Designing Outdoor Living Spaces for Small Yards

You may feel like it is not much you can do with a small yard, but this is not true. With the right planning and a few design tricks, you can turn your small yard into a formidable outdoor living space. All you have to do is make the most of what you are given to work with and with a few handy hints, your small yard will be the best on the block.

Designing Outdoor Living Spaces for Small Yards

  • Create different levels: An outdoor room or living space can be made to appear bigger by adding levels. Create a deck with multiple shades of the same color to provide unity and individuality. A small yard does not have to limit your imagination, so think big and design your yard with creativity.
  • Place a vista: Consider adding a vista which will help to draw eyes away from the limited space you have. Build a trellis or place a small water fountain towards the end of the yard. A colorful arbor trellis filled with vines is eye-catching and can draw focus away from small spaces as well as add beauty to your outdoor room.
  • Multifunctional furniture: Because furniture can take up space go for options that can be used for different purposes. A perfect example is trunks which can be used to store things out of the way as well as seating or side tables. A short wall can serve as both a bench and a way to add a level to the small space too.
  • Stay Clutter-Free: When working with small spaces, the worst thing to have around is a clutter. That is the quickest way to make limited space appear even smaller. Use large containers to hold few plants rather than several smaller ones. Decide ahead of time what the purpose of the outdoor space will be and keep only the relevant items nearby to avoid clutter.
  • Table top features: You can add special features to a small outdoor space by utilizing the table top. A fire bowl can make the room feel cozy and a small fountain can supply a natural ambiance. These do not take up the same bulky space like a fire pit or larger fountain and still deliver the same effects.
  • Be playful: Play with lights and color in the outdoor living space. Brighter colors for furniture and containers can prevent smaller spaces from feeling cramped and lights that can be muted or candles help create mood and work best for smaller spaces. Brighter lights can be overpowering and exaggerate the smallness of an area.
  • Retractable Awnings: A permanent roofing can make space feel closed in, so choose retractable awnings or umbrellas for coverage when needed. This keeps things covered for when the sun is too bright but is easy to open up when it cools down to enjoy a summer evening sky.
  • Nested or minimalist furniture: Opt for furniture that can easily be stacked away to save storage space or choose stools that can double as small tables. Look for furniture that is functional and sleek to avoid taking up unnecessary space.


Just because your yard is small doesn’t mean you should not be allowed to enjoy the outdoors. With a little designing and planning, you can make the most of any small space and create an outdoor living area that people will love to hang out in. Whenever you have guests stop by, roll in a portable grill for entertaining and your small yard will truly offer you everything you need. Good things do come in small packages.

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