One of the first considerations when designing a patio is what to pave with. Pavers, the individually shaped stones or tiles used for paving, come in a number of materials, each with different aesthetics and physical traits. Moreover, there are different techniques for laying pavers, and additional design details to consider. As you plan your outdoor space, consult with patio construction professionals on the options given to you.
Broadly, pavers are composed of manufactured or natural stone. The former includes brick – usually clay – and concrete. Both are inexpensive and low maintenance options; brick has an advantage in being weather and slip resistant, while concrete is incredibly durable. The aesthetic choices are relatively slim, though, as they are more strictly geometric and concrete pavers may not hold pigments well.
Natural stone comes in a wide variety for patio construction. Common paver choices are slate, bluestone, flagstone, travertine, or cobblestone. While more expensive due to requiring more care in installation, these pavers are all very durable as well, and the stones can be more irregularly shaped to break away from plainer layouts. Be mindful of nearby water features, since natural stone can be more slippery when wet.
Consider additions to the paving like coping or cladding. Coping, the edge or cap at the perimeter of a paved area, not only provides a pleasant accent to the walkway or patio but also can be functional in diverting water away in rain or when near a pool. Cladding, a layer of a separate material, gives some aesthetic freedom to your design, especially when working with brick or concrete.
Visualizing all these options can be overwhelming; consulting patio construction professionals can help. Masoners will provide examples of pavers and of past projects to help seed ideas for your new patio. The contractor can also lay out guidelines for effective use of the space, be it for high-traffic walkways, poolsides, or social gathering spots. From start to finish, they will help make your patio come to life.