When most homeowners plan to add an outdoor living area, they think of the needs and interests of the adults in the home. But an outdoor living space can be just as much for the kids as for the adults to entertain their friends. How? Here are a few tricks to creating a more kid-friendly outdoor room.
Use Non-Slip Materials
The outdoors was made for running, jumping, dancing, and chasing. Be sure your patio or hardscape surfaces are as well.
Choose a non-skid material for the flooring, such as concrete or pavers designed for use around wet pool areas, so that the flooring is safe come rain or shine. Add non-slip rubber mats or grit mats to all the stairs. And if your little ones have a tendency to climb, pay attention to the safety aspects of columns and furniture to ensure your little ones don’t get hurt.
Try Artificial Turf
Kids love to play on grass, but it can be hard to maintain and may not stand up to the constant use of kids and pets playing. Modern, good-looking artificial turf is an easy and cost-effective solution that provides somewhere soft to relax and a space that will look great.
Match up this artificial softness alongside a hardscape patio so that kids have a choice about where works best for each activity. The artificial turf will also help the outdoor room pull double duty when you have larger parties of all ages.
Keep It Cozy
Invite kids and their friends outside by creating a cozy space in which they'll be comfortable. Use fluffy rugs and oversize pillows or beanbags. Just make sure you can keep the area clean by installing built-in storage that's easy to access by the whole family.
Additionally, a hammock or hanging chair provides both fun and comfort, as do fabric ottomans that people can move around to accommodate any seating or playing style the kids want. If your tweens and teens love their mobile devices, including a few built-in speakers, phone chargers, or headphone stations will make the outdoors cozier for modern kids.
Much of what kids will want to do in the outdoor room will call for hard surfaces to work or play on. So, include low tables for kids to gather round and play, build, draw, or enjoy games. Low tables perform double duty when the adults have their friends over, serving as coffee tables and places for drinks around the fire.
Add some taller tables and long work surfaces so that children have options for different types of play. Taller surfaces will also grow with the kids so that the patio stays useful as kids become teens.
Add a Kid-Focused Element
Let your kids know that the outdoor room is also theirs to enjoy, instead of just something they are allowed to use when the adults aren't. Even a single kid-focused item will help them feel at home.
An in-ground trampoline or tumble mat laid along one patio edge, for instance, is fun for all and clearly gives the kids their own space. Add some pillows and cushions to help teens and their friends hang out comfortably.
For smaller kids, an eclectic, upcycled sandbox or tire swing is a simple and cost-effective addition. Or, hang a chalkboard on the sidewall, install some faux rocks for climbing, or include a large, flat surface to use as a projector screen.
With a little extra effort, your family-friendly outdoor room can become a haven for everyone who lives there. By including safety features, cozy accessories, and kid-friendly items, you'll have a great start. At Superior Outdoor Designs, we have experience with all types of outdoor needs and interests. Call today for an appointment to learn what we can do for you.