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Outdoor Social Distancing

Creating Social Spaces

When it comes to backyards and decks, most people want private spaces with room for socializing. As the COVID-19 crisis continues, homeowners are seeing new potential for their backyard spaces to serve as spots of safety and comfort. Here are the 2020 top trends in backyard spaces that DIYers and homeowners may consider adding this summer, especially if stay-at-home orders resume:

Backyard Movie Theaters: These can range from high-end pulldown screens attached to pergolas with outdoor surround sound speakers and projectors in all-weather housings to white sheets hung on the side of the garage with projectors propped on folding tables. Either way, the outdoor movie experience is a summertime treat, especially if movie houses are closed.  

String Lighting: Whether clustered over a picnic table or swooping from tree branches, these lights add romantic, whimsical and soft lighting to any outdoor area, dressing it up in style. String lights also are a great way to designate a social space around a fire pit or in an open backyard. The large round bulbs and Edison bulbs create a trendy look while fairy lights make great lighting for flameless fire pits or add whimsey when wrapped in climbing plants. 

Corrugated Metal: Used on walls, bars, and roofs of outdoor sheds, cooking spaces and decks, corrugated metal adds a hip, casual look to backyard social spaces. When combined with metal garden boxes and shabby chic mismatched seating, you get a folksy, down-home look. 

Treehouses: With schools closed early and likely to be closed again in the fall, treehouses and playsets are making a comeback. They are a great way to get kids unplugged and outdoors. Tree houses fit in any backyard setting from small urban boxes on stilts to full-blown estate masterpieces spread across two or three trees. For inspiration you can share with customers, visit Nelson Treehouse.

Swings: Swings have grown up. Now they’ve become large pallet beds with overstuffed pillows and super soft blankets hanging from trees or pergolas. And, individual swings are being added to deck and patio areas as alternative bar stools. Hanging wicker chairs are also popular for decks and porches. 

For a gallery of great backyard ideas check out Pinterest’s Best Backyard Spaces

About Hans Cummings

Hans Cummings
Born in Indiana and raised in Indiana, Germany and Virginia, Hans has worked for NRHA since 2001. He has a B.A. in English from Indiana University and is a published fantasy and science-fiction author. His hobbies include cooking, especially smoking meats, tabletop and video games and supporting space sciences and science education.

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