Greenspaces, plants, and the great outdoors can provide a sense of calm. People keep plants in their homes and create beautiful outdoor living spaces for a reason. But what if we could bridge the gap between the two, creating a seamless harmony of indoor-outdoor living?

In custom home design, integrating the indoor-outdoor living concept comes with many payoffs. From lush aesthetics and increased natural light to higher property value, this flourishing design trend welcomes the outdoors inside. Cooking, dining, living, and entertaining areas become intertwined with outdoor spaces, delivering a breath of fresh air to homes of any size. 

Just ahead, we’ll explore the art of integrating indoor-outdoor living into your custom home design. Read along and discover practical tips and creative ideas to achieve a seamless flow between your home’s interior and the world outside.

What Is Indoor-Outdoor Living in Custom Home Design?

Embracing indoor-outdoor living means crafting spaces where the inside of your home flows seamlessly into the natural beauty of its surroundings. In Calgary, this could mean the tranquil Bow or Elbow Rivers, breathtaking mountains, densely forested areas, or even a simple private backyard. 

This design philosophy blurs the lines between cozy indoor retreats and energizing gardens, patios, decks, or balconies. It’s about dissolving the walls that confine us, inviting an open dialogue between our private sanctuaries and the great outdoors.

Imagine expansive glass doors and windows that flood your home with light, offering unobstructed views of the world beyond. Or flooring that gracefully transitions from your living room to your garden and outdoor amenities that replicate the comfort and convenience of your interior. Think: al fresco kitchens, comfy seating arrangements, and sheltered dining spots under the sky. 

But embracing indoor outdoor living isn’t just about aesthetics, it’s about interlacing nature with the fabric of your daily life. And thankfully, there are many ways you can integrate this trend into your custom home build in Calgary.

Additional scope to renovation projects

How to Integrate Indoor Outdoor Living Space into Custom Home Design

Indoor outdoor living spaces are all about flexibility. In Calgary, flexibility is key to comfortable living. As you can probably imagine, there are many ways to get in on this thriving custom home design trend, but not all of them will be right for your unique space. Consulting a custom home builder and interior designer can help plant the right ideas and weed out any that aren’t the right fit. 

Let’s dig into some core ideas that are currently fueling the indoor outdoor living trend in Calgary. 

Design with Transparency in Mind

Begin with the blueprint of your home. Think about incorporating big glass doors and wide windows. These flood your space with sunlight, provide clear views of your favourite outdoor spots and can make your space feel bigger. 

Bring the vision to life:

Imagine having sliding, folding, or retractable glass doors that can fully open, seamlessly connecting your indoor haven with the outdoor world.

Sliding doors are perfect for spaces where you want to save room, folding doors can add a stylish touch, and retractable designs offer the ultimate flexibility, disappearing entirely to blend the indoors with the outdoors. 

Continuity in Flooring & Materials

Creating a smooth flow between indoors and outdoors means keeping things consistent, especially with materials. 

Consider using the same flooring for both your inside rooms and your outdoor spaces. Or, pick materials that go well together, making it hard to tell where the inside ends and the outside begins. Implementing this approach feels right underfoot as you travel from, say, your living room to your patio.

Put it in place:

If you have wooden floors inside, extend that wood to your deck or patio. This can make both areas feel like one big space. Alternatively, use stone tiles indoors that match with outdoor pavers.

Create Functional Outdoor Spaces

Give your outdoor areas the same love and attention as your indoor spaces, making them just as cozy and enjoyable. Imagine having an outdoor kitchen for summer barbecues, a warm fireplace for chilly evenings, or snug seating spots for relaxing under the stars. 

Make it work:

Add plush cushions and throws to your outdoor seating for extra comfort, or install a wood-fired pizza oven in your outdoor kitchen for gourmet cooking under the open sky. Think about adding weather-resistant rugs and lighting to make the space inviting at any time of day.

Incorporate Natural Elements Indoors

Incorporating outside elements inside your home can further connect your living areas. Indoor plants and indoor fountains can enhance the tranquility of your space, breathing life into its corners. Choosing wood furniture and wooden kitchen countertops and cupboards or stone walls can also mirror the outdoor environment. 

Try it:

Consider a wooden coffee table that looks like it was carved right out of a tree, paired with a stone fireplace that recalls a rugged outdoor setting. Hang nature-inspired art on the walls, or use bamboo shades to add texture and a natural feel to your rooms. 

Lighting for Ambiance & Safety

Lighting plays a key role in making spaces look good and keeping your family and guests safe. Think about using a blend of ambient, task, and accent lighting outside, much like you would inside your home. 

Just as you’d choose the right kind of lighting for a cozy reading nook or to spotlight your favorite artwork indoors, consider outdoor lights that show off your garden’s best features or create the perfect mood for evening get-togethers. 

Brighten your home:

Embrace options like solar-powered path lights for eco-friendly efficiency, LED string lights to create a magical atmosphere in your garden, and wall-mounted fixtures to add warmth and security to your patio.

Landscape as a Living Art

If following the indoor outdoor living trend to the “T”, your garden will be a natural extension of your home. Planning your outdoor spaces with the views the offer will ensure that every time you look out the window, you take in a breathtaking scene. 

Creating areas dedicated to outdoor activities like reading, yoga, and outdoor games will also increase your enjoyment of your space. However, it’s important to consider the changing seasons in Calgary and what that means for these spaces. Your custom home designer can help you navigate tricky transitions.

Enhance your landscape:

From living plant walls and privacy shrubs to fire pits and water features, taking your garden area to the next level will help you create a cohesive look from the inside out. 

Exterior Sketch of Calgary home

Your Home, Your Sanctuary—Create It Today

Bridging the gap between indoor and outdoor living allows you to embrace nature while keeping comfy—and it may even improve your well-being. 

Since flexibility is an important part of Calgary life, the choice to integrate indoor outdoor living concepts into your custom home design is smart, fun, and beneficial, but knowing which to implement is key. That’s where our professional design team comes in. 

To learn more about how this growing trend can work for your residence or vacation home, contact us today. We’ll work closely with you throughout the design process to create your dream space.



Does outdoor living space add value?

Outdoor living space can add significant value to your home. This rings true, especially in Calgary, where we’re privileged to live among such natural beauty.

How do I make my outdoor space feel cozy and more inviting?

Treat your outdoor space as you would your indoor space. Invest in quality, comfortable cushions for your outdoor furniture, install an outdoor fit pit, and use ambient lighting.

How do you connect indoor and outdoor spaces?

Connecting indoor and outdoor spaces can be done by installing large windows and sliding or hidden doors, choosing the same type of flooring for inside and outside rooms, or bringing elements of your garden inside.

Discover more inspiration for your custom home design journey:

Financial Planning Strategies for Home Renovations

Adapting Home Design to Calgary’s Updated Residential Zoning Bylaws

How to Balance Functionality with Aesthetics in Home Design