4 Your Home

Time to Get Cozy: Making the Most of Your Outdoor Space in Cooler Weather

In the age of COVID-19, outdoor space is the hottest commodity around – here's how to capitalize on it

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Remember when spring ushered in such nice weather and we left our isolation to spend more time outside? Well, the seasons are changing again, but that doesn’t mean we have to rush back indoors.

We're shifting from lemonade and ice cold beer to cider and hot cocoa. People still want to be able to enjoy their outdoor spaces and safely entertain, but in a cozier way.

Anthony Wilder of Anthony Wilder Design and Build says the number one request from homeowners this fall is for upgrading or making additions to the outdoor living space – screened porches, for example.

"It's almost like a funny list: I need a hot tub, a swimming pool, a puppy and a screened porch," Wilder says. "Every time we talk to a client they're just dying to get going on some cool project that’s outside."

Photo: Anthony Wilder Design and Build

"I think the two things that we get requests for is escaping the sun and escaping bugs," JP Ward, also of Anthony Wilder Design and Build, says.

This space is over the top, with an impressive natural light feature, heated floors, multiple fire features not to mention this space out here as well.


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Luckily, extending the summer season doesn't have to mean extending your budget. You can do a lot just by accessorizing your existing outdoor furniture.

Pair the blues of summer with warm terracottas. Add pillows and blankets to keep your guests comfy and warm.

Interior designer Keira St. Claire says adding "lots of texture" can help spruce up your outdoor space for the fall.

"We really want to see layering of textures and variation in textures always gives a more welcoming feel and creates a lot of depth to your space," St. Claire says.

"One thing I also really recommend is filling your space with lots of smells. Sometimes we often forget how really all of our senses are activated in our spaces."

Photo: Anthony Wilder Design and Build

With any outdoor space, whether it be a porch, deck or fire pit, you want to pair beauty with practicality in the era of COVID-19.

The CDC says increasing air flow like opening windows and using fans can help protect against the coronavirus.

"You can’t get better moving air than a screened porch," says Wilder.

But improving your outdoor space is about far more than just this moment in time – these types of improvements can help increase a home’s value.

"You're getting away from your interiors which is a big deal. You make your outside as important as your inside," Wilder says.

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