Last Updated on May 17, 2021
COVID-19 has made it hard to gather with friends, but one thing we’ve learned over the last few months is that virus transmission is much lower outside. Still, it’s better – and safer – to meet with friends outside if you can do so at home, since you have more control over the environment, don’t have to worry about potential crowds, and don’t put service workers at risk. It’s also more comfortable and helps us all feel a little more normal, but to really enjoy your time, you need a space to play host.
So, how do you create an outdoor space you’ll be proud to welcome your friends to? These stylish yard furnishings will help you enjoy safe social events, at least until the colder weather sets in.
One of the primary reasons that entertaining at home is so pleasant is that it allows for privacy, but depending on where you live, just how much privacy can be hard to say. Especially in the suburbs, you may have a lovely backyard, but it may also be very close to your neighbors’ yards.
Luckily, you can make your space a little more private in several ways. Consider adding hedges and hanging plants to block the view, or lattice covered in ivy. Adding a water feature to the yard can also muffle the sound of conversations so nearby neighbors can’t hear every word – though they’ll still hear you laughing and enjoying yourselves!
Make It Comfortable
If you’re going to have friends over for a backyard gathering, you’ll need to make the space comfortable, but you don’t want to squeeze everyone together. Given the current circumstances, then, you’ll want to skip the dining sets and couches in favor of outdoor loveseats and chairs that you can space out throughout the yard. A central fire pit can add ambiance and keep the space comfortable even as the weather cools.
Light It Up
We may mostly be stuck at home, but people still have day jobs, which means we often can’t gather with friends until evening – and it’s not much fun if you can’t actually see each other. That means you’ll want to add lighting to your outdoor space, but not glaring security spotlights.
Instead, consider adding outdoor-quality string lights to help set the mood, and add a few smaller lamps to the tables throughout the area. Such lights will make it easy to see, but also feel festive.
It’s nice to sit and talk, but sometimes we all want to be a little more active, especially after being at our desks all day. That’s why, if you’ve got enough room, consider adding some simple backyard games.
Things like cornhole, bocce, and badminton let you keep your distance while engaging those competitive spirits – and if you’ve got kids, they can enjoy them during the day, while the adults can play in the evening.
A nice backyard has always been a valuable amenity for homeowners, but this year, it’s more important – and getting more use – than ever before. If you’re looking for ways to minimize your risk while still socializing, then, consider your backyard this year’s hot spot.
See you, friends, keep your distance and enjoy your time together – safely.