THE CHALLENGE

The 300-square foot terrace was a huge selling point for Vidisha Powell when she bought her Arlington condominium several years ago. The previous owner left her furniture behind, but Powell is ready to update the 10-by-38-foot patio to create a fun, modern outdoor entertaining space. Umbrellas are not allowed, per the condo’s regulations, but Powell wants to add greenery and stylish furniture with clean lines.

THE PROPOSED SOLUTION

Designer Rose Ramseur breaks the long, narrow space into separate zones for dining, conversation and lounging, and uses wood tones in the floor and furniture, as well as plants and various textures, to bring some much-needed warmth and softness to the terrace.

RAMSEUR'S SUGGESTIONS

A large waterproof container and smaller wood bench add storage to protect cushions and accessories from the elements. Instead of repeating the coffee table in front of the love seat (at the far end), try two round side tables that can easily be moved around to provide a landing space for drinks or books. Soften the space by covering the concrete with wood flooring. String lights illuminate the patio in the evening, adding sparkle and providing a festive atmosphere. Upholstery and furniture in bold colors and patterns contrasts with the brick and concrete to create a warmer, more inviting retreat. Area rugs help define the separate seating areas. Adding a round dining table and side chairs creates a fun place to enjoy a meal outdoors in warm weather.

Ramseur, with Primrose Interior Design (571-217-1147), is based in Fairfax, Va.

SPLURGE OR SAVE

SPLURGE: Satellite round cocktail table in apple red ($793, lumens.com), left. SAVE: Maze coffee table in grenadine ($163.99, wayfair.com).

SPLURGE: Risom outdoor lounge chairs with Sunbrella webbing in charcoal ($1,218 each, knoll.com), left. SAVE: Gray strap Girona accent chairs ($399.98 for two, worldmarket.com).

SHOPPING GUIDE

Furniture: Lawson wicker love seat ($549.99) and sofa ($669.99) with cushions in navy, both from birchlane.com; all-weather outdoor garden backyard ottoman tables in red ($39.99 each, Amazon); 122-gallon resin deck box ($143, wayfair.com); Mancini round dining table ($1,119.99, allmodern.com); Bjuran chairs in dark red ($99 each) and Applaro outdoor bench with wall panel and shelf in brown stain ($119), both from ikea.com.

Materials: Runnen outdoor decking in brown stain ($2.87 per square foot, ikea.com).

See past room makeovers at washingtonpost.com/housecalls. Tell us about your design challenge. Send photos, room dimensions and contact information to makeover@washpost.com.

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