How to Make a Patio
You probably think of a patio as a portion of the garden covered with paving stones instead of grass or flowers. Don't be that guy! That guy is missing out on so much and he's kind of bland. Do you want to be bland? Of course not, and neither does your patio for that matter. It can be a wonderful place, one where you can go and enjoy a refreshing beer after a long day of hard work or read a book while you relax in a comfy chair. If these things sound too mellow for your taste, heck you can turn it up a notch and make a grill or even play with your kids if the unpaved area is wet or muddy. The things you can do there are endless, limited only by your creativity. But hey, a patio doesn't just fall from the sky, you have to make it and make it good, so let's go through some basic stuff, like:
Before you do any actual work on it, you need to prepare for it, make a clear plan. First thing you must do is draw your house and yard, top down, using the correct scaling. Then, mark any unmovable objects such as a garage, walls you don't plan on destroying and any trees you don't plan on cutting. Having in mind the before-mentioned unmovable objects you need to plan the patio accordingly. Next step is planning the electricity and drainage, where everything will go. For this step, it is best to consult building regulations or talk to a plumber and/or an architect. One last step in planning is to consider sun position, and ask yourself do you want the patio to be in a sunny part or do you prefer the shade?
Preparing the ground
Mark the area you're going to work on with string attached to a peg. Cut out the turf and dig the area to the right depth (different slabs require different depths), using the markers as guidelines. Fill in the hole with gravel slightly above the base of the peg, since it will sink in a bit when you level it. The last part of preparing the ground is, as I've mentioned, leveling. This can be done manually or with a machine.
Laying down the slabs
When you've chosen the design of the slabs, you need to choose the design of interlocking them. You can do this by simply placing a few of them together in a pattern top see how they look like, until you set for a pattern that suits you. Mix in five parts sand and one part cement to create a mixture that goes underneath the slabs. Place the slabs over the mixture and press with your hands or tap lightly with a rubber mallet. Fill in the gaps between the slabs with the same mix and clean any filth from the slabs right away before it hardens.
Picking out the furniture
To make a good choice when buying patio furniture, consider a few certain things. I trust you're smart enough to consider the price first. Having said this, quality should be a concern and you might wanna invest a bit more into something that will last longer. Next thing to consider before you buy the furniture is sitting for a while in it, see if it suits you. Finally, consider where you're gonna store them once you buy them, since you can't simply leave them out in the rain.
I hope these tips will come handy to you when building your chill-place. With a good patio, you can take away the stress of the day. Heck, maybe even live a bit longer, but certainly live a lot more comfortably. Image source: G.J. Gardner