The title image features Umbriano field pavers in Summer Wheat and Series in Onyx Black.
If the many features in your landscape are going to make the new outdoor living space seem cramped, you can create the illusion of more space by your choice of patio pavers. Here’s a handy guide to how patio pavers can make an outdoor living space spacious in Brick, NJ.
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Throw out any assumption that you must use small pavers in small spaces and large pavers in large spaces. Large pavers visually open up small spaces because joint lines create visual breaks, and removing as many joint lines as possible (and using jointing sand that’s as close to the color of the pavers as possible) can make the space feel larger.
That’s not to say you must use large pavers. Clever use of smaller pavers can also visually expand the space. Brussels Block pavers from Unilock are available in three sizes that can be laid in an easygoing ashlar pattern. The weathered finish and five earthy colors also help to blend the pavers into the surroundings to give the illusion of more space.
Laying pavers perpendicular to the house also creates visual borders. Your eye can see exactly where the patio ends—and it’s an abrupt stop. What you can do instead is lay square pavers at a 45-degree angle to the house. As your eye is drawn to where the corners meet, this visually elongates each paver and makes the space feel more spacious. The 24” x 24” Skyline paver from Unilock (available in two colors) can be perfect for small spaces that need modern flair.
Linear laying patterns also make your patio appear smaller. A running bond pattern draws the eye very quickly (along a visual highway) to the end. Instead, consider a more random laying pattern such as ashlar. This pattern looks random (even though it isn’t) and ensures that straight lines never go further than two to four pavers to prevent a linear look. The use of three random size pavers contributes to the random appearance and helps keep the eye in the space to emphasize the materials. Beacon Hill Flagstone pavers from Unilock feature a subtle texture inspired by natural cut flagstone. This paver is available in a random bundle of three moderately sized pavers ideal for creating an ashlar pattern.
See if your patio can be designed to have curves where it meets the landscape. This helps prevent the feeling of sitting in a box, and it encourages the eye to slow down and meander. The longer the eye takes to cross a space, the larger the space will feel. Mattoni pavers from Unilock can be perfect for curved patios thanks to their long, slender proportions and natural colors that help blend the patio into the surroundings.
Use Colors Wisely
Conventional wisdom says that light colors contribute to a feeling of spaciousness, and dark colors make a space feel smaller. However, you have to put colors into context. If your patio uses light pavers and it’s set in a densely wooded spot, the contrast between the patio and the surrounding vegetation actually shrinks the patio visually. To make the patio feel larger, use colors that help it blend into the landscape and create a less defined border. Make a sleek contemporary patio look larger using modern patio pavers such as Umbriano. The French Grey color avoids stark contrasts, and it’s a wonderful neutral that works with many architectural styles.