Outdoor patio ideas come in all shapes and sizes. It’s easy to let your imagination run wild when planning for your dream outdoor space. It’s important when combining all of the ideas you come up with, so that you consider these very important variables.

This guide aims to help you both get your creative ideas flowing and also give insight into practicalities and tips to make your patio project a smashing success.

Patios are the hub of a functional backyard. Maximizing their square footages while combining utility, serenity, and grace is essential for a successful build. Regardless of direction you decide to go, pre-planning your outdoor patio ideas is key.

If you’re ready to focus on the sunny weather ahead, there are a range of tasks you can undertake to get your patio ready for lounging, entertaining, or whatever it is that you like to do outside.

Here are some questions to ask yourself when considering outdoor patio ideas

What Do I Want From My Patio Design?

Your outdoor lifestyle will change as new friends and neighbors come and go, your family grows, and your hobbies shift to new interests.

Perhaps you’ve discovered a passion for the culinary arts and want to expand your outdoor meal prep options with a brick pizza oven, built-in grill, outdoor refrigeration, and space for growing organic herbs and produce.

Perhaps you’d enjoy the fire pit or hot tub through the rainy winter months if they were more sheltered.

Before you make any changes to your outdoor patio, it is important to assess your needs. Be sure to keep in mind how your outdoor needs may change so you can make adjustments, so that you can enjoy it for many years.

What Does My Current Patio Offer, and What Do I Need to Change?

When you’re considering outdoor patio ideas, first take a good look at what your space already offers. How large is the existing patio, and does it need to be larger or smaller?

Is it oriented toward the best views of your yard or do you need more privacy? What condition is it in? If any repairs are needed, now is the time to do basic maintenance to repair settling, reseal the concrete, stone or pavers, and replace any cracked stones or broken railings to be sure the space is safe and usable.

patio flooring stamped pavement
Concrete Pavers, stamped concrete, or a minimalistic crushed rock can be perfectly paired to your desired lifestyle. Disconnecting downspouts? Drainage an issue? Permeable options allow storm water run-off to percolate naturally into the native soils.

What Patio Improvements Can I Do Myself, and What Will I Need Help With?

Patio Ideas on a Budget

1. Cleaning Your patio

It is amazing how much difference a thorough cleaning can make to your patio. Power wash the area, using appropriate treatments to remove mold or rust stains. Re-sand joints between pavers and repaint or stain any railings or wood accents. If you already love your patio space, a good cleaning may be all the refreshing you need.

2. Pruning Plants Around Your Patio

Overgrown plants near your patio can encroach on the outdoor living space. Shape plants attractively and consider removing or replacing any damaged or unsalvageable plants. Add new mulch around the patio for a fresh look and to discourage weeds that detract from the area.

3. Lighting Makes a Huge Difference

Without proper lighting, you won’t enjoy your patio after dark. Overhead illumination can be improved by adding recessed lighting to covered patios or string lights to pergolas.

Up-lights can add depth and drama to your outdoor space by highlighting the beautiful shapes of surrounding plants and trees and illuminating stairs and pathways will ensure a safe journey from house to patio in the evening.

outdoor patio idea 2
a properly proportioned outdoor living space can increase quality family time as well as increase property value.

4. Define Edges To Create Space

Redefining the edge of your patio with deeper beds, retaining walls, poured concrete planters, or a privacy screen can completely change the feel of the space.

5. Curved Patio Designs

Seating can be incorporated into many areas in your patio. Whether it’s a retaining wall, a semi-circular bench accenting a fire pit, or benches that serve double-duty as railings on an elevated patio. If you’re not considering any additional structures, a fresh lounging or dining set can give your patio a whole new vibe.

With so many styles of outdoor furniture available these days, you’re sure to find one that suits your home, be it mid-century modern or Mediterranean.  Even replacing old covers, cushions or accent pillows can give existing furniture a fresh look.

outdoor patio idea 3

Concrete Patios With Fire Pits

Add elemental life to your patio by incorporating fire or water into the space. Heat it up with a gas or wood-burning fire pit, fireplace, or even fun torches or lanterns.

If liquid refreshment is more your style, options are plenty: koi ponds, fountains, or streams surround you in the sounds of nature. For a more immersive experience, consider a pool or spa.

home pond garden fountain

Contain Your Enthusiasm

Adding containers is a great way to instantly update your patio with natural elements. Large containers of tall grasses or shrubs can create privacy, whether they’re oversized pots or built-in beds.

Covered Patio Ideas

Providing shade over your patio will make your outdoor living space more comfortable in all weather by reducing glare, blocking harmful UV rays and controlling the temperature.

Shelter from rain options include pergolas, gazebos, and pavilions. In a small space, even a patio umbrella will do the trick, and don’t underestimate the natural sunscreen of a beautiful shade tree!

outdoor patio idea 5

Fun With Flooring

Most of us think of a concrete slab when it comes to patios, and there are some beautiful options available, whether stamped, stained, or textured, but there is also a range of other materials to consider. Depending on the style of your house, wood tiles or decomposed granite might be stylish options.

Even a mix of materials, when done right, can add interest to your overall design, versus being too busy as one might expect. And don’t forget about personal touches—adding your initials or children’s handprints will give you something to smile at for years to come.

outdoor patio idea 6

Small Patio Ideas

Speaking of personal touches, you may have a treasured item, such as an outdoor clock, thermometer, barometer, or sculpture that would provide a perfect centerpiece for your patio area, or even serve as inspiration for the entire outdoor space.

A functional chalkboard wall provides instant art whether it’s a drawing surface for kids, or a menu board for dinner guests!

Bring the outdoors in – the magic of an outdoor room!

Not that you don’t already have enough outdoor patio ideas to keep you occupied…here’s one more.

One of the hottest trends in how we are enjoying our gardens these days, is adding outdoor rooms to our homes.

And no wonder – exposure to the outdoors is  cheap health insurance. Just check out what Dr. Roger S. Ulrich from the Texas A&M University has to say on the matter:

“In laboratory research, visual exposure to settings with trees has produced significant recovery from stress within five minutes, as indicated by changes in blood pressure and muscle tension.”  -arborday.org

An outdoor room surely makes getting that exposure easy. Plus, it dramatically extends the gardening season. It can take the form of a private sanctuary, or it can become the perfect party space. The possibilities are endless.

The protection of an outdoor room can also do double duty as a haven for potted plants during our winters if not properly sheltered. So, for an unabashed “hort-head”, a built-in patio also offers much needed protection for my treasured investment.

What Next?

Drake’s 7 Dees leverages decades of construction experience with a seasoned design influence to assure a patio space that resonates with your passions, pocket book and personality.

If you’re ready to add new life to your patio, our team of landscape architects and designers can help you find great ways to freshen up your space, so you can spend more time outdoors enjoying it.

Whether you want an out-of-the box, modern flair or an aesthetic that harkens back to an early urban nostalgia. Our family of experts is excited to talk to you about your new patio!

Contact us at our Portland Nursery and Garden Center in Raleigh Hills today. We’d love to help you on your next outdoor.