Good Spin on 2014 Outdoor Trends

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The outdoors is to a house as shoes are to a person.  Do you want to know what a person is like, look at their shoes, it can tell you a great deal.  Conversely, do you want to know what a person is like, look at their front or back yard and you’ll get a good feel for who they are and what they’re like.  This is a grand generalization, but it’s a tried and tested rule of thumb.

Landscape architects who specialize in residential design in the U.S. were asked to rate the expected popularity of a variety of residential outdoor design elements in 2014. The category of gardens and landscaped spaces received a 94.2 percent rating as somewhat or very popular. Outdoor living spaces, defined as kitchens and entertainment spaces, were second most popular at 92 percent.

In terms of Outdoor Living, the landscape architects surveyed, 94.2 percent expect lighting to be a highly in demand feature. Lighting can showcase the beauty of particular plants or structural elements by literally shining a spotlight on them and allow continued use of the space both day and night. Lighting also improves safety, both from injury when walk ways are well lit, and from crime as a well-lit property is generally an undesirable target.

Other popular features include seating and dining areas, fire pits and fireplaces, and grills with 97.7 percent, 95.4 percent, and 94.3 percent respectively of the respondents rating them as popular or somewhat popular. We’re seeing a lot of this trend of moving entertaining outdoors. Dining al fresco can be anything from a casual backyard barbecue with a bunch of hot dogs and hamburgers to a formal sit down dinner of several courses at a long table lit by candles as the sun goes down. In either case the party can then move to the fire pit for drinks, conversation, and of course s’mores! Other Trends include, but not limited to:

Gardens and landscaped spaces.

When it comes to use of space, gardens and landscaped spaces are expected to be the most popular, with outdoor living spaces — outdoor kitchens and entertainment spaces — coming in second, and outdoor recreation coming in third.

Outdoor lighting.

Demand for outdoor lighting solutions is rising as homeowners seek to extend enjoyment of their outdoor living areas into the night. Good lighting is necessary for safety, as well as to create ambiance. Outdoor lighting can be integrated into deck posts and stairs, added to pathways, and set on timers to conserve energy.

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Terraces, patios and decks.

Landscape structures add architectural interest and are the foundation of many outdoor living areas. Terraces, patios and decks in particular, are garnering the most interest this year, followed by fencing, pergolas and decks.

Decorative water elements.

Traditional swimming pools and spas remain popular, but this year’s trend leans towards decorative water elements, including waterfalls, ornamental pools, splash pools, grottos and water runnels or bubblers.

Let us know which trends you’re most interested in by contacting us today at Plumbtile.com.

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