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Popular structures to complement any deck, patio or garden include pergolas, arbors and trellis’.

The terms can be confusing because they’re sometimes used incorrectly or interchangeably.  And from time-to-time the structures ARE similar (or combined) and difficult to distinguish.

Patio Pergola with Privacy Trellis by Archadeck

Patio Pergola with Privacy Trellis by Archadeck

Even though there’s structural and functional overlap, technically speaking there’s a real difference between the three.

So today, let’s define, in words and pictures, an arbor, a trellis and a pergola. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ready to add a deck to your home and backyard?  Want to go beyond a basic ‘builder-grade’ deck without excessive costs and complicated construction? You can you know!

Custom Deck Designs by Archadeck

Custom Deck Designs by Archadeck

Jazzing-up an otherwise run-of-the-mill deck design is on the wish-list of most every homeowner.

Customization can be accomplished with simple solutions such as lights, levels and landscaping as well as privacy and protection.

Whether you want to use your deck for peace-and-quiet-time or you’re ready to get-the-party-started, by incorporating one or more of these details, your project will be well-equipped. Read the rest of this entry »

In our recent post, The 5 Most Popular Deck Designed Explained, we reviewed five design categories — platform, raised, multi-level, two story and screened-in decks.  Today, let’s look more closely at the platform deck.

Wooden Platform Decks by Archadeck

Wooden Platform Decks by Archadeck

What exactly is a platform deck?

Well, a platform deck is a rather simple structure that’s designed and built just a few inches off the ground.  It is also referred to as a grade-level, ground-level, or low-level deck; patio deck or floating deck.  Whichever label you use, the hallmark of this design is a deck that’s raised, ever-so-slightly, creating a structure to bridge-the-gap between your home and your backyard.

Low-to-Grade Hardwood Deck with a Level Change by  Archadeck

Low-to-Grade Hardwood Deck with a Level Change by Archadeck

As either a detached or attached structure to your home, this deck — though less complicated structurally when compared to an elevated deck — is ideal for customization.  And here are five easy tips for a fabulous platform deck. Read the rest of this entry »

As a contractor, we spend a great deal of time with homeowners talking about large concepts for the overall design of a new deck, screened porch or other outdoor space.  These discussions involve topics such as layout, size, building materials, colors, function and flow.

Deck with Built In Lighting by Archadeck

Deck with Built In Lighting by Archadeck

But smaller design details such as lighting, are really important too.

And the best lighting will illuminate your whole deck including the steps and the rails to boost its style, safety and usage.

So as summer fades away and the days become shorter lighting is a way to invite visitors outside, extending the use of your outdoor space into the latter parts of the year.

But wait.

There are a few more details because outdoor lighting fixtures are available in various shapes, sizes, forms, shades and finishes; however, the most common models include: Read the rest of this entry »

Custom Deck with Amenities by Archadeck

Custom Deck with Amenities by Archadeck

In our earlier post, “Awesome Deck Accessories You May Not Know About” we discussed ways in which contractors add custom detail to a deck project with floor board pattern, inlays, material/color combos and trimmed-out deck posts, beams or stairs.

But once your contractor wraps-up the building phase, it’s time for you to finish-out the space to best suit your lifestyle.

So to help out, we’ve gathered some tips from around town (and around the web) for more awesome deck accents and accessories with creative comfort, cutting-edge convenience and ultimately, your contentment in mind.

Creative Comfort

Pottery Barn Saybrook Collection of Outdoor Furniture

Pottery Barn Saybrook Collection of Outdoor Furniture

Comfortable, eye-catching deck furniture is probably the first thing you’ll want to add to your new ‘outdoor room’.  Furniture will set the stage for relaxing, dining, entertaining or conversation.

With today’s selection of fashionable weatherproof furniture, your ‘inner-exterior-decorator’ can shop until you find your ideal, outdoor-living groove.

From high-end specialty shops to online or big-box retailers, options are abundant.  But don’t be afraid to get creative and look beyond conventional furniture ‘sets’.  Hit your local flea market or garage sale to mix-things-up, have fun and save a little moolah too.

And for the tech-savvy consumer, look to Pinterest for inspiration!

No matter where you shop, be sure to let the overriding style of your home and your budget be your guide. Read the rest of this entry »

New TimberTech Legacy Decking shown in Tigerwood, photo by TimberTech

New Earthwood Evolutions Legacy Line in Tigerwood, photo by TimberTech

In the world of outdoor living, there are always — always! — cool new products that add plenty of pizzazz to a deck or other structure.

So when it comes to creating a project that’s not only functional but has great-looks too, design details and accessories make all the difference.

Absolutely – all the difference!

And an experienced contractor will help you ‘think outside the box’ when it comes to the accessories that will ‘work’ — from both a construction standpoint and from an ‘Oh Wow’ standpoint.

So just don’t forget those oh-so-important ‘finishing’ details.

Read the rest of this entry »

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