Creating Safe Space to Gather

Contributor: Kevin Twitty, Kevin Twitty Interiors

We can all agree that 2020 has been a year of change. As a white man, I have had to face my personal privilege and fragility. As a gay man, I celebrate 50-years since the Stonewall riots which started decades of change for the LGBTQ+ community. As a business owner, I have had to stay agile during a pandemic. Through all of this, what has become so clear to me is the need for a safe space to gather for relaxation, celebration, and open conversation, all while socially distancing.

The first step to feeling safe on your patio is having outdoor seating options that allow for you and your guests to have their comfortable six feet of space. An easy way to accomplish this is by mixing in individual chairs or by introducing a sectional that is modular and easily broken apart to allow for everyone to have their safe spot.

Another step to feeling safe while socializing is mastering the art of the European café. For example, if you are wanting to dine with friends, put up the old large family-style table and bring out a few smaller café tables. Think a cute Paris bistro. This gives everyone their own table to spread out and not have cross contamination during your meal. An added bonus is they are easily mobile and when it’s safe to have close contact again, you can bunch them for that family-style feel.

Lastly, I want to focus on creating a sanctuary. It’s important to have the area for you to enjoy with yourself. Whether you are having a cup of coffee and reading a good book or closing your eyes and letting nature surround you, having this space is perfect for our mental health. Accomplish this by bringing in a comfy chair, bench, or chaise lounge and surround yourself with plants or flowers.