Celebrate Summer in an Outdoor Oasis

Great news for Southern Hemisphere dwellers - Summer is on it's way! 

As the weather warms up so does our intuitive desire to spend more time outdoors, soaking up the sunshine, enjoying the fresh air and listening to the sounds of Mother Nature.

Having contact with nature supports many aspects of our health by encouraging healing and helping to alleviate stress. Surrounding one’s self in a tranquil setting relaxes the body and restores the mind’s ability to focus. As such, having a personal outdoor sanctuary to retreat to after a hard day is every bit as important as having a well-designed, comfortable and functioning space within the home.

Below are all the inspirational tips and practical solutions you need to help you spruce up your garden and create the perfect outdoor oasis in no time!

Design & Space Planning:

Size doesn't matter.
No matter how large or small your outdoor area may be, whether you have sprawling lawns, a mid-size roof-top garden or miniature courtyard, it is possible to embrace the joys of alfresco living. The key to a good design is to make the most of the entire space by maximising its use. In order to achieve this you need to carefully consider how you would like to use the area. 

Think of a garden as having outdoor rooms with different sections or purposes. These factors will determine what you need and what you can actually place in your space. You may require areas to cook, dine, grow, play, read, nap, exercise, swim, sun bathe, even bathe and of course relax! Most importantly you must be able to move about freely around the garden. The space should flow and not be cluttered in any way.

Orientation & Up Keep:

Considering the direction of the sun will assist you to ascertain how best to position plants, flowers and furniture. The type of plants and flowers you select will depend greatly on the amount of sunlight the area receives and of course your love of gardening. Do you prefer a garden that is easy to maintain with minimum effort, or are you a real green thumb that likes to spend weekends gardening?

Design Elements and Principles:

Think about introducing colour, pattern, texture and shape and consider how these elements will relate to the overall feel of the area. Envisage how plants will look with others around it, as well as against any garden backdrops, building elements, decorative accessories and furniture.

Colour & Pattern:
If you are trying to create a tranquil space with an overall ‘Zen’ feel, then introducing too many strong colours or bold patterns could potentially overwhelm calmer shades of greens and browns. However, colour can greatly enhance a space. Adopting even just a pop of colour will help to communicate a harmonious planting scheme, add contrast and create a theme or focal point.

Shape & Texture:
Adding different shapes to your outdoor area such as garden sculptures, wall décor or interesting shaped items of furniture are a great way to add interest, as is utilising various textures.


Repeating textures will help to create a sense of harmony, however, you want to keep things balanced not boring. Don’t be afraid to combine textures such smooth pebbles, shiny sculptures, high gloss pots or mirrors to create a brilliant contrast against timber, brickwork and foliage. 


It may help to do some research and select a style that you like to use as a guideline for the overall design. There are plenty to choose from such as Modern, Contemporary, Vintage, Shabby Chic, Rustic, Cottage, Coastal, French Provençal, English Rose, Mediterranean, Japanese, or the most current trend - ‘Industrial Vintage’ which is an eclectic mix of rustic, factory-style imperfection drawn together by an eye for a bargain. This is a great option of you don’t want to be tied to an obvious style.  

Industrial Vintage


Mediterranean Style 

Shabby Chic 

Create an inspiration file with images of outdoor areas that you love and things will begin to fall into place. Don’t be afraid to take elements from other designs and adapt them to suit your own space.

This topic is extensive and we have just touched on the basics so be sure to look out for my next post: Your guide to Garden Essentials and Outdoor Décor Must-haves.


  1. Such an inspirational page, great article!

  2. Heading into fall/winter here... and I just decided I will live vicariously through you for the next 5-6 months! Great post!

  3. Thanks ladies!
    Haha, Laurelle, I feel honoured that you would like to live vicariously through Squeezed Daily. I know exactly how you feel as I am currently in Montreal and it is FREEZING! I am looking forward to heading to Australia in a few days to defrost! The next garden post will be up soon! It's going to be an A-Z Guide of Garden Essentials. Stay tuned! :)


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