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Make Your Deck an Inviting, Comfortable Living Space
by Monica Resinger -

Description: How to make your deck an inviting place to spend time with your family.

Decks provide additional living space; a place to relax, entertain and eat meals. Decorating it makes our experiences all the more enjoyable and inviting. If you don't have a deck, don't despair, you can always apply some of these ideas to a patio, porch or even a section of grass in your backyard. The important part is to have additional living space when the weather is warm and beautiful.

One idea is to light up your deck with deck light sets. These are sold in a wide range of colors and designs and are much like Christmas tree lights. I have seen them shaped in cola bottles, pink flamingos and more. Even Christmas tree lights will work great for this especially if it's the white lights. You could set a tall potted plant such as a tall palm out on the deck and add the lights to it.

Using container plants to liven your deck is an old but great idea. Before planting, think about the wide variety of items that will work for container plantings such as toy dump trucks, football helmets, wagons or wheelbarrows, wicker baskets and teapots. Just be sure the container has proper drainage by drilling holes or adding an inch or so layer of gravel to the bottom. Plant your container with plants that will compliment it. If you don't want to use live flowering plants, how about silk plants?

Add comfortable, attractive seat covers to any seating. This will brighten it up and make it more inviting and comfortable. For furniture, consider wicker. It's always pretty and durable.

Usually the deck has some wall surface as they are usually built onto the house, so this is an opportunity to decorate it with such things as wicker hats decorated with silk flowers, wicker wall baskets to hold items, wooden plaques or even birdhouses.

Here is a list of other items to try on your deck:
~ welcome mats
~ wind chimes
~ sea shells (these can be used as ashtrays)
~ drift wood
~ pretty rocks
~ candles (don't forget citronella to keep the bugs away)
~ wicker baskets to hold small gardening tools or snips of herbs and flowers
~ Vases or other containers full of flowers and/or herbs

There is one important consideration to think about when decorating your deck and that is weather and if your deck is covered or not. Obviously, you don't want to put books and magazines out onto an uncovered deck, but they would be a great addition to a covered one. If your deck has a roof, you have a lot more options such as pillows, throws, games and furniture that shouldn't be out in the weather.

Many of us have cramped living spaces and this is one way to help solve that problem. Even if you have plenty of room, we all have to get outside sometime.

Monica Resinger is editor/founder of Creative Home Newsletter: a free, weekly newsletter with articles and tips on organizing, cooking, cleaning, decorating and more. To get this free newsletter, send a blank e-mail to:

Related articles:

7 Tips For Buying An Outdoor Fireplace
Decorating a Small Outdoor Space
Restore and Protect Your Deck

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