Hello, readers! Welcome back to the Stonehouse Countertops blog! We’re pleased you’ve chosen Stonehouse Countertops for everything you need to know about custom countertop materials. We provide comprehensive deep dives into various aspects of the design and installation process, as well as helpful tips for choosing the best material for your home. Our goal is to equip you with the information you need to commission the perfect countertops! Stonehouse Countertops carries an array of granite, marble, quartz, quartzite, soapstone, silestone, limestone, travertine, onyx, glass, sodalite, slate, and porcelain materials in its inventory. In addition to countertops, we offer fireplace surrounds, patios, floors, and walls. Whatever your design goals, we’re happy to help you achieve your unique vision!

In our last post, we discussed kitchen design trends of 2022! Trends are constantly changing and there are always new and innovative ideas popping up. We talked about color contrasts, the use of marble, incorporating tile, and more! If you’re interested in learning more about the kitchen design trends we are seeing so far this year, check out our last post. We love to keep our readings up to date on the latest trends!

Today, we’ll be talking about how to get your patio ready for the summer. Summer is just around the corner– It officially begins on June 21st! The summertime is one of the most popular times for being outdoors, especially with the gorgeous weather and scenery in the Lowcountry! With that being said, many of us will have friends and family over to soak up the sun in our backyards, hang out by the pool, or have barbecues. If you have a patio or other outdoor space, you’ll want it to look exceptional for guests! Here are our tips for getting your patio and garden ready for entertaining guests this summer!

Clean or Upgrade Your Patio Furniture

The first thing you’ll want to do is take a look at your patio furniture. Whether it has been in storage or has just been sitting around unused throughout the winter, you’ll want to wipe it down well. Brush or wipe away any leaves, loose dirt, or other debris that has settled on your furniture. For plastic outdoor furniture, use a sponge or damp cloth with some water and an all-purpose cleaner to wipe it down. If you have metal furniture, opt for a sponge or brush with water and a mild dish soap. The same can be used for wicker or wood furniture. Rust is a particular problem with metal outdoor furniture, even if it is rust-resistant. If you spot rust, you can use steel wool to remove the oxidation. These areas can also be touched-up with metallic spray paint!

Check fabric or cushion covers for holes. Seat covers and other pieces of fabric can look great on outdoor furniture, but they are prone to staining and can get dirty quickly. The best way to clean fabric is by using dish soap and warm water. Follow manufacturer’s instructions if available. 

If you feel like your outdoor furniture is just not doing the trick this year, consider upgrading it! Sometimes all new furniture is just what you need to liven up your outdoor space. If you’re on a budget and feel like taking on a project, you can repaint your outdoor furniture altogether. Clean and dry the furniture, then sand off any loose paint before using spray paint to give your existing furniture a fresh, updated look.

Clean Up Your Patio 

Now it’s time to take a look at your patio, deck, or porch itself. Sweep away any debris and take a look at what you’re left with. The best way to wash your patio will depend on the material it is made of. For example, natural stones like granite and limestone are extremely durable and able to withstand exposure to the elements. Certain tiles, like porcelain, are able to withstand pressure washing. The safest way to wash a patio made of natural stone is to hose off the patio and use a mild dish soap or detergent to scrub stains. Hose off the surface again with plain water and repeat if necessary. For dark brown or black spots, mix a solution of water and bleach and scrub. This will not only help remove the spots, but will also help with mildew, mold, and moss. To keep your patio looking its best, we recommend keeping up with routine cleanings and maintenance throughout the year and cleaning up spills as soon as possible to avoid staining.

Add Color

Nothing says “summer” like a pop of color! Create a vibrant and more lively outdoor space by adding color with throw pillows, rugs, and other decor. In fact, a defining rug can make a fantastic statement piece! Choose a color palette that you feel is appropriate for the tone you want to set for your outdoor space. Some colors you may want to consider are shades of yellow, orange, blue, and pink. Don’t be afraid to mix colors as well– Combining colors can give your patio a more summery and even tropical look. You will also want to take into consideration the color of your outdoor furniture. If your furniture has cool tones, like white, gray, or black, consider adding sky or aqua blue decor for a pop of color. If you want to keep things more natural, incorporate plants. (Make sure that the plants can survive outdoors!) Greenery not only provides a more natural look, but also promotes a feeling of calmness and relaxation. 

If you’re looking to go the extra mile, we suggest incorporating colorful tile into your outdoor space. Consider adding tile to outdoor structures such as walls, stairs, or countertops. You can even use them to create a gorgeous mural! Tile comes in a variety of colors and patterns, so the possibilities are truly endless. 

Create Ambience With Lighting

When the sun goes down, you don’t necessarily need to move the party inside or say goodbye to your guests. This is where lighting comes in! One of our favorite ideas for outdoor lighting is the use of string lights. These can be put up around a patio umbrella, trees, along your fence, deck railings, and more. Not only do they look great, but they create a fun and inviting ambiance for your guests. If your outdoor space is rectangular or square-shaped, crossing the outdoor string lights overhead can add a nice touch. Another great choice is the use of solar lighting. Whether placed along a walkway or in a garden area, these lights will get fully charged during a hot summer day and be ready for entertaining guests in the evening. Plus, they’re good for the environment! If you already have existing outdoor lighting that you want to continue to use, make sure that they are in working order for the upcoming season.

As you can see, these are just a few ways to prepare your patio and outdoor space for summer entertaining. Summer is coming up fast and we hope these tips were helpful as you prepare for a season of friends, family, and fun in the sun! We hope you found this article informative. It’s not too late to design and install a gorgeous outdoor space! If you are looking to start a new build or remodel of a patio or outdoor kitchen, we encourage you to reach out to us. We’d be happy to assist you. You can also check out our live inventory to see the wide variety of stones that we offer. If you’re thinking about the installation of stone for kitchen countertops or any other stone surface, remember: At Stonehouse Countertops, we are willing and able to work with you to your specifications. We offer a wide range of different materials and always have someone on hand to answer your questions! Don’t hesitate to reach out for a consultation or for help forming a plan. We want to ensure your vision becomes a reality! Be sure to come back for upcoming articles! Until next time—thanks for reading!