I love living in the heart of a big city. Great restaurants, galleries and concert venues are minutes away, and we don't even bother with a car anymore because we rarely leave Toronto. Yes, since moving here, my boyfriend and I have become one of those couples. (Mostly, I think, because we're not from Ontario so we don't have anyone to visit in the burbs.) But like most big urban centres, space comes at a premium here, so although we love the area we're living in, we're stuck with no backyard and a small balcony.
We just moved into our apartment last summer, so decorating the patio wasn't at the top of our to-do list, but I'm not going to miss out on coffee and toast al fresco this year. While doing some online furniture shopping I stumbled across some ideas that have made me rethink the traditional two-chairs-and-a-table option.
If you're planning to redecorate your balcony this season, have a look at these tips for maximizing a small space. Please also disregard the overabundance of pink — think ideas, not colour.
I like how this homeowner has fitted an L-shape bench snuggly into the corner of this patio, accommodating more people than a table and chairs would — and it just looks so cosy! They've placed a rug in front with a couple of small side tables to hold drinks.
Save space by opting for a couple of comfy lounge chairs, forgo a traditional table, and use a small side table instead.
Keep the little floor space that you have clear by creating a rack for plants that runs along the balcony ledge. A small bench with cushions serves as casual seating.
This homeowner pushed two crate boxes together to make a bench, covered them with pillows and a blanket, and layered colourful rugs in front for a homey feel.
If you do choose traditional patio furniture, make sure it's light and delicate. Nothing is worse than trying to jam a full-size patio set onto a small balcony.
If your patio is really itsy bitsy, you can always throw down a small woven rug, layer a sheepskin over a single chair and pull up a tiny side table to hold your breakfast.
Want a few more ideas? Have a look at our photo gallery of small patios, porches and balconies.