The Great Outdoors
By Linda Parker
We’re a bit dubious about this, to be honest, but in true Brit fashion we’re forging ahead with outdoor ideas anyway. The weather isn’t too great at the moment, but with optimism and all fingers well and truly crossed, here’s hoping that it will brighten up soon! And even if it’s grey it’s still satisfying to have a lovely outdoor dining and social area to look at…
TEXTURAL COMBINATION OF RUSTIC TABLE AND UPHOLSTERED CHAIRS FROM LAGOON
A sturdy table is a good investment, and this is from the Argo collection at Lagoon is generously sized at 165cm square, which will seat eight guests comfortably. This is the Natural version, it’s also available in a darker finish, Pallisandro, and it’s made from the very hard wearing accoya wood. The Argo dining chairs are a great combination of accoya and a synthetic rope frame which is all weatherproof, including the Indigo blue cushions. True blue style!
FREYA DINING SET FROM ATKIN & THYME
This design concept is a fabulous choice for a contemporary outdoor setting – the modern materials and styling sit very well with decking and modern architecture. The Freya Dining Set from Atkin & Thyme comprises a wood-style brushed aluminium table top, with rattan-style matching chairs … all items are weatherproof with UV resistant cushions that will dry quickly, and can be left outdoors throughout the season. The table is 100cm square, which is a good size for smaller, compact terraces or as a morning coffee spot.
LIGHTING UP TIME FROM LIGHTS4FUN
It’s not absolutely necessary to splash out on outdoor furniture sets, sometimes it’s kind of easier and a quicker task just to spruce up what you’ve already got! Adding outdoor lighting is always a good idea, it creates atmosphere and looks inviting when viewed from indoors too. These are the 20 Drop Bulb Vintage Style High Power Solar Festoon Lights from lights4fun, so they can add a nice glow all year round.
BRIGHTEN UP THE OUTDOOR KITCHEN SPACE WITH A RUG FROM TALKING TABLES
Outdoor terraces can sometimes look a bit dull – especially if the planting hasn’t quite taken off, or if it’s a newly constructed space. The solution is colourful furniture and even an outdoor rug, which offers instant transformation. Take a look at outdoor garden rugs from Talking Tables – where there are lots of other bright table accessories too. This is the Paisley design, which adds a summery touch to the garden scheme.
CONTEMPORARY RUSTIC STYLE FROM SWEETPEA & WILLOW
This astonishing dining table is the Bernhardt Trouvile Indoor Outdoor Dining Table which is available from Sweetpea & Willow. The raw concrete edge is stunning and yes, the table would look just as good indoors as outside. Could be the perfect choice for a kitchen that features concrete-style work-surfaces, cladding or flooring. The Bernhardt Kona Outdoor Bench has a teak finish.
LOUNGING AROUND WITH CANNES FROM BRIDGMAN
This gorgeous set is really best suited to brilliant sunshine, but as it could work just as well indoors as outside, it’s definitely worth a look! The Cannes Collection from Bridgman includes the Lounge Armchair, a Footstool, (both shown here), as well as a two-seater sofa, coffee table and side table. The piece de resistance is probably the Palm Solar Floor Lamp which is waterproof, dimmable and USB chargeable.
COLOURFUL ACCESSORIES FROM MAISON ELHORIA
Add colour to the kitchen and outdoor dining tables or barbecue situations with some vibrant striped tea towels from Maison Elhoria, made from recycled and organic cotton.
SLEEK ALUMINIUM LOOKS FROM PEPPERMILL INTERIORS
Aluminium furniture is generally lightweight and a bit more moveable than heavy sofa-style or solid wood outdoor designs. These pieces from the Miami collection from Peppermill Interiors are powder-coated, with a ceramic/marble effect table top, and easily work just as well indoors or out.
ADD COMFORTABLE ELEGANCE WITH DESIGNS FROM WEAVER GREEN
Dress up existing outdoor furniture with some elegant table cloths and soft furnishings; these are from Weaver Green. The Toulouse Blue Stripe Tablecloth has the appearance of soft linen, and is in fact made from recycled plastic, so it’s a faux linen that looks and feels natural and is also stain resistant and machine washable. Take a look at the beautiful cushion collection here.
SERVE UP A SUMMER CHEESECAKE FROM CUISINART’S RECIPE COLLECTION
Yes, it’s perfectly possible to make a baked summer cheesecake in an air fryer mini oven. The Air Fryer Mini Ovenfrom Cuisinart has, of course, hundreds of uses, but we must admit that cooking a cheese cake didn’t immediately spring to mind … Take a look here at the Baked Vanilla Cheesecake Recipe. Just the job for summer entertaining.
MIX A REFRESHING SUMMER COCKTAIL IN GARDEN TRADING GLASSWARE
We had to share this lovely gin cocktail recipe with you, hopefully it will go down well in the sunshine, when it’s back again! The beautiful gin glasses are Berkley Gin Glasses from Garden Trading, the jug is the Portmore Jug. For a Gin Grapefruit Lemonade cocktail you’ll need 2oz gin, 1 oz fresh grapefruit juice, 1 oz simple sugar syrup, club soda to mix and a slice of grapefruit and a sprig of mint to garnish. Cheers!