If you’re hoping to make the most of your deck this summer, there’s plenty of ways you can add some fun and maximize its potential. A few scatter rugs, some colorful potted plants, a floor cushion or two, maybe even an eye-catching vertical wall garden… regardless of what kind of look or theme you want to create, there’s no shortage of ideas for you to try. If you need a little inspiration to get started, here are 10 ways to make your deck fun in 2020.
1. Light It Up
String lights aren’t just for Christmas – bring some twinkly magic to your deck by adorning it with LED lights. Chose white ones if you want to keep things stylishly simple, or add some fun with multicolored ones. If you want a more sophisticated look, recessed deck lighting, in-floor lightening, under deck lightening, and spotlights will give a gorgeously soft glow that’ll do wonders for the ambiance.
2. Add Some Warmth
Adding a fire pit to your deck is a simple, relatively inexpensive project that will make a big impact. If you want to go all out, you’ll find plenty of big ‘n’ bold options that come with their own propane gas supply or that can be hooked up to a natural supply. If you’d rather keep things low key and as budget-friendly as possible, a fire bowl is a great way to go. Before you get too carried away with the idea, be sure to check any local regulations that could impact where and how you place the pit – most communities ask you to keep any open flames at least 10- 20 feet from any buildings, but exact requirements will depend on your locale.
3. Introduce Water Accents
Few things are quite so relaxing as the trickling sound of water. Introduce a tranquil vibe to your deck by adding a few water accents. There’s no shortage of options around, so consider the general vibe and style of the deck before deciding on what’s likely to be the best fit. Some of the possibilities to consider include a water fountain for birds (a great way of introducing some local wildlife to your yard, but maybe not ideal for those with cats), a tabletop water garden, or a dramatic wall waterfall.
4. Go Under Cover
If you want to make the most of your deck come rain or shine, adding a roof is well worth the effort. As Liv Building Products notes, there’s a couple of routes you could go, from extending the roof of the house to installing an awning or building a pergola. Extending the roof of the house is typically the easiest option, but won’t work unless the deck is situated right next to the house. An awning or pergola, meanwhile, both make great options for freestanding decks.
5. Choose A Theme
A hotchpotch of different styles can work, but a themed look can add an extra dash of flair to your deck. Pick a theme to work around (this could be based on a particular color, motif, or item) and then build the rest of the theme around it. You can take the theme just as far as your time and budget allow – maybe you want to simply add a few rugs and recover some scatter pillows to match, or maybe you want to go all out with a top-to-toe refresh.
6. Add Some Color With Rugs
Rugs don’t need to be limited to the indoors. Add a bit of warmth and color to your deck with some vibrant outdoor rugs. If you want to draw the eye to a particular area (the seating or dining area, for example), a large rug will help define the zone. A scattered or multilayered effect, meanwhile, will add a certain je ne sais quoi that’s hard to resist.
7. Plan Out Your Zones
As Better Homes & Gardens advises, one of the best ways to reap the full value of your deck is to make the most of its multiple levels (providing, of course, you have a multi-tier deck. Those that don’t might want to move on now). Think about all the different activities you do on the deck, whether that’s lounging, dining, playing with the kids, or gardening, and then dedicate a different level to each. Having a specific zone for each activity will let you plan out the deck’s design in a way that milks every last drop of value.
8. Pile it with Pillows
If your deck’s not comfy, you’ll never get quite as much pleasure from it as you could otherwise. Up the comfort by adding plenty of soft pillows to your seats – a few throws to cuddle into as the nights get chilly won’t go amiss either. As Midwest Living suggests, a few large floor pillows for guests who prefer lounging to sitting will go down well. Just remember to use outdoor-friendly material for the covers.
9. Go Green
A deck is a great place to introduce a little nature. Potted plants are an easy, cheap way of adding some color and personality to your deck – and with a vast array of deck-friendly plants to choose from, you’ll find no shortage of options regardless of whether you’ve got 10 green fingers or none. If you prefer to eat the products of your labor rather than simply admire them, you’ll find plenty of small fruit bushes, citrus trees, and vegetables that take well to deck life.
10. Add Some Privacy
If your deck is a little too exposed for comfort, there are various ways you can add some privacy. A trellis strung with climbing plants like wisteria or grapevines will protect you from the gaze of snooping neighbors while adding a lovely touch of coziness at the same time. Other options to try include a window-like pane with frosted or tinted glass, a colorful sheet of acrylic, or, for the green-fingered, a vertical wall gall garden.