When you have limited outdoor living space, every inch counts! I should know since I own a tiny patio. The good news is I made it work, and with my advice, you can too!
So, stick around to discover how to make the best use of your small outdoor space. I have quite a few small patio deck ideas that can inspire you to turn your small deck into a stylish, functional, and livable area. All you need to do is choose an idea that complements your lifestyle.
- 1 My Cozy Corner
- 2 Comfy Urban Ground-Level Deck
- 3 Garden Of Eden
- 4 Touch Of Solitude
- 5 Summer Nights Entertaining Space
- 6 Pop Of Color
- 7 Under The Umbrella
- 8 Dining Out In The Open Air
- 9 Extended Living Space
- 10 Minimalistic Oasis
- 11 A Small Deck In A Big City
- 12 Color-Infused Tiny Deck
- 13 Small Deck Design For BBQ-Lovers
- 14 Elegant Dark Tone Patio
- 15 Fall-Inspired Small Deck
- 16 A Sprinkle Of Yellow Color
- 17 Forest Retreat
- 18 FAQs
- 19 Final Thoughts
- 20 About The Author
My Cozy Corner
Jamie Ducharme, a health correspondent at TIME magazine, says that a robust social life helps reduce stress and improves your mood and health. So, you should mingle as much as possible!
Of course, it is much easier to entertain your friends and relatives if you have a cozy outdoor living space. So, get creative with your small deck!
Try doing what I did: get a comfortable outdoor sofa that can accommodate at least a few of your favorite people and pair it up with a coffee table big enough to serve drinks and snacks. You do not need a lot of decorations. However, I recommend having at least one plant to add a touch of nature and some visual interest. String lights make the space feel cozier too!
Comfy Urban Ground-Level Deck
According to the San Francisco Planning Organization, decks provide access to some air and outdoor space in dense urban environments. If you live in the city, you know how important it is to use your space to the fullest. So how to make the best of your small deck?
My suggestion is to design your patio for just two people. Start with two chairs and then fill the space with the coziest items you can think of such as fluffy throws, comfy cushions, and a stylish outdoor rug.
To create a feeling of intimacy, light some candles and string lights. Do not worry if you are single; this space is ideal for sipping up a cup of coffee with your best friend too!
Garden Of Eden
Transform your small deck into a garden of Eden by adding as many plants as you can fit in. Grouping the smaller pots will help the space feel bigger, thanks to all the different colors and textures.
Do you have an empty wall? Great! Decorate it with DIY hanging plant containers made from natural wood, and add a stylish sign to let everyone know you have created your piece of heaven on earth. A floral outdoor rug can help you feel like you’re walking on clouds too!
If you are new to gardening, take advice from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and start with low-maintenance plants suitable for the area you live in. This is how I began my first garden, too.
Touch Of Solitude
Not having a ton of space should not prevent you from enjoying your small deck. Do you have space for only one chair? So be it! Make the best of it! It’s the perfect opportunity to spend some time alone. In the words of Amy Morin, psychotherapist and international bestselling mental strength author, spending time alone has many benefits, such as helping you become:
- More empathic, productive, and creative
- Less depressed
- Better at planning and organizing your time
- More comfortable in your skin
Since you are going to be on your own, you do not need a lot. Get a comfy chair and a small coffee table. Throw in a soft pillow, hang a few plants and string lights, and you’re all done. Privacy is a must, though, so I suggest getting a privacy screen made from natural reed grass.
Summer Nights Entertaining Space
Do not fight against the limitations of your small deck! Instead, create a lovely summer-season entertaining space by investing in two wooden sun loungers and a rustic coffee table.
You can decorate with things you already own. Try not to use up all the floor space, so that your guests can move around and not feel cramped. Adding a soft outdoor rug is a great idea as it enables you and your visitors to walk barefoot and re-create a summer holiday feel.
A fire pit is a great addition as long as you consider some of the basic safety precautions recommended by Jeff Layton from The Seattle Times. If you are up for it, I found this simple wooden fire pit you can make after watching the building process in the video below:
Pop Of Color
A bright white patio does not offer a lot of excitement, but you can easily change that with a dark-colored deck furniture set and a few turquoise sitting pillows. The contrast will make the space feel open and airy.
I like the hanging lamps that mimic natural light sources such as the sun and moon. As explained by the experts from FX Luminaire, a landscape and architectural lighting company, this lightning design technique creates the most natural form of illumination.
Under The Umbrella
When you have a small deck, you must avoid big patio furniture. A compact sofa and two chairs with patterned plush pillows can offer comfy seating that isn’t bulky, making the space feel less confined. Besides, the individual seating allows guests to enjoy their own dedicated space.
If you do not have a covered deck, get a patio umbrella. I think it can make your small deck more inviting. According to experienced sellers from San Diego’s Great House Furniture store, outdoor patio umbrellas can:
- keep you cool and safe from UV rays
- protect you from the elements
- provide you with privacy
- protect your devices from overheating
- provide shelter for your pets
- keep your furniture safe from fading or warping
Dining Out In The Open Air
I adore entertaining friends, and that includes cooking delicious meals for them, so I love to have a space for hosting outdoor dinner parties.
If you enjoy hosting dinner parties outside, build an outdoor dining area. All you need to do is find a patio table that doubles as a dining table. The one in the picture might be a bit low, but it offers plenty of space to serve tasty food. Unless you have a covered deck, an umbrella is a must – you do not want your food to sit under the scorching sun or out in the rain!
Are you looking for some great recipes? Try some of the seasonal salads and sharing bites recommended by Georgina Kiely, a former digital food editor of BBCGoodFood. My friends love them!
Extended Living Space
A small house or apartment can sometimes come with a small deck too. If this is the case for you, you might have limited square footage in your home and could benefit from some extra seating outside. The solution is simple, maximize seating by adding a comfy outdoor sofa and a built-in bench.
As far as decor is concerned, you can stick to a black & white color scheme. In the words of Samantha Bacon, a color professional and a designer, this combo never goes out of fashion. If you do not have a covered deck, buy a weatherproof outdoor umbrella so that you can use your outdoor sanctuary no matter the weather!
According to Harper’s Bazaar, minimalism is “design’s most enduring trend.” The good news is that if you choose to create a minimalistic outdoor area, you will not only be in trend but also save yourself a lot of trouble. Why? Well, a bare-bones design is certainly less demanding, maintenance-wise.
Since you are saving some time on cleaning, you might as well spend it on nourishing a small vegetable garden and a few hanging plants. When you want to rest, you have a comfy chair waiting for you in the shade of the oversized umbrella. What more could you possibly need?
A Small Deck In A Big City
City living usually means having to come to terms with tiny outdoor spaces or even an enclosed patio area. However, you can still have your outdoor oasis. A lot of my friends have built them even though they live in urban areas.
Just look at this picture-perfect small deck. There is enough room for a whole family, and the combination of warm natural tones and green Mediterranean plants recommended by the Royal Horticultural Society will make you feel like you’re sitting somewhere on the Spanish coast. All you need is a glass of cold sangria!
Color-Infused Tiny Deck
If you own a small deck made of unsightly concrete, you must liven it up a bit. What better way to do it than to play with colors? Bodie V. Pennisi and Matthew Chappell, professors of horticulture at the University of Georgia, claim that using colors in landscaping can evoke powerful emotional responses.
This design combines a monochromatic rug that hides the dreary concrete blocks and a turquoise furniture set. Fun pillows with flamingos and unusual brightly-colored patterns balance the colorful flowers that frame this small space. The colors infuse this limited space with a lot of energy!
Small Deck Design For BBQ-Lovers
You don’t need a huge patio to create an outdoor space fit for a BBQ king. Just look at this design! All the utensils are lined up against the brick wall, which leaves plenty of space for a beautiful seating area. So, you can cook and entertain your guests at the same time.
The outdoor fireplace and strings of lights give this space a romantic feel. If you’re single, this might be a great area for a first date. Just make sure you follow the grilling safety tips issued by the National Fire Protection Association to avoid sparking anything else but the flames of love!
Elegant Dark Tone Patio
Using dark tones does not necessarily mean your design will feel gloomy. According to Build magazine, dark colors can warm up your home.
Just look at this small deck! It’s so elegant and inviting even though there are no bright colors, whatsoever. The living patio wall design creates a green heaven for you and your guests, while subtle outdoor lighting makes you feel like you are sitting under the stars. I would enjoy relaxing on this comfy sofa for sure!
Fall-Inspired Small Deck
According to Tim North, a social media intern with Boston University Marketing & Communications, there are many reasons to be excited about the fall. But if fall is your favorite season, you do not have to wait for it.
Use orange tones and natural materials when decorating your small deck space and add a few pumpkins here and there – that is all you need to recreate a heart-warming fall atmosphere.
The wooden patio wall gives you a lot of privacy, while the comfy rattan sofa serves as an ideal spot for reading your favorite novel. I adore the rice-paper lanterns, but I wonder what happens when it rains?!
A Sprinkle Of Yellow Color
According to experts from the SAE Institute, the color yellow symbolizes the sun. It also stands for optimism, happiness, joy, and energy. Want to bring in that energy? All you have to do is incorporate a bit of bright yellow into your small deck design.
As you can see, it is easily accomplished. A few yellow pillows and some yellow flowers hanging over your comfy sofa and you’ll feel better in no time at all. If there is no solar energy to warm you up, simply light up the firepit!
If you happen to live in the forest and you own a raised deck overlooking the beautiful scenery, my advice is to blend in. Keep everything natural-looking and use only earthy colors.
Add a few flower pots and a string of lights to brighten up the space, and enjoy the relaxing sights and sounds from the woods. After all, according to the article I read in The Guardian, woodland sounds help relaxation more than any meditation app.
For more small deck ideas, check out a great video I have found:
How do you make a small deck look nice?
To make a small deck look nice, you must use the available space wisely. You must not use up all the floor space nor add too much furniture, decorations, or other design features. Instead, choose fewer, more interesting options.
What is cheaper to build a deck or a patio?
It is cheaper to build a patio than a deck. According to experts from All Pro Decks & Patios, materials typically used to build patios are simpler and less expensive. On the other hand, decks are more sustainable than patios and are thus a better home investment.
What looks better a deck or patio?
It is hard to say what looks better, a deck or a patio, since it is a matter of personal preference. However, no one can argue that a deck can provide a better view due to being elevated. So if you have beautiful surroundings, opt for a deck.
What is the least expensive material to build a patio?
The least expensive material to build a patio is concrete. However, according to the professionals from the DPG Pavers, even though concrete patios initially cost the least, they require special and potentially costly care later on, or they might rust, break up or wear out.
I hope you got some inspiration from these great small deck ideas and that you are already choosing new patio furniture and hanging plants to embellish your small space.
I am sure the list offers stylish decorating concepts and ingenious space-saving solutions, so please help me reach more people by sharing it! If you have some small deck ideas I failed to mention, share them with me too.