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The 6 Hottest Outdoor Design Trends You’ll See Everywhere This Spring and Summer

by Jennifer Kelly Geddes

One of the most hotly debated issues of our era is easily daylight savings time—and it’s upon us once again.

The clocks are doing their bi-annual switcharoo, going into “spring forward” mode on Sunday, Mar. 10, at 2 a.m.

Love it or hate it, an extra hour of sunlight is coming our way. So, instead of arguing about the topic, let’s dream about how that extra hour of light will enhance our outdoor living and plan a new look or backyard spruce-up.

To help pump up your style, we dug deep to come up with the latest and greatest trends for your deck, patio, and yard.

Read on for design ideas and accessory tips from the pros and industry analysts to level up your yard and lawn life so you’re sitting pretty this spring and summer.

1. Tricked-out kitchens

Entertaining alfresco will never go out of style, meaning outdoor kitchens are here to stay. But the trend in 2024 is to go bigger and better in this space, with homeowners moving beyond a simple grill setup and spending more on bells and whistles to make it fancy.

“Summer kitchens are getting tricked out with more luxury appliances and specialty items like pizza ovens,” reports Pamela O’Brien, principal designer at Pamela Hope Designs. “Homeowners are adding more counter space outdoors, too, to help manage the increased level of cooking they’re doing in the backyard.”

2. Navy blue and forest green

Looking to nature for a color scheme (think green, orange, yellow, and blue) on your patio or deck makes perfect sense—and it’s also on trend in the new year.

Ariel Barrionuevo, designer and manager at La Coralina Island House, recommends these shades when designing an outdoor look and predicts they’ll continue to find favor with homeowners.

“Try these colors when you select comfortable seating in weather-resistant fabrics, or get the blue and green look in an outdoor rug with a geometric pattern,” he says.

Your goal: an outdoor design that’s a stylish extension of your home inside.

3. Petite spaces

The clever folks at Houzz, the online design and decorating site, have been working hard to determine the hot trends in 2024—and one of them is relatively diminutive in size.

Yup, tiny patios, small screened porches, and other cozy outdoor gathering spots are all gaining attention as we head into warmer weather, reports Annie Thornton, a Houzz outdoor expert.

Based on search data on its site, the Houzz Outdoor Home Design Predictions have pinpointed a rising interest in designing petite spaces outside, whether it’s a porch or patio.

To achieve this look, some homeowners install small decks near an entryway or an unused side yard, while those with more room to work with add secondary seating areas that are more secluded and located away from the house.

4. American barn stars

According to lore, having a large star on your barn protected you from bad luck.

Noel Fahden Briceño, vice president of merchandising at Chairish, notes that the American barn star is back as a trend in 2024, partly because folks are “always on the lookout for the most chic, unique, and eclectic pieces.”

Bring the barn star idea to your backyard with a simple metal design attached to an exterior wall. Or you could try the look with stars printed on outdoor throw pillows or all-weather rugs or hang a star pendant light over your deck or patio.

5. Curvy seating

Rounded, wavy chairs and couches are part of the “futuristic forms” trend that the team at Wayfair Professional has put together for 2024. For your outdoor living space, this might translate to curved rattan settees or loungers and a round table to match.

Houzz also identified this design look with its furniture trends for 2024, which include curvy overstuffed couches, round dining tables, and ribbing on pieces like side tables that look like a stack of inner tubes. Use these silhouettes outside, too, in fabrics that can withstand the elements.

6. Planting between patio pavers

An all-stone or solid brick patio is fine, of course, but the trend for the coming year is to tuck greenery among the pavers for a softer, more natural design, according to Houzz data.

The interest in planting between stones might be for beauty or to help with drainage, says Thornton. But no matter the reason, the look is both versatile and appealing.

By trying this trend, you’ll break up a cold stretch of pavers and invite a more lush, live part of your garden to shine through.

Want more design trends and tips on how to make your home your own? Follow me weekly!

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