The great British summer is (finally) here, and there’s not a moment to lose. Make the most of every last drop of sunshine by transforming your garden into extra living space to enjoy with friends and family. And if you’re not the green-fingered type, don’t worry. We’ve taken inspiration from our favourite fashion designers to create DIY projects that bring colour and wow-factor to your space without so much as a garden spade. Then, when you’re finished, all that’s left to do is sit back and enjoy the heatwave...
TIME TO GLOW
INSPIRED BY: Top fashion guru Isabel Marant’s globe-trotting style
Want a showstopping setting for a special occasion? Turn your garden into a magical oasis by combining different types of outdoor lighting throughout the space. Hang string lights in trees or from tall plants, or wrap around large branches for maximum impact. Add glimmering hanging lanterns and position hurricane lamps on tables and along paths – then watch as your outdoor space takes on a gorgeous glow as dusk falls.
INSPIRED BY: Designer Matthew Williamson’s laid-back boho vibe
Turn your outdoor space into a guest-ready entertaining zone in an instant with heaps of bright, boldly patterned throws, rugs and cushions. Bright colours like fuschia will stand out against a backdrop of green. This stylish trick will transform plain patio and decking areas and will add splashes of colour if your garden is lacking flowers. Layer up different designs for a relaxed ethnic vibe – and you’ve set the scene for a garden gathering with a twist.
INSPIRED BY: Paul Smith’s hallmark English-style-with-a-twist
An easy way to pep up your garden space is to give tired-looking furniture a lick of paint. It’ll keep your garden wood lasting longer, too, as the water-repellent paint provides a protective barrier against the elements. As for the colour... the bolder, the better! Dark, rich tones on fences and sheds make a striking backdrop to show off shrubs, garden- classic roses and climbing plants. Or go for brighter shades on chairs and tables for a cheerful setting, no matter what the weather’s doing. Looking to accessorise? Go retro rustic with old milk churns or vintage watering cans to complete the look.
POTTY FOR POTS
INSPIRED BY: Italian duo Dolce & Gabbana’s sun-kissed Mediterranean style
Think beyond standard terracotta by using recycled buckets and wooden crates to give your garden a quirky look. Personalise them with a splash of colour from our George Home outdoor paint range. Get extra creative and mix and match different types of planter for an artfully eclectic look – old wheelbarrows, tin cans, anything goes! Finally, play with colours and shapes to create an eye-catching feature wall.
BACK TO NATURE
INSPIRED BY: Striking butterfly motifs from Alexander McQueen
Chunky candles and tealights in big jars create a focal point on a patio, balcony or around the garden at any time of day – and these butterfly designs add a cute wildlife touch. Not only are they pretty decorations for an al fresco brunch or afternoon barbecue, bugs tend to keep away from lighted candles, so it’s a win-win idea all round!
INSPIRED BY: The muted palettes across the menswear collections, as seen on the S/S16 catwalks at Marni
Pick a sun-trap that captures the afternoon rays and toast the setting sun with sit-back-and-kick-back garden furniture that will have you dozing off behind your shades. Or bring the party outdoors with your own garden bar, complete with stools for perching and a retro-style radio. You can even set up a trolley with essentials so you don’t have to keep dashing indoors. Perfect.
For more great garden solutions, check out our articles 5 Easy Ways To Give Your Garden A Mini Makeover and Simple Gardening Tips The Pros Don’t Want You To Know.