CD Designs Blog
In May we did a series of installations at Lock Keepers Court in Droylsden. The customers were all members of the same family, and so we gave them a big discount for work on three separate addresses. We have case studies on this website for two of these.
The first installation was a patio and lawn, for which you can see the case study here. The flags on the patio had started to develop weeds around them, and looked very untidy as a consequence. It was hard work for the customer to maintain the garden, so we gave them three design options, all varying in shape, idea and price range. With these ideas the customer was able to choose an option that suited both their design aspirations and budget. It was advised that platinum silver would be the most effective colour as it would match the window frames, and walkway slate the best pattern so as to match the contemporary feel of the property. The customer also wanted something unique, and so chose to have a compass printed centrally in the patio, which was then carefully stained along with the borders. A section of the garden was then re-turfed completing the new look.
The second installation was for a patio and decking, for which you can see the case study here. The customer decided that she wanted a predominantly decked area with the incorporation of a shallow step and a 10 metre squared area of pattern imprinted concrete at the foot of the patio. It was advised that Arizona tan would be the most effective colour as it would match the decking area, and a random stone pattern was chosen as part of the project to contrast the straight lines of the decking and to add another dimension to the patio design.
23rd July 2012
You might think of winter as a really hard time to get much enjoyment out of your pattern imprinted concrete patio. It is certainly a far cry from the sun loungers and BBQ’ed food of summer! But this needn’t be the case. You just need to do a bit of planning beforehand, and get some nice features in place that will shine through the winter.
Your choice of surrounding winter plants is the most important. Winter flowering pansies are a great choice for your pots, as they will bloom with beautiful bright coloured spotty flowers from winter until early June. Other good choices for winter are winter flowering heather, Camellias, Snowdrops, Japanese pieris, Winterhazel and Wintersweet. You should try combining your pretty flowers with some greenery for added texture, such as ornamental cabbages and kale, or an evergreen such as winter box.
We’d suggest that you get some nice big pots to put your winter displays in. Give them a base of pebbles or broken pottery to provide good drainage, and fill them up with fresh soil and a nice dose of fresh compost. Get everything planted in Autumn so that they are thriving by the time Jack Frost moves in.
Lastly, how about planting a good choice of trees nearby, to mingle in nicely with the flowers and other winter plants? Prunus Serrula is a good choice, as it gives mahogany coloured bark and cherry blossom in the spring.
16th September 2011
There is something really magical about water – it embodies life and purity, exudes natural beauty and – placed correctly – draws attention from onlookers as a central feature of any scene. A water feature is therefore ideal for inclusion in your home exterior, and will nicely complement a pattern imprinted concrete patio.
But what works best? There is of course the option of building an integrated water feature along the lines of a pond or waterfall. This works great if you have a lot of time and money to spend for remoulding your exterior look, and your desired water feature and patio work well alongside one another. If you do go down this route, we can help you make choices for both the patio and water feature that will come together as a single great design.
If you don’t have the money and time for such major work, then there are still a lot of options you can consider. How about a self-contained unit? You can get something relatively inexpensive in stone, wood, terracotta, bamboo or metal – or a combination of these. The options are endless – fountains, statues, birdbaths, ponds, bubble features, vases, spheres and more can all be employed along with water to enhance your patio! If a constant flow is required, you can use a pump to keep the water running through the system. Light and water can also be a great combination too – how about some solar lamps to add some shine?
To get inspiration and ideas, get in touch with us, and look at some sites such as www.1000waterfeatures.co.uk.
4th September 2011
You’ve got your pattern imprinted concrete driveway installed, and it looks great. Your garden now looks like a solid design that hangs together well. The next stage of course is to accessorise your patio, but what do you pick? To help you out, this article lists some of our favourite items.
Some furniture is always a good idea, and there are many suitable options to choose from, whether you want to sit down for dinner, or lie down for sun. A smaller bistro set is a good idea if you want to sit round and eat but have limited space, or you can go for a larger dining table and chairs. If relaxation is the plan, then there are many fabulously comfortable sun loungers available! Go for an adjustable one with really comfy cushions, and for a real touch of bliss, you might also want to go for a large parasol for some shade, and a mounted ice bucket to keep your bubbly cool. In terms of materials, we’d advise against the old fashioned white plastic set – it may be cheap and hardy, but it sure looks tacky. How about a nice stained wood set, or metal, or a wicker/metal combination with a glass table top?
If you have money to spend and want a really cool unique look, you should pass by the conventional stock, and go for something really cool, like this Cupid Patio Furniture.
A BBQ is always a nice idea too, and rather than just having a cheap B & Q unit, why not go for building in a nice brick BBQ unit? Or you could go for a nice gas-powered unit to save on mess, John Lewis have a good example. The really extravagant among you could again step it up a level, and go for something like Alpina’s Mobile Beer Bar.
Lighting is also a major consideration. Why not go for some cool solar lights, which power up during the day and then give a soothing glow at night? The Garden Lighting Shop has some great ideas.
All the ideas so far are quite conventional, so as a last step, when you’ve got all the essentials down, why not finish off your patio with a more outlandish feature. A fountain perhaps, or a fire pit, or a Tiki hut? How about a giant ornate statue to give your patio that ancient Incan temple flourish?
2nd September 2011
Every good patio needs a beautiful border design to complement it. The right border will provide a calming, colourful and beautifully scented backdrop to your pattern-imprinted concrete patio, for you to enjoy when sitting to read outside or enjoy a BBQ with the family. A well laid out border can also be used to section off patio areas, provide privacy and even provide an area for growing patio fruit, vegetables and fresh herbs.
Look for a border that makes use of different levels. A stacked series of raised or built beds can look very attractive, with ferns, creepers and heavy blossoms cascading downwards to create a waterfall effect. It will encourage a feeling of space and depth, allowing the eye to travel up and down, rather than simply across a flat space.
Rockeries are good for courtyard patios, and plants suited to drier soils will be easy to maintain here. Try mixing pansies and violas with alpine strawberries and colourful daisies. Wildflowers are also a beautiful option, and you can buy ready-made seed mixes to scatter onto prepared soil.
Why not make use too of containers on your patio, to grow some fruit and vegetables? Tumbling tomato varieties are great on a high planter. Berry canes can be trained up from large containers, to climb a trellis against a wall. Herbs can be grown in small pots or containers on windowsills or ledges. Try growing peppers in growbags, and potatoes in deep portable potato sacks – these take up surprisingly little space, but will help you attain your Five a Day on the patio alone!
26th August 2011