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For Justina Blakeney, social distancing is no reason to skimp on a great patio for the summer. The designer got a head start on the warm weather with a fresh makeover of her backyard in Southern California—and a trip to Target met all of the designer’s decor needs.

Courtesy of Target

“I’ve always liked bringing plants and nature into the home, but after a year spent mostly inside, I’m making an effort to take those comforts outside, too,” explains the Target Home style expert. While combing through the store’s summer collection, she quickly found a source of shade with an Opalhouse umbrella, a coffee table from which to work alfresco, and overhead string lights for ringing the perimeter in a cozy glow come nightfall. “It feels so magical,” she says.

Courtesy of Target

Two trends stand out this year: function first and re-creating those places we can’t get to yet. “I picked these bistro chairs because they remind me of my time living in Italy and pair perfectly with my cappuccino in the morning,” says Blakeney. Since visitors to her backyard need to keep 6 feet apart, she sourced larger-scale options that wouldn’t look out of place spaced farther away from each other. “I chose the club chairs and love seat to create an area where outdoor visits can happen comfortably and safely,” she explains.


Courtesy of Target

The colorful textiles and accessories in the two vignettes—folding chairs under the fringed umbrella and a more communal lounge section—are grounded by slope-arm rattan furniture and circular woven rugs. “Bring on the curves! I’m excited to see scallops, arches, waves, and bows being carved, etched, woven, and sculpted into organic curvy pieces that inspire!” says Blakeney.

Our Winter Renovation issue is here! Subscribe now to step inside Leanne Ford’s latest project—her own historic Pennsylvania home. Plus discover our new rules of reno.