The Six Outdoor Decorating Essentials (Plus, the best outdoor sales happening now!)

April 23, 2019

We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 




We're Chris + Julia

read more

What we're                   right now


browse the shop

Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here. 

We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen. 

Even when you don’t want to rip down a wall, you can make that space in your home better. Right now.

browse all

browse all

browse all




Popular Posts




Top Categories

(All outdoor sources linked here!)

It’s nearly time for outdoor entertaining–our favorite time of the year over here. And do you know what the best time to buy outdoor furnishings is? Right now! Everything is on sale and then after Memorial Day, usually, it all goes up to full price until the end of July generally. But this week–the outdoor sales are madness. A few of my go-to shops for outdoor (along with the sales they have going on right now) are:

CB2: Up to 20% off all outdoor
Crate & Barrel: Up to 30% off all outdoor
World Market: 20% off all outdoor
Target: 25% off patio
Wayfair: Up to 70% off outdoor
West Elm: Up to 40% off outdoor
Pottery Barn: Up to 40% off EVERYTHING

Before you dive into sprucing up your outdoor oasis, I thought it’d be good to pass along the six essentials every outdoor area needs, no matter what size.


1. Faux Cement Palmera Outdoor Coffee Table – $249
2. Natural All Weather Wicker Jasper Outdoor Accent Stool – $99
3. Tambor Concrete Outdoor Drum Coffee Table – $261
4. Whitewash Sevilla Outdoor Dining Table – $399

If you have a smaller outdoor area, feel free to skip the outdoor dining table and just go for a coffee table that can double as a place for a delicious spread or an after-hours game of cards. Small side tables so you never have to reach far for your drink also go a long way in an outdoor setting. But if you have room to spread out, nothing is better than dining al fresco all summer long.

1. Southport 2pk Patio Club Chair Linen – $299
2. Aura Outdoor Patio Wicker Rattan Sofa – $573
3. Windsor 4pk Patio Dining Chair – $176

When it comes to seating, focus on making conversation circles. Even if you have a small area, a chair across from an outdoor sofa, promotes good conversation and balances the space. (The 1st option here is a two pack of chairs for under $300! Can’t beat that!).

1. 100-Ft Clear Globe Outdoor String Lights – $34
2. 10ct Outdoor String Lights Black Cage – $11
3. 10ct Outdoor Hooded String Lights – $19
4. Waterproof LED Outdoor String Lights  – $52

String lights zig-zagged overhead, or small fairy lights wrapped around a tree will absolutely bring your outdoor space up to the next level. Don’t skip this ingredient! It will feel so inviting and turn any ordinary night into something that feels special. A memory maker.

Heat Source/Fire Feature
1. Round Copper Bowl And Black Steel Fire Pit – $449
2. Stephen Faux Concrete Wood Burning Fire Pit – $262
3. Round Wood Burning Fire Pit – $99
4. Rectangle Concrete Gas Fire Pit – $359

Whether you’re roasting marshmallows, hot dogs or just keeping the backyard warm after the sun goes down to prolong the conversation, a fire feature is a mood you don’t want to skip. We DIYed our upright fireplace (see the tutorial here!) but these firepits are tres chic!

Outdoor Textiles
1. Ivory Fringe Indoor Outdoor Lumbar Pillow – $19
2. Novogratz by Momeni Villa Monaco Indoor Outdoor Rug – $311
3. Warm Tassel Aria Throw Blanket – $39

Almost every brand under the sun now makes pillows, throws and rugs specifically for outdoor spaces. Or sometimes indooor/outdoor because they’re so durable they can be used anywhere. With the rise of these all-weather textiles, your patio can now look just as cozy as your living room. So make it happen! If you have a pillow that you really want to use outdoors, or just want to make sure your outdoor seating is extra protected, I spray almost everything down with Outdoor Scotchguard–works like a charm!

Music/Outdoor Speaker
1. Ultimate Ears BOOM 2 Phantom Wireless Mobile Bluetooth Speaker – $88
2. Theater Solutions Indoor / Outdoor Speakers Mountable Pair – $79
3. Sonos Speaker – $199
4. Theater Solutions Powered Bluetooth Outdoor Granite Rock Speaker – $109

Maybe you’re just going to open the kitchen window and move your countertop speaker facing outside (been there!), or maybe you go all out with the exterior surround sound. But whatever you choose, mood music is the cherry on top of your outdoor oasis. It’s the often forgotten layer that won’t go unnoticed at your next party–promise. 

Hope this helps! With weather finally in the 60s (the girls were literally in the kiddie pool like it was 100 degrees over the weekend) we’re setting up our back deck this week and every year we tweak it just a bit! So we’ll share updated photos soon! Anyone else moving the lounge party outdoors in the coming weeks?

What do you think?

  1. Ellen G says:

    Daniel got me the #3 round fire pit from target for my birthday and I love it!!! I’m eating up this post because I’ve been working all summer on trying to make our little backyard feel like an oasis.

  2. Maria says:

    Hello! Where do you store your covers while you’re using your furniture?

  3. Sarah says:

    How do your cushions hold up to bird poop and the occasional unexpected thunderstorm with the occasional unexpected rainstorm? I remember reading a while back that you have covers- but do you have those on anytime you’re not actively using your deck? I’ve been struggling to commit to a sofa with cushions due to our neighborhood birds (our deck is their favorite target besides our cars) and unexpected thunderstorms. I’d put away cushions for big instances of expected rain, but most of our storms are fast and quick.

  4. Jennette says:

    I have #3 chairs from target. Do not buy if our in rain ever!! They drip rust constantly and ruined our outdoor rug.

  5. Kim says:

    What do you do to manage mosquitoes? We have a pretty nice, large backyard deck, but cannot enjoy it in summer due to the horrid mosquitoes! I’ve tried burning mosquito coils, citronella candles, using bug spray, and it is still so uncomfortable sitting out there in the evenings, sadly.

    • Julia says:

      We are fortunate enough to not have many mosquitos where we are but could you get some of those mosquito torches to line your outdoor space? Does your county spray for them? Our friends get them bad and they callthe city comes out and sprays for them

all the latest

We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 

HI! We're Chris + Julia

read more

Load More

Reader Faves

SHop all

What We're                     Right Now

What We're                 Right Now

Looking for our favorite things? A place to shop our home room by room, or just catch up on what Julia's wearing / loving right now? Browse the CLJ shop. 


looking for inspiration? 

The next project we’re checking off our 2023 project list is the mudroom! This used to be the laundry room until we built out a much bigger, better laundry room upstairs. So, in the meantime, this space has been exclusively Cricket’s room. Cricket will still have a special space here, but we’re transforming this dingy […]

Can We Send You Our Love Letter?

Another way for us to stay in touch! Joining our weekly newsletter gives you access to exclusive content, never-before-seen photos, your questions answered, and our favorite DIYs. Sign up below!

Follow Along on Instagram

Welcome to our online community where we've posted home, DIY, style, renovations, and family since '09. Renovating our #cljmoderncottage in Idaho and headed for new adventures in Raleigh, NC. #cljfam #cljtransformations