With summer in full swing, there is no better place to entertain guests, share family dinners, read books and watch kids play than on the patio! Transform your outdoor space to increase living area by blurring the indoor/ outdoor divide, and add a fireplace to create a space for all seasons.

Creating an indoor space, outdoors: To help transform a patio into an outdoor living room, introduce some characteristic indoor elements. Begin by reimagining a room without walls and create different purpose areas within the space. Define areas with different furnishings which, strategically placed, will create hubs for different activities such as conversation, entertaining and sunbathing. An easy way to unify spaces, and define distinct areas is with outdoor rugs which also give the room a warm, homey feel. By blurring the indoor/ outdoor structures of the home a feeling of spaciousness is achieved.

Define the purpose of the outdoor space: If the primary purpose is for reading, then the focus element would be a day bed with scatter cushions and a coffee table. If it is to entertain, a conversation area and dining table is focal and if it is a spa retreat you’re after then build an- outdoor shower, or a little plunge pool surrounded by lush plantings to ensure your privacy and create a unity with nature.

Lighting: An outdoor table lamp makes the patio feel like an extension of the indoors and allows you to enjoy the space long after the sun goes down. A chandelier and string of lights add whimsy and romance.

A space for all seasons: To enjoy the patio all year long, put in a fireplace and overhead heat lamps so outdoor living is attractive and luxurious in all seasons.

For a small patio or porch: Instil a small, bright table and a couple of chairs or a Parisian style tiny wrought-iron table and chairs, and a vertical garden to decorate wall space.