10 Inspiring Seamless Indoor/Outdoor Transitions in Modern Design

Depending on where in the world you live, this might be one of the best times of year to be outside. With winter gone and the dog days of summer not quite here yet, it’s neither too cold nor too hot to be outside. In other words: Mother Nature has created the perfect living conditions.


Sometimes, in conditions like this, it’s hard to decide whether to be inside or outside, though. But some modern designs take this conundrum into account as they incorporate seamless indoor/outdoor transitions that bring high style to the great outdoors (or is it the other way around?). Here are some of our favorites:


Wood floors and furnishings transition easily into the actual trees outside this modern deck space. Under this expansive awning, one gets the feeling that they’re outside in the fresh air but still comfortably protected.


It’s hard to say what constitutes “inside” and “outside” in this thoroughly modern space…which is why we love it. Contemporary structures are crafted out of various natural materials and pieced together so fluidly and openly that it makes the question, “Indoors or outdoors?” fairly easy to answer: Both!


Large glass windows and/or doors serve to blur the boundary between indoors and outdoors in modern architecture. These glass panels can be slid open to discard the separattion completely.


An angled patio roofline provides a perfect visual transition from inside to out, expanding straight out to the sky. This is gorgeous.
A semi-open ceiling is one way to seamlessly transition between being inside and outside. Sleek yet comfortable furniture in clean-lined contemporary styles like this look as at home in a living room as on a covered patio.


Rocks as walls (shaped by and held in place with retaining wires) and xerascaped ground as carpet cement the indoor-outdoor relationship in this desert home. A lit, fully covered patio keep the scorching sun at bay for all-day enjoyment in this beautiful outdoor setting.


Oversized concrete leaves and full glass walls shelter the “indoor” space of this poolside deck. When the breeze can blow and the sun can shine and you’re not quite sure if you’re inside or outside but you’re appreciating it all the same…that’s a modern experience.


Comfortable wicker furniture is a fabulous indoor-outdoor transitional concept. Use a variety of organic textured materials as seating, tables, and even as plant pots to fully embrace the great outdoors.


Here is a modern twist on the ancient concept of a courtyard, in which the house surrounds a nature-exposed section of land or water (traditionally in the center of the house wings). We love concrete as ceilings here because it further blurs preexisting notions of what “belongs” where in design.