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Patio decorating ideas to elevate your home's outdoor space

During quarantine, you’ve learned how to bake, paint, dance, and who knows what else. After a year of keeping ourselves entertained while staying indoors, it’s about time we give some thought to what the outside of our homes looks like. Make the most of your outdoor space so you have somewhere to relax and breathe fresh air whenever you’re feeling too cooped up in your house. If we still can’t go outside to reconnect with our friends and loved ones from far away, we can at least have a beautiful space at home that still feels like we’ve gone out. Try these backyard patio decorating ideas and create your personal oasis.

Choose your furniture with the purpose you want it to serve in mind


Yellow apple couch


What kind of furniture do you need when decorating your patio? Well, it depends on what you plan on doing in that space. Presumably, you’d want a place to dine, a place to lounge, and enough seats to entertain. You can have a more formal set-up of a dining table and chairs or you can have a more casual set up of an outdoor sofa set with a coffee table in the middle. If you have a big space, you can do both.

Once you know what pieces you need, it’s time to decide the style and materials you want. A mistake some people make is choosing cheap furniture, so they don’t feel bad if they are damaged due to the elements. This thinking could cost you more money because you will have to keep replacing your furniture. Buy quality furniture that you like enough to put inside your house. Choose materials that are durable and can withstand whatever nature throws at them.

Tie the room together with an outdoor rug

Beautiful outdoor patio

Sometimes you won’t be able to see how your furniture pieces work without a rug. How do you pick an outdoor area rug for a patio? You can have fun choosing your outdoor area rugs and even have more than one rug in a given space. You can mix and match colors and textures and layer them on top of each other to create a cozier space. However, to make things simple, you only have to consider three things: color, size, material. 

First, consider the color. It is not that important to match the colors of your outdoor area rug and your other pieces exactly. Purchase an outdoor rug that is similar or that complements the colors already present in your palette. When it comes to deciding what size area rug you should buy, it’s time to bring out the tape measure. Once you’ve plotted out where your patio furniture goes, measure how large the space is between the edges of your furniture. You want your area rug to be one or two inches larger than that. Finally, consider the material of the outdoor area rug you want. You want it to be durable and easy to clean because it will be exposed to the elements. 

Do not neglect your lighting

When we think of backyard patio decorating ideas, we picture it in the day. We have this fantasy of relaxing and having lemonade without our families while soaking in the sunlight. Although that picturesque fantasy isn’t impossible, it’s probably something that won’t happen very often. Most of us have jobs while the sun is out and the children are in school. So, on the days when your only patio time is after dusk, you need to have adequate outdoor lighting. After all, you can’t play board games sitting on your outdoor rug if you can’t see. 

It is a good rule of thumb to have three types of lighting sources. The first is general or ambient light. This is what illuminates your whole room, or in this case, your patio. If you have a roof over your patio, you can use ceiling lighting. If not, you can use wall sconces or a lamp post. The second type of light is task lights. From its name, a task light’s purpose is illuminating the activity a person is doing. These are usually directional lighting fixtures such as table lamps or pendant lighting. Then there’s accent lighting, which serves the purpose of highlighting plants, artwork, and other features of your space you want to accentuate. 

Lastly, be sure to add plants into the mix!

Beautiful outdoor patio design

To round out these patio decorating ideas on a budget, adorn your patio with something affordable and reminds you how beautiful nature is - plants! If you’ve already been dabbling in plant care this year, this is no challenge, but it’s always good to double check what kind of plants are best suited to your space.

To know which plants are most suited to your patio, you must first observe how many hours of sunlight it gets on a given day. Of course, aside from the amount of sunlight per day, you also have to take into account where your state falls on the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map to see which plants are most suited to your climate.

Assuming your patio doesn’t have a roof or gets around six to eight hours of sunlight, you’ll want plants that thrive in full sun. Some examples of flowers that like full sun are Dahlias, Hollyhock, Peonies, Chrysanthemums, and Gardenias. A few examples of non-flowering plants are Jade Plant, Aloe Vera, Croton, and Kalanchoe. If your patio is in a shaded area and gets little sunlight, plants like Ivy, ZZ Plant, Snake Plant, Pothos, and Calathea perform well in low sunlight areas. You can place these on your patio furniture or just on your outdoor area rug on the floor. 

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