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Wednesday, 16 December 2015 00:21

Picture Perfect

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Picture Perfect

As Australian lifestyles get busier, homeowners are starting to look for ways to make their outdoor living areas easier to maintain. The good news is, styling an aesthetically appealing outdoor space that requires minimal maintenance is now easier than ever, writes April Davis.

The Australian real estate industry has become dominated by small blocks that have less outdoor space than in the past. This has encouraged many young couples and families to find new ways to liven up their backyards, and what better way than opting for new and unique paving designs? Choosing to pave your backyard not only offers aesthetic appeal, but also acts as a long-lasting structural feature that has limitless options in regard to size and colour.

Paving can also be a good choice for families who regularly entertain, because it allows their indoor and outdoor living areas to seamlessly flow together, creating a picture-perfect entertaining area that stands the test of time. The right paving for your home can complement your existing structures and become an integral part of your landscape design.

If you want a hassle-free backyard that looks good and accommodates the restrictions of a smaller space, paving might be the best option to create extra-appeal. Here, Pool + Outdoor Renovations speaks to Ineke Clark, marketing and sales manager at Anston Architectural, to discover why paving your outdoor area can create a functional outdoor space that’s easy to maintain.


There are plenty of paving options available for homeowners who choose to landscape their outdoor area. As Clark explains, pavers can be man-made or natural stone, however, with both these options, it is important not to be tempted with the cheaper, low-quality brands.

“Cheaper imported products can vary greatly in quality, price and consistency. In particular, the inconsistency in sizing of cheaper products can greatly affect the installation costs, or can result in costly rectification work. There are also huge environmental impacts when importing products from overseas by the container load.”

“In comparison, Australian man-made products and Australian natural stone are highly regarded for their quality and consistency. Premium products such as these have the advantage of being consistent in colour, texture and dimension, which makes them easier to install and maintain. They also add to the longevity and durability of your outdoor area, therefore, increasing its value,” says Clark.

One of the biggest benefits of outdoor paving is its array of colour options. Pavers can range in colour from earthy tones to more contemporary shades that will look great with modern landscaping.

When choosing the colour of your pavers, you should always consider the colour palette of your area’s surrounding landscape, to ensure the pavers will complement the rest of your home and outdoor area.

Homeowners can also opt for a more exposed aggregate look, which is traditionally used for commercial streetscapes, but also works well as a feature in residential spaces.


Before you choose your paving, ease of maintenance, such as cleaning and sealing should be considered. To get the long life they’re designed for, pavers do occasionally require some looking after.

“It is imperative that the cleaning and sealing process is carried-out in the right way, preferably by an expert. It is important that homeowners seek professional advice on what product will best suit [their] outdoor space, from both a design and practicality perspective,” says Clark.

Clark also explains that choosing the right pavers comes down to your site conditions and personal taste. In Clark’s experience, “customers select [pavers] for the following reasons: aesthetic appeal, consistency, quality, sustainability and flexibility”.

With the right make and design, pavers can help to create an outdoor room that’s perfect for leisure and entertaining, and establishes a seamless integration between your indoor and outdoor space.

Remember that you’re only limited by your creativity and companies such as Anston Architectural provide plenty of options to customise the colour, shape and make of your pavers in order to enhance your outdoor landscape.


Many paving companies offer both Australian-made and imported products, however, Clark believes that Australian-made products are the better choice.

“Opting for an Australian product over an international import cuts down on the environmental impact of your purchase and supports the local industry,” says Clark.


It can be difficult deciding on what sort of finish you need to complement your outdoor living space. Depending on the condition and size of your land, any outdoor finishing option will potentially have its own advantages and disadvantages.

Paving may be the right choice if you want a low- maintenance and functional outdoor space, as you won’t need to stress about mowing the lawn every other weekend, or replacing pine bark after a nasty storm.

Paving can also be the right choice for those who work long hours and want to relax, and have a barbecue with family and friends on the weekend. Additionally, for those who have pets, paving will eliminate the problem of them digging in your backyard.

Buying a house on a small block does not mean you have to sacrifice on an active lifestyle spent outdoors. Ultimately, designing and customising your outdoor space with pavers can help to create a functional area for entertaining and relaxing. Either way, there is an abundance of colour, style and material that will suit you.


Read 129586 times Last modified on Thursday, 17 December 2015 00:06