Porches & Pumpkins

Text by Jordana White | Photography by Anna Haley

These days, well-appointed homes need well-appointed outdoor living spaces, so it stands to reason that seasonal home decor should extend to the great outdoors. We sat down with Angela Mazanti of Angela Mazanti Design to get her tips and tricks for making fabulous porches and patios even more special for the fall festive season.

At Home Memphis & Mid South: How do you suggest staging a patio?
Angela Mazanti: I like to stage a patio much like I would stage an interior space. I try to find out from clients how they will be using the space and work off that, getting to know specifics like the amount seating needed, whether they want to use it as an outdoor kitchen or what their other needs may be.

AHMMS: How can you maximize the space on a small patio?
AM: You can maximize your space on a small patio by making your furniture do double duty, like choosing seating benches that can also be used for storage. Try thinking of outside-the-box ways to add plant material to your space, like hanging a grid on the wall that can hold flower pots and containers.


AHMMS: What are some fun, festive suggestions for getting an outdoor space ready for fall holidays and Halloween?
AM: Fall is my favorite time of year so I get especially excited when it’s time to decorate for the changing season. I’m not one who enjoys the “dark” side of Halloween decor, but I do think it’s fun to incorporate something for the kids to enjoy. I like to use items like spider webs, bats, pumpkins, gourds, hay, scarecrows, fun ribbon and wreaths. I use lots of texture when selecting fall decor.


AHMMS: How do you determine the color palette for outdoor spaces?
AM: I like to look at the surroundings and find out whether the client would prefer for the space to just blend in with the natural environment, if they want a few pops of color, or if they want full-on bright, energizing color everywhere.

AHMMS: How can you tie indoor spaces into a home’s outdoors?
AM: You can tie indoor spaces into your outdoors by repeating color and texture all the way outside as if it were an extension of the indoor space; as if there were no walls or barriers separating the two spaces.


AHMMS: What should you never put on a patio?
AM: I would never put an indoor TV on a patio. The weather will damage the electronics. If you do feel like a TV on your patio works with your lifestyle and recreation needs, think about investing in one that is made to withstand the elements.

AHMMS: What should you always have on a patio?
AM: I would always have plants/flowers, candles and a source of music on a patio. It just creates a little special get-away sanctuary that will probably become one of the most lived-in parts of your home.


AHMMS: What are the trends you’re currently seeing in outdoor design?
AM: The number one trend this year is a seamless transition from your home to your outdoor space using outdoor rugs, ottomans and side tables, and layered blankets and throw pillows. The backyard/porch has truly become an extension of a home’s indoor space.