Dreaming of an Indian summer

Futon Company says: If last year’s anything to go by we’ve got another month of extended summer to look forward to (step forward Indian summer – we heart you!) – fingers, toes, arms and legs crossed just in case! Which means walks in the park after work, BBQs with friends at the weekend, and – if you’re lucky enough to have an outside space – heaps of alfresco living!
In our blogs we often talk about the joys of having an outside space, but we rarely focus on balconies. So if you’re one of the lucky city dwellers who happens to have a balcony, this blog’s dedicated to you! Cue Elizabeth Stamp’s blog 14 Cozy Balcony Ideas and Décor Inspiration.
She writes: Private outdoor space is a dream of most people living in city apartments – even if it’s just a small balcony. If you’re lucky enough to have a balcony, then you owe it to yourself – and all your friends – to make the most of it. This means doing more than putting out a lawn chair and calling it a day. No matter how tiny it is, your balcony has plenty of design potential… See how you can transform your outdoor space from top to bottom:
• Add a small table: All you need to enjoy your morning coffee on your balcony is a café table and a chair. Choose one that folds up easily so you can store it inside if necessary.
• Install built-in seating: Maximise your square footage with built-in bench seating. You’ll also never have to worry about high winds knocking over your furniture – or worse, send it flying.
• Bring in greenery: Pack your balcony with planters filled with lush plants to create the feel of that backyard you’ve always wanted. Add some herbs to make your balcony smell as good as it looks.
• Opt for floor pillows: Get some colourful floor pillows that can do double duty inside.
• Add pattern with an outdoor rug: Amp up the look of your balcony with a patterned rug or runner. Be sure to choose one that will stand up to the elements.
• Use your wall space: Hang planters or weather-resistant art to help your balcony feel like an extension of your apartment.
• Light it up: Give yourself plenty of light for late-night hangouts by installing an outdoor pendant. If you’re renting, go for string lights or outdoor lanterns.
• Hang a chair or hammock: You may be in a city, but there’s no reason your balcony can’t feel like you’re on vacation. A hanging chair or hammock creates a laid-back vibe.
• Opt for folding furniture: If you’re short on space, try installing furniture that can be tucked or folded away when not in use. A folding table disappears to free up floor space.
• Design a spot for cocktails: What’s better than happy hour outside? A coffee table and two low chairs are all you need to create a space to kick back and catch up while the world passes by below. Or go for a pouf topped with a tray so you’ll always have extra seating.
• Surround yourself with flowers: You may not have room for a dining area (or even a chair), but there’s always space for flowers. Install planters along the balcony railing to sweeten your view and add to your home’s curb appeal.
• Add a spot to recline: Whether you want to soak up the sun or curl up with a book, an outdoor daybed or lounge chair is all you need for a restful retreat. Add some outdoor pillows to make things extra comfy.
• Give yourself some privacy: If your balcony is right up against your neighbour’s, add tall plants like bamboo to create a natural wall. You can also hang bamboo shades that can be raised and lowered as needed.
• Add some shade: Enjoy your balcony in any weather with a retractable awning that will protect you, rain or shine. Go for a classic stripe, or opt for a bold colour to make your balcony stand out.

Futon Company says: What a fabulous blog, so inspiring! And so many of these top tips are simple to achieve and portable too – which is ideal if you’re a renter and regularly on the move. As experts in small space living, all of our products are designed with svelte and compact spaces in mind. Think folding furniture, multi-functional pieces and portable beds that double up as loungers. All hail the Indian summer!

Butterfly Folding Chair (small)

Piazza Table

Bamboo Stool

Walnut Folding Stool

Thalia Stacking Plant Stand

Naples Folding Bistro Table