If you are putting in a new patio, the first design consideration will be what type of paving material to use for the patio itself. There are a few options available for you to choose from.
Decking style patios are made of either wood or a wood-look vinyl product such as PEX. This option provides a very natural look that will blend into your landscaping seamlessly. Decking options are often used when the patio must be elevated somewhat, such as on split levels and homes with basements. With a wood deck patio, you have some freedom in the color, as you can stain or paint the deck whenever you desire. Of course, there will also be some maintenance due to this need to paint.
Pavers and brick
Pavers and brick are one of the most popular options for several reasons. They are simple and quick to install, even if you DIY the patio. There is also a huge range of options available to help you create a unique design to match your home and landscaping. You can use classic red brick, understated flagstones, or even decorative pavers in a range of colors or with stamped designs. Both the pavers you choose as well as the layout pattern help you create a patio design you will love.
Concrete patios are durable and long-lasting. You don't have to go with utilitarian plain gray concrete, either. Concrete can be died a variety of colors and stamped with patterns and designs so that it mimics any look you like. Aggregate tops are also a popular option for patios. For these, decorate stones or gravel are pressed into the surface of the concrete and then sealed into place. This provides the look of a gravel or stone patio without loose material.
The simplest and least expensive option is a simple gravel patio. For this patio, all that is needed is the installation of a base to prevent weed incursion, and an edging material to prevent the gravel from straying from the patio area. Then gravel in the color you like is used to fill in the prepared area. Gravel patios are better suited for small areas, such as island patios with just a bench or small bistro table. Larger versions can be difficult to maintain and they are hard to walk on for any great distance.
Contact a patio designer for more help when it comes to choosing the perfect material for your patio.