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How to create a stylish balcony

BY READERS DIGEST

12th Apr 2022 Home & Garden

How to create a stylish balcony

Living in an apartment often means no outdoor space unless you can access a communal garden. 

This is definitely a downside of apartment life, but many flats do have a balcony, which can be styled as an attractive extension to your living area. Continue reading for some useful tips on styling balconies.

Custom shutters

Would you like some extra privacy? If so, install privacy glass screens or fix wooden shutters made from slats, which let the light through but keep you partially hidden. A retractable awning is also handy for providing shade on hot days.

Planters

Just because your balcony has no soil, it doesn’t mean you can’t have plants and flowers. Planters are a quick and easy way to add greenery to a balcony, and if you hook planters over the railing or fix them to the outer wall (depending on the design), they will benefit from rainfall.

Plant annuals such as fuchsias and geraniums for a burst of colour over the summer months. Cultivate herbs to give your cooking a boost. Herbs like chives, rosemary, basil, and oregano are easy to grow in small containers, and mint is best restricted to a planter to prevent it from spreading everywhere.

If the balcony is large enough, add extra planters and tubs along the perimeter. Fix a trellis to the wall and encourage climbing plants to grow, like clematis and honeysuckle.

Outdoor seating

Invest in a small bistro table and chairs, such as these Lazy Susan 2 seater garden furniture sets. Chairs and tables made from antique bronze or cast iron are weather resistant and can stay out all year round, so you don’t need to worry about storage over the winter (although you can still cover them up to keep them safe if you prefer).

Nothing beats sitting on a balcony watching the sun go down, with a good book and a glass of chilled white wine.

Floor cushions are a nice touch if you want to provide extra seating for guests, but don’t have room to store additional chairs. A few large floor cushions can be brought out in fine weather and used indoors over winter.

Lighting

When it comes to lighting, you are spoiled for choice. Because a balcony is part of the apartment, it is easy to install outdoor lighting, but solar lighting is equally good. Mix and match your lighting. Fit wall lights for functional light at night, and pretty string lights for decorative purposes.

Candles are also a nice touch. Scented candles are great for summer evenings, and citronella candles help to deter mosquitoes.

Decorative touches

Once you have the essentials in place, start thinking about how you can personalise your balcony with decorative items. Look for outdoor-suitable artwork, such as metal wall sculptures and weather-resistant clocks. Windchimes are perfect for balconies, as they look pretty and sound lovely when it’s windy. You could even paint a mural on the wall if the apartment is not a rental.

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