We all crave that special place to relax outside -- some open-air territory to retreat to after spending the day in a hermetically sealed workplace. Whether looking for a small spot to sunbathe or read in solitude, or some slightly more elaborate space to have breakfast, entertain, or stargaze, an outdoor room provides gracious living space outside. And as part of our culture's current focus on a healthier, happier lifestyle and making our homes our castles, building a deck or patio expands the footprint of the house -- embracing the outdoors and enhancing both our property and our well-being.
Decks and patios add another dimension to the home, giving you the freedom to enjoy the outdoors in comfort without leaving your backyard. And since you are literally building from the ground up, the design of outside "rooms" is not constrained by walls or quirky dimensions. You have a blank canvas waiting to take the form of whatever you fancy -- perhaps with some allowances made for budget and zoning laws.
No longer just bland squares of pressure-treated lumber nailed to the backs of houses, decks have taken on new shapes, surfaces, and levels. And patios have evolved from an indifferent slab of poured concrete to encompass a wide range of forms and materials -- from the warmth of brick to the sophistication of bluestone to the casual appeal of gravel.
In this book you'll find hundreds of ideas to inspire you to move beyond the "wouldn't it be nice" stage and really start designing your outdoor room. We begin with a planning primer on how to evaluate your site and examine various approaches to design. The core of the book is a photographic exploration of the varied decks and patios that can be built and the features that define them, including railings, built-ins, and overhead structures.
Hundreds of photos depict the full spectrum of styles and sizes, from the simple wraparound deck to the curved, multilevel redwood deck with an outdoor kitchen; from the small brick patio to an elaborate series of terraced patios with stone walls. And because decks and patios have developed into outdoor rooms that are equipped and furnished like other parts of the home, you'll also see the range of amenities that are now common, such as spas, gazebos, and outdoor fireplaces. In addition to the photos, the book includes numerous illustrations detailing deck and patio components, as well as sidebars on topics of special interest.
Taunton's Deck & Patio Idea Book offers a multitude of useful and inspiring ideas and design solutions for your deck or patio. We hope this book, along with your creative ingenuity, will assist you in building a beautiful outdoor room that provides relaxation and comfort for years to come.