Published on May 20, 2018

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Photography by Laure Joliet

We talk a lot about bringing the outdoors in—and feature a lot of beautiful, plant-filled homes—but the ultimate dream is to have a space that seamlessly blends the outside world and the interior of your home. True indoor-outdoor living is about more than just crafting a perfect patio or porch; it’s about blurring the lines between your home and nature in a way that lets you experience the best of both realities at the same time.

Nowhere is this style of living more prevalent than in California, and the modern ranch home of TV producer michelle nader in Los Angeles is a prime example. Sliding floor-to-ceiling windows in the main living space and master bedroom allow for a barely-there boundary between the interior and outdoor living room

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Photography by Joe Fletcher

In San Francisco, this house designed by malcolm davis architecture”] opens up to the outdoors on every level. Upstairs, the spaces feel cohesive thanks to the use of similar textures, materials, and colors.

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No doubt modernist architect richard neutra played a large part in defining the indoor-outdoor living aesthetic that’s so prevalent in Southern California. His most famous work is in concentrated in the region, and most of the private homes he designed blur the lines between inside and out, like this recently restored gem in the Hollywood Hills.

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Photography by Joey Puterbaugh

When you living in a tiny home, it’s only natural to want to blur the physical borders of your house to make it feel more expansive. For Kim Lewis, that meant large glass doors: “[They] are an absolute dream,” says Lewis. “I can literally lay in bed, open the doors, and it feels like taking a nap outside. At night, I can lay in bed and see the stars; it’s almost like we’re camping. When we open it up, the house really feels like it’s one with nature.”

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Photography by Tessa Neustadt

You don’t need entirely glass walls to feel like you’re outside. In this whitewashed Malibu home designed by Vanessa Alexander of Alexander Design, a few pairs of French doors let the kitchen open up to the patio.

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Photography by Stephen Wilde

The rainy Pacific Northwest may not seem like the ideal place to go for the indoor-outdoor style, but let the home of Herschel Supply Co. co-founder Lyndon Cormack prove otherwise. Situated on a forested waterfront property, the home takes every opportunity to maximize the location. Just one example? An entire wall in the master bedroom can be opened.

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You don’t even need to open the door for it to feel like this Hawaii home is one with nature. It was designed to let the dramatic landscape steals the spotlight, and allow the owners to host large scale gatherings. The architecture of the outdoor living area is exactly the same as it is inside, creating a truly seamless connection between the spaces.

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Photography by KYLE MONK

At this Newport Beach home, you can go straight from the pool to the kitchen and feel like you’re in the same space. A neutral palette keeps things cohesive without being matchy-matchy.

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Photography by Marisa Vitale

This Mar Vista home features one of our favorite outdoor spaces of all time. The owners took advantage of the home’s open floor plan to create an outdoor living and dining room that feels like an extension of the interiors.


See more inspiring homes:

How to Mix Patterns the Modern Farmhouse Way
Tour a Denver Bungalow Full of Plants and Unexpected Moments
This Stunning Nevada Retreat Sums Up Modern Desert Living