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Refresh your outdoors for spring

From the Resene decorating blog

Is that a few rays of sunlight peeking through the clouds? With the first signs of spring our thoughts immediately jump ahead to spending more time outdoors but getting your house and section might seem overwhelming if it’s been left to its own devices over winter.

Refresh your outdoor area with paint

Fresh foliage, inexpensive furniture and a lick of paint can do wonders for an outdoor area. This simple setting even includes a car tyre recycled as an ottoman and painted in Resene Double Pravda. Walls painted in Resene Half Villa White, side table in Resene Double Pravda, tray in Resene Peace, vase and small pot in Resene Bi Hoki and larger plant pot in Resene Kandinsky. Chair from Johnston Imports, cushion (with painted plus in Resene Kandinsky) from The Warehouse. Image by Bryce Carleton.

Here are some quick and simple ways to set your outdoor areas up for spring and summer.

Freshen up the furniture

If you have outdoor seating, tables or even a BBQ bench, planters or a shed, give them all a once over. Check for areas that might need repairs to make them safe to use.

Give them a wash down, to remove flaking paint and any moss, mould or mildew.

If some of your furniture is looking a bit tired, a fresh paint, or, for wooden furniture, stain is a cost-effective and quick way to bring it back to life – and maybe get a season or two more from it before it needs replacing.

If you’re staining wooden furniture and planters experiment with different shades instead of just the natural wood colour. Darker stains like Resene Woodsman Treehouse or Resene Woodsman Banjul look dramatic and modern with bright coloured cushions and throws. Using a darker shade on planters and fences also makes them recede so the focus is on your beautiful flowers, vegetables and shrubs.

Create outdoor rooms

Think about how you might be using the space over the warmer months. Will you need different types of seating? Do you need flexible options that can easily be stored until you have larger groups to entertain? Do you have enough tables? Where should you position your furniture to get the most sun or shelter from the breeze?

What mood do you want to create? Maybe it’s a tropical retreat or a coastal escape. Having a theme or mood in mind helps keep your space cohesive.

Once you have a plan, you can start to create use areas within your garden just as you might inside. Painted recycled doors, or wooden screens, even concrete blocks can be repurposed as dividers, or shelters to give you a secluded relaxation or eating area, that’s separated from the kids’ play area or the tool shed. For a less solid option, train climbing plants such as sweet peas or even beans to grow up wires to create a living screen.

Add layers of colour and texture, just as you would in an indoor sitting area – as well as lots of plants and flowers.

Using a similar or the same Resene colour palettes as you’ve used inside helps create that indoor-outdoor flow everybody’s aiming for. It could be a good way of using up leftover paint from your indoor makeover.

Make an outdoor area more appealing with lighting and accessories

Lighting and accessories are easy ways to make an outdoor area appealing. Wall painted in Resene Triple Merino, floor in Resene Woodsman Tiri, screen in Resene Kashmir Blue, breeze blocks and benchtop in Resene Triple Merino, trolley and rattan tray table in Resene Indian Ink, planter boxes in Resene Smokescreen with decoration in Resene Indian Ink, large planter pot in Resene Alabaster and small plant pot in Resene Kashmir Blue. Project by Kate Alexander, image by Bryce Carleton.

Repaint your front door

One way to give your home an instant update, and improve your curb appeal is to paint your front door. Embrace the trend for vivid statement doors by choosing a bold colour like the gold Resene Mandalay or Resene Mexican Red.

If that doesn’t appeal, think about painting your door a bolder or lighter shade of your exterior colour. For example, if your exterior is a neutral beige such as Resene Quarter Napa, try Resene Double Napa on your front door. Paint your door frame and any surrounding porch trim in the grey-white Resene Sea Fog for a fresh, light touch.

To make your door stand out – and cope with wear and tear – think about using paint with a gloss or semi-gloss finish, such as Resene Enamacryl (gloss) or Resene Lustacryl (semi-gloss). And for added drama to your entrance, add two painted pots with large trees on either side of the door.

To extend the makeover you could also paint porch steps and surrounding pathways. To keep family and visitors safe, paint on Resene Non-Skid Deck & Path for a non-slip finish.

Give your house a lift by repainting the front door

A bright splash of colour on this exterior door gives the whole house a lift.

Door painted in Resene Turbo with trim in Resene Black White and weatherboards in Resene Triple Concrete. Bench painted in Resene Tuna, pots in Resene Nocturnal and Resene Silver Chalice and house number in Resene Nocturnal. Door from Corinthian Doors, light from Lighting Direct. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Bryce Carleton.

An appealing outdoor retreat area

A fresh approach to decorating and seating have made this a unique and appealing outdoor retreat area.

Upper wall painted in Resene Eagle, lower wall in Resene Waiouru, planters in Resene Cut Glass, round rattan tops of cushion seats in Resene Eagle and bottoms of the paper lanterns in Resene Sweet Corn. Pouf from Nood, rug from The Ivy House, paper lanterns from Trade Aid, teapot from Everyday Needs, Hukanui artwork by Rakai Karaitiana from endemicworld, mugs and Wabi Sabi book from An Astute Assembly. Project by Kate Alexander, image by Bryce Carleton.

Add lighting

Outdoor, solar power fairy lights are a quick way to make everything look more glamorous when the sun goes down! Wrap them around your trees, or through your grapevine before the spring growth takes off. Hang them from your fence or pergola, or simply tangle them up inside a glass vase for a pretty outdoor table lamp.

Hurricane lanterns or tealights floating in a large platter or birdbath, are other simple, fast and effective ideas for outdoor lighting.

Wash up

Give your home exterior its annual wash to remove moss, mould or mildew as well as any salt residue if you’re anywhere near the sea. If you wash the exterior regularly you should be able to get away without blasting, which can damage weatherboards, and go for a garden hose with a broom for scrubbing with Resene Paint Prep & Housewash.

Treat areas of mould with Resene Moss & Mould Killer.

A wash and scrub can also do wonders to remove winter’s mouldy residue on brick walls or concrete driveways and paths. Or spray on Resene Deep Clean and leave it and nature to clean your surfaces.

Add art

Decorating the walls and surfaces of your outdoor space is an effective way to give it a new lease of life and add some of your personality to your garden. Find cheap ceramic or concrete tiles and have a go at painting your own designs to dot around the garden. It can be a fun activity to do with your kids too.

If you have a long stretch of wooden fence, add some artistic shapes to it – e.g. the shape of large leaves in a contrasting colour. Go for something geometric you can mask up if you don’t trust your freehand skills or try something abstract with different colours that showcases the shades of your garden.

Or simply hang a beautiful piece of art on the fence or exterior wall of your home. A search around local markets, garden centres and art studios should yield something you love that is weatherproofed and suited to outside.

Mirrors can be another fun way to add life to your garden. They’ll throw light around nicely and can make smaller gardens seem larger. Put some thought into where you place them, so they don’t bounce the glare right at where you’re planning to sit and relax.

Look for opportunities to add more colour in the future – with fresh touches of colour on furniture, planters and landscaping features.

Resene Peace

Resene Bi Hoki

August 22, 2021

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