• The Art of Exterior Design

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    Elaine Johnson Landscape Design
    Employing the Art of Design and the Science of Horticulture , I strive to create gardens for my clients of lasting integrity and beauty. I believe that the role of the designer is to create and bring forward the beauty that inspires us.
    Elaine Johnson Landscape Design

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    By Elaine Johnson

    Cape Codders love spending time outdoors, and more people are treating outdoor spaces on their properties as true extensions of their homes, turning porches, pools,patios, decks, and gardens into outdoor living spaces that serve the same functions as indoor rooms.

    Homeowners want to create a place in their backyard that extends their living space and capitalizes on all the outdoors has to offer, whether it’s relaxing by the pool, playing a game of volleyball with the kids, or hosting an al fresco dinner party on the patio.

    The best of these living spaces breaks down the barriers between indoor and outdoor formal and casual. Outdoor spaces have become even more full, complex, and inviting.
    Walls seem to disappear and interiors flow effortlessly to the outside to spaces that enhance, reward and rejuvenate.

    These rooms can be embellished with an ever-growing selection of products that define our tastes and serve the needs of our personal life styles.

    “Most of us have the confidence to improve the inside of our homes with a fresh coat
    of paint, new rugs, furniture, and fixtures. But when it comes to the outside of our most
    prized possession, we don’t know where to start,” says Julie Meservey in her book, Home Outside: Creating the Landscape You Love.

    Begin the design process by defining the specifics of the space you wish to transform. Like our interiors, outdoor rooms are defined by entryways, walls, floors and ceilings. Whether a secluded bower or an expansive terrace or deck, attention to structural elements will give the room definition and and a sense of intimacy. ”

    Among some of most popular additions today include all-weather furniture for dining and relaxing. Your choices will reflect your decorating taste, color preference and use.

    Outdoor kitchens can be designed for ease of meal preparation and create the “hub” for entertaining. Fire pits have become very popular and extend the use of your outdoor room for enjoyment on cooler nights.

    Exterior ambient lighting adds that special aura well after dark and beautiful lanterns illuminate key areas. High tech has allowed sound systems that are remotely controlled and integrated with the system inside. Containers, sculpture and other forms of garden art further embellish much like the objets d’ art do inside your home. ”

    Take the time to lay out your room to scale by measuring and diagraming key features.
    Make notes on exposure, sun location, existing features that will remain and those that can be eliminated.

    Creating a “mood board” is a fun way to collect ideas and conceptualize your outdoor room. If you decide to seek out professional help in planning your dream room, seek out designers with experience in all aspects of exterior design and construction.

    This may save you from making costly mistakes and impetuous purchases. Surround yourself with the things you love.

    Sit back, kick off your shoes and ENJOY. Please contact me at emj19@mac.com

    July 14, 2014