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With summer just around the corner now is the perfect time to transform your outdoor space. There are plenty of ways to create your dream hangout spots full of comfort and style.

I’ve rounded up my favorite ideas, with everything from beautiful planter arrangements to dreamy outdoor kitchens. With these ideas, you’ll have a functional and comfortable patio just in time for the warm weather.

1. Create Conversation Areas

Comfortable seating and furniture are the focal points of the patio. And this doesn’t have to mean a large furniture set.

patio with a small seating area.
via Studio McGee // Shop the look here

A small table with some chairs can make the perfect patio, and can feel much more intimate.

round wooden patio table with folding chairs and a patio umbrella.
via Studio McGee

Or if you like to host gatherings, invest in a nice furniture set to complete your space. Outdoor cushions and throw pillows make the space feel more relaxing and inviting.

RELATED: Viral Walmart Patio Set Review.

2. Define Areas With a Rug

A outdoor rug is the cherry on top of your patio decorating.

patio seating area with wicker furniture, an area rug and two large umbrellas.
patio furniture // outdoor rug // white table no longer available

A rug is also the easiest way to clearly define different areas of the patio. While you probably don’t want a rug under an outdoor dining table, having one around a seating area is a great idea. It adds color, a soft texture underfoot and makes your patio feel like an extension of your living room.

white outdoor couch and two cane armchairs on a patio.
via Serena & Lily

3. Outdoor Fireplaces

Speaking of living rooms, is there anything better than sitting by a warm fireplace? With an outdoor fireplace it can be your favorite thing all year long! Not only is an outdoor fireplace the perfect source of warmth on chilly nights, but it’s definitely top of the list for relaxation and the perfect ambiance!

4. Fire Pit Areas

An outdoor fireplace may only be a dream for some of us, but a firepit is very attainable and easy to add.

A couple of years ago, we added a fire pit area to our backyard and it quickly became our favorite spot to hang out. It creates the perfect centerpiece for an outdoor gathering and even just for ambiance.

gravel firepit with white adirondack chairs and a solo stove.
all-weather Adirondack chairs // solo stove

Adding built-in seating or chairs around the pit creates the perfect night-time hangout. My family and I love to roast marshmallows here during the summer, and it’s a great place for us to make memories!

If a designated open firepit area is not possible, a gas fireplace with a built-in tank is also a great option. We previously had a gas firepit on our patio, pretty close to the house and it was a great feature to have.

patio with an eggchair and a rectangular concrete firepit table.
egg chair // propane firepit

5. Dining Al Fresco

There’s nothing better than being able to enjoy a meal outdoors during the summer months. It’s the perfect way to extend your home and get use out of your backyard space.

outdoor dining table set up for dinner.

You don’t need to have a big space to get a perfect dining area either. A small table with some chairs can be just enough to fit your needs.

large patio with both a seating area and a dining area.
wicker patio furniture // striped umbrella // egg chair // dining table & chairs no longer available

Of course, if you have a larger patio area like I do, you can add a separate dining space to accompany your seating area and really get the most from outdoor living.

Having a patio with just a dining table creates a backyard oasis. It makes for a quiet and secluded dining experience perfect for hosting dining parties. Add some planters and string lights for the perfect ambiance.

patio with a dining table and overhead string lights.
via Julia Berolzheimer

6. Dreamy Outdoor Kitchen

For those who love to cook and entertain, an outdoor kitchen is a must.

large outdoor kitchen.
via Chris Loves Julia

You can easily enjoy the convenience of cooking and dining without having to keep going back inside. From built-in grills to refrigerators and coolers, you can customize your space to fit your needs.

6. Layer Outdoor Lighting

Lighting can quickly bring a space together and add the perfect amount of ambiance. It can turn any spot into an evening hangout to get more use out of your patio.

firepit area with string lights on at night.

Around my firepit, I have solar-powered string lights and they are amazing! It elevates the space while being functional and decorative. They are quick and easy to install and you don’t need to worry about cords and electricity.

We also added solar powered puck lights throughout our landscaping that add soft uplighting. Similarly to how we layer lighting in our homes (table lamps, sconces, overhead lighting), doing the same outdoors will create a much more inviting space.

8. Planters and Greenery

Plants and greenery are the best finishing touches to a patio. They truly bring the space to life and are beautiful. Mix and match planters of different sizes and materials to add depth, color and texture.

RELATED: Summer Planter Ideas.

I like to fill my planters with all sorts of seasonal flowers and plants. Picking a neutral planter is best so you can style it with all colors without worrying about it clashing.

9. Shade Solutions

The summer days can get uncomfortably hot so having shade is essential for enjoying your patio in comfort. Adding an umbrella, pergola, or awning not only provides relief from the sun but also creates a stylish element.

rattan dining set on a patio with two navy patio umbrellas.
via Pottery Barn

10. Hammocks or Swing Seats

Hammocks and swing seats are a great way to spice up your patio. They are perfect for relaxing and enjoying the warm weather. These are a comfortable alternative to regular patio chairs. They can easily be removed making your patio functional for different occasions.

hanging porch daybeds.
via Pure Salt Interiors

11. Bring the Inside Out

Adding decor pieces to your patio can transform the space and pull everything together. A console table can add a sense of comfort like you are in an outdoor living room.

console table with a tray, potted plant and lanterns behind an outdoor couch.
via Sanctuary Home Decor

Add elements like a tray or a pretty vase and flowers on the table as the final touches. It also serves as a place to store pool towels or blankets.

12. Decorative Tiles and Paving

The patio floor is one of the biggest elements of the space, and a great opportunity to add some design flair!

If you want to make the floor the focal point then opt for a patterned tile like this:

If you want to do a DIY project that really adds a wow factor to your patio, then a stenciled pattern on concrete can look truly amazing. Just look at what Jenna Sue did to hers!

Another idea is having large pavers separated by gravel. This is a good option for separation of spaces while adding a design element.

concrete and gravel patio floor.
via Monika Hibbs

14. Cohesive Decor

Just like when designing your home’s interior, you want the decor on your patio to look cohesive and flow. I continued the colors from my interior outside to our patio, but just made them more vibrant. Having the throw pillows, rug, lanterns, etc. all match creates a cohesive look.

patio with blue rug, wicker furniture and concrete coffee table.

Don’t forget to break up the space by using varying textures – wicker, rattan, wood, concrete and ceramic.

Final Thoughts

Creating a functional and comfortable patio will be so rewarding come summer. I promise it will quickly become your favorite place to spend time! By incorporating these ideas, you can create the patio of your dreams that fits your space and style.

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