Sue Armbruster’s Sherwood Forest home overlooks the Severn River, with a deck perfect for guests, but no furniture or accessories for dining or entertaining. Sue wants help dressing up the drab deck with easily movable seating and accessories.

Sue Armbruster’s deck. (Leah L. Jones/For The Washington Post)

Designer Cindy Myers Griffin picks simple furniture with color and style that follows the private community’s color guidelines. Myers Griffin, of Cynthia Myers Griffin Interiors (240-246-1539,, is based in Gaithersburg.

The solution. (Illustration By Julius Goyanko For The Washington Post.)

Create two separate seating areas — one for relaxing, the other for dining.

An outdoor area rug adds coziness and a fun pattern to the neutral deck.

Greens, beiges and whites fulfill the community’s color requirements. Yellow pillows add a splash of color and can be easily moved.

Two umbrellas, for each seating area, provide much-needed shade.

Planters in a neutral color can hold a variety of plants. Myers Griffin suggests ficus and hibiscus.


Furniture: Edington patio fire pit set ($525), chaise longue ($244) and Moss slipcovers (prices vary by size), all from; Harper patio dining furniture set with Turq cushions ($487,

Accessories: Treasure Garden 10-foot octagonal umbrella with Obravia Sand shade ($559,; Lakeland square planter in black ($100 for 16-inch planter,; Cabana geometric pillow in Lemon ($18) and Kaeden pillow ($22.50), both from


Trans Ocean Import Ravella Lakai Circles Green Rectangular 8 Ft. x 10 Ft. Rug. (Courtesy Bellacor)

Arboria Berkeley 7.25-ft. Cedar Pergola Arbor. (Courtesy Hayneedle)

Lakai Circles green rug in green ($605 for 8-by-10-foot rug,

Berkeley cedar arbor ($639,

. . . OR SAVE

Monterrey area rug. (Courtesy Home Decorators)

Arboria Astoria 82 x 64 in. Outside Cedar Arbor. (Courtesy Home Depot)

Monterrey area rug ($186 for 8-by-11-foot rug,

Arboria astoria cedar arbor ($345,