Rustic Outdoor Living

Over the bank holiday weekend we started work on upping our outdoor living game…we’ve cleared the area outside the living room which used to be home to a picnic bench for outdoor dining (a complete waste of an area with french doors leading out of the living space really) and built a simple, rustic pergola. We now have a blank canvas to build our outdoor living area from. We’re wanting some sort of rattan corner sofa, it needs to be small and very comfy (we seem to be struggling to win both of these factors, any suggestions very welcome). There is a fence along one side of the space which has bird boxes & catering sized bean tin planters on it, I’m planning to paint this dark to match the grey in our living room to make the spaces flow.


We have some rose bushes and buddleia already growing in the space which should be easy enough to train up the pergolas structure but plan on adding bamboo & other privacy building greenery as one corner of the space in particular is a little exposed. To add to the rustic vibe we’re planning to suspend a couple of pallets from the pergola and plant them up with trailing greenery, a little like this idea we saw in Zizzi restaurant.


For years now I’ve had my eye on the Recycled Kadai firebowl & I’m hoping we can fit one into this area for keeping warm long after the sun has set and maybe even toasting marshmallows with a hot chocolate in autumn (selling one to myself here, can you tell?). No outdoor living space would be complete without festoon lights, Lights4fun have a great selection of solar festoons along with lots of other decorative lighting ideas to finish the space off with. I plan to add a recycled plastic rug (unsure of whether to order this monochrome one or stick with a yellow one we already have, maybe I’ll layer both!?), then to accessories with recycled tyre planters, some metal barn stars & lots of candles.


I’ll post again when the space is nearly finished, I say nearly because no space is ever fully finished at Little Mill House, we’re always changing things up & adding to spaces as our Instagram followers will know! If you’ve an inspiring outdoor living area I’d love to see it, comment below or email me

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Natalie Lockwood Interiors has been showcased at Grand Designs Live and Ideal Home Show as well as being featured in national newspapers and magazines.