Belgard at a Home Show Near You

Have you noticed signs about upcoming Home and Garden shows? Then you know Spring is here! Although the Northeast may have had a blistery April Fool’s Day, it is time to till the garden. Belgard has been the feature at many of the country’s largest shows. Below is a sample of the top of the line displays created for homeowners to be inspired. Double click on any photo to enlarge. Don’t forget to visit our website for inspiration.


Virginia Mid-Atlantic Show

Outdoor Kitchen Area
Garden Seat Wall
Lighting Adds Polish

Belgard’s Elements outdoor kitchen area was the main showcase. With a variety of Belgard pavers, including Old World and Arbel® Stone, plus Celtik® Wall and BelAir Wall® creating seating, and integrated lighting, you felt as though you were outdoors. You will see how Belgard pavers, plus an Elements Bristol Collection kitchen and fire place, work together. The complete look is fabulous.


Southern Spring Home & Garden Show, Charlotte, NC

Seat Walls
Contrasting Patterns
Lighting Adds Drama

The Southern Spring Home and Garden Show featured a stroll through “Belgard Gardens.” Within the Park Expo Center, a true romantic presence was felt. A circular path of Belgard’s Arbel Stone pavers and a seat wall from the double-sided Weston Collection invited you to linger. Lighting installed directly into the walls gave the beautiful landscaping a fairytale feel as well as its functional purpose, to light the path.

Mixing the paver products of Arbel and Lafitt pavers, allows two paths to come together in a carpet-like manner. One leads off through a castle gate towards a Belgard free standing Belair Wall®. Many design tips can be collected from this amazing display.


Southern Ideal Home Show, Greensboro, NC

Fire Pit, Column, Wall
Elements Kitchen
Mobile Show Room

Belgard’s Mobile Show Room parked outside the Southern Ideal Home Show. Visitors were welcomed by the Elements Bristol Collection and its unlimited possibilities of matching seat walls, cabinets, kitchens, and more.

Inside the show, Belgard Arbel® Stone pavers created a handsome flooring and Weston Wall™ created convenient seating, column and fire pit. Adding one (or more) of these features completes a backyard so the outdoor enjoyment continues throughout the year.


Rochester Home Show

Looking Great from the Back
Chicago Brick Oven

The Rochester Home Show set up a Chicago Brick Oven and Element Bristol Collection full kitchen display with seat walls.  The back of the kitchen and brick oven are as handsome as the front. You might consider planting a vegetable or herb garden. Pull off some fresh basil leaves and add to your homemade pizza!

This kitchen features a MediumRare grill, stainless steel cabinets, a cocktail station, bar, sink, and electricity – all part of Belgard’s Elements. The Bristol collection uses a granite counter top, edging of Dublin cobble, and Urbana banding. With Belgard, the attention to detail is impeccable. Using Elements, your outdoor kitchen planning is a snap, and it installs within a day or two.

Elements Brighton Fireplace, Water Features and Seat Wall
An Amazing Backyard Dream

The area also included an Elements Brighton fireplace with water features and matching seat walls. It coordinated with Arbel® Stone pavers in a circular fashion which delineates the outdoor living space. The dining area features Lafitt pavers and a Weston wall to add seating and separation.


Foot Bench Built-In

Milwaukee Realtor Show

This show took Belgard’s BelAir Wall™ and created a fabulous outdoor bedroom with built-in lighting! Notice the head and foot boards created from the Arbel® Stone Collection. The outdoor bath tub was a must-see. The look was completed with Belgard’s environmental line of permeable pavers from the Subterra® collection. Permeable pavers allow rainwater to be absorbed by the ground where nature filters the water, instead of becoming runoff.

Outdoor Bedroom Ideas
Bathtub!

Read our past post featuring Belgard’s Elements Collection.

Follow A Backyard Transformation – Completion

After four days of work, the backyard and entrance of the Simoneaux’s home in Covington, La, is completed. “It has been a total transformation! We have always enjoyed our backyard, but now it is a true extension of our home,” states Christi Simoneaux. “It’s almost too good to be true.”

New bar area off the main house

“Every time I walk outside, I still can’t believe this is my backyard,” agrees sixteen-year-old Carter Simoneaux, who can’t wait to invite a few friends over to celebrate his birthday later this month. Not to be outdone, younger brother Dustin is already planning a gathering for his 7th grade class at the end of this school year. “It won’t come soon enough for me,” states Dustin.

Design Studio Rendering

The transformation process began a month ago with ideas and plans. When the installer, Rod Trahan of La Pavers was chosen, the difficult choices had been made. Using the Belgard’s Design Studio, the Simoneauxs had a clear picture of the final project. “Using Belgard’s Design Studio saves potential problems because the homeowner sees the outcome, thus avoiding misconceptions, which equals delays,” states Trahan who is using it for future products.

Front entrance before
Completed project

Timing

The whole installation took a total of four days. “Can you believe we had concrete removed, pavers installed and an outdoor kitchen completed in such a short time?” Simoneaux questions. Trahan replies, “That is the beauty of Belgard products, especially the Elements line. Everyone wants an outdoor kitchen these days. Yet a typical project with this effect can take weeks. Belgard’s Elements install in one day and the homeowner knows exactly what they will get.”

The project that was initially planned to be phased out over a number of years, due to cost, was able to be completed all at once thanks to the Belgard Preferred Payment program. “Being able to spread the cost over 12 months with same-as-cash financing was one of the factors to help us realize our dreams now,” says Simoneaux. “Our house, from the entrance to the backyard, is totally transformed. Thank you Belgard!”

Products used: Pavers are Mega Lafitt® & Old World; Grill and bar are from the Bristol Collection of Belgard Elements. Download a pdf catalog from the Elements Collections website.

Before and After

Follow a Backyard Transformation – Construction

The project is underway! The Simoneaux family of Covington, La have been eagerly awaiting this moment for years – a new front entry, pool patio additions, and a new Belgard Elements bar and grill station from the Bristol Collection. After initial planning, meetings with designer Mike Miles with the Belgard Elements Collection and Harmony Outdoor Living and contractor Rod Trahan of La Pavers, the project was ready to start. “It’s been quite a production! There are vehicles of all shapes and sizes for two blocks,” Christi Simoneaux reports. The plumber and electrician were on site to run lines for the new items.

Excavation
Cutting existing concrete

First, the area was excavated, which included removing seven inches of top-soil for the pavers, as well as several sections of existing concrete. One area of concrete was over 10 inches thick, requiring use of a jack-hammer and a hydraulic concrete breaker. “It was somewhat surreal to see this huge piece of equipment right outside my living room window. But before I knew it, the concrete was gone and hauled away,” said Simoneaux.

The next step was to install the patio areas, which is a multi-layer process. First, black felt is rolled out to cover the bottom of the excavated dirt areas. Next, a bed of limestone is shoveled in and compacted, followed by a layer of sand that is leveled and compacted.

Black Felt
Black Felt
Limestone
Compacting
Leveling sand
Compacting Sand

Finally, the pavers were laid and cut to fit the design. This project included Belgard’s Mega Lafitt® pavers edged by Belgard Old World pavers. Once the pavers were in place, polymeric sand was brushed into the crevices and activated with water to form grout lines.

Pavers
Cutting to fit
Polymeric Sand

With the patios complete, next came the Elements Bristol Collection bar and grill station.

Concrete Slab for the bar/grill

The bar arrives pre-manufactured in three pieces. Once placed into position, they are ready for use, as opposed to a multi-day on-site construction. “We chose the Elements for their ease of installation. Not only does it save a lot of time and headache, it also saves money on installation costs,” Christi said.

Even though the access to the backyard was very tight, and the space was limited due to the pool and porch overhang, La Pavers’ installers didn’t miss a step. “Installing the bar was a well-choreographed dance… up an inch, lower an inch, to the right a half inch, raise a quarter inch, now back up again.  There were three pieces, and it took about two hours to set them in place. Compared to the two weeks it would have taken to build it in place, I have no complaints,” Christi said.

Installation of the 3-piece bar/grill

After three days of work, the installation is mostly complete. Day four brings the appliances and plantings. “I feel like I live in a resort now. All my friends keep asking what time the party starts,” Christi jokes. “I think we’re going to plan a get-together for next weekend, but for now our family is enjoying our own private getaway, right in the back yard.”

Contact an Authorized Belgard Dealer for more information. Download a pdf catalog of the Elements Collections.

Next up – Completed project.

Follow a Backyard Transformation – Planning

When you purchase or build a new home, you add special touches to make it your own. When Pierre and Christi Simoneaux bought their new home six years ago in Covington, La., they had renovation plans which included adding hardscapes, gardens, and the piece de resistance, an outdoor entertainment area.

Photos before installation
A transformation is about to occur

“To keep  everything within a budget, the initial plan was to ‘phase out’ the project over years – the patio, then the bar, then a built-in grill,” said Christi Simoneaux. “But Belgard’s Preferred Payment Plan let us spread the payments out over several months with no interest, which allowed us to complete the project all at one time.”

Belgard’s Design Pro 3-D rendering of the new bar area

Using Belgard’s website, the Simoneauxs were able to see various options and make initial decisions that fit their style. They loved the look of the Belgard Elements Collection, as well as a variety of pavers. Loaded with an arsenal of ideas, and having located a local Belgard Authorized Dealer from the “dealer locator” on the website, the next step was to design the space.

The couple submitted some photos of their backyard, along with some rough sketches of ideas. Using Belgard’s Design Studio, Mike Miles, designer with the Belgard Elements Collection and Harmony Outdoor Living, was able to provide a 3-D rendering of their plans.

Outdoor Seating Area by the Pool

“I honestly couldn’t believe how realistic the drawings looked, down to the color of my shutters and the shape of my pool,” said Simoneaux. “We were able to see exactly how the pavers and Elements would look, and even made a number of changes to the design that we wouldn’t have realized were needed if we hadn’t had these renderings. Some of what we pictured in our heads would not have worked well in real life. Thanks to the 3-D drawings, we saved ourselves a lot of potential heartache.”

Once the design was finalized, Jim Stone Co., the local Belgard dealer, recommended two Authorized Belgard Installers to bid on the job. Their chosen contractor, Rod Trahan with La Pavers,  then brought samples to their home to finalize the product selection. “Seeing the product in the environment helped us make final choices,” said Simoneaux. “They took some measurements to plan access and confirm placement of everything, and we were on our way to our new backyard.”

Rendering of the Entry Way

With the finances finalized and the products chosen, the installation is set to begin. The use of Belgard’s Elements reduces the project time-line immensely. It would typically take weeks for a similar installation built from the ground up. By using the Elements Collection, the time-line for the Simoneaux family is reduced to three days. “Belgard Elements are built in modules in the factory and shipped on a pallet, already constructed,” said Trahan. “The first day will be prep work, the second day is installation, and the final day is finishing details.”

Follow the Simoneaux installation on this blog.

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Wall Seats and Decor

Seating area overlooking the garden. Belair Wall

A beautiful backyard will naturally draw people to the outdoors. Yet, once they are there, if there is no place to sit and relax, they may turn around and head back inside. The remedy? Outdoor seating. Even the most appealing backyards are incomplete without seating. Creating an permanent seating area will invitingly draw your guests to a particular spot in the garden or to an enjoyable backyard feature, such as a fire pit, fire place, or swimming pool.

Belgard’s diverse range of wall products makes your hardscape seating options practically limitless.  For example, BelAir Wall™ is an ideal solution for residential and light commercial retaining and  free-standing wall construction where pleasing aesthetics are a key consideration. The attractive multi-piece design (= endless pattern options) and blended colors offer an alternative look. The design of this easy-to-use product allows for straight lines, sweeping curves and right angles. Matching caps provide ideal seating areas.

Seating around a water feature using Celtik Wall

Another excellent option is Celtik Wall™. Belgard’s twentieth-century interpretation of ancient wall stone, Celtik Wall offers timeless elegance combined with modern durability and  ease-of-maintenance. Celtik Wall’s design flexibility makes it ideal for any number of uses — encircling greenery, partitioning property, accenting light posts, or simply creating accent walls with rugged, romantic appeal.

Ideas for Seating

    • Retaining walls – build them to seating height. Belgard offers many cap toppers to create a matching, cohesive appearance.
Seat in a wall. Celtik Wall
  • Around a feature – when adding a fire pit or water feature, use a topped wall to allow company to sit and enjoy the elements.
  • Create a new space – use a wall to divide spaces and create a gathering area. The wall can serve double duty by providing seating for both areas.
  • Garden borders – add a wall to border a garden, creating a relaxing seating area to enjoy the flowers.
  • Tall walls – create surface areas that project from higher walls to create additional seating.

More Than Hardscapes

To create even more interest in your outdoor room, add a splash of color and texture by using pillows and cushions. There are many fabrics specially made for the outdoor elements. When selecting items, consider the color of both your hardscapes and surroundings.

Bright colors and lively motifs create fun in a space. Blues and greens can be soothing and coordinate with a pool and nature. Earth tones add a serene feeling when they blend with the surrounding vista. Be sure to coordinate your outdoor colors to compliment those inside if they are being seen through glass doors and windows.

Colorful pillows make an area fun. Celtik Wall

Although outdoor fabrics are durable, you will want to make sure they receive adequate drainage and drying after a rain. Take them in during the freezing of the winter, especially if there is moisture present. If you see stains or mold, remove and treat immediately.

When you are purchasing fabrics, make sure they are fade-free, repel water, mold/mildew resistant, stain repelling, have full color threads (not a pattern printed on the fabric), and of course, soft.

All photos use Belgard products. Belgard offers a variety of natural, smooth-step pavers and rough-hewn  textured wall systems that provide a time-honed appearance reminiscent  of the gardens of Old Europe. However, they’re the product of thoroughly modern manufacturing, engineered with precise dimensional consistency  for easy installation. Visit our website for more ideas. www.belgard.com

Belgard Products Featured in IBS Show Homes

 

The New American Home
The New American Home in Orlando. Photo by James F. Wilson for NAHB.

Belgard® Environmental Collection permeable pavers are featured in the fabulous Greek Revival style “The New American Home” (TNAH 2011), the official show home of the National Association of Home Builders, open for tours this week to attendees of the International Builder’s Show 2011 (IBS 2011) in Orlando, FL.

Located a short shuttle bus ride from the IBS 2011, the home incorporates over 1,700 square feet of Belgard’s Eco-Holland Slate permeable pavers and 480 square feet of the Eco-Holland Charcoal permeable pavers. Permeable pavers allow rainwater to be absorbed into the ground, virtually eliminating destructive run off, potentially removing the need for retention ponds and underground sewer pipes. In addition, they contribute to LEED certification credits.

Eco Holland

Belgard Products Featured in IBS 2011 Homes
Eco-Holland
Available in a variety of colors, Eco-Holland can be laid out in numerous architectural designs, offering design flexibility and adding value to residential and commercial properties. Eco-Holland permeable pavers benefit the environment and have the strength to withstand both vehicular traffic and harsh weather conditions. Plus, they are ADA Compliant. Visit the Belgard website to learn more information on the entire Environmental Collection.

The New American Home
Featuring the latest in building products and innovative construction technologies, the home will be visited by industry professionals from across the globe. TNAH 2011 was certified by the National Green Building Standard with Emerald Status, the highest of the four levels of achievement in resource efficiency that the NAHB Research Center recognizes. Tours are available through Saturday, 1/15. Visit the show website for a schedule.

The Vision and ReVision Homes
Also in Orlando are the Vision and ReVision Homes, two ultra-energy-efficient homes featuring Belgard products. Shuttles from the IBS to both homes begin at 10am and last departure from the homes: 1/13 departs at 3pm; 1/14 departs at 4pm; 1/15 departs at 1:30pm.