Picture stepping out for a romantic evening without leaving your property.
Unlike a front porch that is on display to passersby, backyard rooms provide private sanctuaries for family and friends, and offer a mini vacation from the hustle and bustle of the main house.
To get the most out of your investment and actually expand the size of your living quarters, plan a room that can be functional both day and night. If you live in a warm climate, design your room to span several seasons.
When you're decorating, walk right by the stiff, unimaginative porch furniture. Look for all-weather fabrics, which are becoming as exciting and sophisticated as interior ones now that high-end textile companies making outdoor-living fabrics. (See the last page for more fabric tips.)
The new performance materials repel stains and resist fading like never before. Thanks to new weaving and finishing techniques, they have the look and feel of traditional upholstery fabric. These fabrics might cost more, but they last longer and can save you money in the long run.
Where do you start your outdoor room? Designers weigh in on the following pages.
Continued on page 2: Planning Your Room