Patio Decor Ideas: How to Create an Outdoor Oasis

Do you love a relaxing outdoor space? These patio decor ideas will help you create an outdoor oasis of your own!

Summer has a feel all its own. Warm nights sitting outdoors, time spent reading on the patio, and of course, dining alfresco. All of these activities call for an outdoor space where you can relax and recharge. But if you’re anything like me, your outdoor space may not be quite what you want it to be.

To be honest, until recently our patio was a bit of a mess. My outdoor cushions were stained and needed replacing. My pots were full of mostly dead plants. And I had never found outdoor lounge furniture that I liked and that I could afford so that part of the dream had never been realized. 

It was time for a refresh. And this time, I was determined to finally finish our outdoor space in the way I had always dreamed of.

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gorgeous patio area with wicker lounge furniture summer patio decor ideas

Today I’m sharing some patio decor ideas that can help you refresh your patio or outdoor space. And in case you think your area is too small, I don’t think so! It doesn’t need to be a large space to create something special.

In fact, I think the key to creating a true outdoor oasis is much more about ambience than it is size!


Take Inventory of What You Already Have 

outdoor dining area with farmhouse table and wicker chairs gorgeous French farmhouse style The first thing I did when summer rolled around was take an inventory. Our dining area has a great table my husband made (you can read about that here), as well as chairs I still love. So those got a good cleaning and that’s about it.

For those asking, I’m also sharing a similar outdoor wicker chair (these aren’t actually made for the outdoors!)


outdoor patio with iron chairs white cushions gorgeous outdoor space However, the cushions on our iron chairs were in pretty bad shape so I decided to order a new set of those. One thing that’s nice about investing in quality outdoor furniture is it lasts a long time. These chairs are almost a decade old and still in great shape, and now the new cushions really gave them a new lease on life!  


Add Plants and Flowers 

potted flowers in planters gorgeous French farmhouse style patio decor ideas

Of course, I also added some blooming plants to all the planters and pots. Plants bring so much life and color and really help an outdoor space feel complete. Even the most beautiful outdoor space feels a bit bare without any plants or flowers.

In fact, if it feels like something is missing in your own outdoor space, it’s almost sure to be a lack of blooms. And on a small patio, flowering plants can really make a huge difference in how the space feels.


Clean, Tidy, and Clean Some More

gorgeous French country style outdoor space with travertine table and wicker chairs

It’s hard to overstate what a difference a clean space can make. When I first tackled the patio area, there were dead leaves and debris accumulated behind the pots, around the fountain and under the dining table. I spent the good part of a day sweeping everything, scrubbing the furniture, and cleaning the cushions that were staying.

Just that day of cleaning made such a difference. Even before I added flowers or new furniture, it already felt so much better!  


Add Unique Elements

gorgeous patio decor ideas vintage garden statue flowering plants in pots

Because I’m a lover of vintage elements, I tend to add those to the patio as well. Here I displayed a vintage bird statue in a vignette on the dining table.

But really you can add anything – from a garden statue, to a bowl of shells, to a vintage watering can, to a wine barrel. And it doesn’t have to be antique – anything that you love does the trick!  


European style patio decor ideas stone garden elements potted plants

I recently purchased this stone sphere and I love it! I’m waiting on another size (it’s backordered) but I love the European character it adds. I’m even tempted to buy a few more!

Adding some unexpected decor elements helps make any outdoor space feel like an extension of your indoor space. And when you bring your style outside, your home continues to tell your story.  


Add Indoor Comforts

If you really want to create an outdoor oasis, add some comforts from indoors. Throw pillows on the sofa and outdoor heaters or throws for cooler evenings help to make it cozier and extends the amount of time you can spend outside.  


Add Extra Lighting

One thing our outdoor space didn’t have originally is a lot of light. There are only two wall sconces and they don’t really light up the patio. So until I added our string lights last year, it really did get difficult to stay out much past dinnertime. Even if it wasn’t cold, it just felt way too dark!

But now the string lights have added so much light and made for much better evenings outside.  To be honest, I can’t think of anything that has changed the look of our outdoor space for such a small investment!  

And don’t forgot to add lanterns or candles on the table for added ambience. ๐Ÿ™‚  


Invest in an Outdoor Rug

Really I shouldn’t even use the word ‘invest’ when outdoor rugs are so reasonably priced these days! I added a new one in more neutral tones this year and it’s from Target. Not only that, there were probably 4 more that could have worked and were equally well-priced!

And as someone who didn’t have an outdoor rug until a few years ago, I would argue that they add much needed coziness to an outdoor space. In fact, outdoor rugs are one of my very favorite patio decor ideas! Not only do they make any outdoor space feel cozier, but they keep lounge areas cleaner, and they help to delineate different areas – especially helpful in larger outdoor spaces.  


Add Lounge Seating of Some Kind

I had always wanted some sort of sofa or sectional out here to create a true outdoor living space. But as I’m sure you know, outdoor lounge furniture can be tricky! Either I found sets that weren’t my style, or I found gorgeous ones that were way out of my budget. And though there are tons of less expensive sets, I didn’t want to go too cheap lest it wear out too fast and end up in a landfill – something I always try to avoid.

I have always loved the Restoration Hardware Provence line. I love outdoor wicker. And it’s a classic French-inspired design (right up my alley!) However, the price was prohibitive.


Because of that, I’ve spent the last two summers trying to find something that would give me that look, still be fairly high quality, and not cost a fortune. This set is what my RH dreams are made of!!


The measurements are exactly the same, as is the color. I even brought home a wicker sample from RH to compare and they were indistinguishable!

I did change out the cushions – I used a local seamstress to make me some in an off-white as the grey wasn’t my first choice. However, I will say the grey are still very pretty and super thick and substantial! 


outdoor patio lounge area table with flowering plants and wine

I’m still waiting on a new coffee table (also backordered!) But other than that, I finally feel like I have the lounge area I’ve dreamed of – just took a few years, haha!    

Now it’s time to relax and enjoy the rest of the summer!



Shop Patio Decor Ideas 



Patio Decor Ideas graphic Maison de Cinq


If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out more outdoor patio decor ideas and summer decorating below!

Simple & Pretty Outdoor Patio Refresh 

How to Host an Easy Summer Wine & Cheese Party

Outdoor Patio Refresh: 3 Small Changes that Made a Big Impact

Charming & Cheerful Summer Table Setting



Be sure to visit my friends who are also sharing their patio decor ideas below!

1. Easy Ways to Enjoy Your Outdoor Living Space | Pasha is Home

2. Outdoor Decorating Ideas | My Sweet Savannah

3. Our Backyard Patio Makeover Tour | Modern Glam

4. How to Make Your Outdoor Space Cozy | Most Lovely Things

5. Outdoor Decor Ideas | Craftberry Bush

6. How to Create an Outdoor Oasis | Maison de Cinq

7. Fun Outdoor Living Ideas | My 100 Year Old Home

8. DIY Porch Swing Using a Crib Mattress | Twelve on Main

9. Outdoor Living Space Ideas on a Budget | Happy Happy Nester

10. How to Make an Easy DIY Outdoor Lantern | Robyn’s French Nest



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  1. I just love your patio, Sheila. It’s beautiful, bright, and inviting. I recently decided to sell all of our patio furniture (outdoor wicker). I need to find furniture that is simple and clean and easy to wipe and sit. I’m tired of fighting the nesting spiders and cat hair from neighborhood cats in all the nooks and crannies of these woven products – I just find them too fussy and hard to keep up. I’m going to use your photos for reference while I look for something that will work.
    Thank you for always offering your inspiration!

    1. Thank you so much Janet, I so appreciate your kind words! Funny, because my new outdoor wicker is actually easier to keep clean than my old furniture! Because it’s outdoor wicker I can simply brush it, or if it’s really dusty, take a hose to it. But I’m sure you’ll find something gorgeous – have fun!

      Happy Summer!

  2. So beautiful and welcoming Sheila! Thanks for the tips – I need to remember to freshen up my planters! ๐Ÿ™‚ Hope you’re having a lovely summer.

  3. Robyn Huff says:

    You had me at โ€œmy dead plantsโ€! If only I could keep my plants alive!

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful space! Your ideas are so practical and Iโ€™m already anxious to use some of your inspiration in my own backyard.

    1. Haha oh I feel you on that one! Now I just buy new ones. I don’t buy expensive ones and if they don’t make it, I just replace them! Thanks for your kind words Robyn – happy weekend to you!


  4. Please tell me where you got the iron coffee table pictured in your patio looks.

    Janine is right; your porch looks like something from a gorgeous resort.

    1. Hi Paula! Thanks so much for your sweet comment! The table is old and was custom – I ordered from a local furniture maker here in Ca. I haven’t found anything exactly like it but I did link several very similar ones with straighter legs (not scrolled) that have travertine tops (mine does) or simulated stone. You can shop those by click on the pics at the end of the post!

      Hope that helps!


  5. I love your table mixed with the wicker chairs. I didn’t realize your husband made the table. The baskets mixed with the stone sphere…I love a modern + soft mix!

  6. What a welcoming patio you’ve created! I’m trying to use what we have and yet still create a vibe similar to yours. My brown faux wicker furniture makes it a challenge, but doing my best. I was wondering how you create the beautiful aged white patina on the terra cotta pots that you have. I have pots that are a few years old and there’s no patina happening on them! Thank you for sharing your creativity and enjoy the rest of summer!

    1. Hi Janet! Thank you for the kind words – so appreciate that! All of my pots came that way – I’ve linked them in this post and on the Shop my Home page. I never found new ones to do it so I finally just bought ones that will. They come slightly ‘whitened’ but then they get more patina and moss as you water in them. I have two types – links are below (and in the post too).

      Hope that helps!

  7. What a beautiful transformation Sheila! I love all the greenery and fabulous dining area you have.

    1. Thank you Ashley!! Happy Summer my friend!


  8. What a cozy and welcoming back patio you have my friend! I agree- cleaning it is the first key to making it that way ;)!

  9. Sheila,
    I just did the same and bought new cushions for our outdoor table! I love the new cushions, and it was a huge game changer for an otherwise old table! I love all your decorating ideas, and your backyard looks like a gorgeous resort! Btw, I pinned it to bring more love to your post.

    1. New cushions are such a transformation – who knew??!

      Thanks for your kind words my friend – and happy summer to you!