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Paint your outdoor retreat in beautiful colours

Photo Caption: In this photo, the home exterior is brought to life with Benjamin Moore paint in Breath of Fresh Air, in a high gloss finish. Touches of natural greenery complete the look.

(NC) Canadians live for patio season, often gathering outdoors at the first sign of warm weather. Patios, decks, terraces and front porches are an extension of the home, giving us an opportunity to expand the beauty of the interior into our outside space. Sharon Grech, the colour and design expert at Benjamin Moore, explains how this can easily be done.

“What better way to enjoy the spring and summer season, than in the comfort of your own home?” she points out. “Spring means al-fresco dinner parties, casual outdoor afternoon lounging, and freedom to soak up the sunshine.” Here's how to make sure your outdoor living space is always alluring:

Paint the furniture: Outdoors, we have the opportunity to really explore and play with bold colour choices. While black and grey furniture are always chic, don't be afraid to push the boundaries with bright hits of reds, warm oranges and soft yellows. From Benjamin Moore, for example, try Strawberry, Orange Blossom or Danse du Soleil, as these colours pop against the natural greenery.

“To preserve the beauty of the paint, I recommend using the Aura Waterbourne Exterior Paint in a semi gloss finish,” says Grech. “Aura provides outstanding durability and protects against the elements. Best of all, the Colour Lock Technology means the beautiful, rich colour will last. If you're painting over metal furniture, first use a primer like Fresh Start All Purpose for best results.” Once all the furniture has dried, create seating areas conducive to conversation and mingling. Side tables strategically placed offer a spot to hold beverages and small plates.

Finishing touches: The accessories can really make a difference in an outdoor living space. Add coloured cushions in a fresh print for the ultimate in comfort and style. Umbrellas offer shade when the sun's rays are a bit too strong. Bright, colourful lanterns instantly conjure memories of warm summer nights with their soft glow.

Dress-up some bird houses: The birds finally flew home for spring, so make them feel welcome in a beautifully painted bird house. It won't matter whether it's the stunning colour that attracts them or the bird seed. Paint the bird houses in a similar colour palette to the outside living area for a harmonious look.

Just add some greens: Every outdoor space needs an element of nature. Potted trees, shrubs and flowers bring the space to life, and can even offer privacy when arranged strategically. It's all about making this special space feel cozy and homey.

Additional tips for outdoor living are available online at www.BenjaminMoore.ca.

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