Outdoor Living

Create Beautiful Outdoor Spaces on a Budget

Those of us lucky enough to have a lakeside retreat know how lazy afternoons in the sun and long fishing trips are the perfect oasis from a hectic lifestyle. But sprucing up the summer home is probably also on the to-do list. Here’s a tip: it doesn’t have to break the back or the bank.

“There are so many fresh design ideas that can be used to get a breezy cottage, country look,” says Karen Sealy, owner of Sealy Design Inc. and also the host and designer of HGTV’s Summer Home Season 1. “Scouting flea markets and thrift stores while relying on do-it-yourself craftiness can help you achieve the interior and exterior spaces you’ve been dreaming of.”

Consider these tips to make the outside of your summer home as charming as the inside:

• Give your deck, dock or shutters a facelift by throwing on a fresh coat of paint or stain. Consider using vibrant colours for a punch of fun that might not work as well in the city.

• Install an outdoor change room complete with shower. See ideas at deltafaucet.ca. One standout for the shower is a two-in-one showerhead and handshower called Delta In2ition. Wash away sand and sunscreen from the day’s adventure before entering the cottage.

• For waterfront cottages, revitalize the shoreline by installing a new dock or clearing the shoreline of branches and other debris that take away from the view.

• Construct a fire pit for flame-cooked meals and starlit campfires (check local zoning).

• Reupholster furniture in outdoor fabric to lend freshness to lounge space.


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Canadian Home Trends magazine gives you a personal tour of the most stunning homes and condos across Canada. You'll be inspired by a selection of accessible home décor products, trend reports, simple yet stylish DIY projects, and much more. In each issue, you are given the tools to recreate designer spaces you've always dreamt of having at home, in-depth renovation and design advice, colour palette and furniture pairings, and Canada's best places to shop.

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