Slightly better, eh? I bought flowers and a couple plants (including an amazing organic basil plant from Whole Foods!) and an adorable little wire bird sculpture that was chirping my name, but the rest was just stuff we had around the house! One of the rare times when I appreciate all the extra junk we have yet to purge...
Still room for the essentials... like the milk delivery box.
How to create your own outdoor room:
1. Decide how you want to use the space. I wanted the following: space to sit with my feet UP, space for little boys to play, and space to have an occasional al fresco dinner with my husband.
2. Rummage up some furniture to make the space functional. Think outside the box! If your outdoor room is covered, you can even use indoor furniture. If it's not covered, grab some stumps from behind the garage, an old bench in the back of your garden, or your old dining room chairs that you could claim as outdoor furniture! In my case, I used an old indoor futon chair with cubes as a foot stool, and an outdoor bistro set. A hand-me-down chair and end table both spray-painted brick red complete the space.
3. Add layers as you would in an indoor room. Rugs, lighting, plants, baskets with toys & books, or magazines. Here's where you give it your flavor!
4. And lastly, don't expect it to be perfect! At first, I was deterred by my dreary front porch, and the fact that it needs some major renovations. The house is faded, begging for paint... the porch needs a new floor... the concrete stairs are sad and peely.... but it can still be a lovely place to enjoy while we wait for the time & funds for a major reno!
A couple nights ago, my little family gathered on the porch to read our bedtime stories, and my husband gave me a great compliment: "This is my favorite room in the house!"