Vail Daily design column: Pull up a chaise, it’s summertime |

Vail Daily design column: Pull up a chaise, it’s summertime

When the sun goes down, the chill arrives soon thereafter. Cozy up to a fireplace, firepit, chiminea or even propane heater.
David Patterson | Special to the Daily |

There’s nothing like summer in the mountains. Sure, the beach has its draw, but the summer has finally arrived at 8,200 feet. This is such a blissful time of year. We can claim we love it for our kids, but in actuality, as adults we all find the time to do our “chores” later. The long days let us sink into our chairs and enjoy life at a slower pace.

While any outdoor time is welcome after a cold winter, there are a few ways to make your outdoor space even more of a haven.

Treat your patio or deck like an extended living space and get rid of the plastic chairs and wobbly table. You want this space to be the go-to area for your family and guests. Teak tables and chairs are classic and only look better as they weather the storms. Update an existing set with colorful cushions. Or put pillows — in weather-resistant outdoor fabric — on your favorite chaise. Dark wicker sofas with bright cushions are timeless and provide plenty of seating for parties. An area rug also perks up a patio with fun colors and added texture to the space.

A favorite item I added to my deck area last year is an outdoor pouf. Colorful, fun and multi-faceted, it can be used as an ottoman or additional seating and it just makes me smile. They come in a variety of sizes, shapes, textures and patterns, again in weather-proof fabric to prevent fading and spotting. Add a tray with your favorite cocktail, and voila, it’s cocktail hour on the deck.


Our days may be blazing when the sun is out, but when the sun goes down, the chill arrives soon thereafter. Instead of putting on your fleece or down jacket, cozy up to a fireplace, firepit, chiminea or even propane heater. If you have a large outdoor space, consider building a firepit ring. Set up a few Adirondack chairs, grab some marshmallows and you have the most sought-after spot in the neighborhood. One caveat: Check with local ordinances or homeowners’ association guidelines to see if firepits are permitted.

An easy and cost effective way to transform your outside dining area is with new linens and dinnerware. Mix and match prints and colors — don’t be afraid to try floral with stripes, French country with mid-century modern, mother’s silver with edgy martini glasses. It’s fun to make the space your own. Add fresh flowers, a bottle of rose and your nightly dinner feels elevated.

I spent hours on my grandparent’s glider, lazy afternoons spent reading and swaying. Gliders and swings come in a wide range of fabrics, sizes, colors and designs. Make a small front porch instantly inviting with a porch swing. Add an herb garden for aroma and potted plants for color, and it’s a slice of heaven. Keep a few throws on the back of the glider or on the sofas to make the day last even a bit longer.

Sit back, enjoy the view and relax on your patio.

Yvonne Jacobs is the president of Slifer Designs. She’s been passionately creating inspired spaces for 17 years. For even more inspiration and ideas, check out

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