Summer in Wisconsin means spending every minute possible outdoors. Summer highlights of grilled meals and family time outdoors don’t have to end just because fall has arrived.

Southeastern Wisconsin is enjoying a beautiful fall, and there’s still plenty of time to get outside and enjoy your outdoor living space. When building with Colby Construction, your custom home does not end where the doors head out; your home extends to the outdoors.

To relax outside during the cooler months, you’re going to need a little bit of inspiration. Don’t worry; a small update such as adding seasonal colors makes a strong statement with little commitment or money. But to go big, a couple of extra touches will keep your outdoor space open a bit longer, making it a great place to entertain all through the season

Outdoor Living Spaces in Southeastern Wisconsin


As the days get shorter and it gets dark earlier, it’s natural to want to head inside even when the weather is good. Keep your yard inviting well into the evening by upgrading or adding to your outdoor lighting. String lights around your patio, add wall lights and path lights: these all can extend the time you spend outside before it’s time to head inside.

Emphasize the Outline of Your Outdoor Room

A screened porch offers an at-home getaway feel, as does a lower-level covered patio. Work with the existing footprint to square off space to create a “room,” complete with outdoor furniture and an amped-up cozy factor. Baskets with warm, comfy blankets and throws will keep you warm as the temperatures drop. You don’t need to purchase an entirely new line of furniture for fall and winter, but simply swap out the summer pillows for soft fall-colored ones: think browns, taupes, oranges, and hues of red. Add flameless candles and lanterns throughout the space for a warm ambiance. If your space allows, hanging an outdoor TV makes the space a perfect place to watch weekend football or have movie nights cozied up in your outdoor space.

Incorporate a Heat Source

While fire pits in the yard are wonderful and still can be used in the fall for fire, consider adding another heat source to your deck or patio with an outdoor heating source. There are many safe-for-deck-space heaters that run on propane, natural gas, or butane. Tower-style outdoor heaters are affordable, and the heat they give will keep your family and friends toasty and warm. If you plan ahead for extending your outdoor space, let Colby Construction help you design a gas fireplace or fire pit in your outdoor space. Another great way to keep the warmth in your covered patio is to add hanging paneled curtains to keep the heat in the space.

Embrace the Holidays

Extend your fall and later winter decorating to your outdoor living area. While front porches get the mums, pumpkins, and gourds, add some to your other outdoor spaces. When the temperatures start to drop and winter is closing in, add potted evergreen trees – small and large are perfect for decorating. Outdoor lights and ornaments found in nature such as acorns and pine cones will complete the look.

Outdoor Spa

The swimming pool is likely closed by now, but an outdoor spa or hot tub is great for soothing sore muscles after a long day of raking leaves, and there’s no better place to sit and enjoy the evening stars. When planning your custom home, think about the space ahead of time to have the location or even an in-ground spa added to your outdoor living area.

Embrace the Season

Don’t dread the thought of winter coming; instead, embrace the change of season and take advantage of the new opportunities to stay at home and appreciate outdoor living well into October and beyond. Enjoy the colors as they change and crisp air in your custom outdoor space.

Kitchen and fireplace area in a lake country home.