Libby Smoot, February 13, 2015
Bringing the Indoors Out
Extending the style, comfort and function of indoor spaces to the outdoors remains a top priority for homeowners who are integrating kitchens, dining nooks and fire features on their decks. Similarly, demand is up for integrated benches accented with colorful cushions and pillows, fashionable storage compartments and lighting, along with accessories such as ornamental post caps and railing with decorative balusters similar to those traditionally found inside the home.
“There’s a big push right now toward creating a seamless transition from indoor to outdoor spaces,” says Andrew York, a TrexPro deck builder with ProDeck Construction in San Diego. “For example, we’ve seen increased demand for large folding doors, which allow for a dramatic but continuous transition from the inside to the outside of the home.”
Designing Outside the Box
Regardless of the size of the outdoor space – or budget – homeowners say they no longer feel confined to a basic squared-off deck or boring slab patio. Remodelers and architects report increased interest from customers in decks with multiple levels, curves, cantilevers, pergolas and even walls to create three-dimensional interest and define functional areas.
“Today’s homeowners are coming into the deck planning and building process more informed than ever before,” says Adam Zambanini, vice president of marketing for Trex. “Inspired by neighbors, home improvement shows and social media channels like Pinterest and Houzz, they have very specific ideas of the design features they want and are interested in custom options that will allow them to truly personalize their projects.”
Recreating the look of the tropics is cited as a top outdoor design trend. From New England to Southern California, integrating materials that evoke an exotic island getaway are all the rage. From tiki torches, cabanas and waterfalls to deck boards that feature warm colors and variegated streaking inspired by tropical hardwoods, these features deliver the feel of an exotic paradise without having to leave home.
“For our new South Carolina vacation home, we wanted everything to blend in with the natural elements of the ocean-side surroundings,” notes Lydia Mondavi of the Mondavi wine family and co-founder of the Mondavi Home Collection. Trex Transcend decking in Island Mist was the perfect choice for their decking “because it looks like driftwood – the color blends into the environment and is very natural looking,” she says. “It delivers a rich, exotic aesthetic without the maintenance or environmental impact of using a true tropical hardwood.”
High Performance. Low Maintenance
While aesthetics drive many deck-building decisions, performance remains top of mind. When planning their deck builds, one of the main priorities for homeowners is materials that allow them to spend more time enjoying their outdoor living space rather than maintaining it.
This motivation has fueled continued innovation and popularity of composite decking and railing. Unlike wood, high-performance wood alternatives resist fading, staining, scratching and mold – and they won’t rot, warp, crack or splinter. Upkeep is hassle-free with no sanding, staining or painting required, and food and drink spills wash off easily with just soap and water.
Made from reclaimed and 95% recycled materials, Trex composite decking also is environmentally friendly, making it an ideal choice for today’s increasingly eco-conscious consumers.
For more examples of Trex outdoor living settings featuring this year’s top trends, visit our Inspiration Gallery.
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