How to make your Balcony a Retreat

Apartment living is all about how to make the most of your precious Balcony space. Big or small, up high or just one storey up, we have compiled some inspired ideas to help you turn it into a real retreat.

1. Plan and Reflect – what are you going to mostly use your Balcony space for? While you might like the idea of a cosy reading nook, if you really need an outdoor dining area then you should plan your space around the perfect outdoor dining suite.

2. Measure, Measure, Measure – keep in mind the proportions and space you have to work with. You might have found a wonderful piece of outdoor furniture at a great price, however if it is not going to fit comfortably with room to move around, it is not going to be such a great deal.

3. Outdoor Armchairs – Designers have embraced our love of outdoor relaxation, and there are more options for those looking for well designed and comfortable weather-resistant seating. Should you prefer a modern and colourful moulded plastic piece, or a cushioned armchair made of woven materials, you’ll be sitting pretty after a day scouting specialist stores.

4. Quality before Price – The Australian sun is harsh, so be sure your outdoor furniture is built to local standards. You’ll also be happier in the long term with pieces that allow you to remove and wash all fabric components.

5. How do I look? – If your balcony is lower to the ground level and visible to passers by, consider how your chosen furniture and decorations will appear from ground level. Bright colours and bold shapes can really add to your street appeal.

6. Going Potty – There are so many options now for Plant Pots and containers – decide what shape will work best for your space and go looking for the right size in your local Hardware Store and Garden Centre. There are even innovative options for Vertical Gardens for your walled areas. For further inspiration head to Pinterest for some DIY options.

7. Green Thumbs – Not every plant will work on every balcony. Carefully note how much sun your balcony gets and use that information to direct your purchases. If you need expert help, just ask for it online or when in store. There are some plants that will survive almost anywhere – the humble Succulent can be the Garden Novice’s best friend. Just don’t forget to water, as plants dry out in pots faster than you think.

8. Backdrop – If you’re not so keen on the current wall covering, and you can’t do anything dramatic, there are more creative options. Wooden lattice, screens or boarding can be temporarily installed, along with the perennial bamboo screening. Just be sure to check your Strata Scheme rules before you invest too heavily.  If your balcony is small, your best bet might be to install an outdoor mirror to create the illusion of space and reflect light into your apartment. Just remember to install it well so it won’t fall on a windy day, and do keep it clean!