Our outdoor living space addition in South Austin is a good example of the way Archadeck of Austin is changing the way homeowners are able to utilize, and enjoy their backyards. We are able to deliver these kind of results in two ways; #1 we can transform the vision of your ideal backyard and bring it to life from the ground up, an #2 we can convert an existing outdoor living structure into the backyard of your dreams. The possibilities are truly endless!
In the case of these South Austin homeowners, they had an existing outdoor space consisting of an aging backyard pond and an exposed aggregate concrete patio. The pond had become a chore to maintain as it had become a nursery for mosquitoes making spending time in the backyard a challenge to avoid being bitten, especially after dusk.
Archadeck of Austin consulted with the homeowners and listened to their vision of what they wanted their backyard to be. They wanted a spot that was versatile in that they could find a respite from the hot Texas afternoons and relax in mosquito-free comfort. They still wanted to be able to take in the ambiance an open fire provided too, so the new design had to incorporate a fire pit. With these ideas in mind, we set out to bring their anticipated outdoor space to life.
There were some obstacles to overcome in order to give these South Austin homeowners the environment they wanted. One of which was having to finalize a design that would pass the impervious cover requirements needed for their localities. Once this was confirmed it was smooth sailing! The project also needed to be mindful of some drainage issues and maintain some space outside the covered porch to accommodate their outdoor grill.
The completed project is multi-faceted and included transforming the concrete patio by way of installing flagstone atop the existing patio and covering a portion to give the homeowners the needed shade they desired. In addition to the extensive upgrades just off the rear of their ranch style home, we also created a detached space that includes a custom stone fire pit encircled with a hardscape retaining wall, which can also double as seating. The fire pit is just a stone’s throw away (no pun intended) from the covered patio which allows the spaces to be enjoyed simultaneously. To the side of the porch and connecting all the way to the driveway we constructed a patio/walkway using an Oklahoma variety flagstone on a bed of decomposed granite and pea gravel. This allowed for a good solid surface but allowed any water to absorb into the soil.
The covered patio is finished a rustic ceiling, with exposed cedar rafters and T1-11 ceiling, which was stained to make it pop against the painted hardi wrapped posts/beams atop stone pillars. The covered patio also includes a ceiling fan to circulate the air on hot summer days and deters any insects from invading the space, plus some post sconces to light up the evening
The clients are elated with their new backyard — which is far more than just an outdoor living space, it is a completely new outdoor living environment! If you are ready to change the way you and your family live outdoors, contact Archadeck of Austin today to begin the process today — you can reach us by phone at at ( 512) 259 – 8282 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When you are looking for ways to create the perfect backyard often times we let our dreams of our ideal space be fall to the wayside. Homeowners need to realize that what makes their version of the perfect outdoor living space right for them comes from within. No two people view the idea of outdoor living the same way, that being said we specialize in customizing your dreams to suit your desired function within that space, the area you have available to create your space and your budget.
We have compiled a list of the top 10 ways to create that outdoor oasis you have been dreaming of. This list will help provide ideas and insight into how you can make your outdoor oasis a reality.
Top 10 ways to create an outdoor oasis
1) Pick you own personal style – create a backyard that flows with style. Create everything from formal by using columns and classic lines, to more modern by using curvilinear edges on your patio or deck edge, sticking to monochromatic color palettes and even introducing metal into the mix. If you can’t decide on just one style, then you can use a combination of well-chosen elements for an eclectic unique look.
2) Embrace textures – this maybe the most crucial design element that is often overlooked when building an outdoor living structure. By mixing wood, composite, stone and other hardscape materials together within your design, you create a feast for the senses. Combining a hardwood deck in combination with a flagstone patio will leave you with a space that begs to be lingered in. On a simpler note, even adding a pergola of rough-hewn cedar in conjunction with a hardscape feature will provide the same stunning contrast.
3) Be creative – outdoor living design is not black and white. There are no set rules, so go ahead and think outside the box. Employ the use of unexpected design opportunities to add visual interest. From adding a seating wall around your fire pit to placing deck lighting in an unusual spot to create ambiance, these details make the difference. A little creativity goes a long way.
4) Work with what you have – take a good look at your backyard and cultivate your outdoor living space with ingenuity. Mature trees, a spectacular view, or the slope of your yard can all be used to your advantage to get the most function and enjoyment out of your outdoor structure design.
5) Live outdoors and still have privacy– by designing your backyard with intimacy in mind; you can still have a highly functional outdoor space that offers privacy. Retaining walls and privacy walls are a great asset to your space and add a way to keep prying eyes away. This can also be achieved through landscaping methods, such as borders that can add color and lush foliage to your space too.
6) Choose your function – in order to get the most from your space, it is important to decide what you want the primary use of your space to be. Entertaining, cooking and dining, relaxing and even a need for a shaded area are viable reasons to choose one structure over another. If you intend to use your space for multiple functions then a design that includes multiple outdoor areas that offers separate designated functions may be your best choice.
7) Borrow upon the elements of nature – the 5 elements of nature are water, metal, earth, wood and fire. By using one or more of these elements in your outdoor space you will create an atmosphere that blends with your backyard. An outdoor fireplace or fire pit adds an intoxicating feel to any outdoor design. The flame, the sound and the warmth bring out some primitive instinct that makes us want to be near it. Water plays on our senses in much the same manner. By adding a water feature such as a rock waterfall into your outdoor space, you will hear the soothing sounds of moving water on a regular basis which relax and renew.
8) Decide the amount of maintenance your material choices will require– many times homeowners convey their wishes to use certain materials without realizing the amount of maintenance their structure will require. For example an Ipe or Tigerwood deck requires annual maintenance, and sometimes more frequent in certain climates, to keep the wood looking new. In order to maintain your structure to get optimum results, it is important to decide the amount of time you are willing to put forth to maintain your investment. Many of the materials we have available require little or no maintenance and will remain looking new for many years to come.
9) Create an outdoor room – screen porches, covered patios and 3 season rooms can now be treated as an outdoor room with all the functionality and creature comforts that an interior living room can provide. Outdoor kitchens, fireplaces, ceiling fans, outdoor televisions, recessed lighting and plenty of electrical outlets are some of the many options available in outdoor structure design. The hardest part is deciding what you want to include in your space.
10) The details make the difference– an outdoor structure without decorative accents or outdoor furnishings that individualize it is just an empty shell without character or personalization. By choosing furnishings that offer comfort and style to your space you will want to use it more often, and so will others. A comfy outdoor sofa with overstuffed cushions will create a place that you will never want to leave. The small touches that put the icing on the cake are the decorative touches like planters placed on your new deck stuffed with beautiful foliage and blooms, or maybe a reclaimed architectural piece placed as a focal point; these things are the glue that binds the perfect outdoor oasis together.
Whether you are ready for a new deck, yearning for a quiet spot to keep the sun off of you so you can read in the garden, or are ready to transform your entire backyard with an outdoor living combination structure, we can make it happen. Outdoor living is all about fun, friends and family; to us outdoor living is personal. Contact Archadeck of Austin to learn what the stuff of dreams are made of.
Call for a free consultation: (512) 259 – 8282
See more inspiring images of other outdoor living areas by visiting our shade gallery, outdoor living gallery and patio and hardscapes gallery located on our website.
Patios are very popular here in the Austin area and flagstone patios in particular are one of the most requested type of patios among our customers. The rustic elegance they provide compliments our Texas landscape and unique home designs. Installing a flagstone patio requires a lot more steps than it may seem.
The first steps begin once the dimensions are determined during our pre-construction meeting with the homeowners. Following this important meeting we then have the concrete poured to form up the shape of the patio. Sometimes the homeowner first needs to contact their sprinkler system company and have them re-locate any sprinkler heads that are in the area of the intended patio, if not Archadeck of Austin will cap off the heads. If we are building a “full-on” patio next to a house that is built on a slab our professional concrete contractor will also install rebar every two feet to connect the foundation of the patio to the foundation of the house. This extra step ensures a stable patio foundation. Once this step is completed we then pour the perimeter of the patio. We pour this 1ft. by 1ft. around what will become the perimeter footing, we also add rebar to this area as well for an added measure of strength. Most other companies just don’t take this step; we however feel it very important for the strength and life of your patio.
Depending on the slope of your yard, we may install a fascia. A fascia involves the underpinning which is concrete paint that is trimmed so it doesn’t convey a rough vertical surface. We will then use vertical stones around your step areas. Typically this is not done around the entire perimeter because over time it can flake and break off so we do something that will last over a long period of time.
On the top of the poured patio base we add a 4″ deep cap and pour an additional 4″ of concrete strengthened with wire mesh. Depending on the size of your patio, we may also install man-made, control and expansion joints every 10-12′ depending on the width. Once those layers of concrete properly cure, the flagstone will then be delivered by the stone company so our expert masons can lay out the flagstone in a mosaic pattern. Once they are laid out and everything is concise, we then put in the mortar that was chosen by the homeowner. One thing we are proud of is the tight mortar joints we do so well, this gives you a flagstone patio that looks like stone when you look at and not all mortar. After all, our customers are paying for stone, not mortar. After the mortar is done, the next step is to apply a sealer. The sealer is undetectable to the appearance of the patio, but it keeps moisture from penetrating the stone and also keeps mold and mildew out. The sealer also gives the finished patio a cleaner look. After applying the sealer you shouldn’t have to do any further maintenance for 5-10 years.
When the stone selections are made we generally meet our customer at the stone shop to help them with their selection and any questions or concerns they may have about a particular stone. There are actually 10-14 various types of flagstone to choose from. The most popular flagstone choices are Oklahoma, Arizona and Mexico. All the most widely used flagstones come from Oklahoma. Sometimes when we use flagstone we will incorporate beautiful and useful features such as stone benches or even a stone kitchen island if your patio incorporates an outdoor kitchen.
Flagstone patios are not only gorgeous, they are a solid material choice for your patio because with a stained concrete or concrete patio when it cracks, and it is not a question of if it cracks, but a question of when, you will have to live with it. When you use flagstone and the concrete underneath cracks you may get a little separation of mortar joints over time but you won’t see a line in the stone. Making sure your flagstone is installed by a licensed professional ensures the beauty and enjoyment of your patio is treasured for many years to come.
If you are ready to add a flagstone patio or other outdoor structure to your life this season, contact Archadeck of Austin to make it happen. Our talented design staff can come up with the perfect outdoor oasis to fill your needs. Call for a free consultation ( 512) 259 – 8282 email:Austin@archadeck.net
To see more beautiful flagstone patio creations visit our flagstone patio gallery located on our website.