We’ve all been yearning for the warm weather to return so we can spend time together again outdoors. With summer celebrations finally in view, now is the perfect time to take stock of your outdoor entertaining spaces and add small touches to create a more welcoming environment. Even something as simple as updating your patio’s seating arrangements can make the difference between a party that fizzles on the early side - and one that leaves everyone feeling reconnected after a long time apart.
As a candle-making studio, we of course love using candles in our home decor... and we’ve found that they make great additions to porch and patio decorating as well. Consider how the soft glow of candlelight can make your reunion with loved ones even more relaxed and meaningful.
In honor of the many happy gatherings we hope you’ll have with friends and family in the coming months, we’ve put together a whole collection of patio decor and porch decorating ideas to inspire you. We hope you like them!
1. Set up greenery in eye-catching ways
While the outdoors is all about lush greenery, there’s no rule that says you have to leave nature to its own devices. There are so many ways to incorporate plants into your porch decor that can enhance even the smallest of spaces. Consider lining your porch steps with your favorite flowers in eye-catching pots or filling window boxes with luscious herbs. If you’re feeling adventurous, one creative patio decor idea we love for maximizing a small space is creating a floating garden on an accent wall.
2. Create ambiance with decorative lighting
Nothing is more magical as dusk settles in than a string of patio lights or the warm light of candles placed throughout your space (naturally one of our favorite patio decor ideas). Create your perfect outdoor ambiance by hanging sparkling lights over walkways, lining porch steps with flickering tea lights, or lighting candles to cozy up the outdoor mood amidst conversation and good cheer. You can go with a decorative outdoor ceramic candle like our Terrace Collection or Marbella Candle, and later repurpose as a planter for wildflower seeds.
3. Add comfort with cushions
A few artfully placed cushions can make all the difference in any patio decor. Many of us have experienced times when uncomfortable seating made staying outdoors for extended periods difficult. The great news is you can change that without needing to purchase a whole new set of patio furniture. For added comfort, simply soften up hard metal chairs with pads or consider investing in some durable canvas pillows to cozy up lounge chairs.
4. Inspire relaxation with shaded areas
If you’ll be hosting a daytime celebration, managing the sunlight is a key part of perfecting any porch decor. A soft filtered light ensures no one is stuck with the sun in their eyes or suffers a sunburn. Unless your landscaping or architecture already affords you a pleasantly shaded area, a patio umbrella, canvas shade cloth, or privacy curtain can help you create your own.
6. Accent with bright pops of color
While there are patio essentials like chairs and tables, your patio decor can be as colorful and interesting as you want it! Incorporate pops of your favorite colors by choosing bright pillows, accenting with a vibrant candle, laying down a colorful rug, or finding a vivid tablecloth. If you’re feeling ambitious, consider recovering a lounge chair with eye-catching fabric or painting your concrete floor in a radiant hue. Committing to just one or two of these porch decor ideas can breathe new life into your outdoor entertaining space.
7. Have a plan to keep bugs away
Pesky bugs and mosquitos can ruin a party quickly, so a smart addition to consider for your patio decor is something to keep the bugs away. We love adding an outdoor fan that doubles for a soothing breeze or lighting a citronella candle in the evenings on the patio table near our seating. The strong citrus fragrance and flame have been known to ward off bugs while adding a refreshing scent you can enjoy.
8. Set up a whimsical garden workstation
Making your porch or patio a welcoming entertainment space doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice function for style. A simple wooden potting bench can make a beautiful and practical workstation, or even the site of a fun interactive craft for your guests. All you’ll need is a few stylish flower pots, some gardening soil, and seeds to get started. Consider reusing empty candle vessels from our collection of planter pot candles as your planting containers if you’re into DIY projects.
8. Invite birdlife into your outdoor space
The soft melody of birdsong instantly brings peace to any outdoor space, so why not invite your neighborhood’s feathered friends to join your gatherings? Welcome a wide variety of birds by stocking a charming bird feeder with sunflower seeds or offer your favorite bird’s seed of choice to increase the likelihood of their presence. Adding an elegant bird bath can make your porch or patio decor even more appealing. Plus, watching the birds play makes an excellent conversation topic for your human guests.
9. Repurpose decor for creative planters
Sometimes the most fun part of designing your porch decor is picking out the accent pieces that add flair and really make the space yours. One idea that’s got us particularly excited is creatively repurposing items in your home to be planters for lush greenery or succulents.
There are so many options for what to make into a planter: wide-bottomed woven tote bags, antique teapots, last year’s galoshes… we’ve even created a line of candles that are designed to be upcycled into flower pots when the wax is gone! This is an opportunity for you to really tap into your creativity, and maybe even get your kids in on the project.
10. Unify your space with a cozy rug
Creating a cohesive design is a common challenge in patio and porch decorating. One tip for creating unity is adding a sturdy outdoor rug that incorporates colors from your existing design. Not only will the color scheme help tie together the rest of your design elements, but the rug’s perimeter can also divide your space into different zones without making it feel smaller.
We hope you are inspired by these patio decor and porch decorating ideas and feel ready to make some small changes to improve your outdoor spaces. Do you have any patio decorating tips for spring and summer gatherings that we missed? Tell us how you’ve rejuvenated your porch or patio in the comments below!