Creating an Outdoor Oasis – Small Balcony Ideas

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

I am personally all about condo living - and I am fortunate enough to have a pretty good size balcony. If you are one of the lucky ones and have a balcony in your apartment, condo, or house, congratulations! (Also this post is for you!). I have looked, researched and read so I can share the best ways to maximize your (small) balcony space and create your perfect outdoor oasis.

Here is the before - super plain, boring balcony. I tired to find the size for you all but think a girl can find a meter when she needs one? no! I have outlined the 5 steps I followed to get my balcony Summer ready but if that's not enough - I have included few more ideas on the bottom of this post.
Step #1: Creating any oasis starts with deep cleaning your space - I used these natural products, microfiber cloths and a mop to clean the vinyl. 

Step #2 (optional): My balcony is fairly high up, but I face a parking lot and a busy soccer field so I had to work in a way to create some privacy too. While there is ton of options I needed something that would not move in the wind and that can be a permanent fixture. I purchased two of these Barrette Diamond Privacy 4X8 White Lattice pieces and fastened them to the balcony fence with zip ties.  Zip ties are perfect if your place is rental so the privacy screen can easily be removed. The reason I chose these lattice pieces over bamboo or textile privacy screen is that they are weather proof (even Edmonton cold weather proof) and I will not have to replace them for a long time. 

Step #3: Make sure your foundation (aka floor) is good to go. My balcony is vinyl but I decided that adding some color would makes a world of difference. If your balcony is cement or wood, or you just hate the color (why is beige vinyl a thing, why? could they not install grey?) you can look into these snap in place balcony tiles. They make any balcony feel more cozy and warm and its perfect as they can easily be removed if your home is a rental or you change your mind.

Step #4: Pick your furniture. If you are on a budget or need a specific size you can make your own patio furniture. I chose a set from wayfair - I like the wicker style and it came with cushion but most importantly it fit the size I needed.  If your balcony can accommodate a hammock or a swing chair those make any space cozier and comfier.

If you have a gas attachment or just love to BBQ, investing into a small BBQ is the way to go. I chose a smaller gas style BBQ with foldable sides so it take  as little space as possible. Plus since I don't have to use a propane tank, I can store things in it. 

Step #5: Make it your own. Twinkly light, extra pillows, flower plans and candles - whatever suits your style. I used to have two trees, and even tho the sales person assured me they would be able to live outdoors during Edmonton winters, they lied. So this year I added different plants that I will have to move indoors for winter.
I added lights around the edge of the fence (I chose this style as they have a solar panel too). 
I added more pillows to make the space feel cozier. I would highly recommend getting waterproof/outdoor pillows just in case you are like me and leave your nice throw pillows out and get caught in the rain.  
Now - here are few amazing and awesome ideas (that just did not work on my space) but can make any outdoor space a perfect oasis.

Add a railing breakfast bar /table/outdoor office space. I found this one on Etsy and LOVE it and this one can accommodate a laptop as well.
(image via etsy)

Swap your patio furniture with a day bed with lots of pillows for a maximum relaxation.

Add a gazebo or an umbrella. 
(image via wayfair)

Go green - with lots of plants.

Don't be afraid of color. Add different colors and textiles and prints.