This summer is all about patio decor

Have you embraced summer yet? Do you truly believe that it has arrived?

This past weekend gave us our first taste of the beauty of summer and I’m running into a lot of people with bright red faces and tales of patios and mosquito bites!

Does your home reflect summer?

Have you brought the outdoors in, drawn back long forgotten curtains and polished up your windows to allow the view and sunshine to flood your home? This is the time to pull out all the stops, the very limited time in Alberta when we can live two lives – outdoor and indoor.

Outdoor we decorate our tables and patios with colours unheard of in our mild mannered interiors. There is a wide variety of hot fuchsia, mariner blue and lime green so bright you just gotta wear shades!

When would we set our indoor dinner table with brightly striped napkins and plastic holders emblazoned with shimmery dragonflies? Would we put large metal buckets shiny with primary paint colours on our Thanksgiving table used to house citronella candles or bottles of beer?

Of course we wouldn’t which is what makes summer so fun and carefree. Entertaining is casual and colourful and our décor becomes the most whimsical it could ever be. Buy a box of popsicles and let their pure hues inspire you to create a magical area on your deck.

This summer it’s all about the patio, making the most of our short season and decorating it to the max! Summer décor is cheap and cheerful and so much fun, what other time of the year can you hold a fabulous dinner party using plastic plates?

Use your patio to its fullest potential this summer, string colourful lights and play the song ‘patio lanterns’ throughout the night so people get the theme. Haul in large galvanized buckets filled with ice and your favorite bottled beverages so your guests can help themselves. Consider an outdoor area rug and outdoor furniture in addition to your deck table and chairs, even a favorite spot under a tree can become an instant focal point with comfy chairs and a firepit.

Take on the colours of the season! Your accessories should be as bright and colourful as the food you are serving. Watermelon, lemonade, bright green vegetables – all of these primary tones can serve as inspiration to your design palette.

The classic red and white checked gingham with all white accessories is another fun way to show off your beautiful summer fare but throw in an unexpected accent of cobalt blue or even varying shades of orange.

Try to theme your service and your food, change the napkins for the dessert course so that they match the beautiful homemade sorbet you will be presenting to your guests and always use fresh flowers or greenery on your table.

Have your friends vote your house ‘best patio’ this summer as you host the most fabulous outing! The memories you create will carry your heart and sanity through the many cold months ahead. You owe it to yourself to be on your patio and then on the patio of a close friend or family member – make the most of this summer and enjoy!

Kim Lewis is an interior designer in Red Deer with Carpet Colour Centre. Contact her at 403-343-7711 ext 227 or email her at

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