Cozy, Contemporary Backyard Patio by Lauren of Pure Style Home

Article Posted By: Lauren Liess

of Pure Style Home

In our Style Challenge series, we ask some of our favorite bloggers from around the web to surprise us with their ideas for creating a stylish and functional space using Home Depot products as a starting point.

Designer Lauren Liess is known for the crisp interior spaces she creates and the way she infuses each space with a touch of nature. She applied her design skills to the backyard of  her Northern Virginia home for our Patio Style Challenge, and came up with a comfortable and cozy space suitable for entertaining or relaxing with her active family. Read on for her simple and creative backyard patio decorating ideas.

A  family relaxes on an outdoor sectional on their backyard patio

Our family pretty much lives outside when it’s warm.  (And honestly, we’re out there a lot when it’s cold too.) My husband Dave and I have three boys and a dog so being outside is a necessity. When we found our new house this past summer, we fell in love with the yard and the outdoor spaces. This past fall, when we moved in, we ate most of our meals outside on the back deck at a big table we have, which was great, but we had nowhere to really veg and relax. When we were contacted by The Home Depot to be  a part of their Patio Style Challenge, I was SO EXCITED because we’d been dying to create an outdoor lounging space/ living room next to our deck dining area. This was just the push (and help!) we needed to get it done.

Here’s what our space looked like before:

Lauren Liess' backyard before a makeover

We decided to add a stepped flagstone patio just outside of our kitchen that would fit right next to our existing deck and dining table:

A backyard patio after flagstones have been laid

Once the patio was in, it was time to set up our Home Depot sectional!!! We selected the Hampton Bay Beverly Sectionalwhich is a nice smaller-sized sectional. We purchased additional Beverly chairs to make a massive sectional– perfect for the five of us to spread out on, and of course, for entertaining too.

A backyard patio living room with Hampton Bay Beverly Sectional, outdoor rug and potted plants

I loaded our sofa with pillows and blankets – I’m a total nester and love snuggling up.

Lauren Liess sits on an outdoor sectional as she plays with her son on their backyard patio

Some of the fabrics I used are from my own hand-drawn line of textiles, like the Fern quilt on the back of the sofa, the chartreuse paisley here…

A backyard patio sectional is decorated with pillows made from texitiles by Lauren Liess Textiles

… and this buttercup pillow here:

A backyard patio sectional is decorated with pillows made from textiles by Lauren Liess Textiles

My inspiration for how I styled this shoot came from my love of gardening. Even though I’m pretty terrible at it (I’m trying!!) it’s something that I really love doing, especially with my boys. We’re in the midst of starting a veggie garden so I took my inspiration from that.

Vintage root chart that inspired a backyard patio makeover by Lauren Liess

I love the feeling in the old French carrot/root chart I have in my kitchen and thought it was appropriate since it’s very early spring, and we’re just starting to plant now.

Backyard patio with outdoor sectional and a container vegetable garden

Green’s my favorite color and I love it paired with natural materials and colors. Terra cotta pots are a staple around here too. I love them just as much when there’s something growing in them or when they’re simply empty and waiting…  Our house is always full of midstage projects, but I think there’s a sort of beauty in that anticipation too. It’s rarely perfect around here. (Only during photo shoots! ;) )

A terra cotta pot and vegetable plants on a coffee table on a contemporary backyard patio

It’s still fairly cool here (In Virginia, just outside Washington, DC), so we’re starting with root vegetables and lettuce:

Potted lettuce on a backyard patio

…and a couple of snapdragons from The Home Depot because my boys love playing with the “dragon heads” and making them roar and talk:

A young boy examines vegetable plants on a backyard patio

We’re trying out some lettuce in pots because we still need to be able to bring the plants indoors on cold nights. My little guys, Christian (5) and Justin (3) love projects:

A young mother interacts with her boys on a beautifully decorated backyard patio

Our baby, Luke (or “Louie,” as the poor kid’s been getting called) usually hangs out and watches with Daddy:

A young father holds his adorable baby boy

And Ashby loves her little spot:

A dog enjoys the sunshine on a beautifully decorated backyard patio

When we were deciding how to arrange our furniture, I knew we wanted to be facing the kitchen and our yard so we could supervise our boys from a sitting position. (A-mazing!) Here’s a view of our yard, where you can see them taking a cruise in their jeep:

An outdoor section is the main feature of a beautifully decorated backyard patio

I love the lines of the Beverly sofa… They’re clean and classic and work well with our contemporary home:

An outdoor sectional and potted plants on a beautifully decorated backyard patio

The “rattan” is actually a coated metal, which is really pretty and looks like it’s going to hold up well. I love mixing old and new, so I added in a pair of vintage rusty garden chairs:

Vintage rusty garden chairs add to the style of a cozy and contemporary backyard patio

They work really well in our patio because their shape is really interesting and sculptural –providing a little juxtaposition with the straight basic lined of the sofa. But you can virtually see right through them so they don’t block the view of the yard at all.

Outdoor living room with Hampton Bay Beverly Sectional and textiles by Lauren Liess on a backyard patio

I added a graphic indoor-outdoor rug we already had along with an old wood coffee table and vintage garden stool so that the patio really feels like “us.” We’ve been having so much fun with our new outdoor living space. It really feels like an extension of our home.

A young family relaxes on an outdoor sectional on a beautifully decorated backyard patio

I’ve had outdoor sofas before, but never one this big or comfy. It’s just perfect for snuggling up…

Designer Lauren Liess holds her infant son

And relaxing with my family…

A young mother relaxes with her son on a beautifully decorated backyard patio

We love it!!!! Thank you so much to Home Depot for including us in this (very generous!!) and fun Patio Style Challenge!!



Ps- I had to share a little drawing Christian made of the snapdragons after our family photoshoot:

A child's drawing of snapdragons in a pot

Soon after I took this photo, he added a laser-shooting airplane to the scene. But it was sweet for a moment. ;)

Lauren Liess describes herself as “a wife, mom and decorator with a textile collection.” She writes about decor, food, life and more on her blog Pure Style Home. She’s also the creative force behind Laura Liess Interiors in the DC Metro area.

To furnish her backyard patio, Lauren used the Hampton Bay Beverly Sectional with additional seats from The Home Depot.

For more backyard patio decorating ideas, see other Patio Style Challenges as well as our Style Challenge pinboard on Pinterest.

Style Challenge is a series of posts from guest contributors who aim to bring you fresh inspiration and ideas for your home and garden using a single Home Depot product as a starting point. Lauren received the Hampton Bay Beverly Sectional from The Home Depot and a gift card, but The Home Depot provided no other compensation. The opinions and ideas Lauren expressed are her own.

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