The trend towards outdoor living has been around for a while, but what we’re seeing now is an extension of that, as people venture deeper into the garden. The outdoor room–once an add-on, almost an afterthought, to the internal areas–is now expanding into the furthest reaches of the garden, as we dedicate a much greater proportion of the open-air space to living, lounging and dining. Riemelia Oram of Cosh Living explains,“There no longer needs to be a constructed visual divide between the garden and the home. We’re seeing the strong design trend of the garden entering the home and, in turn, more and more, the home entering the garden.”
Getting back to nature
The basis of this trend is a burgeoning desire to step away from the indoors – and away from our screens and the incessant demands of technology – and reconnect with the natural environment. There’s also a growing awareness of environmental concerns that makes us want to experience and appreciate nature, something that our balmy climate enables us to do year-round. “Here in Sydney, we have an amazing opportunity. Our European supplier partners envy the opportunity for real all-round outdoor living that our climate can facilitate,” says Riemelia, who also sees this environmental awareness play out in the demand for furniture with longevity, luxurious pieces in the best sense, meaning quality materials and classic design that will never go out of style.
Furnishing a live-in garden
Furniture trends are facilitating the journey into the garden, with a new emphasis on casual comfort. “The term ‘outdoor homing’ is being thrown around, essentially describing the concept of living equally indoors and outdoors,” says Riemelia, explaining how this translates into softer, cosier cushioning and pastel colours – a gentler palette more usually seen indoors.
This trend can also be picked up with accessories – chanelling the Danish ‘hygge’ concept by loading up outdoor furniture with cushions and throws – and with moveable pieces, such as bean bags and floor cushions, that can be shifted around the garden on a whim.
Create a sense of adventure
The secret to living deeper into the garden is to make it a place worth exploring, with enticing features for all seasons. Design the space with meandering paths to draw you in and a well-planned lighting scheme to illuminate the way after dark and highlight the most delightful features. Create multiple destinations beyond the dining area closest to the house; consider a fire pit, a charming water feature, or just a soft patch of grass under dappled shade for impromptu picnics at home.