throwaway space? Are you stashing things out there that you don’t have room for inside? If your bike doesn’t contribute to your balcony decor scheme, you’ll need to find another place for it. Take advantage of on-site or outside storage to put away things you need but that won’t have a place in the final plan.

What’s your sun exposure?

If you want to include plants in your balcony decor plan, you need to choose the right ones for the amount of sun they’ll have on a typical day. Even a southern exposure might give you limited sun if the railing is solid, or if there’s an overhang or a sheltering tree. Most plants described as “full sun” want at least six hours of unbroken sunlight each day. For spots that have less than that, ask at a garden center (or search online) for suggested plants that do well with indirect sunlight.

What’s the sleekest way to meet the need?

In most apartments, a multi-use balcony isn’t an option. Identify the one thing for which you most want to use the balcony, and then figure out the most efficient way to do it with space-conscious furnishings. If it’s dining, you probably don’t need to furnish the balcony to accommodate a feast. A small bistro table and chairs will work for most casual meals. For a place to sit and enjoy the view, ditch the dining table and choose seating that’s slender as well as comfortable.

What will speak to each of your senses?

For balcony decor that calls you outside, choose elements of balcony decor targeted to each of your senses. Plants, colors, and lighting draw the eye. Enjoy the sounds of birds or a breeze in the leaves, or add a small fountain if you need to cover less pleasant noise. Textural items create tactile interest, and flowers and herbs offer aroma. Even if your balcony isn’t intended primarily for dining, give yourself a place to set down a cold drink or a bowl of fruit.

As you put everything together, resist the impulse to overdecorate. The largest element in your balcony decor is the outdoors itself, and you’ll make the most of it by embracing and enhancing it, and find yourself spending even more time outdoors enjoying your space.


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