If your outdoor patio isn’t as large as you would like, use these small outdoor patio design ideas to make the most of the space you have. Modern outdoor patios aren’t always what they used to be. Sprawling outdoor patios are a sacrifice that many accept as more and more people move into urban areas. In high rise apartments, condominiums, and even row houses to some extent, patio space is often at a premium. We’ve put together a few small outdoor patio design ideas to make the most out of the modern outdoor patio.

In order to enjoy the modern outdoor patio one must have seating, and if your outdoor patio is small this can be a challenge. The first of our small outdoor patio design ideas addresses this issue. One solution is to use built-in seating. A L-shaped bench that hugs no more than half of the perimeter space of the patio should provide seating for several adults while keeping the floor space free for ease of movement. Another of the small outdoor patio design ideas regarding seating is to use folding furniture. By using furniture that can be folded and placed out of the way when not in use, you can remove clutter and avoid excess furniture taking up space unnecessarily.

Next on our list of small outdoor patio design ideas is the use of greenery. In addition to the aesthetic value of having live plants on your modern outdoor patio, they can add depth to the space. In very tight quarters, consider the use of vertical or hanging planters to keep the floor space free.

The best small outdoor patio design ideas emphasize comfort. Regardless of size, the modern outdoor patio must be exude an atmosphere of relaxation, especially in the bustle of the city. This is why it’s important for your modern outdoor patio to be shaded. This may be one advantage of having a small outdoor patio. Either a standing umbrella or a suspended sun shade are capable of providing more than enough coverage to shade nearly the entire patio.

One of the easiest small outdoor patio design ideas to pull off is the addition of a rug for a couple of reasons. First, as in the case of the shading, the rug does not have to be large to make an impact. Second, a brightly colored rug or one with an intricate pattern will visually break up the floor, creating the impression of more square footage.

Don’t forget to utilize your wall space. As we mentioned earlier, vertical planters are a nice touch but don’t let your imaginative small outdoor patio design ideas stop there. Any wall décor that can stand up to the elements can be used to beautify your modern outdoor patio. If your patio or balcony has a wrought iron railing, consider mounting metal wall décor in a contrasting tone onto it as this can lessen the perception of the railing as a boundary.

If possible, consider adding a hanging chair, one of the trending small outdoor patio design ideas that actually has dual purpose. A hanging chair provides additional seating while not taking up any additional floor space and can actually make your small patio appear bigger.

The last of our small outdoor patio design ideas involves lighting. For covered patios a large yet low profile overhead lighting fixture adds style and while remaining out of the way. For uncovered balconies consider running LED light strings along the railing for warm ambient light.

Incorporating some or all of these small patio design ideas into your modern outdoor patio design will definitely make an impact on your outdoor space. If executed properly, over time your outdoor patio may not seem so small after all.