Transform Your Patio for the Ultimate Dining Al Fresco Experience

Enjoy Warm Weather to the Fullest

The season of dining al fresco is upon us, so if you're lucky enough to have a patio of your own we have a few tips for sprucing up the space to make the most of your summer evenings. All you really need is a table and chairs, but some good design (and a glass of wine) can't hurt.

1. Lighting Adds Ambiance

What's a summer evening outside without a little firelight? Whether you use a real flame, those handy faux candles that can withstand a breeze, or a strand of twinkle lights, a bit of light can add visual comfort and warmth to your outside dining space.

2. Curtains Give Privacy

Curtains made from outdoor fabric do several things for your patio. Of course, they give the option of privacy should your neighbors have prying eyes. But they can also keep a bit of warmth inside your patio if the evening is cooler than planned, can act as a sunshade, and also add a bit of texture and dimension to your space. They're an unexpected feature, but useful and stylish at the same time.

3. Cloth and Glass Add Luxury

Eating outside doesn't have to mean paper plates are your only option. Take your al fresco experience up a notch with a linen tablecloth and all your fine dining ware. You'll feel more refined than that plastic knife will allow.

4. Surround Yourself With Plants

If you're dining outside, take full advantage of nature by making greenery a part of your patio decor. A climbing vine and few select container plants are enough to ensure you don't forget you're in the fresh air.

5. Relax to the Sound of Water

The sound of a bubbling fountain can lend a relaxed, zen experience to your outdoor meal -- and it's something you can't enjoy indoors. This standard garden feature can make your meal a complete sensory experience.