This is a sponsored post with AllModern. All opinions and considerations are my own. Links may be affiliated for your ease of shopping.
I live in the south. That means mild winters, hot summers, and just right in between. I’m incredibly thankful for an outdoor space to use for dining and enjoying. Unfortunately, our space left a lot to be desired, and a small round table with two chairs hardly fit our family of four, so we it wasn’t ideal for us to enjoy a meal out here.
In order to dine alfresco, you need two things: function and mood.
Setting the Function
It all started with a rug.
That’s how it usually goes with me. This space was no different. Finding the perfect neutral, vintage-like, boho rug ignited the feel for this outdoor room. This one from AllModern is soft like an indoor rug, but is made out of polypropylene, which is a durable and easy to clean.
Next, a table is obviously a must-have function piece for dining alfresco.
After a deep search on Facebook Marketplace, I found a vintage table and chairs for $80. It also came with two leafs so that we can have a full blown holiday meal out here if we wanted!
It was in pretty rough shape with some vibrant fabric on the chairs, but a little TLC and some new neutral outdoor fabric, it’s as good as new. (An entire post will be dedicated to this table soon!)
Lastly, on the functional side of dining alfresco, is layout.
I want this space to create an experience for my family and friends while we dine and entertain. Bringing in functional pieces and placing them in areas that not only make sense but provide for easy conversation and purpose allows for those experiences to easily take place.
For me, this includes the extra chairs for dining that also doubles as lounge chairs and the small dresser that holds extra place mats and outdoor dinner ware.
Setting the Mood
Cue the long moonlit outdoor meals with the Bravermans on Parenthood. Don’t tell me you haven’t secretly desired those long evening outdoors with friends and family with tree-strung lights and endless conversations!
Though I don’t have string lights (yet), setting an inviting mood was on the top of my list. It certainly helps that we live in a bird sanctuary (at least is sounds like it) with lots of mature trees in the background. Location aside, setting the mood can happen in many ways.
Here’s my cozy formula for any space, inside or out: Lighting + Plants + Texture
I’m 99% positive that the old outdoor light was original to our 1970 house. An upgrade was overdue, and I found the perfect light for our space from AllModern. Since we needed the light to fill up the space and not just provide downward facing light, we went with a globe style.
Another way to add lighting is the old fashion way: candles. Even just simple, white unscented candles can provide just the right amount of coziness.
I’m also a big fan of lamps, for a covered area, and string lights. Both of which I’d love to add down the road.
Real or fake, plants bring life to a space. One great way to add height to a space is by hanging plants. I love these modern plant hangers from AllModern! I filled mine with Creeping Jenny and a variegated vine.
I’m also a lover of all the ferns. Large ones, small ones, green ones, purple ones. Ferns have set a cozy vibe in many spaces around my home, especially this one!
One good thing about choosing neutral furniture is that you can completely change the look of a space simply by swapping the pillow covers. I found THESE four outdoor pillow covers for only $16 on Amazon! I was so pleased with how well they went with the rug.
One of my favorite new features in this space is the curtains. It made this back porch feel like an actual room. So not only do they provide extra texture and coziness to the space, they can also hide the unpleasant view of the power lines and neighbor’s house as well! I hung four panels from AllModern with THESE cheap ceiling hangers from Amazon and two copper rods joined together by a copper coupler found at Home Depot.
With the space finished just in time for Fourth of July and our new grill ready to go, I’m excited to put this space to use with close friends and family very soon!
In the meantime, you’ll find us out here every morning. 🙂