Patios vs. Pergolas: Weighing the Benefits of Outdoor Structures

April 24, 2024 Inspiration, Outdoor Living, Patio Design

As the boundaries between indoor and outdoor living continue to blur, the importance of creating a functional and inviting outdoor space has never been greater. Whether you’re seeking a secluded retreat for relaxation or a stylish setting for entertaining guests, the choice between a fully covered patio and a pergola can significantly impact the ambiance and functionality of your outdoor oasis. 

In this article, we’ll delve into the unique benefits of each option, from shelter and privacy to aesthetics and versatility, to help you make an informed decision that aligns with your preferences and lifestyle. 

Custom Outdoor Patios

Flexibility in Design: Crafting a Personalized Outdoor Retreat

Patios add functional outdoor living space to your home on a base level. This is especially valuable in areas like Texas, where the weather (and the cooling features and heaters) make spending time outside all year long possible. Potential buyers are looking for ways to enjoy the outdoors, and a spacious, well-equipped patio provides that sought-after space for entertaining, relaxing, and cooking. This added value is especially appealing to families with young children.

Hill Country Charm with Scandinavian Accents

Shelter from the Elements: The Full Covered Patio Advantage

When considering a full covered patio, one of its primary advantages lies in its ability to provide comprehensive protection from the elements. With a solid roof structure, this option shields you from harsh sunlight, heavy rain, and strong winds. Regardless of weather conditions, a covered patio ensures that your outdoor space remains comfortable and inviting, allowing you to enjoy al fresco living year-round.

Privacy and Seclusion: Creating Intimacy with a Covered Patio

Beyond weather protection, a full covered patio offers the added benefit of privacy. Its enclosed design creates a secluded sanctuary where you can unwind and entertain without worrying about prying eyes or external disturbances. Whether you’re hosting a family barbecue or enjoying a quiet moment with a book, the privacy afforded by a covered patio enhances the overall enjoyment of your outdoor experience.

Versatility and Customization: Tailoring Your Outdoor Oasis

Another advantage of a full covered patio lies in its versatility and customization options. From integrating ceiling fans and lighting fixtures to incorporating outdoor heating systems, the possibilities for personalization are endless. Whether you envision cozy evenings by the fireplace or lively gatherings under the stars, a covered patio serves as a blank canvas where you can bring your outdoor oasis dreams to life.

patio cover Houston

Pergolas

Timeless Charm: The Allure of the Pergola

In contrast, a pergola boasts unique benefits, starting with its timeless charm and architectural appeal. Characterized by an open-roof structure supported by columns, a pergola adds an elegant touch to your outdoor space, elevating it from ordinary to extraordinary. With its classic design, a pergola serves as a captivating focal point that enhances the overall aesthetic of your backyard.

Natural Ventilation: Enjoying the Breezy Comfort of a Pergola

One of the key advantages of a pergola is its promotion of natural ventilation. Thanks to its open-roof design, a pergola allows air to circulate freely, creating a cool and breezy atmosphere, particularly ideal for warm climates. Whether you’re lounging with a refreshing drink or dining al fresco, the natural ventilation provided by a pergola ensures that your outdoor experience remains comfortable and enjoyable.

Pergola

Whether you opt for the sheltered intimacy of a full-covered patio or the airy elegance of a pergola, both options promise to transform your outdoor space into a haven of comfort and style. Contact us today to talk through your personal preferences, requirements, and budget considerations and we can help you make a choice you will love for years to come. 

Get started on your backyard transformation by clicking here to book your free consultation today.

Traditional Touches, Industrial Chic, and FORTY-EIGHT More Patio Design Ideas

November 21, 2023 Outdoor Living, Patio Design

Patios are the perfect spot for outdoor relaxation, dining, and entertainment. With so many factors to consider in building your perfect patio, it’s hard to know where to start. If you’re looking for thought starters, ideas, and inspiration to build a new patio or upgrade your existing one, you’re in the right place. Let’s go over 50 patio design ideas to inspire your patio journey:

1. Mix-and-Match Seating: Playing with different seating options, like chairs, lounge chairs, and loveseats, can create an eclectic and stylish feel to your patio.

2. Outdoor Fire Pit: A fire pit is an excellent addition to any patio, creating a focal point and a cozy ambiance. 

3. String Lights: Adding string lights creates a warm and inviting atmosphere, making your patio a perfect spot for summer nights.

4. Vertical Garden: If you’re tight on space, adding a vertical garden can bring the greenery without taking up floor space.

5. Outdoor Movie Night: Install an outdoor movie screen or simply hang a white sheet and enjoy a movie under the stars.

6. Rustic Touches: Incorporating rustic elements like wooden benches, potted plants, and lanterns can add a touch of charm and coziness to your patio.

7. Small-Space Solutions: Create a quaint and cozy patio that feels like an extension of your living room by adding trim and comfortable seating options like poufs, stools, and cushions.

8. Traditional Touches: Create a classic and timeless outdoor space with traditional design elements such as wrought-iron furniture and terracotta planters.

9. Mediterranean Flair: Create a Mediterranean vibe with colorful tiles, lanterns, and clay pottery to add charm and character to your patio.

10. Dining Outdoors: Incorporate an outdoor dining space into your patio, complete with a table, chairs, and a grill or outdoor kitchen.

11. Living Wall: Create a vertical garden stretching from floor to ceiling with a living wall, adding greenery and interest to your patio.

12. Cozy Reading Nook: Create a cozy nook for reading with a comfortable chair or hammock, a small side table, and plenty of cushions.

13. Clean and Minimal: Use neutral colors and modern furniture to keep your patio simple and minimal.

14. Modern Geometric Designs: Incorporating bold geometric designs on cushions, furniture, and flooring adds a modern touch to any patio.

15. Bohemian Chic: Bring a vibrant, boho feel to your patio with colorful fabrics, dream catchers, and textured planters.

16. Outdoor Kitchen: Create a complete outdoor kitchen with a grill, sink, and countertop to make cooking and entertaining easier.

17. Pergola: Adding a pergola to your patio adds functionality, providing shade and style with a focal point and design feature.

18. Colorful Accents: Add pops of color with vibrant accent pieces like outdoor rugs, cushions, and throw blankets.

19. English Garden: Create an English garden-inspired patio with classic elements such as a white picket fence, wrought-iron chairs, and colorful blooms.

20. Outdoor Bar: Building an outdoor bar with a built-in sink, shelves, and dressers means being the host with the most.

21. Poolside Paradise: Create an oasis with an in-ground pool, seating, and lush greenery, adding a paradise to your backyard.

22. Repurpose Old Furniture: Utilize old furniture you own by repainting or reupholstering it to fit your patio aesthetic.

23. Mix of Textures: Add depth to your patio by mixing textures like wicker, wood, and metal furniture.

24. Pop of Patterns: Add interest to your patio with bold prints, patterns, and fabrics that add color and personality.

25. Cost-Saving Ideas: Keep your patio budget-friendly by repurposing items such as bed headboards, old doors, or used rugs to create unique patio designs.

26. Beachy Vibes: Bring coastal charm to your patio with white and turquoise colors paired with weathered wood furniture.

27. Pops of Potted Plants: Add character to your patio with pots and planters of different colors, shapes, and sizes.

28. Wrought Iron Details: Incorporate wrought iron details to add a classic, traditional touch to your patio.

29. Outdoor Lounge: Furnish your patio with comfortable outdoor lounge chairs to create an elegant, relaxing hangout spot.

30. Rustic Vibes: Bring a welcoming, rustic feel to your patio with burlap textiles, metal furniture, and natural wood.

31. Industrial Chic: Bring an edgy vibe to your patio with industrial-inspired materials such as metal and wood.

32. Oversized Umbrella: Adding a giant umbrella creates a shady spot for your patio, perfect for spending lazy afternoons outside.

33. Serene Water Element: Incorporate the calming element of water to create a serene, tranquil atmosphere in your patio space.

34. Cozy Courtyard: Create a cozy courtyard space, complete with small bistro tables, greenery, and outdoor string lighting.

35. Tranquil Zen Space: Add a zen feel to your patio by incorporating simple, clean lines and natural elements like rocks and bamboo fencing.

36. Covered Patio: Constructing a covered patio with a fan or lighting fixtures is another way to create a shaded space.

37. Built-In Benches: Adding built-in benches can provide additional seating and a cozy touch to your patio.

38. Natural Rock Accents: Incorporate natural rock accents such as rock garden beds, stepping stones, and low walls to create a natural, earthy feel.

39. Retro Style: Add a retro flair to your patio with bright pops of color, vintage furniture, and accessories.

40. Four-Season Patio: Create a four-season patio with air conditioning, heating, and a retractable roof system for year-round use.

41. Geometric Patterns: Play with different geometric patterns on cushions, rugs, and furniture to create a modern, sleek patio design.

42. DIY Garden Boxes: Create DIY garden boxes to plant herbs and vegetables, adding practicality and style to your patio area.

43. Tropical Escape: Bring a tropical feel to your patio with warm colors, giant palms, and slick wicker furniture.

44. Inexpensive Seating: Create an affordable outdoor seating area by repurposing old chairs or using inexpensive benches.

45. Moroccan Theme: Incorporate Moroccan-inspired accent pieces such as vibrant textiles, patterned patio tiles, and ceramic planters.

46. Cozy Fireplace: Install a cozy fireplace on your patio to create a warm and inviting ambiance.

47. Build your own Sectional: Save money and add a personal touch by building your outdoor sectional using your existing furniture or new materials.

48. Shabby Chic Charm: Embrace chic charm on your patio, complete with bright florals, antique decor, and vintage furniture pieces.

49. Modern Rustic: Combine modern and rustic elements by adding sleek metal furniture to a rustic wooden deck or patio area.

50. Natural Light: Make the most of natural light in your patio space by adding large windows or doors to enjoy the sunlight throughout the day.

Conclusion:

No matter your style or budget, you can upgrade your patio into the outdoor space of your dreams with these 50 patio design ideas. The real magic of a custom TCP space comes with the homeowner’s decor and furnishings, creating an inviting and functional outdoor space. Adding many of these DIY projects will give you the outdoor living you’re looking for.

 So, start planning and get ready to enjoy more quality time with your loved ones in your newly upgraded patio space!

Answering All Your Burning Patio Heating Questions

October 18, 2023 Outdoor Living, Patio Design

No matter the time of year, you deserve to enjoy your patio. While we’ve previously talked about ways to cool off your patio on hot summer days, what happens when the temperature starts dropping?

Here are a few frequently asked questions we get about heating your patio:

Can I Have a Fireplace Outdoors?

It doesn’t matter if you’re inside or outside, you can’t beat the classic fireplace. Whether wood or natural gas, there’s nothing better than the crackling, cozy comfort that a fireplace brings. Not only does it help heat up your outdoor living space, but it’s a beautiful addition to your porch that everyone will gravitate around.

What Materials Are Commonly Used In Fire Pits?

A fire pit is a great way to bring people together while still staying warm. Like fireplaces, fire pits are mostly wood or natural gas-based, but their size and central locations are great for huddling around. If you don’t want to add a permanent pit made of brick or stone to your backyard, you can purchase portable options, allowing you to store the pit when you’re not using it. 

Can I Cook or Grill on a Fire Pit Table?

In recent years, fire pit tables have grown in popularity because of their functionality and heating purposes. If your table is running on natural gas or propane, you can make everything from kebabs to s’mores right in front of you. Talk about maximizing your space!

Can I Install a Permanent Heater?

Heaters from brands like Bromic and Innova can both be installed under your patio cover and can run off of gas or electricity. This allows them to be directly connected to your power source, letting you enjoy your warm outdoor living space.

What If I Want to Move My Heater Around?

If you don’t want to install a permanent heater, portable fire pits and umbrella heaters have become increasingly popular over the years. Usually running on propane, these heaters can keep your patio warm throughout the winter without taking up too much space. This is the way to go if you’re looking for a non-invasive, portable heater.

Regardless of which heating option you choose, the only other things you’ll need are some chairs, some hot cocoa, and your loved ones, and you’re set for a great fall and winter. Call or contact us here, and we’ll be ready to help through every step of the way.

Textures, Colors, and More Ways to Decorate Your Patio For Fall

September 21, 2023 Outdoor Living, Outdoor Style Show, Patio Design

As the temperatures cool down and the leaves change color, there’s something magical about the autumn season. It’s the perfect time to embrace coziness, warm colors, and outdoor entertaining before winter. If you want to spruce up your patio for the fall, we’ve got you covered. Here are a few simple yet effective tips for bringing fall touches to your outdoor living space.

Layer Up on Textures

One of the best things about fall decor is the textures. Think chunky knit blankets, plush pillows, and soft, cozy rugs. Layering up on textures will create a warm and inviting atmosphere on your patio. Don’t be afraid to mix different patterns—this will add visual interest and depth to your design.

Add Some Warmth with Lighting

As the days get shorter, outdoor lighting becomes even more important on your patio. String lights, lanterns, and candles can all add a warm and inviting glow to your outdoor living space. Consider installing dimmer switches or smart lights to adjust the brightness and create an even cozier ambiance.

Play with Seasonal Colors

Fall is all about warm hues like oranges, reds, and yellows. Incorporate these colors into your patio design by adding throw pillows, tablecloths, and other decor accents in these shades. You can also try incorporating metallics like gold and bronze for a more decadent look.

Embrace Nature

What better way to celebrate the beauty of fall than by bringing some natural elements onto your patio? Consider filling vases with seasonal flowers like chrysanthemums or arranging pumpkins or gourds in clusters on your outdoor table. You can also add touches of nature by using wood accents in your design.

Don’t Forget the Coziness Factor

Above all else, your patio should feel cozy and comfortable. Make sure to incorporate plenty of seating options, including plush armchairs and sofas. Consider adding a fire pit or outdoor heater to warm things on cooler nights. And don’t forget to stock up on cozy blankets and throws—the perfect finishing touch to any fall patio design.

Fall transforms your patio into a cozy, inviting outdoor living space. By incorporating these simple decorating tips, you’ll be able to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere you’ll love spending time in all season long. With these tips, you’re on your way to creating the ultimate fall patio oasis.

Holiday Recap: 20 Years of TCP Custom Outdoor Living Projects

December 11, 2023 Outdoor Cooking, Outdoor Living, Patio Design, Project of the Month

For two decades, TCP Custom Outdoor Living has been providing beautiful and functional outdoor living spaces, and we couldn’t have done it without the support of our fabulous customers. 

From humble beginnings to becoming an award-winning company, we’ve had the pleasure of working on some of the most incredible projects across the state. As we celebrate our 20th anniversary, we’re taking a moment to reflect on some of the highlights and express our sincere gratitude to all who have chosen us for their outdoor living needs.

It’s not just about the patios; it’s about the people. Over the years, we’ve had the pleasure of getting to know our customers so we could work together to bring their outdoor visions to life. We’ve had some of the most rewarding experiences with families who now have a backyard to host family reunions, birthday parties, or a quiet night under the stars. It’s been an honor to help create those moments for our customers.

As we celebrate 20 years of TCP, we want to extend a heartfelt thank you to all of our customers over the years. We are grateful for your trust in us and are always humbled by the positive impact our projects have on your lives. We’re excited to continue building beautiful outdoor living spaces for many years and hope to develop more unforgettable moments for our customers. 

A handful of the nearly 3,000 projects we’ve built since 2004. 

If you’re considering upgrading or building your patio, contact us today to help write the next 20 years of TCP Custom Outdoor Living. Contact us today!

Project of the Month: January 2024

January 16, 2024 Outdoor Cooking, Outdoor Living, Patio Design, Project of the Month

This residence featured a modest covered space at the rear, accompanied by a simple paver patio. Situated adjacent to a branch of the Buffalo Bayou, the homeowners were eager to transform this area into their dream backyard sanctuary.

Before

This home had a large backyard with plenty of space to create their dream outdoor space.

After

The client wanted to have a pool built and add an updated outdoor living space to go with it.

1,400 Sq Ft of new concrete was poured to accommodate the new covered space and the pool decking. For this request, we resized some of the 2nd-floor windows to build the new covered patio.

The new covered space is about 550 sq ft. and includes the larger area off the end and the smaller covered space along the home. This designed space has plenty of room for a sitting area, dining area, and outdoor kitchen.

The Ultimate Outdoor Kitchen and Dining Experience

Coming off the indoor kitchen and breakfast area, this new space is just a few steps out the back door.

The outdoor kitchen has RCS brand appliances – a grill, fridge, and storage. There is plenty of counter space for prep work and for serving up a great meal. The granite is Colonial Gold from Daltile.

It’s now the perfect setting for relaxation! The ceiling is West Coast IPA pre-stained tongue and groove by Woodtone. The flooring is Loire Beige 24X36 porcelain pavers from QDI and the stone used throughout the project is Chopped Blanco with color from Rock Materials.

Reach out for a free consultation, and let’s make it happen. Contact us today!

Project of the Month: November 2023

November 21, 2023 Outdoor Cooking, Outdoor Living, Patio Design, Project of the Month

Check out our latest Outdoor Living Area project, a practical and stylish addition to elevate your outdoor space.

Covering around 300 square feet, the new patio features a pre-stained pine tongue and groove ceiling, metal shingles matching the home, and efficient 6-inch seamless gutters with two downspouts for proper drainage.

Before

Structurally, three steel posts and a matching beam provide support, painted to blend in with the house’s hardi soffit and trim. We’ve added an accent wall with a tongue and groove-style facade and handled the removal of four existing posts, fixing up travertine areas for a smooth finish.

After

The outdoor kitchen is designed for functionality and aesthetics, offering a 16-foot linear kitchen with a stone veneer exterior, galvanized steel frame, hardi backer panel, and level 2 granite countertops spanning approximately 52 square feet.

On the electrical side, we’ve installed six 4-inch recessed cans with bronze trim, a dimmer switch for cans, a fan switch, and a sconce switch. Two outlet receptacles and two 110v dedicated circuits complete the setup.

This project seamlessly combines practicality with a touch of style, turning your outdoor area into a functional and appealing space. Interested in transforming your patio?

Reach out for a free consultation, and let’s make it happen. Contact us today!

Project of the Month: October 2023

October 23, 2023 Outdoor Living, Project of the Month

This home had a small covered space that needed to give the family more room to spend time outdoors. Their home is also on a neighborhood lake, and they wanted a space built by their boat dock to be close to the water. 

Before

We needed to remove existing columns to create the space they wanted. To accomplish this, we added four hundred square feet of cover and incorporated the old cover into this new larger structure. We built a 12-foot L-shaped kitchen in the corner under the cover, adding a fridge, a grill, and storage with plenty of counter space to accommodate prepping and serving. The granite is Typhoon Bordeaux 3cm from InStyle Granite and Marble, and the stone on the kitchen, firepit, and columns is Ashlar dark cream from Apex Stone. 

After

The flooring is stamped concrete in a travertine pattern. The retaining wall, fire pit top, and tops of the half columns are all light-tumbled travertine pavers from QDI cut to fit. The ceiling is finished in Irish Cream pre-stained tongue and groove by Woodtone

We also added a sidewalk down to the neighborhood lake and a patio for sitting out by the water, cementing this landing area as the perfect spot to enjoy the night sky. 

This outdoor living area completely changed the backyard. 

Interested in an outdoor transformation? Contact us today!

Project of the Month: September 2023

September 21, 2023 Outdoor Living, Project of the Month

This home had a very large backyard and needed a total refresh. The client was already installing a pool and wanted to add an outdoor living room with a kitchen, fireplace, and dining area. 

Before

The new covered patio is at 765 square feet and attached to the garage and the back of the home, removing the long breezeway that was there. The space is split with the double-sided fireplace, creating two separate areas. Both sides have room for lounging around by the fire. The larger side has the dining table and bar area, while the other side has the outdoor kitchen. 

After

The outdoor kitchen is equipped with RCS appliances – a grill, fridge, doors, and drawers for storage. The granite is Black Pearl from Daltile. All of the stone on the fascia of the kitchen, fireplace, and half-column is Autumn Blend Chop thin veneers from Alamo Stone.

The vaulted ceiling is West Coast IPA pre-stained tongue and groove by Woodtone. A Bromic heater was also installed to keep the space nice and comfortable on chilly days and evenings. To top it all off, the outdoor living space is equipped with speakers in the ceiling, perfect for parties. 

This outdoor living area completely changed the backyard. 

Interested in an outdoor transformation? Contact us today!

Project of the Month: August 2023

August 9, 2023 Outdoor Living, Project of the Month

This home is on several acres and the homeowner wanted a freestanding outdoor living room with a large kitchen and fireplace that matched their home.  The rustic/hill country vibe is just perfect.  The rustic stone and dark stained columns and beams create this stunning outdoor space.

Before

A walkway from the home to the new outdoor space was poured for easy access to the 624 SF freestanding living room.  Everything was built to look original to the home – matching the siding, metal roof and gel-stained Hardie on the columns and beams. 

After

The 18’ kitchen along one side is equipped with a grill, sink, fridge, storage, and a ceramic smoker.  The granite is Fantasy Brown 3cm leather finish from InStyle Granite and Marble.  The raised bar top provides plenty of space for dining outdoors. 

The 18’ kitchen along one side is equipped with a grill, sink, fridge, storage, and a ceramic smoker.  The granite is Fantasy Brown 3cm leather finish from InStyle Granite and Marble

The raised bar top provides plenty of space for dining outdoors.  All of the stone on the project is Colonial Monte Vista from Apex Stone.  The hearth and seat walls are topped with Ashton Moire ledge stone also from Apex Stone. The custom-built fireplace is woodburning with storage on either side for wood storage. The ceiling is American Nut Brown pre-stained tongue and groove by Woodtone. 

Have a project in mind? We work throughout the Houston and Dallas - Fort Worth areas.

Our Customers Love Us

I have a lot of experience with construction and renovations, so some contractors find me annoying at best. My outdoor living project was larger than I was able to take on as it entailed adding an outdoor living area, kitchen, dining room, and bathroom with a fireplace and fire pit. It’s built onto an existing structure with a tile roof in a seamless manner. The completed project is amazing, and was featured in the Houzz project of the month for December 2013. It was a very large project so it took a long time to complete, however the process was absolutely painless. In my previous experiences, I have always had issues with miscommunications and added costs, among other things. My experience with Texas Custom Patios included NONE of these issues. The finished project far exceeded my expectations. The workmanship was superior, and the quality of the products is top of the line. I truly highly recommend them.

© 2024 TCP Custom Outdoor Living

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