Sensibility and senses Produce a Melbourne Patio Magical

Equipped with a blank slate at the rear of their residence, Australian architects Dominic and Marie Bagnato chose to make an outdoor wonderland for their family. Having a playful and entertaining area was significant with two children in your home, but they wanted a calm spot adults could enjoy, too. Dividing up the area by activity, using plants that are appealing to all five senses and getting creative with storage and seating solutions created a lavish space that retains both kids and grown-ups in mind.

Patio at a Glance
Who lives here: Dominic and Marie Bagnato and their two children
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Size: 580 square feet
Price: $31,000

Bagnato Architects

The living room opens out to the Bagnatos’ 22-foot-wide patio. Together with the children in your mind, they divide the area with a paved area for riding bicycles along with a small grassy spot for playing.

They constructed 9-foot-high fences on each side of the patio for more privacy. “We didn’t want the fences to be all the same, so we created themes,” says Dominic. The fence on the right is lined with a horizontal pattern of Merbau timber from Southeast Asia.

Bagnato Architects

The opposite wall is coated with layers of cement planks cut at a random pattern. Dominic completed himself. The paint includes iron fiber that reacts to an acid coat; it’s applied in layers. Only after he finished painting, a rainstorm hit, providing the remedy extra wear.

The Bagnatos incorporated plants that smell, taste, look or texture interesting for their children to encounter. Four kinds of fruit trees, pots full of planters and blossoms with succulents pleasure the senses.

Bagnato Architects

“We sought to make a series of outdoor spaces for our family to enjoy, like you would plan the interior of your house,” Dominic says.

Low planter-box walls at several heights make more seating for kids and adults — pleasant to have around the dining room. A complete barbecue cooktop is hidden on a stage behind the stacked stone wall. Here the adults can cook dinner and watch over the kids. A garage with direct access to a rear road sits just behind the grill. Five 9-foot-tall pine posts help differentiate the garage area from the entertaining zone.

Bagnato Architects

The patio extends down the side of the house, finishing at a red lime-wash-painted wall. The characteristic wall highlights a DIY garden ornament that’s visible from inside the house. Wall lighting makes the garden texture magical at night.

Bagnato Architects

Above the patio an extra room in addition to the garage functions as an office and press room. It has a crystal clear view of the house out of its Juliette balcony. On top of that, it’s accessed from the ground by a pull-down ladder, giving it a playful feel.

Have you generated an wonderful outdoor room? We would really like to find a photograph below!

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12 Ways to Warm Up Your Patio

If there’s one tough point to say goodbye to in the end of summer, it’s outdoor entertaining on the terrace. However, with certain additions, there’s hope for extending your patio usage into late autumn. Some require a larger investment like a roof or heat lamps, others a kinder on the pocket, like candles. Or, if you reside in a warmer climate, a couple of design tricks for “warming up” your terrace for the season also have been included in the following ideabook. Here is to patios no matter weather!

Elizabeth Dinkel

Add a rooftop. Whether you choose a permanent, yearlong structure or a seasonal canopy, a roof over the terrace will help include warmth in the warmer months. If you are able, wire it with lighting to prepare it for fall’s sooner setting sunlight.

Brian Watford Interiors

If you do add a roof, circle it with curtains. You can easily block a breeze once it becomes overly cold, plus, visually, their addition will present your covered terrace a tropical cabana feel.

Build a fireplace. This one is quite obvious, and will alter the way you experience your terrace.

Kirkpatrick Design

If a fireplace is too big an investment, or your terrace just does not have room, light each seating area separately with small, portable candles. You will benefit from comparable warm lighting without shelling out big bucks.

Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture

With all the cool gadgets nowadays, you can also create a small firepit directly in your terrace table. Just be careful when reaching for the salt!

Straight Line Landscape

Heating lamps can heat a substantial area, helping your whole patio stay cozy despite dipping temperatures.

Kaufman Homes, Inc..

If standing heat lamps seem to big and daunting, consider a more discrete version, similar to this heater installed in the ceiling.

DuChateau Floors

Though you’d never know from just taking a look at the picture, these wooden floors are heated. Engineered flooring can work wonders for a terrace, keeping your feet and space additional snug.

Baysix Design

If you are one of the lucky ones who resides in a warmer climate, you may not have to worry considerably about cold temperatures invading your terrace. However, you may wish to visually warm up your space for the winter season. Peppering your patio furniture with blankets and cushions can allow it to look extra cozy.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

In dryer climates, think about adding a rug under your furniture, particularly for stone floors, which is cooler. The carpet is going to likely more comfortable on bare feet and floor the appearance as a whole.


Warm up your furniture with upholstered cushions. Blogger Cococozy, who made this terrace, upholstered the cushions in heavy-handed linen backed with Sunbrella to defy the rain and snow of cooler months (she leaves her cushions out all year).

Hint: Cococozy suggests propping outdoor cushions in their sides when not in use: If it rains or snows, the water tends to drain out instead of build up inside the pillow.

Huettl Landscape Architecture

Texture adds visual heat. I really like the smart use of tall grasses facing the cement wall.

Add texture through tablescapes and mantle decorations. Even the look of rattan furniture can help to heat up the room.

Busybee Design

This terrace has it all going on: comfy cushions, a cozy rug, throw pillows galore and plenty of hot texture.

CG&S Design-Build

Of course, the greatest addition to some “collapse” patio? A hot tub. The perfect spot to unwind, star gaze and enjoy a cool, winter evening.

More: Read ideas for outdoor fireplaces

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