Column: For the love of outdoor spaces


Commentary by Randy Sorrell and Bill Bernard

Who knew our outdoor living spaces would mean so much to us? With social distancing and simply an elevated level of appreciating fresh air, patio living is as prevalent as the crowded Monon Trail and the Sun King/Fork&Ale green space!  I’ll have the burger special from the Fork and a Wee Mac please … wrapped in a face mask, of course.

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This outdoor project incorporates a wealth of material selections. (Submitted photos)


We are often asked what our favorite patio material is. Hmm. If you can answer which is your favorite child, I will happily answer what our favorite material is. It depends, doesn’t it. Often, it is driven by the surroundings, conveniently part of our company name. Formal homes with classic details call for a totally different material pallet than woodsy natural neighborhoods, a you might imagine. 

Formality begs for natural stone in squares and rectangles with boxwood hedges. We love blue stone, limestone and travertine, among others. A contrasting edge is often appreciated, whereas woodsy natural settings might lend themselves to a clay paver or the referenced natural stone in an irregular shape. 

Just when we think we have figured it out, the Architectural Review Committee or homeowners association weighs in. And then there’s decking, new ceramic tile pavers, oversized modular yummy pavers and …

Perhaps the point is that there are a lot of variables, including budget and homeowner taste, that piles into the decision-making process that we are pleased to navigate. 

The pictures attached reflect a thrilling project with tons of materials selections that have been a career highlight for many of us, in an undisclosed neighborhood. 

Hope you are enjoying your outdoor space!