Pretty patio ideas to inspire every garden space

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  • A garden patio makes for a wonderful and welcoming living space throughout the year

    Looking for patio ideas? A garden patio makes for a wonderful and welcoming outdoor living space, throughout the summer months. Even into winter, if you get your garden design right. Compared with lawned gardens, patios (and paved and gravelled spaces, too) require little maintenance, and therefore becoming more of a preferred choice. Even the smallest seasonal refresh can completely update your outdoor space.

    Love your garden and want more patio ideas? Find inspiration on our gardens homepage

    Patio ideas

    If you’re looking for garden patio ideas that will brighten up your garden space this year, whatever type of home you have and whatever size the outdoor space, there’s plenty to consider in this inspiring collection of patio ideas.

    1. Surround with raised flowerbeds

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    Image credit: Lizzie Orme

    If you only have a small garden, swap grass for a patio to create the perfect area for alfresco dining. Raised flower beds surrounding the patio, are a clever way to add a splash of colour that will make you feel like your dining in the middle of a meadow.

    2. Mix and match textures

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    Image credit: Colin Poole

    Add interest to a raised patio by dressing it with eclectic furniture. In this garden a natural wooden table is paired who two contrasting styles of chair – clear glossy acetate chair, sometimes called a ghost chair, contrasted with two stylish green chairs with a matt finish. This mishmash of materials and colours gives the garden a modern and contemporary look.

    3. Create a focal point with a warming firepit

    patio ideas

    Image credit: Polly Eltes

    No mater how big or small your patio space, it’s always good to create a focal point to give a sense of purpose. Benches either side of a warming firepit help to create an inviting place to relax and spend some downtime in the garden – no matter how chilly it gets.

    4. Incorporate a garden canopy

    patio ideas

    Image credit: Dan Duchars

    It goes without saying that patios are a go-to spot for alfresco dining, but rain – or sometimes sun – can be a problem when entertaining outside. A simple homemade canopy made of a swathe of flowing fabric can offer a stylish covering, and gives a somewhat nautical vibe to a outdoor area. Looking at other fabric-based garden accessories (or some might say essentials) a hammock is another indulgent option for a relaxed patio. It works for small and large spaces alike, and makes a lovely place to snooze in the shade on long summer days.

    5. Create ambience with lighting and accessories

    Patio ideas

    Image credit: Lizzie Orme

    You may want to dial up your garden’s ambient atmosphere after dark. Consider setting the mood once the sun sets on your patio, with lanterns and cushions scattered on the floor. Lanterns are an easy and instant way to illuminate garden spaces without having to seek assistance from an electrician.

    6. Blur the boundaries between indoors and outdoor aesthetics

    patio garden ideas

    Image credit: David Still

    Make the most of a compact outdoor space that adjoins a flat or house, by creating your very own modern secret garden. Here, the floor tiles run out from the interior space, creating a sense of continuity and implying that outside patio area is merely an extension of the kitchen itself. Clusters of large pots holding lush plants create a tropical feeling and the sense of being in nature, which is only enhanced by the warmth of horizontal wood panelling. A vast mirrored panel doubles the space – visually at least – and makes the space feel light and full of energy for a meal or casual drinks at the bistro table and garden bench. Talk about having it all!

    See the trends: Garden trends 2019 – we reveal the key looks and must-haves for your garden

    7. Take indoor interiors out with homely accessories

    Image credit: Max Attenborough

    In addition to considering the aesthetics such as wood panelling on walls and floor tiles, think about taking the indoor accessories outside too – to create a more homely feel. Outdoor rugs and cushions are both becoming increasingly more popular, as a great way to inject an artistic flare to garden spaces. There’s no harm in taking your existing accessories outside, permitted the weather stays fair to prevent damage. However you can purchase accessories especially made for outdoor purpose, which is preferable.

    8. Make it modern with polished concrete

    patio ideas

    Image credit: Nick Pope

    When you have patio tiles or stone underfoot, as opposed to grass, keep the look light with a polished concrete finish paired with contemporary garden furniture. This glass-topped pedestal table and finely woven chairs have an almost weightless feel, and look crisp and fresh against all the garden’s greenery – which is located around the patio’s boundaries. A large white parasol creates the sense of a specific dining zone, while also providing shade on sunny summer days.

    9. Make the patio an extension of your indoor space

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    Image credit: Darren Vhung

    Create a patio garden that looks nothing like your traditional idea of a patio garden! Roll back the doors from your kitchen-diner and increase space with a seamlessly adjoining al fresco space beyond; the tiles match up perfectly creating a fluid dining area. You could move the table and chairs out easily for fuss-free and family friendly weekend meals.

    Looking for more garden ideas? READ: Small garden ideas to make the most of a tiny space

    10. Create a pretty potting area

    patio ideas

    We love this pretty patio idea! A patio needn’t be used solely for summer dining, as this pretty idea proves. Set up your practical plant potting area outside your (brightly painted) back door, with a vintage workbench for storing gardening tools and housing the season’s prettiest plants. When not in use for pruning tall trees, a neat stool doubles up as a lovely spot to have a tea break and take in the scene.

    11. Install an enclosed garden room

    patio ideas

    Image credit: Matthew Williams

    Is it a porch? Is it a patio? Maybe it’s both! the space beneath a raised deck makes a lovely shady outdoor living area, that’s ideal for sociable gatherings in summer – or even winter, if you provide a little heating and plenty of blankets!

    12. Plan a designer garden

    patio ideas

    Image credit: Mark Bolton

    Patios don’t have to be a one-level, just-outside-the-door affair; this carefully designed tiered space is a prime example of a patio that has stepped up (forgive the pun) to the next level in garden design.

    13. Keep it functional and family-friendly

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    Image credit: Emma Lewis

    If you’re looking for garden ideas with a more traditional design direction, why not use garden furniture to set your desired atmosphere? Consider teaming wooden benches with relaxed soft furnishing for a patio haven that’s very shabby chic or, by contrast, set out a vintage-style iron bistro set with slatted chairs and patterned seat covers to capture an effortless French farmhouse look for lazy Sunday lunches outdoors. If you have a brand-new kitchen extension, but the garden beyond doesn’t quite match up (yet), a little streamlined modern furniture can work wonders.

    14. Simplify your patio space

    patio ideas

    Image credit: Brent Darby

    Make a cosy nook for yourself in a sprawling country garden with a beautiful courtyard. Richly planted – with climbers creeping up trellises, bedding plants and even a selection of plants potted in aged galvanised steel containers, this patio space has an old-world charm about it.

    15. Opt for a ski-chalet-style garden

    patio ideas

    Image credit: David Brittain

    Patio ideas don’t come much better than this! You don’t have to hit the slopes to enjoy the benefits of an apres-ski style terrace. A fresh take on the functional garden patio, this area takes the outdoor social space into winter…with the help of an outdoor heater, plenty of faux-fur blankets, woven textures and flickering candles housed in glass lanterns. Romantic, super stylish and a little bit Hygge? We think so.

    Love cosy winter gardens? READ: 7 ways to make your garden cosy in winter

    16. Perfect your patio with Shabby-chic furniture

    patio ideas

    Image credit: David Giles

    A paved balcony can make a great garden substitute in flat. Make the most of the extra space and furnish with slimline colourful furniture that won’t overwhelm the patio. Foldable pieces, such as this teak table, are ideal as they can be folded down to create space when not in use/to suit the situation. Use the ledge beneath the balcony to house plants and bring the all-important natural element to your miniature garden.

    17. Create a sunshine vibe with colourful accessories

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    Image credit: Robert Sanderson

    A walled garden, with a herringbone bricked patio, needn’t stick to English country style. Bring a more exotic feel to your space with richly patterned and colourful accessories that are more reminiscent of a Moroccan riad.

    Related: Easy garden ideas – simple updates to transform your outdoor space

    Will you be using any of these patio ideas to update your outdoor space?

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