5 Ways to Bring More Intrigue to Your Yard

By the experts at Western Timber Frame™

The yard has a higher value than its display of charm or the surrounding attractive vegetation. The home is the central hub of everyday life, and the yard is the groundwork that cradles it all.

A well-designed out-of-doors living area will reflect the family interests energized by activities they take joy in doing. This activeness might include a cozy reading nook, home theater, an outdoor office, barbecue station, athletic workout area, or maybe a full kitchen/dining room. This open-air living area can inspire some new leisurely activity or undiscovered passion as well.

Designing for a greater purpose, as a place where family, friends, and relatives can participate together in a healthy atmosphere can bring more meaning to everyday life. According to Hyrum Thompson of Western Timber Frame™, a company specializing in outdoor living pergolas, pavilions, gazebos, arbors, trellises and more, the purpose of a backyard extends beyond a great place to have a lot of fun. “Families who are involved with each other will build trust and commitment, bonds that are the framework of our communities like ‘the hearth’ and ‘the front porch,’ ultimately it will strengthen our nation through the engaging of great minds.”

Air, shelter, food and water are common vital needs. Safety, belonging and intrigue is essential components to our happiness. As many homeowners enjoy the treasure in a new comfort-loving backyard that gives them a greater sense of belonging, there may also be some ways that with a bit of imagination can enliven our intrigue.

The two focal elements to incorporate in the process of designing a better outdoor space are:

  1. Structure
  2. Intrigue

Structure: The intentional plan, the composition; the supporting points and order of arrangement.

Intrigue: The details that fascinate making the backyard area contradistinctive. The thought-provoking characteristics that cause people to say, “Wow! I love this!” or even, “I hate that!” instead of “I don’t recall it.”

Intrigue ignites when there is discovery, the unexpected, or thought-provoking. By exploring the richness of creativity and artistic imagination shared by others, literally available at our fingertips, we can discover, be inspired and feel more empowered, to create our unique outdoor environments, to our personal taste, in ways we may never have thought of before. Here are five ways to get you started for more intriguing outdoor living space.

1. Add Motion

Life is motion, not even a building is totally standing still, even though we rely on physics to tell us that. As we glide and navigate through our environment, we are drawn to the power of motion such as the mesmeric, flickering dance of a fire, the bubbling flow of water or a kinetic sculpture. We may not totally understand why a warm fire, sparkling water, soft, colorful lights, the tender caress of a breeze invokes comfort and acceptance, but it gives an excellent intimate ambiance.

A swing is a fantastic way to involve the whole body again and again. For added intrigue think beyond the traditional swing, it could be a suspended table or bed.

2. Direct Traffic

Regardless of whether a yard is small or large, an outdoor living space functions better and if there is an established traffic pattern. There are a variety of ways to accomplish this, including laying a walkway, creating corners, borders or walls with hedges, shrubbery, trellises or hardscapes. The mortal journey is replete with experiences as diverse as each person’s natures, manners, and expressions, create a pattern that makes you smile.

The pathway does not have to be obvious, and for some, you can find your way through strategically placed large pots, refurbished treasures, a bench, log or rock. Putting pots of various sizes and shapes can also add color and texture and can be used in establishing borders placed on corners of a deck or patio.

3. Unpredictable Colors

Flowers are a common and excellent way to add life and can be a fun way to have an ever-changing color palette by rotating seasonal plants such as spring pansies, summer daisies, and autumn mums. These types of pleasure stimulate the brain. When we experience unexpected or unpredictable events, surprises or pleasant things, such as seeing a new picture or a change of scenery it adds a unique flavor to our dish.

For a more intriguing backyard think beyond standard flowers and pots. Never underestimate the dramatic presence of color. Color speaks to us in ways that cannot be communicated through words alone. It evokes us emotionally, inspires us and can fill with joy when displayed with an element of surprise and beauty. Contrast colors such as bright textured throw pillows, outdoor curtains, an architectural shade structure, decorative art or a fountain with colored lights, something you don’t see everywhere else.

4. Invite to Touch

Working in the medical field of geriatrics, pediatrics and special education the importance of touch plays a significant role in healing and mental health.

A treasure chest, wooden box or ceramic pot filled with sand, a few seashells, shiny rocks, or even a twig for a hands-on delight. Many adults as well as children love touching a slick bowling ball or looking through at things through an attached magnifying glass.

Trees are proven to give vitality, just touching the trunk, and so will wood. If a tree is not an option within a tight proximity of a home consider a solid wood bench, sawn log or shade shelter that can give that beautiful texture and warmth of nature.

5. Beckoning Comfort

Nothing is intriguing if you feel uncomfortable.

On a hot sunny day we like it in the shade, and on soft rainy days, we can enjoy the outdoors still with some shelter. Trees can take years to grow, but there are many more convenient ways to create shade. Install an outdoor shelter; it can give a prestigious and dramatic presence while providing the comfort and protection the family needs to be outdoors every day. Most impressively, even a large, durable shade shelter, which will have a lasting impact, can be installed in just a few hours for a lifetime of protection. If an outdoor area is comfortable and there is seating it will intrigue us out to spend more time in the outdoors.

Eclectic seating is a current widespread trend. This fashion is the combining of new materials with garage sale treasures e.g. repurposing an everyday piece of furniture into an Artisan-inspired design, mixed with textures, shapes, and patterns to create a one-of-a-kind look of intriguing visual appeal.

The human spirit has always enjoyed the unique, the surprising, something new to delight and awaken the mind to the beauty of this world. So ask yourself these five questions:

  1. Does the yard provide a flow of motion?
  2. Is there direction even if it is subtle?
  3. Are there delightful, yet unexpected colors?
  4. Are there invitations to touch?
  5. Does it beckon with comfort?

Look beyond the vernacular backyard and inspire yourself to create a more intriguing outdoor living space.