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Tips for Planning Your Outdoor Space

November 26, 2012
Winter’s colder temperatures drive homeowners indoors, providing the ideal time to plan outdoor spaces that will be ready for spring when outdoor living begs and burgeons. The planning process doesn’t have to be long and laborious; however, it should follow careful steps to ensure the resulting space is suited to its environment and entertainment needs. The journey to designing the ideal outdoor space begins by using an architect’s eye and ends by incorporating personal preferences. Here are four perspectives to consider when first considering the design of an outdoor living space: Let Architecture Be Your Guide Outdoor living spaces should be a continuation of the home, so in the designing phase work with, not against, the architecture of the house and its relationship to the property. Accents and angles should be thoughtfully incorporated into the design. Begin at Focal Points Extend visual lines from the home’s corners, doors and windows to create shapes that integrate the landscape design into the architecture. Allow for Breathing Room When deciding on a size for an outdoor room, consider how much space you’ll need around your furniture – pulled out chairs and mingling during cocktail parties require different space needs than a table set for dinner for four. Consider The Axis Design areas of major interest off your major axis points. When standing at the back door or window, imagine the outdoor space like a wheel, with the spokes as your sight lines. These lines should guide the eye to a beautiful flowering area, a water or fire feature, or an intimate seating area. With the architectural design elements firmly in grasp, the design team can begin to consider the paver colors, patterns and textures that best complement the home and suit the homeowner’s style preferences. Visit our Hardscape Inspiration gallery for step-by-step guides or to request a complimentary Idea Book.

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