7 Funky Ways to Incorporate the Outdoors Into Your Home

Philadelphia-based interior designers share their recommendations for bringing in nature and greenery.

Photos | Beets canvas: Aliza Schlabach Photography; Cactus frame and dining room decor : Magnolia Photography

Listen up everyone, it’s time to go green. And guess what? A green thumb isn’t required! Get your fix of the great outdoors, indoors. Here are seven fresh-feeling décor tips from top designers who think outside the planter.

1. Decorate with fruits and veggies. 

“Green is the color of life. It’s an instant mood booster. I recommend combining 2D and 3D greenery. I love incorporating paintings of leaves and trees as well as real plants. You can also add inexpensive large leaves to feel like you’re on a tropical vacation. Go to your local florist and ask for extra leaves. The above were two dollars and lasted for two weeks!” –Larina Kase

Larina Kase Interior Design | Wayne, Pa.

Photo | Bridget McMullin

2. Cover a whole wall with nature-inspired fabric for an all-encompassing vibe.

“Look for a large pattern fabric or wall covering that brings organic life inside! These clients are world travelers who love the Caribbean life. This Manuel Conovas fabric hit all the right notes, brining in a riot of color with its tropical design of fruits on the vine. Add a little steel drum music and this high-rise apartment now feels island bound!” –Bridget McMullin

The McMullin Design Group, LLC. | 7 N. Haddon Ave., Haddonfield, Nj. 08033

Photos | Rebecca McAlpin

3. Hang greenery from up high for added dimension. 

“Incorporate various sizes of twigs and moss spheres to accessorize. It brings nature indoors in an unexpected yet decorative fashion. I also like to hang terrariums housing succulents. It adds visual interest and greenery with the luxury of being low maintenance.” –Glenna Stone

Glenna Stone Interior Design | 15 W. Highland Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19118

Photo | Tina Delia

4. Use natural fibers, patterns and textures. 

“Make the most of natural light. Change out those heavy drapes with lighter sheers. Keep blinds and drapes on the translucent side and keep them open to reveal a full view of the beautiful outdoors. When closed, they will still bathe the room in a soft, diffused light. I also like to bring in rustic wood pieces and pillows or an accent wall covering that is inspired by nature.” –Tina Delia

Delia Designs | 100 East Penn Square, Suite 1080, Philadelphia, Pa. 19107

Photo | Drew Callaghan Photography

5. Pick bright and shiny colors and accessories. 

“Here, we created a bright and sunny atmosphere with a glowing gold-lined light fixture that evokes the sun. The modern geometric wallpaper mimics a trellis-like pattern to bring the outdoors in. It’s the perfect backdrop for a live-edge granite tabletop supported on a rustic wooden base. A modern marble bird sculpture is perched on top.” –Leslie Hayes

Leslie Hayes Interiors LLC | Haverford, Pa.

Photo | Maria Nagy

6. Want the good feeling you get when your outside to flow throughout your home? Add an Aloe plant! 

“Having plants in the home has many health benefits. We suggest at the very least, pick a pot you love, put an Aloe plant in it and place it in a spot that you will remember to care for it. Not only is the Aloe plant low-maintenance, but it also has many skin benefits! Move the plant around the room until you see a visual impact. We [Down2Earth Design Team] provide recommendations based on the lighting and decor in the room along with full description and maintenance instructions for each plant.” –Amy Cuker and the Down2Earth design team

down2earth Design | 7604 Spring Ave., Elkins Park, Pa. 19027

Photo | Blair Britt

7. Embrace wood–and its imperfections! 

“I like to use wood to bring the outdoors in. Here I used French Cottage Shutters from France as wall decor. They are original wood–which has so many imperfections that make it perfect. There are parts were the wood has fallen off, holes where they were secured to a house and even flickers of paint. Just thinking about the history of the shutters puts a smile on my face! They’re sturdy and full of life. I added faux greens; the dimension of the older wall art combined with new age plants bring the space up to the modern era!” –Blair Britt

Bella B Home | 2535 Huntingdon Pike, 2nd Floor Valley Court Yard, Huntingdon Valley, Pa. 19006

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