Places: Courtyards Rediscovered

Posted by: on March 6th, 2013 | 2 Comments
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Whether hidden behind a wall, nestled into a home’s interior or tucked in between buildings, a courtyard is in many ways the perfect outdoor living room. Courtyards offer the comfort and privacy of being inside the home while allowing you to enjoy the open air of an outdoor living space.

Courtyards have served as private outdoor spaces used for cooking, sleeping, working, playing, gardening and a host of other activities for thousands of years. But lately it seems homeowners have rediscoveed the intimate confines of the courtyard.

We’ve even noticed a trend toward new homes incorporating courtyards in their design, as homeowners look for ways to create a more seamless flow between their home’s interior and exterior.

If you find the serenity and seclusion of courtyards as intriguing as we do, stroll the rest of this post. You may discover an idea or two you can use to make your own courtyard more inviting.

 

Classic English, French or Mediterranean, colorful contemporary, or modern Zen-infused minimalist courtyards are but a few of the influences you can explore for the design of your courtyard, as you can see above. Adding elements that complement your home’s décor and its surrounding architecture — from outdoor sofastables, dining sets, plants, pots, and even pavers and step stones — will only further enhance the connection between the interior and exterior space. Ponds and fire pits are also courtyard considerations.

 

Image of a central courtyard in Brooklyn Heights

Image via Goode green NYC

 

Interior residential courtyards like this one in Brooklyn Heights date back to nearly 3,000 B.C. But this courtyard, with its prehistoric-looking vegetation, could be mistaken for one from a much earlier period in time were it not surrounded by a green roof, glass, and steel, with those two womb-like patio chairs plopped in the center. The clash of epochs thing is apparently what these Brooklynites were going for.

 

 

Grilling out on a nice day in a communal courtyard decorated with lanterns, comfortable outdoor rugs and lots of beautiful plants and flowers sounds like a truly wonderful experience … if only one could choose one’s neighbors.

 

 

For many people, the view out onto the courtyard is considered its most important feature. Looking at this image from House Paradise, we can see why they feel that way.

 

 

If you’ve been searching for inspiration to help you transform your courtyard or patio into a true outdoor living room, look no further. Tapped to participate in our Style Challenge: Patio Edition, Samantha Reitmayer Sano, owner and creative director of SWOON, the Studio, taught us a few things about creating an attractive, intimate outdoor living space. We supplied the beautiful Hampton Bay Beverly Sectional Set, and she paired it with impeccably chosen artwork, mirrors, throw pillows, thrift store finds and other home accents. It brought to life a cozy, modern courtyard retreat in what was before a rarely used outdoor space.

 

Give your courtyard or patio the royal treatment. Find everything you need to truly enjoy the comforts of outdoor living online or in store at The Home Depot. And, to explore more extraordinary ideas for your courtyard or patio, check out The Home Depot Style Challenge board on Pinterest.

See more inspiration and ideas in our Places series here on the Apron Blog.

 

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  1. Janet Majors says:

    The images are all so lovely and I would really want to have one in my house!

  2. [...] of a fairy garden. You can create a small garden for a patio table to add a touch of whimsy to a courtyard, porch, patio, sunroom or any outdoor living [...]