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10 Ways to Make the Most of a Small Outside Space

Just because your outside space is small doesn’t mean you can’t have grand design ideas for it. Whether you have a diminutive courtyard, tiny roof terrace, private balcony or a modest section of fenced-off Earth to call your own – you can create a small outdoor space to enjoy and be proud of.

Take a look at our top 10 ideas for making the most of your small outdoor space, no matter how compact and bijoux.

Less is more for small gardens

When you have a little space, you can’t go wrong by going minimal. Minimalism is about understated, calming, simple spaces that achieve beauty with the bare essentials.

Use your outdoor space as an extension of your home

Throwing open big, wide doors onto small outside spaces serves to extend your indoor living space into the outside. The size and scope of that extension won’t matter. The first day you can open your home up and make the outdoors part of it will feel magnificent.

Create a cosy atmosphere in a small terrace or garden

Rather than try to pretend your outdoor space is something it’s not, embrace it. Cosy, intimate spaces can be just as pleasant to spend time in as sprawling gardens. Use cute lighting, comfortable cushions and soft furnishings to create a cosy, intimate space. It’s all about confidence.

Can’t build out? Build up

Planning permission notwithstanding, if you have a small garden why not extend the space you can use by building a raised platform? With storage or a playspace underneath, building a raised platform can create double the square footage of the surface area.

Create different levels in your small garden

Building garden surfaces at different heights can achieve the illusion of travelling from one space to another. A raised platform for seating, or sunken garden pit, creates a dynamic effect that may not seem possible in a small space. Tiered planting gives the illusion of depth.

Use mirrors and lighting

The use of lighting and mirrors can reflect alternative aspects of your garden, or make it look as though a mirror leads to another dimension. 

Create multifunctional areas

Furniture with built-in storage means you don’t need to add sheds or storage boxes. Fold-down tables or bars mean you can create a dining or entertaining space in seconds, and fold it away to provide freedom of movement when you need it. Sunken trampolines, sandpits or pools that can be covered are a godsend when you need more floor space.

Choose the right furniture for a small outside space

Furniture on legs creates the illusion of space where you can see the flooring underneath it. Light-framed, easily portable furniture is the way forward. Avoid imposing sofas or dark, boxy pieces.

Create the illusion of space with decking and cladding

There are many ways to trick the eye. Use creative patterns and lines to draw the eye up and out. Consider cladding for walls or fencing, and experiment with decking patterns.

Plant up

If you don’t have space for lots of planting on the ground, plant upwards! Create flower walls or use climbers and pergolas to create horticultural displays above ground.


Why not see how it would look to deck our small outdoor space with our 3D deck builder tool, Prime Design?

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