As July crosses the halfway point and schools begin to shut their doors for their summer, minds turns to relaxing days spent outdoors, enjoying our gardens and - fingers crossed - being blessed with a spell of good weather.
Even if the weather doesn’t cooperate entirely this summer, there are plenty of ways you can bring a splash of summery style to your home in the next few months. How about trying one of these ideas?
Bringing the outdoors in has long been an aspiration for many of us, but that doesn’t have to mean adding a conservatory or building an entire extension to help integrate your garden and living room. Instead, adding either French windows or bifold doors can help open up your interior space to make a seamless transition to your garden. Throw them open when the weather is good and you can enjoy the best of both worlds. A window fitter can show you the kind of options that are available.
It’s common to want to make the most of our gardens, whether it’s for growing plants, entertaining others, or simply sitting outside in the sunshine. If you want to enjoy your outside space, it’s important that it’s set up right - and while you can just dump a table and chairs on your lawn, it isn’t necessarily the best use of space. Why not build a patio or add decking at the rear of your house so you have a dedicated area where you can sit and entertain.
When it comes to styles and materials, you're spoiled for choice. A popular option these days is to use tiles - new products are particularly hardwearing and suited to life outdoors, while if you use the same style inside, for example in your kitchen, you can create a seamless effect that helps bring the two spaces together. Using wood to create decking is also popular - consider using salvaged wood to get a weathered effect, that is also ec0-friendly. If you choose to have a traditional stone patio, consider finding a treated stone that won't soak up water and discolour - it could save you several Sundays spent jetwashing in years to come.
There’s nothing like a good barbecue - the smell of smoke, the crackle of the charcoal, the taste of a quality banger or burger that’s been cooked outdoors. Everyone loves a barbecue, but rather than struggle with a dirty old kettle barbie, or even - perish the thought - using a disposable BBQ, why not upgrade to something a bit more substantial? A bricklayer can build a dedicated barbecue set up with a grill, space for the woods or coals, shelves for all your tools and equipment, and everything else you need to turn your garden into a pitmaster’s dream.
If if you fancy indulging your culinary side outside but aren't so keen on smoking meats and charring veggies, why not consider a pizza oven instead? A bespoke pizza oven will give you the chance to churn out your own authentic Neapolitan or New York slices better than any local takeaway joint. The only worry you'll have is keeping hungry punters away.
Most of us long for more useable space in our homes, but even a simple extension can be beyond our budgets. If you constantly find yourself wishing for an extra room to use as an office, a hobby space or studio - or even just a place to relax - then a summerhouse might be the answer. It's not just a souped-up shed, it's a practical space that can be adapted to meet whatever use you throw at it, and, with electricity and good insulation, it can even ve useful long after summer fades away. Self-assembly kits mean you be up and running in no time, or you can find a tradesperson to built something more bespoke. You can either find a creative carpenter to help build your dream summerhouse, or find a handyman who can help assemble something a little more practical.