We asked three designers from Casaza.com, Drew and Jonathan’s design-inspiration platform, to transform a reader’s least favorite space—just in time for the official start of summer.
The Challenge: Before
The Chicago-area Hurwitz family submitted their blank slate of an outdoor space and were desperate to add structure, warmth, and personality to the concrete slab. “The patio is long but not as deep, and we want to maximize the space despite the patio’s size,” says Michele Hurwitz. We turned to a team of talented interior designers who work with Casaza to create three party-ready patios. (All products available at casaza.com.)
Meet the Experts
Steph Morris @northandbirch
A lover of organic elements and mixed materials, Detroit-based Steph Morris of North + Birch Interior Design works with her clients to create personalized spaces that feel unfussy, modern, and calm.
Forbes + Masters @forbesmasters
Founded by designers Tavia Forbes and Monet Masters, the Atlanta-based company specializes in truly custom designs. (Forbes builds the furniture; Masters hand-paints design elements.)
Daneyka Lazier @dl_arch_design
Based in Toronto, Daneyka Lazier is the principal of DL Arch + Design and regularly works across the U.S. and Canada. She’s drawn to clean, modern lines and focuses on designing spaces for her clients that fit seamlessly into their everyday lives.
Design by Steph Morris
To warm up the space, Morris brought the indoors out. A restrained palette of neutrals and navy lets nature provide the color, and plenty of wood makes the area much more warm and welcoming. To fully utilize the patio’s rectangular shape, Morris created two zones: a comfy lounge area meant to encourage conversations and a dining space that’s great for family meals or morning coffee. “This patio is meant to be an extension of your home—a haven for rest, retreat, conversation, and gathering,” she says.
Design by Forbes + Masters
Pattern play is a Forbes + Masters signature, so Tavia Forbes and Monet Masters used lots of it to liven up this space. Successfully mixing many patterns can be tricky, so they suggest sticking to a tight palette; in this case, blues, tans, and pops of crisp white to make sure things don’t get too wacky. For a little wow factor that doesn’t take away from the natural surroundings, the designers flanked the sofa with large tropical plants. “We wanted to create a space that brought the comforts and coziness of a family room to outdoor living,” they say. Mission accomplished!
“Having a comfy, practical patio will help you get more out of your property. You’ll be surprised at how often you’ll find yourself wanting to just stay home all weekend. With a patio like this one that’s lacking a sense of place, taller planter boxes are a simple way to create that private retreat.”—Jonathan
Design by Daneyka Lazier
Lazier’s first order of business? Adding some structure to the undefined space. “The climbing-plant wall creates a sense of privacy and adds much needed texture and color,” she says. Next, she added a living set with crisp white cushions to make the space look brighter and larger. To bring in personality, Lazier had fun with accessories: “The pillows are an unexpected punch of color, and the chevron rug keeps the space from feeling serious.” A table tucked against a wall can be pulled out when you’re entertaining without taking up too much real estate when you aren’t. “Outdoor living is the new indoor living,” says Lazier. “We want comfort and style without compromising functionality.”
Get a little help for your least favorite room. Email email@example.com and submit a photo for a chance to have our designers give it a digital redo!
Renderings by Michael Panov | Product images courtesy of Casaza | Steph Morris headshot by Lisa Villella, Forbes + Masters headshot by Andrew Michael Phillips, Daneyka Lazier headshot by Alicia Thurston
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2020 issue of Reveal, Drew & Jonathan’s lifestyle magazine.