The outdoor room

A purpose-built outdoor living area is one of the most requested additions in domestic architecture. Extending the home into the garden or enclosing a balcony is particularly well-suited to our relaxed Aussie lifestyle.In the past it was as simple as throwing a couple of weathered chairs and a token pot plant out on the patio. These days it’s about keeping cool and looking stylish with all the comforts of being indoors.

FUNCTION FIRST

Before jumping in to a renovation or redesign, decide exactly what you want from your outdoor oasis.It might be a lively entertaining area, an extension of the kitchen, a dedicated quiet zone or a kids’ space.Interior stylist Tina Hutton says people can easily make mistakes in the planning, then wonder why the result never feels quite right.’It’s really important to be clear about how the area is going to be used,’ says Tina.’Thinking a space can be all things is usually a bad idea. That’s not to say it can’t be zoned to suit different purposes, but that in itself has to be a decision rather than an accident.’

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