The founder of Secret LocationCarey Melnichuk appeared on Global TV last month to give summer patio decor tips that you might find useful for the seasons to come.

 

 

Why should people dress up their patio for the summer?

Being in Vancouver, we're incredibly lucky for the phenomenal weather we get in the summer. Not too hot, not too cold - we truly are a 'Goldilocks' city. Because our summer is so short, we want to spend as much time as possible outside. Creating an 'outdoor living room' will allow you to use your space as much as possible.


What are the first (and/or most important) items to get for a small patio/balcony?

A seating arrangement. One that is comfortable, and allows for the most amount of bodies without utilizing the entire space. This could be a bench (perfect for storing items) as well as a chair, or an L-shaped couch.

Second, a table with the right height. The table should sit a few inches higher than your seat, which will allow you to use it to eat and entertain. The best is to find a table that is multi-purpose. Whether it be a covered sandbox (if you have children) or a trunk of some kind to allow for storage.

Third, greenery. Choose something that can stay outside all year round. It will keep your patio looking like a welcoming space and positive even in the winter.

 

     


Where are some of the best places to shop for patio furniture/decor?

First, I would decide on your budget and how long you'd like the items to last. It is easy to invest in good quality but simply designed basics (such as your couch), and focus your attention on the extras, which will help to dress up your space and help it to stand out.

Secret Location has a wide array of homeware items, including candles and cushions. For those with very tight space constraints, Örling & Wu has lovely seating arrangements. And for a great couch that will have your guests talking, visit Inform.

A favourite designer would be Jonathan Adler. He has the ability to have fun, and create beautiful and memorable prints.


What are some of your favourite patio finds?

I love to have an outdoor space that feels just as comfortable as one indoors. I like introducing more traditional 'home' items onto the patio, such as vases, books, and coasters. Personally, I'm partial to rich and deep hues. I find if you put greenery towards the back with a fresh off-white base, it can create a space that feels like a retreat. A current favourite is a large vase showcasing a copy of The Kiss by Klimt.

 


How should people go about choosing fabric and colour scheme?

When it comes to furniture that must remain on your patio, focus on durable or treated materials that will not fade or deteriorate in the elements. For 'extras', such as cushions, you don't need to focus as much on utilitarian fabrics. A great way to keep things looking fresh is to have cushions with a slipcover that can be easily removed and cleaned.

If your patio is connected to your home (like a condo balcony), or if you'd like to re-integrate items from your patio once the season is done, it is best to keep the neutral base the same. This will keep everything cohesive, and your patio will create the illusion that your home is larger than it is.

For myself, once I've selected my base (such as white or cream), I always choose one print or item to set the tone for what other colours I will introduce. If you don't feel confident utilizing many colours, focus on two and mix up the textures and prints.


What, if any, are the best patio plants to buy that will last through those rainy months?

Not only do you want a plant, which can withstand those rainy months, but also, the cold.

I'm partial to plants that not only bloom for weeks but also give off a lovely aroma. Mock Orange, a bush that will add a beautiful citrus scent to your patio, and can grow up to 20 feet tall. There are also numerous varieties of Potentilla. From the rose family, you will find a blooming and beautiful smelling plant that comes in an array of different colours and shapes. For more blooming and fragrant options, you can also look at Skimmea and Azealas.

However, be aware that with any blooming plant they require slightly more maintenance. If you're looking for something incredibly easy to care for, that will also create privacy, focus on shrubs. Cedars, Yucca, and Spikemoss are plants, which are quite hardy and will still create the oasis you're looking for. Succulents are great as well.

 

 

 

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Size Chart

WOMENS CLOTHING

Standard XXS XS S M L XL
US P P S M L XL
US 0 0 2-4 4-6 8 10
Unisex 0 1 2 3 4
France 32 34 36 38 40 42
Italy 36 38 40 42 44 46
UK 4 6 8 10 12 14
China (top) 155/76A 160/80A 165/84A 170/88A 175/92A 175/96A
China (bottom) 155/64A 160/66A 165/68A 170/70A 175/72A 175/74A
Japan 3 5 7 9 11 13
Australia 6 8 10 12 14 16
Germany 30 32 34 36 38 40
Denmark 30 32 34 36 38 40

 

WOMENS JEANS

Standard XXS XXS XS S M L XL
Inches 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
China (jeans) 24/155/62A 25/160/64A 26/165/66A 27/170/68A 28/175/70A 29/180/72A 30/185/74A

 

WOMENS SHOE

Italy 35 35.5 36 36.5 37 37.5 38 38.5 39 39.5 40 40.5 41 41.5 42
US 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12
UK 2 2.5 3 3.5 4 4.5 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9
Japan 21.5 22 22.5 23 23.5 24 24.5 25 25.5 26 26.5 27 27.5 28 28.5
China 225 228 230 233 235 238 240 243 245 248 250 253 255 258 260

 

WOMENS RING

Standard XS XS S S M M
Europe 11 11 12 12 13 13
US 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5

 

WOMENS HAT

Standard S S M M L L
US 6 3/4 6 7/8 7 7 1/8 7 1/4 7 3/8
UK 6 5/8 6 3/4 6 7/8 7 7 1/8 7 1/4
Europe 54 55 56 57 58 59

 

WOMENS BELT

Standard XXS XS S M L XL
US 0 0 2-4 4-6 8 10
UK 4 6 8 10 12 14
Italy 36 38 40 42 44 46
Europe 65 70 75 80 85 90

 

WOMENS GLOVE

Standard XXS XS S M L
Inches 6 6.5 7 7.5 8

 

MENS CLOTHING

Standard XXS XS S M L XL
Unisex 0 1 2 3 4 5
UK/US (Chest) 32 34 36 38 40 42
UK/US (Waist) 26 28 30 32 34 36
Italy 42 44 46 48 50 52
Japan 0 1 2 3 4 5
China 165/84A 170/88A 175/92A 180/96A 185/100A 190/104A

 

MENS TROUSER

Standard XS XS S S M M L L XL XL
Inches 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37
Italy 44 44 46 46 48 48 50 50 52 52
Japan 0 0 1 1 2 2 3 3 4 4

 

MENS SHOE

US 7 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12 12.5 13
UK 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5 11 11.5 12
Europe 40 40.5 41 41.5 42 42.5 43 43.5 44 44.5 45 45.5 46
Japan 24.5 25 25.5 26 26.5 27 27.5 28 28.5 29 29.5 30 30.5

 

MENS SHIRTING

Standard XS XS S S S M M L L
UK/US (Collar) 14 14.5 15 15.5 15.75 16 16.5 17 17.5
Europe (Collar) 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44
Italy 44 44 46 46 46 48 48 50 50

 

MENS HAT

Standard S S M M L L XL
US 6 3/4 6 7/8 7 7 1/8 7 1/4 7 3/8
UK 6 5/8 6 3/4 6 7/8 7 7 1/8 7 1/4
Europe 54 55 56 57 58 59 60

 

MENS BELT

Inches 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37
Europe 85 85 90 90 95 95 100 100 105 105

 

MENS GLOVE

Standard S S M M L L XL
Inches 7.5 8 8.5 9 9.5 10 10.5

 

UNISEX

0 1 2 3 4 5
XS S M L XL XXL
US MEN 34 36 38 40 42 44
FRENCH MEN 40 42 44 46 48 50
UK MEN 34 36 38 40 42 44
ITALIAN MEN 44 46 48 50 52 54
GERMAN MEN 44 46 48 50 52 54
SPANISH MEN 44 46 48 50 52 54
JAPAN MEN XS S M L XL XXL
US WOMEN 0 2 4 6 8 10
FRENCH WOMEN 32 34 36 38 40 42
UK WOMEN 4 6 8 10 12 14
ITALIAN WOMEN 36 38 40 42 44 46
GERMAN WOMEN 30 32 34 36 38 40
SPANISH WOMEN 32 34 36 38 40 42
JAPAN WOMEN 5 7 9 11 13 15
WAIST PANTS 23-25 26-28 29-31 32-34
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