Skip to content

Designing your outdoor living space wisely

designing your outdoor living space
Patio furniture

Designing your outdoor living space is right at your fingertips and will not break the bank!

As the summer months are fast approaching and the days are getting longer, it’s not hard to imagine spending more time outdoors.  GOGO design group is in the spirit of outdoor living space design full force.  Just last month, a client reached out and said to me. “It’s enough, let’s create our outdoor living space so we can finally use it!”  Well that’s all she had to say.  Within three weeks, we selected and ordered her furniture, pillows, area rug and accessories and will be installing her Vintage Vibe entertainment oasis by the end of this month.

How great it will be to finally set up YOUR outdoor living space!  The design marketplace has made it so easy to implement, it almost feels like instant gratification.  Retail stores such as Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel and CB2 are now offering sophisticated outdoor furnishing design at budget friendly prices for all personal styles.  And, many items are stocked, so delivery can be scheduled within a couple weeks of ordering your furniture.

rooftop living space

Purchasing at the retail level saves you money on shipping and delivery costs that can be incurred at showrooms that only sell to the Design Trade.  In addition, stores often offer promotional sales which can save you even more money.  Another perk of purchasing at the retail level is that items are returnable, and the stores stand by their products in the rare event of poor performance.  Outdoor use fabrics, rugs and accessories have never been more sophisticated, and offered at such good pricing.

The beauty of designing outdoor living spaces nowadays is that the home furnishings market has exploded (in a good way!), creating furniture, fabrics, rugs, lighting and accessories to withstand the wear and tear of outdoor living.  My “go-to” stores for creating the ultimate outdoor living experience for my determined client continues to not let me down (see links below).  This year, I was delighted to see that the magnitude of choices evolved to the point of blurring the line between indoor and outdoor living.  There is now the concrete (no pun intended) concept that your home’s outdoor space can be created as a literal extension of your indoor living space — as another room in your house.  The style and color scheme of your interior can flow right into the exterior surrounds of your home.  It’s simply a beautiful thing, and a trend that clearly will become a classic approach to outdoor living space design.

wicker outdoor furniture

Designing your outdoor space doesn’t just include selecting and arranging your furnishings; it must be thoughtfully planned within the context of your existing space, whether it is a paved patio, pergola, landscaped area, or all of these variables.  According to Landscape Architect and Interior Designer Michael Norpell of Norpies Wall To Wall, today’s growing trends in Chicagoland landscapes include planting native plants such as Wild Columbine that don’t require a lot of attention, maintenance and water.  In addition he says, customized lighting is becoming essential, and is installed not only to light your path, but adds a warm feeling and drama if you so desire.  As LED lighting has become a solid presence in interior lighting design, it makes total sense to install it outdoors because it is lower maintenance and energy efficient.  You can choose to purchase a little more expensive LED light fixture, but in the long run you will save you money on energy costs, and you will not have to replace the light bulbs for several years.  Or, to save money up front, you can install long lasting LED lightbulbs in a universal fixture, while saving on energy costs in the long run.  To learn more about how you can illuminate your outdoor living space with the most cutting edge, economic and aesthetic tools available, please visit and connect with the foremost experts is landscape illumination.

Backyard living space
Credits: Photography by Linda Oyama Bryan, Design by Michael Norpell’s Wall To Wall
Outdoor living space
Credits: Photography by Linda Oyama Bryan, Design by Michael Norpell’s Wall To Wall

Please explore the links provided below for ideas as to where you can start shopping and designing your outdoor living spaces in design styles that suit your lifestyle and personality.  It’s all at our fingertips, and very exciting to watch as the marketplace is growing and evolving.

The following links represent a few “biggest bang for your buck” destinations where I shop for a variety of styles and needs for my clients’ outdoor living:

  • – find outdoor traditional and transitional, classic furniture that will blend into a range of design styles.
  • – find outdoor traditional and transitional furniture, area rugs, pillows, and accessories.
  • – find an eclectic and unique selection of local and national outdoor furniture and accessory artists and suppliers at a reasonable variety of price ranges.
  • – find transitional and modern outdoor furniture and accessories at a great price.  I’ve even selected the outdoor concrete table for a client’s kitchen.
  • – find lower end more unusual outdoor living accessories and occasional furniture.
  • – find unusual garden and outdoor accessories
  •  – find consignment planters, statues, and furnishings
  • – find outdoor mid modern and contemporary furniture
  •  – find outdoor contemporary furniture, rugs and accessories

Create a space to nourish your soul.