After a long winter spent indoors and a socially distanced spring, your balcony is likely turning into your favorite “room” at home. As summer approaches, give your patio or balcony space a design refresh, to make it a stylish, charming living space you can relax in, all season long.

You don’t need an enormous balcony space to achieve the aesthetic you want, and you won’t need a big budget either. Start by measuring your outdoor space and choosing appropriately sized furnishings to anchor the space. Bring in a variety of plants and herbs to add texture and color, before finishing up with textiles, simple lighting and personal touches that make it feel like home.

Your balcony will be the perfect spot to enjoy warm coffee on lazy, summer mornings and cool cocktails on Saturday evenings. Here are 5 simple ways to decorate your balcony for summer.

Nothing brings a balcony to life faster than a stash of potted or hung plants. Place tall, hardy plants in corners, on side tables, or hang them from above, and you’ll instantly transform your outdoor space into a natural retreat. Choose plants that are best suited for your balcony, and the more hardy, the better. Think geraniums, begonias and succulents, to start, and consider how much light your balcony gets and how likely you are to remember to water them.

Bring bright pops of color and texture to your outdoor space easily and affordably by investing in an outdoor rug, throw pillows and even a few throw blankets for cool, cozy nights. You’ll want to choose a rug that is truly designed for outdoor spaces. Choose throw pillows in fabrics that are designed for exposure to the elements, or make sure to bring these indoors to store after each use (same goes for your throw blankets).

Hardy Furnishings
When choosing furnishings for your balcony space, you’ll want to choose chairs and tables that can withstand the elements, like teak, plastic and wrought iron, as examples. Avoid bringing that extra loveseat outdoors, or that beautifully painted set of wood chairs-over time, the wood will rot and the couch will be a puddle.

Relaxing on your balcony past dusk is a summertime must, and to do it right, you’ll need proper lighting. String lights overhead, or place votives with LED candles inside them on side tables. Bring a sturdy, outdoor lamp to stand in a corner, or place something simple, portable and battery-operated on a side table. Whatever you do, avoid using candles or anything flammable.

Personal Touches
Finally, it’s time to add your favorite, personal touches to your outdoor space, and make it feel like a true reflection of your personality. Hang delicate garland or a cozy canopy in bright or mute colors, depending on your preferred design aesthetic. Small pops of color, your favorite chotchkes and other personal items will tie the space together, and set you up for summertime success!