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Design Trends

Summer 2012 Outdoor Design Trends

With summer upon us, we searched for some of the top trends for outdoor spaces. Here are some of our top finds and ways to update your clients' spaces.
Yachts Away
Hampton-style beach furnishings seem to be everywhere, including updated sailcloth ideas for shade structures, umbrellas, and even furnishings. This timeless look updates itself every summer, tying into the nautical fashion trends that hit the runways for summertime. Nautical blue and white are always on point, looking clean and fresh. Adding a third color to the mixes keeps this look updated and fresh, such as a fuchsia or orange striped rug, throw pillows or painted accent wall to add punch.
Flea Market Chic
Creative furniture finds and bright colors add inspiration to any outdoor space. Add drama and whimsy with colorful pillows, vases and painted canvas cloth in bold stripes or polka dots as finishing touches to furnishings in teak and black wrought iron, or updated wicker styles. Colorful plantings such as daisies or geraniums add another layer of color. Lighting is hand-crafted from wine bottles or glass jars, in an array of color.
Urban Poolside
Taking inspiration from city and nature - water and sky, moss and rocks; this trend is a happy splash of nature with a sassy dash of urban. Ornaments are scantily clad in their simplest expression of shapes and natural textures. Furnishings in teak, white wood and rattan drip with relaxed attitude, with crisp white, geometrics or stripes on the cushions. Accessorize with sea glass and decorate with whimsical frogs or turtles .Lighting fixtures finished in brushed nickel, stainless steel or antique brass provide the finishing touches.
Tree of Life
A new playground for adults, the treehouse has grown up. Finding new uses for vertical living include guest quarters or just a quiet getaway, treehouses are trending in a myriad of design themes.

In the Clouds
With CasaBubble at the forefront of this trend, you can literally sleep in a cloud. Experiment with these outdoor tents to create a new type of camping experience.
Vertical Gardens
Vertical gardening is one of the hottest outdoor design trends this year. From living walls to modular hanging solutions, it’s never been easier to leverage that growing space above you.
Modern Materials
Material mash-ups like wicker, metals and acrylics set the stage for an eclectic, modern room. 


Bringing the Indoors Out
Furnishings such as sofas made look like they could seamlessly transition indoors continues to uptrend in exteriors. Create this luxury look by the layering of sturdier outdoor fabrics in trendy motifs.


Weaving In and Out

Wider weaves in rattan furnishings feature thicker strands of wicker, providing a stand-out look in this furniture series. With outdoor spaces increasing in size, this furniture can fill spaces perfectly.

There are so many more trends but these are just a few highlights of our finds this year. Stay tuned as we continue to search out the latest trends.

All photography by Sara McLean, and with permission and courtesy of Bethany Nauert Photography and Corbis Images.