Designing you a better lifestyle

Stunning alfrescos, patios and decks at affordable prices

In days gone by, flat or multi wall polycarbonate roof sheeting was something you’d see in commercial areas, but perhaps not so much in residential areas. You may have seen it used to form an atrium or a covered walkway, or as a roof on an outdoor terrace at a café or restaurant.

Due to the higher price of the sheeting, it was quiet unusual to see it being used in residential areas. However, as people noticed it more in commercial areas, demand began to grow. They wanted that same filtered light effect in their alfrescos and in their patios.

As demand grew, the price of the sheeting fell, making it much more affordable for people to use in their own home projects. All that has led to a huge expansion in the market, where polycarbonate sheeting is now extremely popular for alfresco areas, due to its look, its capabilities, and its price.

When it comes to designing a patio or alfresco, getting the right balance between the amount of light you have and the amount of heat you reflect is essential. You want your alfresco to be well-lit and airy, but not too hot. You want to let in enough sunlight – but not too much! If you want to achieve the perfect balance, there are certain factors to take into consideration.

Direction

The direction your alfresco faces will usually determine the amount of heat you want to reflect and the amount of light you want to let in. South and east facing alfrescos can often lack light, while north and west facing alfrescos are usually flooded with it. For the same reason, north and west facing alfrescos usually need to be able to reflect more heat as well.

If you have a south or east facing alfresco, you probably want to make the most of the light you have. That can involve choosing light stone or pavers for the alfresco flooring, and white ceilings to reflect as much light into the alfresco as possible. This should make it seem lighter, brighter and airier.

When deciding on the design of your patio or alfresco, one of the most important decisions you will have to make is the material you will use to line the ceiling. The ceiling is just as important as the flooring, helping you to not only to create a complete ‘look’, but also helping you to make the most of the light you have available.

 

Choosing the right ceiling lining material for your project will depend on a number of factors – the first of those being the direction the alfresco faces. If the alfresco faces north, it will typically enjoy sun throughout the day. If it faces west, it will enjoy sun from midday onwards. However, if the alfresco faces south or east, it will not receive as much light.

 

For north and west facing alfrescos, you will have to think about creating a space that provides the maximum amount of shade. Being darker, a cedar roof could certainly provide that. Unlike a white ceiling, cedar would also minimise the amount of sun reflecting into the alfresco, helping to keep it cooler and in deeper shade.

 

On the other hand, if your alfresco faces south or east, you may want to make the most of the light you have. To do this, a white ceiling that reflects more sunlight may be better than a cedar ceiling, helping to create a brighter, lighter area under the alfresco.

One of the easiest and most beautiful ways to highlight your alfresco is with the perfect lighting package. There are many ways to light your alfresco, from simple LED downlights fitted within the ceiling, to uplights on a wall, to spotlights on the stairs, to candle-like lights on the table.

And of course, it’s not just your alfresco that can be illuminated. You can also find a range of creative lighting for your yard, your pool and the exterior of your house. You can illuminate trees and plants, you can illuminate a wall garden or screen, or you could even illuminate a piece of art on your garden wall.

Your only limitation is your imagination!

How Patio Living can help

Designing the perfect alfresco will not mean much if the design does not match your home or your yard. If you want to get the most out of your alfresco, and make it look as good as it can possibly look, it’s important to coordinate the design with your yard and with your home, so you end up with a more complementary look.