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When most homeowners think of a pergola, a standard, slatted backyard shade structure with open sides comes to mind.  Pergolas, however, are an extremely versatile outdoor addition and can be planned, built or altered to suit any home or garden.

Fan Shaped Pergola with Round Columns by Archadeck

Fan Shaped Pergola with Round Columns by Archadeck

Pergolas can be constructed from natural wood or man-made synthetic materials and designed as an attachment to your home or as an entirely separate, free-standing unit.

A pergola might be a small and unobtrusive addition to a secluded garden getaway or a welcoming, grand and impressive gateway to your home’s front door entryway.

And combined with a deck, patio or other outdoor space, pergolas make an aesthetic impact while providing shade, shelter and a sense of privacy too. Read the rest of this entry »

Most folks think of an outdoor room as a space that is physically enclosed like a sunroom or a screened porch.

Large Deck with Elaborate Deck Board Pattern by Archadeck

Large Deck with Partial Roof Cover and Elaborate Floor Board Pattern by Archadeck

But did you know that you can designate different ‘outdoor rooms’ with a deck floor pattern as well?

Next, top off your deck with a roof, pergola or canopy.

VOILA, you have an outdoor room at a fraction of the cost of a sunroom or enclosed porch.

So what types of surface board designs are best for a deck?

Well, ‘it depends’ because possibilities and price-points abound. Read the rest of this entry »

Covered Outdoor Space by Archadeck

Covered Outdoor Space by Archadeck

It’s time to bring the man cave above ground, especially now that football season is here.

There’s nothing better than watching the big-game with family, friends, food and drink… outside!

And here’s how to make it enjoyable with an outdoor space.

The Right Size

When it comes to designing an outdoor space, entertaining is a hot-topic.  And if hosting get-togethers is important to you, then first consider the number of folks on your typical guest list and try to tailor the space to fit that purpose.

But that’s not all.  There are many other determining factors.

Neighborhood – For the best value, choose a project design that’s consistent with your home and the neighborhood.

Elevated Deck with Bar and Hot Tub by Archadeck

Elevated Deck with Bar and Hot Tub by Archadeck

Think of the Goldilocks principle — not too large, not too small, just right.  Build large enough for your needs but don’t go overboard.

Home and lot – How will the layout fit-in with your existing house?

You’ll want pleasing proportions, efficient traffic patterns and seamless integration with the grade of your lot, the existing trees or other landscaping.

Attached or detached – How will an outdoor space attach to the house, if at all?  How do you want it to look, visually?  And can your vision be  accomplished structurally?

Architecture technicalities or constraints – Getting permits and complying with local building codes will influence floors, rails, stairs, roof, joists, beams and footings.  This, in turn, might influence design and construction. Read the rest of this entry »

When it comes to an outdoor living space, elevated decks are often the best design choice for many types of homes and lots.

Elevated Decks by Archadeck

Elevated Decks by Archadeck

Decks are, hands down, the best structure for any property with:

  • multiple stories
  • a walk-out lower level
  • or a sloping lot

But why?

A deck, unlike a patio, can adjoin divergent planes.

Decks can be built to go ‘up, down, over, under and around’.

So if your home’s design and landscape necessitate an elevated deck, what’s the best way to manage the leftover space underneath?

Essentially, there are four options for the space beneath:  an open area with groundcover, enclosed storage area, underdecking for an open outdoor room, underdecking for a screened-in room. Read the rest of this entry »

'Outdoor Room' with Levels, Lattice and Roof by Archadeck

Outdoor Room with Deck Levels, Roof and Lattice Privacy Screen by Archadeck

Think about it.

Before ‘outdoor living spaces’ became a popular trend, folks created impromptu ‘outdoor rooms’ in all sorts of ways.

A blanket spread-out for a picnic, a tent for backyard camping or a fort constructed with sheets draped over tree branches simulated the concept.

Everybody loves an outdoor room.

They’re fun!

Beyond ‘fun,’ any outdoor room is functional too by adding usable square footage to your home and backyard.

Outdoor Dining Room, Deck Design by Archadeck

Deck Design by Archadeck

It might sounds cliché, but in today’s market this type of home improvement will bring real dollar-value to your property.

The precise return-on-investment may vary by city or neighborhood but generally speaking, homes with an outdoor space are in-demand.

So now you may be wondering, “OK.  How do I actually add an outdoor room?”

The honest answer is, there are a lot of ways and we’ve outlined five specific strategies for your consideration right here.

And no matter if you can budget for a large-scale project or just want to begin by dressing-up an existing patio, an outdoor room can be in your future.

Pergolas create an outdoor room

If you have an existing deck or patio, consider a pergola addition.  Pergolas create significant shade and add a sense of enclosure too; yet, they cost less than a solid roof structure.  A pergola might be a great way to start.

Pergola for Backyard Patio by Archadeck, St. Louis Mo

Pergola for Backyard Patio by Archadeck, St. Louis Mo

Add stylish weather-proof furniture for comfortable seating or dining and VOILA, you have a bona fide outdoor room.

Go a step further and add an overhead canopy or hanging plants to supplement shade and intimacy.

Hang an outdoor mirror for depth and dimension.  Use benches as borders.  And don’t forget lighting.

Portable lanterns, string globe lights or an installed overhead light-fixture with a fan will work too. Read the rest of this entry »

Open and Screened In Deck by Archadeck

Open and Screened In Deck by Archadeck

When it comes to adding a custom outdoor space to your property, the absolute best design is one created for exactly how you want to live.

So if you’re itching to transform an ‘old-school’ backyard with a new trendy space that fits your lifestyle, a screened in deck or screened patio enclosure may be just the ticket.

But a backyard transformation doesn’t have to break the bank.

At Archadeck, we have some customers who prefer to ‘keep things simple’ and uncomplicated.

Cedar Screened Room over Patio, St. Louis Mo, by Archadeck

Cedar Screened Room over Patio, St. Louis Mo, by Archadeck

These folks want a minimalist structure with a roof and screens to provide a nice spot to sit in the shade, out-of-doors and away from insects.

Others customers prefer ‘the total package’, opting for a quasi-outdoor space designed and built with plenty of bells and whistles to re-create the same creature comforts of any indoor space — plush furniture, outdoor rugs, electrical access, cooling or heating devices, televisions and sound systems.

Either way, a reputable and knowledgeable contractor can help you develop a plan, perfect for your family. Read the rest of this entry »


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