The unofficial start of summer has begun and for lots of people, that means getting out of the house to enjoy the weather and great company. Unfortunately, the coronavirus pandemic changed things this year. Even as states across the country slowly begin to reopen, governments are still advising people to shelter in place and social distance as often as possible.
Despite these necessary restrictions and slow reopenings, you don’t have to remain indoors all summer long. In fact, with the right changes and a bit of creativity, you can update your backyard to create an environment for fun, relaxation, and entertainment.
An outdoor kitchen, for example, provides you with everything you need to enjoy delicious meals and quality time outside with your family. If you’ve got the budget and time to create an outdoor kitchen in your backyard, these design and planning tips will help you get started.
- Review Your Space – Before your ideas and imagination get away from you, it is best to give your backyard a once over to see exactly how much space you have to work with, how much privacy you have, and where any fences or gates with a lock need to be. The good news is there are design ideas for outdoor kitchens no matter how large or small your yard is.
- Consider the Layout – Once you know how much space you have to work with, the next step would be to consider the layout of your outdoor kitchen. Think about where you’ll place the grill/stove, cabinets, countertops, sink, refrigerator, table, and chairs. It is ideal to try and find the area in your backyard that provides the most shade since you’ll be spending a lot of time outdoors.
- Select Appliances, Materials, and Styles – Next you’ll want to decide on the types of appliances, materials, and styles you wish to use in your outdoor kitchen. Are you going with a more modern look with outdoor stainless steel cabinets, stove, sink, and refrigerator complete with granite countertops? Or, are you more interested in a more natural look with wooden cabinets and floors and stone countertops? You can search for ideas by shopping retailers or home improvement blogs online.
- Purchase Outdoor Decor and Furniture – Now that you have a good idea of what your outdoor kitchen will look like, you’re ready to consider your options for furniture and outdoor decor. You’ll need to purchase a patio table and chairs for outdoor seating and perhaps other pieces of furniture like side tables, lounge chairs, and umbrellas or canopies for shade. You’ll also want to look at ideas for table linens, outdoor dishes and utensils, chair cushions, throw pillows, and indoor/outdoor carpets.
- Hire the Experts – Unless you’re confident in your ability to put together your own outdoor kitchen and you have the proper tools and equipment, it is often best to hire contractors to take care of it for you. You’ve done all the necessary planning and are fully aware of exactly what you want your outdoor kitchen to look and feel like. All that’s left to do is convey your plans to a contractor, sit back, and wait for your backyard to be transformed.
- Enjoy Your Outdoor Kitchen – When the weather allows, you should certainly take advantage of your outdoor kitchen. You can prepare breakfast, lunch, and dinner outside and enjoy a meal under the sun in the fresh air, lounge around under the stars at night, or entertain a small group of people with a fun barbecue.
Being stuck in the house all day can really put a damper on your mood. This is especially true when the weather is perfect for getting outdoors. Staying close to home may still be necessary to fight the coronavirus pandemic, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay cooped up inside. Utilize the planning and design tips provided above to turn your backyard into an outdoor kitchen and entertainment space that you and your family can enjoy all summer long.