Will the summer holiday work out this year? Can I invite people to the barbecue? No one knows for sure. Making plans has never been so pointless. But there is hope! At a time when we are so often confronted with our own powerlessness, it does us good to concentrate on what we can control: our own four walls. And the balcony as a green outdoor room functions like the summer edition of your home.
Even if your balcony is still so small: this is your kingdom! Here you can do what you want, (almost) everything is allowed and no one will tell you what to do. This summer it can be everything for you: sun deck, workplace, breakfast corner, chill-out area, supplier of fresh herbs and meeting place for friends. We show you how to turn your balcony into a place worth living with a few life hacks and a little creativity.
Design your balcony.
Tip No. 1: Consider your balcony as a valuable living space that deserves to be furnished with love and care.
- Keeping things tidy: During the cold half of the year, many people's balconies turn into junk rooms. Your first act is to clear away everything that has no place in your living room extension. Yes, even the clothes horse!
- Plan: Next, think about what you want to use your balcony for. If you want to eat and work on it, you need a table at the right height and 1-2 chairs. For relaxing, however, a hanging chair or a lounge sofa is more suitable. Tip: Most of the time you are either indoors or outdoors. Things like chairs or cushions can therefore simply move with you. You don't have to buy them twice.
- Furnishings: What is the basic shape of your balcony? If it is long and narrow, you can balance it out with furniture or plants at the short ends. If it is more square, create small islands with groups of furniture to give it structure. How about a table and chairs on an outdoor rug and a lounging area separated by planters?
- Very small balconies require special tricks: furniture with a folding function clears the field when it is not needed. Attach as much as possible directly to the railing, e.g. flower pots, umbrellas and tables, and also use the walls, e.g. for shelves.
Tip No. 2: Your balcony is what you make of it.
- Decoration: You should definitely not forget this during your makeover! It's what gives the balcony flair. Lean on your living room here and stay true to your style. With a uniform colour concept, framed pictures and beautiful textiles, you can create a harmonious transition between indoors and outdoors. Atmospheric lighting with solar lamps, candles and fairy lights make the balcony cosy.
- Underfoot: A pleasant, clean floor covering is not to be underestimated. You can quickly create a new look with a weatherproof carpet. You can lay wooden or ceramic tiles yourself and they look generously sophisticated.
- Electricity: Sockets are rare on balconies. Get yourself a cordless LED lamp so you can still relax and leaf through a magazine in the evening. A power bank is a good way to charge batteries.
- Shade: To prevent your green oasis from grilling you like a chicken in summer, you should provide shade. Awnings take up little space, umbrellas are more flexible.
Gardening on the balcony.
Tip No. 3: Did you know that a little more greenery in the city is doubly good for you? On a balcony with herb pots and flower boxes, not only you but also bees and other insects can recharge their batteries.
- Plant selection: South, east, west or north? The orientation of the balcony determines which plants feel comfortable on it.
- Usefulness and ornamentation: Easy to care for and suitable for pots - these are the criteria for your plant assortment. With a little skill, something will be in bloom all season long. If you like cooking or barbecuing, you can cultivate herbs or even vegetables on your balcony.
- Help: If you are unsure about which plants to choose, go to a garden centre or ask a friend with a green thumb for advice.
Enjoy the balcony.
Tip No. 4: Enough work! A balcony should not only be work, it is first and foremost there to be enjoyed.
- BBQ on the balcony: First check the house rules, cover the grill with a lid, pluck the herbs and off you go!
- Now a drink: What could be better than cooling off on the balcony after a warm day with a home-mixed drink? Our tip: Strawberry Mint Gin & Tonic.
- The greatest luxury: doing nothing. Just stretch out all fours, look up at the sky, listen to the sounds of the city and be in the moment. Nowhere can you do that better than on your balcony.