Wednesday, July 05, 2006

The Patio

The year that we moved into our house I decided that I wanted to put in a patio. I was so excited about the idea that I started to dig a hole for it before I even bought any patio materials. That hole sat there unfulfilled for five years. Three years ago I finally finished one half of the patio, and it wasn't even the half that I had started! (Go figure. I'm weird like that.) I lived with that hole in the other side for another three years... until this last weekend when my husband and I finally dug in and got it done.

We went to get the blocks and retainers for the project and were met with what we should be used to by now - "Oh, those were discontinued and we just sold out of the last of our stock a couple weeks ago."

I was worried that we would have to pull up the whole patio and start over with another style. But the girl at Menards said that there might be another store that still had them. She called around and sure enough Red Wing still had quite a few in stock.

So we ran down to Red Wing. And BONUS! since they were discontinued, they were also about half the price that I had originally paid for them. They weren't exactly the same color as the ones that I had originally put in, but they were close enough that most people would never notice; and if it really bothered me, I could always pull up a few from the one side and mix them in with the other to even out the color difference. I opted to save that for if it REALLY bothered me later.

Here is the booty in all its glory.

Here is my husband digging in our rock-hard dirt. We had to use a mason hammer to get through some of this it was so compacted!

Here is the hole all completed with the paver base in and compacted. Well, as compacted as I was going to get it. It was HOT!! 90 and humid - YUCK!

We used retaining blocks to hold the shape of the patio. Yes, the ones that we had used for the first half had also been discontinued, so we ended up getting the closest ones that we could find. Not the best, but they work.

Here I have spread out the sand base and have started to lay out the blocks. The paver base was supposed to be 4-6 inches deep and the sand 3-4 inches deep, but I used 2 inches of paver base and 1 inch of sand. That's how I did the other half and it worked just fine for my liking. And we have some really bad freeze and thaw here, so we know that it will be just fine through anything. You are supposed to spread the sand, screed it flat, and then lay the bricks; but I am a little too impatient for that, so I just eye-balled it. When you are done laying them in, you can fill the area with water to see where things need to be leveled - that's how I did my brick walkways.

Here is the finished product. I also do not cut any blocks, so I just configure the pattern in such a way that I do not need to. It might be a little to unstructured for some, but I like the way it looks like really old cobblestone.

Here's a shot of the whole patio - we decided that we will call the first half (the one in the foreground) Patio A, and the new half (the one in the background) Patio B.

Here's another shot of the whole patio. Lovely isn't it? We left the side walk in the middle and I think it looks just fine. Now we have plenty of room for friendly gatherings for grilling and firepitting.


Blogger Jenn said...

That's beautiful. I like the cobblestone look, too.

7/05/2006 12:17 PM  
Blogger Kasmira said...

It looks great! We did a little patio over the holiday weekend too, but I like yours better.

7/05/2006 3:49 PM  
Blogger SierraBella said...

That is beautiful!
We had a rustic-looking used brick patio at our last house... and it's the only thing I really miss.
I showed you pictures to Mr. SB (which he really liked.)
Now to decide where to build ours!

7/05/2006 3:51 PM  
Blogger snappy said...

the aftershots are very nice, so enjoy sitting on your new patio drinking a cool beverage.I think it looks gorgeous.

7/05/2006 7:21 PM  
Blogger crazygramma said...

So when is the patio party?? That will be my project next year I hope, but I am going to opt out and do the easy slab trick at the back of the house. At least that is my plan but I may change my mind. Yours looks great.

7/05/2006 10:08 PM  
Blogger Hanna said...

That looks really good! I have a half done patio too. Maybe in seeing your success I will be inspired this weekend. :)

7/05/2006 10:16 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Don't you just love progess! We are going to cover our bedroom deck and put in a pergola this summer. I can't wait.

7/06/2006 10:42 AM  
Blogger Sylvana said...

Jenn, I saw a lot of cobblestone overseas. Although it is really tough on your rolling luggage, I found it beautiful.

Kasmira, did you do a post about it? I want to see!

Sierrabella, I would have to say that the overall feel that I am going for with our house both inside and out is Old World Rustic.

Snappy, we have already enjoyed our finished patio a few times!

CrazyGramma, you can get stamped concrete that looks like pavers. There are even concrete colors that you can use to add some interest.

Hanna, you know, seeing everyone else's projects in the blogosphere often times gives me motivation to get my stuff done too. But this time it was the nagging feeling that Menards was going to close-out this style of blocks - which proved to be correct! I love intuition!

Sandy, I want a half-circle pergola right above this patio. We've been talking about it for years, but we both can't afford to have someone else do it nor do we trust someone else to do it. So we will wait until we have the energy and money to just jump in and figure it out.

7/06/2006 5:11 PM  
Blogger Naturegirl said...

Good job I admire your patience and dedication!! Oh yes and your skill!

7/07/2006 2:29 AM  
Blogger OldRoses said...

You guys are so talented. And creative. Most people would have removed the sidewalk. I love that you left it and it has become an architectural feature.

7/09/2006 9:47 PM  
Blogger Sylvana said...

NatureGirl, I'm not always patient. I usually have to wait until I am sufficiently motivated about a project before I can start it because otherwise I lose patience with it. So I will wait, and wait, and wait until the mood strikes me just right.

OldRoses, Thanks! I like to think that I am creative. I like that the sidewalk flows like a river between two fields (those would be the halves of the patio).

7/10/2006 9:03 AM  
Blogger Z*lda said...

You have some really good ideas. We have plenty of old bricks laying around, too. Question: What is paver base ?

8/01/2006 4:12 PM  
Blogger Sylvana said...

Hi Z*lda. Funny, Blogger didn't send this comment to my email - I know because I just scoured through looking for missed emails the other day!

Paver base is crushed/decomposed rock. In our area it is limestone. On the East Coast I hear it is granite. What it does is create a lose "cement" to give the blocks a solid base to sit on and lets water drain away to lengthen the life of the brick as well as keep the freeze and thaw from heaving the blocks/bricks.

6/14/2009 8:01 AM  
Blogger jeanekennethsalvosa said...

i proud of you guys your so talented and creative i like your patio too.. windspinner

8/18/2010 11:14 PM  
Blogger Sylvana said...

Jeane, thanks for commenting. It was nice to revisit my patio project. We have gotten so much use out of this patio, I am really glad that we finally finished it. I never did mind the different colored pavers or the sidewalk down the middle -- didn't change a thing :)

8/19/2010 8:01 PM  
Blogger Less is More said...

wow very adorable . i like this i think you should add some accessories and ornament such as wind spinner,wind chimes and plants to bring out the beautiful of your patio . i hope it help , thank you and have a nice day !

8/22/2010 9:20 PM  
Blogger Sylvana said...

Less is More, I currently have this patio covered in kitchen garden containers, a fire pit, and a couple of bistro tables. Also, just this last weekend, I bought a cool wrought iron plant stand at the local thrift store. I also set up my mini-greenhouses out there since it is one of the warmest places on the property.

9/12/2010 10:33 PM  
Anonymous Stamped Concrete said...

Very nice. I also like cobblestone look very much.

7/25/2011 5:07 PM  

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