Taking the Party Outside with Designer Linda Hayslett

Written on 28th April 2022

Photography: Lifestyle - Stephen Karlisch, Portrait - Lauren Pressey

Welcome to the Party Plaza, the all-purpose, day-to-night, indoor-outdoor entertaining space. The brainchild of LA-based designer Linda Hayslett, it’s had us daydreaming about long, lazy al-fresco dinners and dips in the pool ever since it was revealed as part of the House Beautiful Whole Home late last year.

Today, we’re finding out the guiding principle behind its creation – and it’s one you can use for your own outdoor spaces too, no matter what form they take.

“I think about outdoor space the same way I do indoors,” says Linda, founder of the LA-based studio LH.Designs. “Every area needs to have a purpose.” 

So, what does that look like in practice? Keep reading below for more from Linda on how her envy-inducing exterior came into being, plus her best advice on where to start with your own space.

Tell us about yourself and your design style

My design style is warm, contemporary with a bit of edge. I want my clients to feel comfortable in their home but have a space that will stand the test of time and that they’re proud of.

The outdoor space you designed for the House Beautiful Whole Home was stunning. What did you wish to achieve at the beginning of the project?

Thank you! I really wanted people to see that the outdoors is usable space that should really get incorporated into their home. I didn't want it to seem like an afterthought with just furnishings out there. I really wanted someone to take away ideas for their own outdoor spaces, whether big or small or in a warm or cooler climate.

WHAT LED YOU TO CHOOSING STUDIO GREEN FOR THE EXTERIOR?

I chose Studio Green for the exterior because I loved that it was a green that wasn't too dark yet could be great for any style of home. It's a great colour that would be perfect for many different exterior styles such as contemporary, farmhouse, traditional, and modern.

The colour just blended in perfectly with the vision I had for my space with Whole Home. Studio Green was the perfect warm and inviting colour that I needed to go with all the pieces I brought into the space.

When designing their outdoor spaces, what should people consider first?

When designing outdoor areas, people should really consider how they are going to blend the outdoors with the indoors so they are seamless with one another.

Often people make the mistake of looking at their outdoor spaces as bonus and just buy items that you wouldn't want to bring indoors. The outdoor is an extension of your indoor space, so try to keep it in the same conversation as the interiors.

IF SOMEONE ISN’T BUILDING A NEW HOME, HOW CAN THEY APPLY TO THIS AN EXISTING SPACE?

If you want to apply a seamless indoor-outdoor transition to an existing space, just look to your interiors. The outdoors is an extension of your home, and is usable space that you want to spend time in.

So, if you have an existing space and you have certain colours going on throughout your home, then think of how to bring those same colours outdoors. For instance, I used Farrow & Ball Green Smoke for the walls of the powder room I designed in the Whole Home.

The powder room was connected to my outdoor space. This green complemented the exterior colour of Studio Green and made the flow to the outdoors seem harmonious and intentional. There wasn't a break in feel or look. It's a smooth transition to the outdoor space that I created.

Do you have any tips on how to add colour to your outdoor spaces?

My tip in adding colour to your outdoor space is to also rely on nature and plants for adding some colour. Though for interiors you can add plants, outdoors you can really add an entire garden or plant great veggies and fruits that add to the ambiance of a space.

What’s your favourite outdoor space and why?

My own outdoor space – it is simple and private with a lemon tree, lime tree and orange tree. I don't have a large outdoor space because I live in the heart of Los Angeles, but because of the 20-foot hedges I have in the back, it doesn't seem like I'm living in a city. My outdoor furniture is similar to my indoor furniture pieces, and accessories that I use in my backyard I use in my interiors as well.

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