What is an Outdoor Living Space?Any form of outdoor space that that helps in bringing out indoor comforts to the outdoors, such as a deck, gazebo, outdoor kitchen, patio, pergola, or a screened porch. With these spaces, you can enjoy the incredible outdoors while still getting the protection you need from the elements. Think about it – the new pergola that you install will prevent the occasional rainstorm from ruining your BBQ party. With a screen porch, you can enjoy cool summer nights without worrying about mosquitoes.
Get a PergolaFor decades, gazebos and sunrooms have been popular backyard structures, but they often lack functionality and are expensive to build. A pergola is a marvelous alternative as it is easier and cheaper to construct. It is an open-air frame that typically has latticework roofing, offering a simple design that can accommodate almost any function and any budget. Pergolas are traditionally shade structures that have mostly open roofs and sides. However, many modern designs incorporate canvas-covered or solid elements that offer better protection from the rain, sun, and wind. This means that your outdoor entertaining season can be extended into the fall and winter.
Design and Placement Tips for PergolasA number of factors need to be kept in mind when you choose where your pergola will go. Apart from accommodating the shape and size you desire, you will have to decide if you want a partial-cover or solid roof and whether you prefer a structure that is attached or separate. When a pergola is situated within your yard landscape, it will be visible from your indoors and provides a visual element that draws attention to the landscape. For the placement of a separate structure, consider where you will spend the most time, where the view would be best and whether there are any areas that are naturally sheltered. An attached pergola is a terrific option if you want to extend your indoor space onto an outdoor patio or ensure that your dinner parties are kept close to the kitchen. However, keep in mind that attached structures may block outdoor light, darkening interior spaces.
Add Fire to Your BackyardWhether it is covered or uncovered, concrete, stone or metal, stately or simple, nothing adds a little something-extra to a backyard space than a touch of fire. In addition to adding ambience, light and warmth, fire pits can make entertaining easy and cooking fun. Fire has a quality that brings people together and makes everyone feel at home. Plus, a fire pit can be a stellar focal point of your backyard’s design even when you do not use it.
Design Consideration for Fire PitsYou can make installing a fire pit as simple as you want. You can purchase a portable unit or construct an elaborate built-in living space with incorporated seating. A wide range of materials are available for built-in fire pits, including brick, concrete, stone, and tile. While most pits have a circular design, you can easily design an L-shaped, square, or triangular space. In general, keeping the pit as centralized as you can is a wonderful idea with seats that envelope the fire. That way, you ensure that everyone has a terrific view and faces each other while they enjoy the fire.
Sink Your PatioIn recent years, sunken patios have become popular in backyard landscape design. If you have a small yard, you can get visual interest and depth by having a sunken area and also, the overall space will seem larger than it actually is. In an expansive yard, you can better delineate the architectural scheme of your outdoors with a sunken patio and create a slightly “separate” space for entertainment or relaxation.
Design Options for PatiosYou can add dimension to a flat yard with a recessed patio as well as incorporate them into irregular and sloping landscapes. An inset patio can be circular or semicircular or square or simply blend naturally with the existing landscape. With a sunken patio that has broad, paved steps, you can easily add plenty of built-in seating for your guests while a graduated border can give you extra room for terraced plantings so that you have added privacy. In areas where fences would be obtrusive, you can get some isolation minus the eyesore with a below-grade patio. You can take in the scenery in your backyard and enjoy some much-needed isolation at the same time. You can start enjoying your backyard area, fully without worrying about privacy issues, lack of space to entertain and the elements. All you need to do is create an outdoor living space by adding a few awesome additions. With a simple design, the right materials, and solid construction, you can transform your backyard into your own private oasis.
The Best Ideas for a Great BackyardHere is a look at 9 of the best ways to create the ultimate backyard for your home:
- Deck up your deck – Define different activity zones within your deck to make it a destination. With multiple levels, you can carve out separate spaces for relaxing and dining. You can cover a pergola with beautiful vines and abundant potted plants to bring your garden up onto the deck so that the structure blends into the landscape.
- Create the perfect patio – With the perfect design, you can make your patio a welcoming extension of your house where you can enjoy fresh air and cool breezes. With fantastic planning, you can turn your patio into a seasonal room that gives you comfort and relaxation. The surfaces of a patio are usually brick or stone. If you choose concrete, consider adding color and texture to give it a natural look. Add container gardens, planting beds and weather-proof furniture to add style to the outdoor space.
- Add an outdoor kitchen – If you love eating outdoors or grill at least two times a week from spring through fall, an outdoor kitchen is a must. You do not need to get a fancy grill. All you need is a countertop for food prep as well as a separate side burner, closed storage, and other conveniences to ensure that you have a fantastic outdoor cooking experience. To make pre and cleaning even easier, you should definitely add a fridge and sink. Now you can make food that will leave your guests salivating for more. Now you will have guests bring their own food over just so you can cook it in your incredible set up. You may even have the nearby barbecue restaurant asking you to cook for them!
- Get the privacy you want – You can make your outdoor space feel more like an oasis by adding an enclosure. For patios, garden walls, and fences are a salient way to ensure privacy. However, you can also use pergolas, lattice, and landscaping to define outdoor spaces and screen the views of houses around you.
- Create a shady hideaway – A little shade is always welcome, especially during the summer months. Your deck or patio will be even more enjoyable if it can provide you relief from the sun. You can create shade spots with the help of umbrellas, retractable awnings, mature trees, or even arbors and pergolas that have beautiful vines growing on them.
- Get the perfect furniture – When it comes to outdoor furniture, there are more choices than ever. Traditional wood, cast or wrought iron and cast or wrought aluminum are classics that always appeal. You will find new weatherproof, synthetic outdoor furniture in today’s market and they offer the same comfort, style and durability of anything that you may have in your home.
- Use outdoor structures to define spaces – You can add another level of luxury to your outdoor oasis with a gazebo. Whether it is built on the landscape, set near a pool or attached to the deck, it is an outdoor room that offers a protected space for relaxing, cooking or dining. You can define activity zones in your outdoor space with arbors, trellises, or pergolas. They offer a marvelous way to create focal points, transition from one area to another or divide areas based on their function.
- Add a spa or hot tub – To make your backyard your luxurious retreat, you can add a spa or hot tub and enjoy long, relaxing soak at the end of a hectic and stressful day. There are many things you need to consider before adding one of these – privacy, the best location for the tub or spa, access to the house and whether you want the spa in a sunny or shaded area. Once you figure all this out, you can enjoy the luxury of a spa in your backyard.
- Plan your outdoor lighting – To make sure that you get to enjoy your backyard paradise even after the sun goes down, outdoor lighting is vital. The most basic is porch lights that illuminate the way to your house and provide ambient lighting. Low-voltage lights and solar-powered accent lights are wonderful options to add drama and interest to your backyard landscape and to highlight paths.