The concept of outdoor rooms for outdoor living and maximizing outdoor spaces such as gardens and patios has really taken off in recent years. The reasons can range from shrinking square footage in modern housing to improved products for outdoor living, but we can all agree that the extra space provides added flexibility. Before you begin furnishing an outdoor room you have to decide how you want the space to function:

• A place to gather and entertain
• A private retreat
• A place for cooking and dining, or just dining
• A playroom for children and friends
• A multipurpose area where you combine different activities

Once you’ve narrowed down a purpose for your outdoor room, select a location. Depending on what kind of outdoor space you have, you may have just one option or be able to select from many.

If you have less space to work with, it will call for more efficient planning and creativity. You can turn that area into an exquisite outdoor room with special attention to function and form.

When you have plenty of space, you still have to pay attention to form and function, but you will have more leeway.

Choose a spot with a view if possible. If you don’t already have a view, create one with plantings, garden sculpture, fountains and accessories.

Add drama to your location with your furniture and fabrics; consider crisp, bright colors.

For more Outdoor living ideas-