Outdoor spaces: Season’s trends to create your oasis

Chris Reisbeck

Chris Reisbeck

Outdoor spaces have become increasingly more important to home buyers, especially in a climate as mild as that of Southern California. But even if you’re not selling your home, you may want to create or re-imagine your outdoor spaces. With the right touches, you can create an oasis to retreat from your daily routine, as well as a beautiful setting to entertain friends and family.

If you are selling, you may find my blog about staging LA real estate useful. Read on for ways to create an outdoor space that is both relaxing and impressive!

Creating an extension of the indoors

Homeowners want their outdoor spaces to flow from their indoor design. Especially in a mild climate where the space is likely to be used more often, a blend of indoor/outdoor living is popular. One way to do this is by creating an “outdoor room.” You can frame a sitting area with water-resistant curtains and/or creating the illusion of walls with the use of planters and tall grasses. Situate furniture on outdoor rugs to complete the look. Then add canopies for shade and plenty of throw pillows.

Another way homeowners are creating that seamless flow from indoors to outdoors is to use the same type of flooring in both spaces. Generally this can be accomplished with a high-quality, natural-looking material such as tile: which is durable enough for the outside and stylish enough for the inside.

Outdoor spaces: Other Trends for 2018


In 2018, deep blues and greens are the color of the season. According to a Realtor.com article, it’s all about making outdoor spaces feel luxurious. Typical designs would combine lots of neutrals with rich blues and greens for accessories such as cushions, throw pillows, or umbrellas.


Homeowners are getting more versatile with fabrics too, designers say, daring to try indoor-outdoor wovens, something called performance velvet, and even a spray product called Neverwet that creates a moisture-repelling barrier on a variety of surfaces.


Concrete is also having its moment in the sun. Its affordable, durable and can be customized with creative stains to really stand out. Not to mention it’s cool — in temperature, as well as style — whether it’s used in fire pits and planters, or as a flooring alternative. Designers say concrete is not just popping up outdoors, but inside homes in everything from bathtubs to counter tops.


Make an impression with bold lighting fixtures or strings of lights (which have the added bonus of acting as a wall when hanging in strands). This can amp up the dramatic presentation of your outdoor space, particularly useful if you entertain in the evening.

Strip lighting under steps, seats and bench tops can also becoming popular, and adds a dramatic effect to your outdoor space.

outdoor spaces


If you have a covered deck or patio, create a warmer space by covering your ceiling with untreated wood planks. Mount wall sconces for mood lighting ideal for an intimate dinner or glass of wine outdoors. And if your space is limited, consider “vertical gardening” by mounting planters right on the wall or installing arbors, arches or pergolas. You can create a vibrant garden in very little space!

Whether you’re updating your home in the hopes of attracting a home buyer or simply creating your own special retreat, designing your outdoor spaces will add value to your home. 

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