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If you are in the process of renovating your garden, or perhaps moving into somewhere new and have a blank canvas to work with, you may have pondered a decision that has split opinion and caused division since the dawn of time when it comes to your outdoor living area; deck or patio?

This is a particularly difficult decision for us as we believe our porcelain tiles and paving is the best option when it comes to choosing a new flooring option for your outdoor living space. However, decking can also be used to create truly breathtaking spaces. Especially if you match our porcelain products with an equally premium decking option such as composite decking boards. Ultimately, the decision between a patio or a deck can be decided by three factors, your garden's landscape, your practicality expectations and overall taste. We take a look at each of these a little closer to see whether a patio or deck comes out on top.

Landscape

You’re a bit stuck when it comes to the landscape of your property, and while the work to change it can be done, this can end up being costly! A huge benefit of composite decking is that because it is usually raised, construction can be a lot easier, speedier and cheaper! When laying a patio, more rigorous landscaping may need to be carried out in order to minimise any ground movement. Therefore if your outdoor living space requires a fair amount of landscaping, decking would be the most sensible option.

Winner = Decking 

Practicality 

If you're looking to design an outdoor space that offers the most practicality due to time or financial limitations, then a porcelain patio may be the choice for you. Our collection of porcelain products can be installed both inside and outside, meaning that if you already have porcelain tiles inside your home, you can then create a seamless transition leading outside. This can be particularly beneficial if you're looking to redesign both indoor and outdoor spaces at the same time as you can choose one porcelain product that you like and install it in both spaces at once. Composite decking, unfortunately, cannot be installed indoors so the possibility of a seamless transition is lost.

Winner = Patio

Taste

This last point is perhaps the most important as it should guide your final decision. Assuming you’re willing to make the investment in either porcelain tiles or composite decking, it’s how they look and fit in with the rest of your garden design that really counts! You may choose a patio for more traditional properties and a composite deck for modern ones, but both can work providing you put a bit of thought into the design. What's better is that both can be incorporated to create one, gorgeous, low maintenance living space that you can enjoy for years to come. To see an example of how you can combine composite deck boards and porcelain paving, take a look the case study from Windsor, England below! 

Winner = Both!

Deck/Patio Case Study >

 

If you have any questions that you would like to ask us regarding our collection of porcelain tiles or if you have any other general enquiries, then please do not hesitate to contact us today, where a member of our customer service team will be more than happy to help!

2019 is just around the corner, and the big question on all of our lips here at PrimaPorcelain is, what patio trends can we expect to see in 2019?

Our PrimaPorcelain team have reviewed our most popular orders from this year and scoured the internet to bring you a forecast of patio trends we can expect to see in 2019. With rising summer temperatures, we see an increasing number of homeowners looking to expand and improve their outdoor living spaces so they can be enjoyed and used as frequently as the rest of the home.  With this comes a desire to create a space that is practical, beautiful and on trend. Continue reading if you’d like to learn more about the patio trends we expect to see in 2019.

Indoor to outdoor transition

As previously mentioned, more and more of our customers come to us requesting a way of blending their indoor and outdoor living spaces together. A well-crafted, well designed outdoor patio can add extra space that can be enjoyed as though it was part of your existing home. One way of creating a truly seamless transition from indoors to outdoors is by laying the same paving across the two spaces. Almost all of PrimaPorcelain’s tiles can be purchased in both 10mm (indoors) and 20mm (outdoors) thickness, making them suitable for creating this transitionary patio trend.

Take a look at the tiles we stock that can be used to create this trend here:

Indoor/Outdoor Transition >

Tones of Grey

This year we had a dramatic influx in orders of grey paving. It wouldn’t surprise us at all if this trend carries on into 2019. Grey tones compliment contemporary, urban patio designs and provide a neutral backdrop for any garden furniture or accessories you like. We have an extensive range of grey paving with different finishes that can be used both indoors and outdoors to create a trendy living space.

Grey Paving >

Stepping Stone Paths

Stepping stone paths aren’t by any means a new garden feature, but we have seen an increase in the number of customers asking our design teams to add this to their 3D design. Stepping stone paths are ideal if you have areas of your garden that become boggy or muddy throughout the year. They are also a great way of adding a garden feature that perfectly complements your new patio, so there’s no surprise that we expect to see requests for them rocket as we enter 2019.

We recently wrote a blog on how to lay a stepping stone garden path using PrimaPorcelain paving to show how simple this trend is to execute. Have a read here:

Stepping Stones Path Blog >

These are just a couple of the patio trends we expect to see repeatedly throughout 2019. If you’d like to enquire about implementing any of these trends into your home/garden then don’t hesitate to get in touch with a member of our team.

This is PrimaPorcelain’s guide to installing a 'Loose Lay' stepping stone path in your garden. It is quick, easy and will enhance any outdoor space visually and practically, giving you year-round access to areas that may get muddy in the winter.

Your stepping stone garden path can be made using porcelain paving slabs you have left over from a bigger project, or you can order PrimaPorcelain paving specifically for this purpose – either way, it is easily achievable even for a novice and your finished path will be truly stunning.

What you’ll need:

  • Straight edge spade
  • Rubber mallet
  • Straight edge or spirit level
  • Brush
  • Gloves (optional)
  • Small bags of sharp sand

STEP ONE – Setting Out:

Plan your path before digging. Lay out your porcelain slabs to determine the ideal spacing and curve if needed.

STEP TWO – Digging Out:

Using the slab as a template, use the spade to cut around the slab.

The slabs are 20mm thick so you will need to cut down into the ground by around 50mm.  This will create a thin sand bed and will help ensure the slab sits slightly below the level of the grass to allow a lawn mower to pass over safely.   Please note: If laying the slabs in gravel or shingle, dig a shallower hole to allow the slab to sit slightly proud of the loose material.

 

STEP THREE – Laying Out:

Pour a thin bed of sharp sand into the hole making sure you spread it into all corners evenly, leaving a fairly flat surface.

Carefully place the slab in the hole, gently tap with the rubber mallet to ensure the slab is settled on the sand.  Then use a straight edge or spirit level to determine the slab is laid perfectly flat. Fill the gaps around the edges with sand, and finally brush the slab clear of sand. This process can be repeated if movement occurs once the path is finished.

STEP FOUR – Enjoyment and Maintenance:

Your pathway should be very low-maintenance but occasionally a slab may work its way loose, especially in areas of the garden that hold water, step three can be repeated here. 

Laying your path into a cement bed:

The PrimaPorcelain installation team recommend that if you want to lay these stepping stones into a cement bed you need to follow these steps but dig out approximately 50mm deeper to allow for the sand cement bed and use an SBR Bonding agent in the cement mix. They also recommend covering the back of the tile fully with the cement mix rather than the dot/dab method.

To view our range of porcelain paving, click here. Or if you’d like to speak to a member of our team about having a stepping stone path installed as part of your garden project, click here.

As Christmas approaches, we think its time to consider how you can decorate your indoor and outdoor spaces. This blog will inspire you to invest in some festive pieces to transform your home and garden for Christmas. 

Bring Nature Indoors

For centuries it has been a Christmas tradition to bring holly, ivy and evergreen trees into our homes for Christmas. Our 10mm Forest Walnut Tiles are ideal for giving you the look of real wood flooring, why not complement it with some of nature’s wintery gifts? Display pine cones, twigs of evergreen and chestnuts amongst your candles or around the base of your Christmas tree to create a beautiful festive look. (Just be careful if you have pets or little ones around!)

View our Forest Walnut Tiles here >

Dreaming of a White Christmas?

If you prefer to keep things a little more minimalist, why not adorn your home with delicate white and gold decorations, like the snowflakes pictured here? Gold, silver and white decorations perfectly complement our Tirolo Tiles and Paving range in white or cream, that can be installed both inside and outside. 

Tirolo Tiles and Paving range >

Merry and Bright

Adding lanterns to any indoor or outdoor area creates an ethereal atmosphere that’s perfect for Christmas. Our Stoneware Tiles in Greige are the perfect neutral backdrop for lanterns, giving a soft cosy glow to any room or outdoor space. There are lots of electric and solar-powered lanterns on the market that look lovely if you are cautious about using real candles.

See our Stoneware Tiles >

These are just a few ideas to inspire you to decorate your indoor and outdoor areas ready for the festive season. Of course, all of our porcelain tiles look gorgeous regardless of how you decide to decorate this Christmas. Take a look at our full range of products, you might even find the perfect paving gift.

Slate is an undeniably beautiful natural stone, but it does have some flaws that make it a problematic choice when tiling a large area. By understanding the different qualities of natural slate and porcelain slate tiles you can make a more educated choice about which tiles are right for your floor.

How is natural slate formed?

Slate is formed underground when minerals and sediments are compressed under intense heat and pressure; these sediments and minerals can be anything from chlorite to mica meaning that natural slate can have a lot of inconsistencies in its colour, quality, and porosity. No two natural slate tiles will be the same.

How are vitrified porcelain tiles made?

Vitrified porcelain tiles are made from clay and water that (much like slate) is put under immense heat and pressure to create a durable, aesthetically pleasing tile. The difference is that the components that make up vitrified porcelain tiles are controlled to ensure that the slate effect tiles have a more uniform appearance and are more structurally consistent.

Maintenance

Maintenance is often a factor that weighs heavily on people’s minds when they’re looking to choose the right material for their floors. Natural slate is quite a crumbly stone. This means that to keep natural slate floors looking their best you’ll need to regularly sweep and seal them– this can be time-consuming and costly. The brittle nature of slate also makes it prone to cracks and chips. These tiles can be hard to replace because the appearance of them is so varied.

On the contrary, slate effect porcelain tiles require almost no maintenance, simply give them the occasional wipe over and they’ll continue to look gorgeous for years to come. Porcelain is far more durable than slate meaning it is less prone to scratching or chipping and therefore, won't need replacing as often (if at all).

Porosity

As previously mentioned, slate tiles can range from incredibly porous to not very porous at all due to the way slate is formed. This does mean that some slate tiles are very prone to staining and others are not. This can make installing slate tiles in your kitchen or living room (where coffee and food spills are likely to occur) can be a risky move, but it really does depend on the qualities of the particular slate you’re installing. PrimaPorcelain’s slate tiles are notorious for their water-resistance, meaning they are far less likely to stain.

Can slate be installed outdoors?

Slate can be installed outdoors but can become very slippery when wet, a definite issue if you install them anywhere in the United Kingdom. PrimaPorcelain offers two thicknesses of slate porcelain tiles (10mm and 20mm) both of which offer excellent slip resistance making them the perfect choice for creating a visual flow from your inside to your outside space - a clever way to enhance the dimensions of your home.

PrimaPorcelain Slate Tiles:

  • Consistent in colour and structure
  • Incredibly easy to maintain
  • Water-resistant
  • Perform well indoors and outdoors
  • Available in a range of colours

Do you think PrimaPorcelain slate tiles are the right option for you? If so, take a look at our slate range by clicking the button below:

View our Porcelain Slate Range here >

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