Someday My (Patio) Will Come

patio inspirationvia

Dinner al fresco. Ice cream among twinkling fireflies.  Morning coffee and a magazine.

All that comes to mind when I’m dreaming up our someday patio! (I do love to imagine the end result, don’t I?)

Today I’m talking patio inspiration.

The current area where we will be putting a patio tucks into a corner of the back of our house. When we bought this house, there was a considerable amount of water damage to the concrete foundation – which we have fixed. To help prevent any more water issues, we will be grading the yard away from the house, and also putting in a patio to help. (If the Moose says we “have” to install a patio, I don’t ask questions.)

There are three things I’m looking for in a patio:

1. Budget friendly
2. Organic feeling
3. Low maintenance

It’s been surprisingly difficult to find realistic patio inspiration ideas. There are a lot of “builder basic” patios out there online. And the photos I’ve found on Pinterest and Houzz are glamazon outdoor living rooms.

This is a collection of images I’ve saved all with features I’d like to consider when we’re ready to do our patio:

patio inspirationvia

We’ve discussed creating our patio using three different methods: 1. brick, 2. pavers, 3. stampcrete (or stamped concrete).

We have yet to price everything out, but generally brick and pavers are more expensive (and very DIY labor intensive), and concrete is less expensive. Concrete will also give us more protection from the water issues our home has experienced in the past.

I really like the pattern in the image above – hard to believe it’s concrete! You can also stain concrete. But, I think we’re leaning towards the natural gray you see above.

patio inspirationvia

I like how this patio has a decorative border around it. It’s a nice finishing detail that really makes the stonework sing.

A lot of patios have a small stone walls, or raised planters to add privacy and designate the patio space. But I tend to like the more organic feeling patios that feel like they grew there themselves! A border is a nice way of making that distinction while still staying ground level.

patio inspirationvia

Glory Cottage, that’s right! I would love to sit on this patio all day long!

I like the abundance of potted plants on this patio.

Maybe a potted herb garden will be in order?

patio inspirationvia

There is just something lovely and romantic about pergolas.

I like how this pergola makes the patio feel so connected to the house. Since our patio will be tucked into a corner (kind of like this patio), it’s creates a cozy little nook.

patio inspirationvia

Again, we’re thinking of lots of ways we can better connect the patio to the house.

We have a walk-out basement, which will lead to the patio. But that means we have exposed concrete bricks where our (supposed-to-be-nice-and-pretty) patio will go. We’ve talked about a number of ways to cheer it up, and one of them is ivy.

There’s something so New England about ivy. We would, however, install vertical trellises so the ivy grows on that instead of creating problems with the roots weakening the concrete foundation.

patio inspiration
There are two things I love about this patio.
One: if the pergola is too much of an investment, I like the mini-pergolas over the doors. That’s another way to add character without breaking the bank.
Two: I love the shutters! Too often shutters are only on the front of the house, but adding shutters to the back windows on the patio is another way to make the outdoor space feel united to the rest of your house.
Plus, I’ve never been one for outdoor artwork.
patio inspiration
Again with the pergolas. If we don’t want to do a full-fledged pergola, this modified pergola is a great way to get partial shade and still having a patio open to the skies.
Plus it’s an excellent place for hanging plants!
patio inspiration
As if I needed to add more fuel to my pergola fire.
This could be a great way to add a porch swing to your patio. (We currently have one sitting in the basement waiting for some TLC. It was going to go on the front porch… but maybe the patio would be a better place for it?
Such tough decisions. :p

It looks like I have a lot of research work cut out for me!

Do you have a patio or outdoor living space?

What’s your favorite part about it? Any recommendations?

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4 comments

  1. I’m very spoilt, I have a raised decked patio in my back garden amongst pots of veggies and tropical plants and the birds and the butterflies, and a tiled balcony at the front of my house, also with potted plants and nice view of a Bay. Please don’t hate me! Back in the UK I had a patio at all of our houses, it’s been a must have for me all my life, even in cold weather, because I hate being cooped up indoors all day and love fresh air and sunlight. Whenever we’ve had to build a patio area I’ve always done what you’ve done here, collect ideas, plan it out, and often I do a rough drawing just so the hubby has some idea of what it is I want him to build! I always think of the patio as another room, just an outside one, and often when you’re lucky, a much more civilised one!

  2. Beautiful ideas! You now have me thinking about the patio I don’t have. I never even took the time to really think about one; I now think it is the next house related upgrade on the list! We spend a lot of time outside around our fire pit, so I think that is something mine would have to have or even be built around. Good look, and I will be happy to see what you finally come up with.

  3. acrosthec says:

    Hey! I’m not sure if ivy does the same stuff up there as down here since the climates are SO different, BUT…Ivy down here is like a hotel complex for roaches. They creep me out (!) so I “no’d” putting ivy anywhere around our house. Just wanted to give you a heads up in case it’s something you want to look into! <3

  4. These are worth sharing patio ideas!
    One way to achieve an awesome patio without breaking the bank is having a stamped concrete patio. It’s cost-effective and durable, plus there are lots of concrete stamp patterns to choose from that could definitely complement your outdoor!
    Good luck with your patio project!

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