Whether you have a sprawling backyard, a cozy front porch, or a sliver of a balcony, today’s outdoor spaces are increasingly being designed for everyday use, rather than sporadic weekend parties or warm-weather grill-outs. Many homeowners now depend on these outdoor areas to provide additional living space, a peaceful escape, and a connection to nature that their homes might otherwise lack. Weather permitting, a wide variety of activities including work, play, cooking, relaxation, and entertaining are all moving outdoors.
To accommodate these new needs, the latest outdoor living trends embrace the comfort, convenience, and style common to home interiors. Tap into the full potential of your outdoor living spaces with these top trends for 2022.
For many, remote work is here to stay, and work-from-home setups are getting a fresh spin. While makeshift workstations at the dining table or couch were common throughout the past few years, 2022 is the year of the alfresco office. Named the 2022 outdoor trend of the year by exterior wood care brand Cabot, outdoor workspaces allow you to carve out a spot for work, crafts, homework, and more without taking up valuable space indoors. Transform a garden shed into a private office or set up shop at a desk on the deck to extend work-from-home outdoors.
Structured Outdoor Rooms
Patios, decks, and other outdoor areas are increasingly being treated as well-defined rooms that serve as bonus living areas. This outdoor living trend is driving an uptick in furnishings that reinforce that room-like feel, such as built-in seating and shade structures that provide a “ceiling” overhead. According to Wayfair’s 2022 Outdoor Trends report, searches for outdoor pergola kits are up 369% compared to the previous year, as homeowners seek out ways to define their outdoor spaces while maintaining that open-air feel.
Just like a bold area rug can liven up a living room and new tile can transform a bathroom, adding patterns underfoot is equally impactful outdoors. We’re now seeing homeowners using stenciled designs to spruce up concrete patios and painting deck boards with eye-catching patterns. For a more permanent dose of pattern, install patio pavers in alternating colors to create a geometric pattern, or trade traditional pavers for striking cement tiles.
Expect interior furniture trends to migrate outdoors this season. Already well-established in living rooms, curvy furniture styles and trendy textures like rattan are making their way onto patios and porches. Wayfair’s report noted huge jumps in search interest for both outdoor egg chairs and bistro chairs, signaling that basic patio furniture is getting a stylish upgrade. Look for outdoor seating and accent pieces that boast rounded forms and woven textures to capitalize on this 2022 trend.
As inflation and COVID-19 restrictions continue to make travel tricky, staycations are more appealing than ever. Outfitting your backyard with resort-style features can help you create a relaxing escape without the need for a plane ticket. Choose simple updates such as a water feature for soothing ambience, chaise lounge chairs that provide laidback seating, or patio heaters that let you comfortably extend your hours outside. Or invest in a pool or spa for the ultimate backyard retreat.
Jessica Bennet, Better Homes & Gardens