Patio Remodel 2000

Lately, here in Vancouver BC where this post is being written, the weather has been very appropriately spring-like. It doesn’t always work out this way at this time of year, so when it does it’s noticeable! As the climate shifts to balmier temperatures, one gets to thinking about the kinds of things that can be done outside, rather than inside. And among other things, I’ve discovered the joys of alfresco reading, sitting down under the shade of a tree, and losing myself in a good book.

In this third installment of our patio remodel budget series, we move past the process of imagining a space, and begin to think about how to create a zone within an outdoor living space as a whole, and with real human activity in mind.

Take a look at this graphic example below to see one of the many possibilities for this kind of approach when we’ve doubled our budget from last week – two grand!


Extra dimensions for a patio remodel

As budgets get a bit bigger, you’re free to start thinking about more surfaces and structures for a patio or deck space. For instance, you’ll notice that the image above has added something pretty basic, but that has added an extra dimension to the proceedings; walls.  Well, they’re sort of half-walls. But, what this does is to create a boundary between this space, and the rest of the property. The effect is a more self-contained area that has a life of its own. It’s more room-like. And therefore, it allows for more ideas about what will happen in it.

“Deliberate” design for patios

In the past two installments of the series, we talked about imagining the kind of space you’re looking for, and then laying down some basic elements to support it. We talked a lot about the idea of comfort, and how that should be the guiding principle behind the plan. But, now we’re taking those ideas and being very deliberate about them. This means that the patio space to be created should become something that is a defined zone within a property as a whole.

It should be remembered that your outdoor living space is a zone in and of itself; a living extension of your indoor space. But, your patio or deck area should have a life of its own as well as be apart of that greater design context. Build a location that could be a room of its own if it were a part of any space in your home. It’s your space. Choose your staging area and go for it, even if it means thinking outside of the usual suspects that characterize outdoor living spaces with a one-size-fits-all approach.

Real human activity

This is a thread that runs through this whole process, no matter what patio remodel budget you’ve got set aside. But, it must be remembered that your patio or deck space will be the site of real human activity, whether it is the lone activity of reading a book in the quiet, or having lively conversations with friends and family – or both! This is the reason you’re planning this space after all. And it’s why you’re still thinking about comfort as a primary motivator, attached to the kinds of activities you most enjoy outdoors.

What will this look like when budgets get even bigger? Stay tuned for next week’s installment!

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