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Creating My Dream Patio

Today decor8 columnist Anna-Malin is back to visit us from Sweden sharing her recently redecorated patio. I love seeing how people treat a patio space – some fancy tables and chairs with a big umbrella, others add a water feature or fire pit and still others incorporate hammocks or even build a koi pond. It’s amazing to see the difference from patio-to-patio as you browse magazines and books for outdoor spaces, isn’t it? I think you’ll love Anna-Malin’s patio because it’s more of a second living room and lounge space for relaxing, reading and entertaining during the warmer months and can take her straight into the Autumn. I’ll let her take it from here…

Patio Inspiration

Hello everyone it’s Anna-Malin! For my June column I wanted to share my newly decorated outdoor patio because I am very proud of it and feel that it could be an inspiration to many of you who are unsure as to how to decorate your outdoor space. Last summer my husband and I built a wooden frame in the backyard to create a room in our garden area (below). Since we have full sun in our yard all day long we needed a place with some shade for relief! On top of the wooden frame we put branches and twigs to create a rustic, natural ceiling. On the concrete wall to soften it a bit visually, we added a shelf and some wood for vines.

Patio Inspiration

This year I bought new furniture — a sofa, a big round table and a chair — all in bamboo. I wanted the feeling to be calm and relaxed
so I added a lot of pillows in a mix of patterns, shapes and colors and I store them when I’m not using the patio to protect from fading and water damage since they are not waterproof. I also bring in the sheep skin when I’m not using my patio. A sheer panel (below – you can’t see it in the photo above) not only looks pretty swaying in the breeze but filters the light as well.

Patio Inspiration

Patio Inspiration

Patio Inspiration

By mixing the bamboo furniture with my old white rattan armchairs and a really old bench from the flea market, I achieved the feeling that I was looking for – rustic, modern, clean and very “me”. I like to have a space that feels very personal, even outdoors. The string of lights were added to the fence to give a warm glow at night and lanterns create a romantic ethnic bohemian vibe in the evening along with some good tunes from my iPod.

Patio Inspiration

Patio Inspiration

Patio Inspiration

Patio Inspiration

Patio Inspiration

With beautiful weather finally here, this my favorite place right now, especially in the evenings with lots of candles, a cup of tea and a good book. I hope my outdoor space inspired you – do you have a place in your backyard to create something similar? Do you already have a patio that you’ve recently redecorated? You can link it in your comment if you would like to show and tell!

I’ll be back in July with another Handmade Home story from you, until then, goodbye! Anna-Malin Lindgren.

Posted by decor8 in Decorating Tips on June 14, 2011

Your comments...

  1. Will commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 4:52pm

    Seriously this is! So good, Anna-Malin. I love the bulb lighting chain and the graphic mix of black and white stripes. The billowing drape sets the scene beautifully, too.

  2. Luciane commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 4:53pm

    This is a truly stunning patio! It’s a place to go and just relax at the end of the day, or the middle of it, if you’re lucky! :-)

    Beautiful pictures. Love the mix of different elements.



  3. Agne Nananai commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 4:56pm

    If it was mine, I would never go out from there.Very good!

  4. amber kane commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 4:57pm

    What an amazing space, I think that I would be content to sit there all day, everyday.

  5. Ludmila @ creamylife commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 5:06pm

    Oh, this is amazing! Love the clean and relaxing look of this patio!

  6. Pammy commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 5:17pm

    Ohhhh my! I love this so much. We have a screen porch with some similarities to this, but i’ve been dreaming about creating a pergola made from branches for the far side of the yard. My husband would like the stronger structure of this version, and i like that it’s still rustic-looking. Love the shear curtains as well!

  7. Stacey @ Here's to Life commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 5:35pm

    Gorgeous! I adore this space!

  8. Colleen commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 5:42pm

    I absolutely love this. This is exactly the kind of space that I would like to have in my yard. I’m envisioning an outdoor room with mosaic pavers on the floor and a beautiful arbor with grapes growing over it. Unfortunately, I can’t show you a picture yet but you’ve definitely inspired me.

  9. Genelle commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 5:57pm

    Dreamy! I love the simplicity of it. The decor turns it into a retreat! My husband and I have been planning to build a similar structure in our backyard — now I’ve got the perfect inspiration! Hope it looks as great as this one!

  10. Rebecca commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 6:00pm

    Such a beautiful patio!

  11. Lili Emilia commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 6:01pm

    You have such a lovely place <3 It looks so cosy and summery. I can imagine how beautiful that place is with candels when it's getting darker. Enjoy your time there:)

  12. Cyndi commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 6:02pm

    I love this patio space! I’m just in the process of setting up our patio for the summer and was glad to see the sheer panel since I’m considering a similar treatment. The accessories really cozy up the space – I’d love to spend a lazy afternoon out there.

  13. alex commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 6:22pm

    Just lovely! Thanks so much for sharing – I’m planning a little front deck and this is great inspiration! Two years ago we converted our carport into a little lounge with comfy furniture and a fire table – it’s my favorite place to hang out but there’s no sun, so time to create a spot in the front of the house :)

  14. Sandra commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 6:44pm

    Wow, I love it! I love the bamboo couch and I can imagine sitting there a warm summer night enjoying a mojito :-)

  15. Samantha commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 6:56pm

    I am in love with that top photo of the patio… And i happen to have a thing for lanterns. Ah, summer!

  16. Robin Baron commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 7:04pm

    I have to agree with all of the comments, this patio is beautiful! The black and white with small splashes of color looks absolutely fantastic. So serene, I would never want to leave either.

  17. Julie Khuu commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 7:12pm

    Reminds me that I need to get moving on mine! Been dying to host a backyard fete outside but June Gloom’s been rearing it’s ugly head in SoCal…here’s to the promise of a better week! Gorgeous inspiration!

    Peace. Love. LOL!

  18. Lauren commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 7:26pm



  19. Michelle commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 8:32pm

    This is such a wonderful space!

  20. Kirsten commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 9:00pm

    Wow it’s gorgeous! I would love to spend a long weekend sipping tea and reading a good book in a light summery breeze on that patio…

  21. Laura commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 9:33pm

    Gorgeous!!! Would love to sit out here listening to music with friends! x x x x

  22. Tamara, Bella Boho commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 10:05pm

    Oh Anna! You created the most perfect outdoor living space, love, love, love it!

  23. Karlita commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 10:25pm

    wow! I thought I was watching some magazine pictures! great photos and design! so calm and relax.. perfect!

  24. desiree - Vosgesparis commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 10:50pm

    Love the space Anna Malin created. I think I have seen it on her blog before maybe.. or some of it ;) Love the fact we also choosed the same page in the same book to lay open for the picture … I always have my book open at that same page ;)

  25. MelanieO commented
    June 14th, 2011 at 11:54pm

    Simply lovely. Thank you for sharing!

  26. Yelena commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 1:39am

    So beautiful and airy! I love it!!!


  27. Kathy C commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 2:01am

    Lovely, just lovely! Does your furniture stay outdoors? I would love to redo my patio but it’s huge and I have nowhere to store furniture or even coverings. Any ideas?

  28. Kara commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 2:12am

    totally divine!

  29. Jenny P commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 3:44am

    I could start the morning with a cup of coffee and sit all day until it was time for wine!

    Such a beautiful and relaxing space!

  30. Melissa Jaine commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 4:02am

    I have an undercover outdoor area, that I have done nothing with. Each year I tell myself that I will for summer, but it continues to very dull with nothing but an outdoor table and chairs. I use the excuse that I rent, but that is a ridiculous reason for not making a nice space – I do inside, so why not outside too? Thanks for making me think about it again. :)

  31. fenny setiawan commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 4:52am

    Lovely patio Anna. I feel I want to be invited by you and we can enjoy a glass of wine during twilight or just a cup of tea to enjoy a morning sun would be perfect too :).
    I wish I have privilege to have patio then absolutely I will steal your idea to decorate mine :). I wish you enjoy the good day at your patio.

  32. Ivy commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 5:47am

    Beautiful set up. I especially like the glass lantern, that is right up my alley. Did you find it at a flea market or was it in a shop?

  33. Barbara commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 6:35am

    Great spot! Looks very comfy! I wonder where I could get the strings of lights, here in the states. Lighting can really make a difference!

  34. Julie the Alkaline Sister commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 7:54am

    I just realized how many times I have scrolled up and down ooogling at this lovely space-at least 10! I wish I could just climb thru the computer screen right into it and chillax! I need to do some fluffing so this was ever so inspiring as I have lots of ideas flowing now, thank you for your lovely column.

  35. Erin commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 8:11am

    I’m bookmarking this for when I redo my patio. *sigh. Yet another instance when I wish I could copy+paste in real life.

    I especially love the balance of solids and textures of the natural wood ceiling, fence and wicker.

  36. dawn commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 8:26am

    what a lovely patio!

    below is a photolink to my little sliver of paradise.
    i began the project three summers ago when i bought this little house.

    (scroll below the photo for ‘before’ photos and more ‘now photos’)

    it was a brave move after a sad divorce and shoveling rock by the wheelbarrow and planting my future garden truly healed my soul. it is funny how you can’t feel how hard your heart hurts when your the rest of your body is in pain, too. :)

    superlovely patio work! i want that string of lights.

  37. Nic Duncan commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 8:42am

    What a gorgeous outdoor space! A great example of how to create a whole new room in the garden. I love the mix of textures used – bamboo, twigs, sheepskin, wood, the metal and glass of the lantern – they all work together so well to create a space that really connects with nature. Very inspiring!

  38. SOUL design commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 9:08am

    lots of inspiration…love especially the cane sofa and big lightbulb fairy lights

  39. Cristina commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 9:10am

    I love all! (I must remember about the nice effect of a sheer panel swaying in the breeze!)

  40. Lisa commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 9:39am

    The full effect of this space is exquisite. Love the black and white graphics and the creative way you softened the back wall. This is bohemian done right. What a gloriously peaceful space.

  41. Nat@ dear little house commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 9:43am

    Very luxurious and relaxing! I love the bare globes too.

  42. petites et grandes commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 10:22am

    Unfortunately, i don’t have a garden or any place to create a patio. But this one is really beautiful, seems like a dream come true.

  43. michelle commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 10:22am

    BEAUTIFUL! I want all of it please…so inspiring.

  44. Alex commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 11:19am

    This is so lovely !!! I would really like to have such a patio, too!!

  45. Chantal commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 12:00pm

    This looks just incredibly pretty. Very well done. Enjoy your cosy space!

  46. Nathalie commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 1:31pm

    Wow, this is stunning! Totally inspired to create something like this in my garden :)

  47. classiq commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 4:09pm

    It looks lovely. Dreamy indeed, with a wonderful mix of different elements. :)Ada

  48. Linda Hunt commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 5:09pm

    It looks delightful. Thanks for the pictures. I am working with a client now on creating a sunroom and outside patio at the river and you have given me inspiration!

  49. Anastasia Marie commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 5:24pm

    This is totally my dream patio. It’s almost unfair. I have no backyard even to have a patio of any sort. I am dreaming…

  50. Signe commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 6:59pm


  51. Lela - Seaseight commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 7:03pm

    Really inspired! I love it :)

  52. Lisa Lyons commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 7:52pm

    I love your patio…makes me want to curl up with a great book\magazine!


  53. able mabel commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 8:34pm

    I’ll come join you and enjoy your patio! :) I love to how you explained why you did what you did. It definitely gets the wheels turning over here.

  54. Emily commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 10:28pm

    Anna –

    So lovely. I keep “pulling the plug” on my patio decoration because of RAIN. Seriously. What do you do with all of the lovely decorations when it rains? Run outside & bring them all in? What if you’re out when the downpour begins? Do you have a outside storage box?


  55. Melissa de la Fuente commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 11:08pm

    Absolutely gorgeous and so very calm & relaxed. I adore that couch and table…just perfect. Where did you get them, Anna-Malin? I also love the inspired cover over the wood frame. Perfection….

  56. Lori Randall commented
    June 15th, 2011 at 11:42pm

    I love this patio! Looks very relaxing! We are wanting to spruce up ours as well.

  57. Daniel commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 12:10am

    What a wonderful pictures, keep up the good work!!


  58. ArticulateArt commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 12:29am

    The place looks really nice!!! That’s some really good taste!!!
    I wish I had a stylish place like this too.

  59. desiree - Vosgesparis commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 1:00am
  60. Nancy M commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 4:24am

    your outdoor space reminds me of my own. Like Anna, I spent as much time i can outside ( Canada has a long winter like Sweden) I would like to show you pictures of my own backyard. Have a great summer.


  61. Zsa Zsa commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 5:25am

    Anna’s patio is truly a dream!! It’s one of the best I’ve seen and I just love, love those black and white pillows and the wicker furniture. :)

  62. Cinz commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 7:07am

    What a lovely patio – it looks soooo chillaxing:) Great job to Anna Malin!

    On another note, i just wanted to say you got a great blog Holly, i just found you yesterday and kept going way way back to your old entries,hehe. I find your blog very inspiring and with great photos, totally makes my day all bright and shiny! I’m glad i found you, will defo come back for more:)


  63. sarathira commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 7:09am

    oh dear lord this is heaven! I am sort of falling in love more and more as I scroll down the pictures. I love all the little details that you’ve incorporated! At some angle it looks english, at some point it looks bohemian, and at some point it looks moroccan! I love that!! I hope you dont mind me sharing your patio on my blog, because it is just so amazing and i am so going to throw parties with this patio as my inspiration :)

  64. Chloe commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 11:02am

    Wow, this is gorgeous. It looks like a little slice of garden heaven! My outside space is all wooden decking so I can absolutely use this as inspiration to transform it for the summer!

    Thanks for sharing,

    Chloe xx

  65. Kim Johnson commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 1:14pm

    Yes Please! I want a relaxing patio like that so I can sit back and do absolutly nothing! :)

  66. nap atelier commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 3:06pm

    Love it!! Looks like a perfect place to relax.
    Have a lovely day!

  67. erin commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 3:49pm

    This is so so lovely. It looks like a great place to hang out! Thank you for sharing, I’ll definitely be coming back for inspiration.

    We want to do something similar, but my struggle is that we have a very large yard and I feel like there is no anchor point. I don’t want it to just look like a box in the middle of my yard, especially because the view from the back deck overlooks the entire yard rather than being level with it. I just think it might look funny, although I’m hoping to resolve this issue after planting some ornamental trees. :)

  68. cynthia commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 5:26pm

    Beautiful! I love the fabric blowing in the wind!

  69. Emily commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 7:46pm

    I love all the fabulous spaces everyone has! I just finished re-doing our front porch and I am so excited with how it turned out

    Now I just need to get to the back yard. Definitely drawing some inspiration from here!

  70. Laura commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 10:20pm

    We are wanting to redo our patio, so I am taking in everything from this post. Looks so relaxing…this is great inspiration!

  71. Star Hughes commented
    June 16th, 2011 at 11:45pm

    Gorgeous patio! I love your choice in pillows. And those wicker chairs too! That’s my favorite look for an outdoor space.

  72. Cinz commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 3:24am

    Hi there Holly,

    i left u a msg earlier but not sure if it got thru. Anyhow, i just wanted to say you got a great blog going on here!!! It’s very inspiring and it brings a smile to my face. You got me looking into design related stuff again and that is just what i need right now in my life, something that triggers my passion or road to self discovery:) I just kept flicking thru your past posts yday,lol!!! Great photos and a lot of great finds of other creative arty people:) I’ll be back for sure!


  73. Jenny Daniels commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 7:47am

    Very cool patio! Makes me want to redo my tiny balcony! :)

  74. meagan commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 1:25pm

    Oh Ann-Malin what a gorgeous job you did on your patio! It is stunning and totally brag worthy. I would be inviting guests over non-stop if I had that patio. Love it.
    Row House Nest

  75. Asiye commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 2:03pm

    fabulous space!

  76. Decor Girl commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 3:32pm

    Such a delightful space! Easy and relaxing makes for the best patio/outdoor room.

  77. CharlyCha commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 3:47pm

    It’s really wonderful, a very little paradise, i have with your blog a lot of ideas to my home, thanks you very much and sorry for my bad english, french people aren’t the best english speakers :-)

  78. Domestic Lioness commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 3:54pm

    This is divine! Aren’t the outdoors just your favorite room in the house?

  79. Design Candy commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 6:04pm

    Beautifully put together! I adore my little deck, but it is nothing compared to yours! Although, I too have a big Morrocan-style lantern for those cozy evenings :)

  80. SisterBatik commented
    June 17th, 2011 at 6:36pm

    This is simply stylish and I want to sit right there with the summer breeze and enjoy the outdoor air – I love it.

    I only have a small balcony and share a communal garden and this is what it looks like : )

  81. Paula Jo @ Outdoor Garden Decor commented
    June 18th, 2011 at 12:32am

    Stunning! I would spend all of my time out there. Nothing would get done in the house or away from home.

  82. Niki Fulton commented
    June 18th, 2011 at 12:56am

    Lovely photos and a wonderful space. Not much chance of using our patio this summer as we are still struggling to get over 14 degrees (with rain). Hopefully we will get an Indian summer and I shall turn my mind to creating a fun space too.

  83. Tima commented
    June 18th, 2011 at 7:35am

    Love the patio! You have definitely inspired me, thank you!

  84. Amy commented
    June 19th, 2011 at 4:23am

    Just lovely! I’d love to sit out there with my latest read and relax!

  85. Yanet of 3 Sun Kissed Boys commented
    June 19th, 2011 at 5:44am

    What a great space! I love using curtains in outdoor spaces. It’s just lovely!

  86. Linda commented
    June 19th, 2011 at 8:25am

    she is such an amazing, tallented, stylish woman.
    everthing she does she does to perfection.

  87. Janneke commented
    June 19th, 2011 at 4:00pm

    wauw, what a fantastic space!! The atmosphere is really cosy and relaxed. I like the bamboo furniture. Looks like what I had when I lived in Cameroon. Instead there I had it in the house, which I really liked.

  88. Rocio Rincon commented
    June 20th, 2011 at 4:32am

    What a gorgeous patio! I love it!!!

  89. Desha commented
    June 20th, 2011 at 4:43am

    How beautiful! I love how modern and clean it is. Although my style is different, I Love this! You inspired me to take some pics of my favorite spot- my front porch.

    thanks for sharing!

  90. sabby commented
    June 20th, 2011 at 5:31am

    Wow, a simply beautiful outdoor space.

  91. Jasmine Orchard commented
    June 20th, 2011 at 11:29am

    I love this combination, it achieves the rustic style with soft romantic, great indoor/ outdoor feel and what great cushions!
    I have been looking for some of these lloyd loom style chairs myself, for a bed and breakfast room I am styling- they look great with big comfy cushions on.

  92. FIDM Fashion Club commented
    June 20th, 2011 at 8:14pm

    I do love how clean your style is for your patio. I think a patio should be relaxing and a special place for you to get away from the world and I think you created the perfect oasis of style :)

  93. hena tayeb commented
    June 21st, 2011 at 1:41am

    Oh I love it.. so relaxing..

  94. Allison commented
    June 21st, 2011 at 11:20am

    I am in LOVE with your frame and branches! Is it possible to get a tutorial on how you pulled it all off?

  95. Rose commented
    June 21st, 2011 at 9:36pm

    Just looking at these whimsical images of a fabulous summer day makes me wonder where our gorgeous, often too hot weather disappeared to – we here in the southern hemisphere are in the thick of a wet and cold winter. Enjoy your summer weather and wonderful patios.

  96. Kate commented
    June 24th, 2011 at 3:57am

    It looks so cozy! I want to copy everything and plunk it in my own back yard.

  97. jules @ The Diversion Project commented
    June 26th, 2011 at 5:18am

    this certainly has inspired me – i’ve just boght a sprawling 60’s pad, and man did they love their patios back then. lots of great ideas here, thanks!

  98. Raynee commented
    August 20th, 2011 at 5:37am

    Love this! This is a patio I would enjoy coming home to.
    I love comfy outdoor spaces.

  99. Robin Horton commented
    January 21st, 2012 at 7:24pm

    This might now be one of my dream patios! I love how she created an outdoor room that appears as comfortable as one might be indoors. Beautiful use of fabrics and accessories. A wonderful place to linger for sure.

  100. franky commented
    May 2nd, 2012 at 6:54pm

    this is such a beautiful little patio! perfect fit for summer time…cozy, light and bright. Beautiful work! where did you purchase the bamboo couch, i want to find something similar in Toronto, canada.

  101. Vera commented
    November 1st, 2012 at 9:00pm

    That’s just perfect.

  102. Denver Patios commented
    April 7th, 2013 at 11:09am

    Bamboo patio furniture are proven to be one of the best to relax with, nice choice, it is really a nice idea to make them a part of your dream patio.

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