(BPT) - It's that time of year - time to dust off your patio furniture, fill your planters and set up to spend the spring outdoors. While expanding an outdoor space is a top renovation project for homeowners and renters alike, it does not have to induce a state of pre-spring stress. With a few simple tips, you can create an outdoor space that adds value and comfort to your home.
Focus on your front entrance
'Enhance your home's curb appeal by brightening up your front entrance,' says The Home Depot's Director of Trend and Design, Sarah Fishburne. 'A coat of brightly colored paint on your front door can redefine the look of your home.' This year, go bold with your color choice - try coral, tomato red, teal, aqua, violet, pistachio and cobalt. Add a wreath, doormat, kick plates and new door hardware to complete the look. Knobs and handles with a burnished bronze finish also hide fingerprints and don't show tarnish as easily. After all, a fabulous front entrance can make a powerful first impression.
Design your dream deck
The base of any great outdoor space is a clean slate. Start with a good scrub and power wash. Echo the feel of your interior to create a cohesive style that makes it easy for you to move indoor decor outside when you are hosting. Start by creating a sense of space with an arbor or trellis. Use colors, furniture finishes and seasonal accessories that complement each other, such as a beautiful custom patio set from Brown Jordan. If you're unsure where to start, use an online patio planning tool to make it easier to customize the look. Mix and match patterns, textures and sheens for a designer-inspired finish. For urban dwellers in apartments or small spaces, you can create a great outdoor space by installing a vertical garden filled with succulents and a small cocktail table and chairs.
Accessorize and add color
'Accessories aren't just about making a fashion statement,' says Fishburne. 'In fact, adding finishing touches to your front and back porch creates a polished look and feel.' Not only does a weather-resistant, indoor/outdoor rug anchor furniture just like in a living room but it also adds a punch of pattern and color to complement your outdoor furniture. Adding big, bright flowers, such as red geraniums is a simple and cost effective way to brighten up your outdoor space. Not a gardener? Not a problem. Achieve beautiful results with minimal effort by using Drop 'N Bloom pre-mixed containers of bright spring flowers. For additional pop, whitewash or paint your tired planters with this season's hottest colors - pollen yellow or aquatic green.
Plan for a party
What's a great outdoor space without others to share it with? Set up your space to host parties all season long. Don't leave your guests in the dark - hang up string lights or place solar lights around the patio to get the party going. Create ambiance and a cool conversation piece with a fire pit or add colorful throw pillows for your guests to sit back and relax. Finally, set yourself up for a season of signature meals by planting an herb garden. Make the night more interactive by inviting your guests to help pick herbs that will complement the meal.
For this and more project inspiration, check out The Home Depot's Trend and Design Tumblr. For more quick and easy gardening tips, sign up for The Garden Club, which provides regionalized garden information, forums and deals.