7 Ways to Create a Cozy Outdoor Living Space

Transform your outdoor space into a cozy oasis with these 7 Ways to Create a Cozy Outdoor Living Space that is affordable.

The outdoors is a beautiful place to relax, entertain guests, and enjoy the fresh air. Creating a cozy outdoor living space is essential for a comfortable and inviting space whether it be a patio, porch, or deck. Adding thoughtful touches and details can transform your backyard or patio into a cozy oasis. Here are 7 ways to create a cozy outdoor living space for your home.

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I'd like to thank my dear friend, Marty, from A Stroll Thru Life for organizing such a wonderful summer home tour. This tour is so eclectic that there is a little something for every home style. I look forward to it each and every season.

If you are visiting from AnnMarie at Simply 2 Moms, welcome! She has some more fabulous ways to create a wonderful outdoor living space.

We spend much of our time living in our outdoor living spaces. Even when the day heats up, you will at least find us out here in the morning or evening.

Suprising, May was a cool month. Once I got the living spaces cleaned of all the pollen and grime in early May, we were able to start enjoying them. You can see my outdoor clenaing tips HERE.

7 Ways to Create a Cozy Outdoor Living Space

Happily, I've been working on the screened porch almost daily with my laptop. It's just so peaceful listening to the birds and squirrels. I've also been eating lunch on the porch or patio with my Kindle. I find that I read so much this time of the year. What is it about the warmer months that have me taking things a bit easier?

This year, I came up with a 12-month reading list. I listen to tons of audiobooks over the course of the year but wanted to set a reading routine for myself. You can see my monthly book list HERE. I'm happy to say that I am on track! If you are curious about my audiobooks, I share them in my (somewhat) weekly series, Saturdays on the Porch.

As I share my outdoor living tour, I'll be weaving in 7 ways to create a cozy living space.

Welcome to our home!

Do you find yourself wearing the same colors that you decorate your home? I absolutely love all things blue. This dress has quickly become a favorite this season. It is lightweight and has pockets!


If you are new here, I made the decision to stop coloring my hair 2-1/2 years ago and have never looked back. It's a long process with ups and downs, but I am happy with it.


Comfortable and cozy furniture is king.

Thankfully, outdoor furniture has come a long way in recent years. It used to be that high-quality items were extremely high priced.

Our outdoor wicker set came from Sam's Club. It is excellent! Fortunatley, our set is still available online even though they come out with a new in-store set each year. We have absolutely no complaints about it. It did have a coffee table that the ottomans rest under. Eventually, we decided to donate it last year when we added a firepit coffee table.

This year we retired two plastic, inexpensive Adirondack chairs for a pair of these polywood chairs. Fortunatley, they were a breeze to put together and have been a big hit with our family.

I purchased our iron antique set for the screened porch about 25 years ago from Craigslist. It was such a budget-friendly option for us all those years ago.

It did not have cushions. We had the set sandblasted to remove all the layers of old paint and rust. I then spray-painted it myself. We had custom cushions made back then that were not crazy expensive in a dark green Sunbrella fabric. Fast forward all these years.

We'd like to update the cushions. They are still in excellent shape with no rips or fading. Just a little flatter and not my color choice in recent years.

Custom cushions are outrageous now! These are not a buy-off-the-store rack size. I've looked and looked. My quick fix is these covers that fit like a fitted sheet and go in the washing machine as needed. Cotton throw blankets wash easily and make great covers. It has given me a new look at a fraction of the price. These covers are meant for indoor use, but I find they work well for us on the screened porch.

Don't be afraid to check thrift stores and Facebook Marketplace for some gems that might need a little TLC.

Add a coffee table or side table to create a spot for your favorite trinkets, a hot drink, or magazines. The coffee table on the screened porch was a thrifty makeover.

The front porch rockers were a budget-friendly purchase from Kirkland several years ago. They are no longer available.


Adding an outdoor rug can provide warmth and texture to your outdoor space. Rugs can define and separate different zones in your outdoor living space. They also add color and style to your design. Choose a durable rug that is weather-resistant, easy to clean, and can withstand outdoor elements.

Nothing can bring the indoors out like a fabulous all-weather rug.

I keep mine clean with 30 Second Cleaner and a soft brush on a pole. A light touch with a power washer works well.



Soft and cozy throw pillows can add color, texture, and comfort to your outdoor furniture. Mix and match different shapes, colors, and patterns to create a cohesive and comfortable look.

Pillows are where your personality can really come out. I find that your less expensive pillow options don't hold up as well to the sun and elements. I typically get about 2 years out of a set. This is ok with me.

Outdoor pillows are such a fun way to change up a look. You can even switch out pillows throughout the year to keep your outdoor space fresh and updated.

The outdoor pillows on the covered porches last for many years since they are protected.



Adding greenery and natural elements can make your outdoor space more inviting and peaceful. Consider adding low-maintenance plants such as succulents, herbs, or tropical plants that can thrive with outdoor light and water. Use planters or hanging baskets to add height and interest to your outdoor living space.

On the back and front walkways, I use real plants. Primarily annuals and a few potted hydrangeas. I've learned over the years what works best in both areas.

A few of my favorites are Creeping Jenny, begonias, geraniums, impatiens, and coleus.

Our screened porch is a labor of love to keep clean. The best thing that I have ever done for my sanity is to go faux on the screened porch. In the month that I have had my faux plants, the porch has never looked better.

Faux plants have really come a long way. I am so impressed with what I have on the porch. No fern mess for me this year! I do plan to store them in the off-season to keep them looking fabulous for years to come.


Adding outdoor lighting can create a warm and cozy atmosphere in your outdoor space. String lights can add a whimsical and romantic feeling to your design. Lanterns or outdoor lamps can provide ambient lighting and add a touch of elegance and style.

I used white globe cafe lights on the screen porch. I went with a 100-foot length so that I would not have to have multiple strands.

Hanging Tip: These have been up for about 15 years and still work! I hung string from cup hooks and marked where each cup hook was on the string. I then removed the string and measured the length that I would need. Reinstall the string with the marks. This makes it so easy to get the actual strand hung. After you have hung the strand, remove the string. Then you have perfectly portioned swags!

We have regular cafe lights hung on the patio area. You can see how we created our string light pole planters HERE. You won't believe what we used to save money!

NOT pictured on the patio are these fabulous outdoor solar lanterns that I received after taking photos (linked below). These lanterns are GORGEOUS! My favorite thing about them is that there are no glass panels. It makes it so easy to clean them. I have the tall one and the shorter one. You'll find them in the source list below.

I use lamps on our screened porch. It is a deep porch. One lamp was a very expensive outdoor lamp that I purchased about 15 years. Ago, Now I just use regular lamps. They do fine on the deep porch. Occasionally, I'll have to replace a shade. This was a fun outdoor DIY shade project.

Garden Stools

Garden stools are versatile and functional. They can be used as additional seating, side tables, or decorative pieces. Garden stools come in different colors, shapes, or materials to add interest and style to your outdoor space.

I have a thing for blue and white garden stools. They are traditional and work indoors and out.

I love that they are small and portable to move around as my decor needs change.

Fire Pit

Fire pits have always been a family favorite. Hours can be spent with conversation around one.

We used to have a traditional metal one that burned real wood. It was so smokey and messy. We eventually got rid of it after many years of use.

last year we added a propane coffee table-styled firepit. We love the convenience of it. The flames are nearly as large as a real fire, but the benefits outweigh the smaller flame.

We selected this one because it has a plate that covers the fire area when not in use. It then becomes a coffee table. It also has a cover to use to protect it from the elements. We do need to purchase a propane tank cover. It is housed outside of the firepit. We have it out of the way behind the couch.

We love going out there in the evening together to chat over a cocktail before cooking dinner.

Creating a cozy outdoor living space requires attention to detail and creativity. Use a mix of different elements such as comfortable furniture, soft pillows, outdoor rugs, low-maintenance plants, lighting, and garden stools to create a space that reflects your style and personality. Don't be afraid to scour thrift stores, consignment shops, and Facebook Marketplace for deals to create your outdoor living space. With these tips, you can create a beautiful and inviting outdoor living space that you can enjoy year-round.

Up next on today's tour is Kelly from The Tattered Pew. I just adore her vintage treasures.

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Christy has been creating content for Our Southern Home since 2012. She has been featured in numerous print and online publications. Her classic, eclectic design approach spans her home and fashion style. Christy has a way of mixing store-bought with thrift store, antique and vintage finds. As a recent empty nester, she is having fun navigating this new stage of life. Read more about Christy HERE. Be sure to subscribe below. You can also contact me HERE.

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