Home Decor

13 Small Balcony Ideas and Designer Examples

Joshua Greene

There’s nothing quite like reading a good book and people-watching (or bird-watching!) from a balcony with a cup of coffee in the morning and a cocktail at sunset. And even if your balcony is tiny, there are tons of ways to optimize it so you can enjoy the fresh air as much as possible. Indeed, we rounded up tons of small balcony ideas and designer examples to help you make your own as cute and cozy as possible, no matter the size. Each one is different in style and use case, but they all have one thing in common: proof that size really isn’t everything.

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Camouflage the Railing With Greenery

This balcony in a home designed by Marguerite Rodgers feels warm and inviting, thanks to the throw blankets and cushions sprucing up the patio furniture. Greenery wraps around the railing to make it feel more connected to nature without obstructing the views.


Hang Planters and Wall Sculptures

Hanging planters, string lights, and wall sculptures make this small balcony designed by Dee Murphy the ideal place to curl up for a cat nap.

A room divider can create the illusion of privacy if your outdoor area abuts a neighbor’s—as well as make for a dramatic backdrop to a homey seating area. Joshua Greene also included a console table to dress things up and disguise the fence.

To make your balcony feel like a natural extension of your living space, place a planter right inside the door. Opt for something a little dressier and more impactful than the pots you use for your outdoor plants.

Even if you have to keep generic pavers in a rental or in an urban environment, you can make it feel pretty and whimsical with garden furniture, an area rug, and lush landscaping, as Celerie Kemble did on this New York City balcony.


Pull Out a Rocking Chair

Only have room for a few items? A rocking chair is the ultimate outdoor seat—especially when strategically places under a ceiling fan in warm climates.

This balcony by Keesha Franklin of Halden Interiors is full of personality, with bold red-painted furniture, printed cushions, and modern white furniture. Because there’s no overhead structure, she also brought out an umbrella to create some shade.

Window boxes will do wonders when there isn’t any room for much else. Balcony blooms like these on a balcony by Gary McBournie will beautify the entire space without actually blocking the pathway to the door.


Install Safety Lighting

Though minimalist by design as to reflect the architectural style of the home, designer Joy Cho added a low-profile daybed for lounging and installed motion-detecting lights above the entry point (also great for enhanced safety!)

If you a spacious backyard addition to a small balcony, allow the balcony to introduce architectural personality but keep it clear of clutter and use your yard for things like entertaining and lounging. This balcony on a property designed by Madeleine Stuart is bare, except for a bird feeder.

If you don’t have a ton of space on your balcony, fill it with the coziest items you can find without overcrowding it. This deck area by Malcolm Simmons features hanging plants, comfortable throws, and layered outdoor rugs, making it seem like the ideal spot to sit with a cup of coffee and a new book.

An old wagon becomes a gardening display on this dreamy balcony overlooking the ocean designed by Kim Dempster and Erin Martin. You could also turn a wheelbarrow into a bar cart.

A little bar cart and lounger is all it takes to prepare this small balcony designed by Gary McBournie for relaxing summer afternoons.

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