How to Decorate a Concrete Patio

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The sight of a concrete patio can disappoint even the most creative homeowner or apartment dweller. Cold and generally uninviting, a concrete patio is really just an opportunity to create a usable outdoor room for the summer. Whether your concrete is newly poured or is showing age, it's still a great foundation for what can be a rich and enticing retreat.

Things You'll Need

  • Paint for concrete
  • Stencil
  • Rollers for concrete texture
  • Outdoor rug
  • Patio furniture
  • Plants
  • Posts
  • Curtains
  • Cable
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Curtain clips
  • Paint it. Cover your concrete with a sage green or shade of paint that matches your home brick or siding. This will help to distract from the concrete flooring and make the patio blend in better with the surroundings. You can also apply a stencil pattern to the concrete if you prefer. Simply purchase a stencil at a craft store and paint with concrete paints.

  • Use an outdoor rug in bamboo or a grass weave to cover the middle of the concrete patio. This will make a good foundation for your patio furniture by warming up the space and covering any shabby concrete cracks or holes.

  • Add some patio furniture. This is another way to distract the eye from the concrete patio surface. Place some rattan, wicker or iron patio furniture, including a table and chairs, onto your outdoor carpet to define the space and bring the eye away from the concrete border.

  • Bring in some tall plants. Add some palm-tree plants or other plants of a larger stature to corners of the concrete patio to cool the space and break up its hard lines. Concrete patios tend to look harsh, but thanks to the softness of the rug and some tall plants, you can create a false organic look to the space.

  • Layer in some small flowers and herbs. Build up the corner areas with more plants to trick the eye into thinking the hard borders of the concrete patio lead out onto an organic space. Plan for three layers of plants in three various sizes to add interest and texture to the patio.

  • Bring the eye up with some fabric. If the concrete patio leads out to a grassy yard, put in some tall posts at the corners and drape with cool white sheets. Run a line of cable between the posts and drape a curtain from the sides of the patio to create drama, bring shade to the area and define the space.

Tips & Warnings

  • Consider texturizing or distressing your painted concrete for a shabby-chic look that would need no area rug. Paint the concrete with a border of a coordinating color, then distress using wire brushes.
  • Don't make the mistake of picking up an indoor area rug for your outdoor space. Make sure your rug is indoor/outdoor so it holds up to rain and sun.

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References

  • Photo Credit Erin! flckr.com, Repoort flickr.com, amandabhslater flickr.com, tmolini flickr.com, tmolini flickr.com,
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