Outdoor Living: Making A Stylish Space for Al-Fresco Dining

The lure of the great outdoors isn’t going to abate any time soon, so get your outside eating space sorted with some stylish tiles, fabulous firepits, and fantastic barbecues! There’s absolutely no excuse for having a less-than-gorgeous outside dining space, even if you’re a novice at the tiling game (we have loads of advice available online), and our range of outdoor slab tiles is second to none. Here’s a rundown of some of our favourites alongside some exterior décor and accessories suggestions…

Cobbled Details

Our new Eire Gris Cobbles tiles include décor tiles to introduce a curvy detail – use them for a border or a circular central focal point (there are plenty of ideas available online if you’re struggling for inspo). Eire Gris are porcelain tiles made to replicate Basalt cobbles. The pattern detail makes them an excellent choice for large or small areas, bringing detail and interest to large expanses of tiles, or focusing on the detail for smaller spaces such as balconies. Each slab/tile is 610mm x 610mm – choose from plain or with curved detail to create your patterns.

Clear Spaces

Choose a large-scale slab to create a low-key, expansive look for an outdoor terrace. These tiles are Bellevue Ivory outdoor porcelain slabs, each measures 595mm x 595mm with rectified edges, which means the grout lines will be crisp and clean. They’re designed to replicate Gneiss natural metamorphic rock, which has layers of detail and colours on closer inspection. Great for a neat, clean look for your summer entertaining. Just add friends, food, and fizz!

Multifunctional Choices

Ahh, definitely a dream choice! This is the Morso Forno Delux Garden Oven and Kitchen, available from Beaumonde. So, there’s somewhere to keep the logs, hooks for utensils, a grill/pizza oven, space for serving and prep and of course, it’s moveable too. This is especially important as it can be moved around either to avoid the wind or to bring it centre-stage and then tuck it away when the dancing begins! Definitely one for the wish-list once the tiles have been installed!

It’s Hip to be Square…

The Quan Quadro Premium Large Wood Fired BBQ is a neat, practical design that will sit well in a generous space, it measures 100cm x 100cm and provides a central fire pit with a tempered carbon steel top plate for direct on-the-surface teppanyaki-style cooking. It looks simple, but is designed to provide airflow for cooking and then the fire bowl continues to provide heat through the evening – and of course, there’s a log-storage area within the pedestal, too.

The Warm Spot

A firepit, such as the Rose & Grey Cast Iron Firepit is perfectly partnered with the Wooden Firepit Bench, also by Rose & Grey. A firepit is a great option for outdoor entertaining without the fuss (yes, sometimes it is a fuss and a faff!) of barbecuing! Keep it simple with outdoor cocktails/drinks and a gathering around the firepit instead. Try our outdoor tiles for a neutral backdrop to interesting outdoor choices, such as the firepit bench and pit.

Serious Outdoor Accessories

We’re loving the eccentric Kadai Fire Bowls & Pits by Cast In Style, the range includes racks and grids for barbecuing, plus grills, riddles, shelves, trivets, stands, chimney starters, pokers and even tripod roasters. The range is fabulous and would inspire anyone to tackle a hog roast or at least a few steaks, rather than the regular sausages and burgers! One for the serious BBQ chef/fire pit connoisseur (and guests, of course!) This particular model is 120cm in diameter, and is available from Scaramanga

Clear The Decks

Keep your outdoor scheme simple, using straight lines and clean finishes. We love the combination here, raised beds with a built-in bench and a patch of lawn to add softness and colour. Then you get to a stretch of slabs – these are our Granito Grey porcelain slabs, each measures a whopping 400mm x 800mm, and they have a matt finish with an R11 slip rating – perfect for the safety factor when entertaining outdoors.

Atmospheric Touches

Keep the cosy glow going late into the evening with the Cosi Fires Cosiscoop Timber Frame Fire Lantern from Silver Mushroom. It’s made from teak and glass, with a gas cartridge concealed beneath the pebbles. Can be used indoors and out, so could be a sleek addition to your interior winter décor as well.

Just Saying…

Consider a set of patterned tiles for the new terrace, either as a central panel (creating a rug-type effect) or as an intense, eye-catching all-over design. Our Concretia Grey Outdoor Slab Tiles measure 600mm x 600mm and are a bold choice for a dark exterior plan.

Simple & Elegant

Go for simplicity and elegance with the subtle tones of our Valar Beige Outdoor Slabs, designed to replicate striped limestone. We like the rather formal look here, pair with a large dining set and shady parasol for a stylish outdoor dining experience.

Square Style

Keep the simple, uncluttered look going with a square fire pit, such as the Square Fire Pit from Von Haus. It provides a smokeless fire, using gas, without smoke or coals/wood.

Stylish Curves  

We love the combination of lush greenery and stylish outdoor tiles…these are our Ebor Gris tiles, and if you’re concerned about what it take s to install them then don’t be as we have a rather handy large-format-porcelain Installation Guide available too. Be adventurous and add curves for a traditional look, echoing the curved edges of the steps. We think this is a rather lovely classic entertaining space.

Will you be incorporating any of these ideas when jazzing up your exteriors this summer? If so then don’t forget to send us your pictures of the end result – share your pics with us over on Twitter tagging @TileMountainUK or on Instagram!

You might also enjoy these posts on the Tile Mountain blog…

Indoor-Outdoor Looks for Summer

Five Essential Tiling Tools For Installing Outdoor Slab Tiles

Five Outdoor Themes: Create a Super-Stylish Themed Outdoor Look

Linda has worked as a freelance interiors writer and blogger for many years; she has written for most of the major home and design magazines, including KBB Magazine, Grand Designs, Homes & Gardens, House Beautiful, Period Homes and Good Homes. She made the break and moved from London back to her home town of Shrewsbury three years ago and has just finished renovating her house. She also works in an interior design studio, produces copy for brochures and website, tries to tame her garden, aims to finish all the home furnishing projects she has on the go … and loves walking.