Design Inspiration

Deck Ideas: Five Tips For Choosing The Direction Of Lay

Attention to detail is vital to good garden design and, once you’ve chosen the colour of your DesignBoard composite decking and the size and shape of the decking area you want, there’s another detail that needs considering: direction of lay.

Have you ever wondered why designers choose to lay their boards in one direction and not another? Here are five tips to give you a head start on your design choice.

Kate Gould’s Greenfingers Charity garden at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019, featuring Greenwich DesignBoard

1. Use the length of the boards to emphasise width. Where lines exist, our gaze tends to run along them, so laying the length of boards across a decking area will make it seem wider.

2. Use the same trick to give an illusion of depth. Boards laid across a space slow the gaze and encourage a slower pace, so making the area feel bigger. For example, boards laid at right-angles to the direction of a path make it feel longer, stop the gaze from shooting to the end and make the path feel wider.

Haskett chose to lay this Greenwich DesignBoard in this way for a very good reason

3. Think about the furniture you’ll be putting on the deck. Long, boxy sunloungers combine with the length of boards to create a strong linearity that works well in very contemporary and minimalist designs. For a more relaxed, ad hoc feel, lay boards so that furniture sits across the length.

taking us to sunnier climates, this Amber DesignBoard scheme elongates the decked area and works in harmony with the furniture

4. Use boards to signal a change in levels. Alternating boards across the width of steps with the direction of boards at top and bottom brings attention to the steps and gives added interest to the texture of the space. (Haskett Greenwich)

‘Different’ can be great! This scheme from Hill-Wood & Co nails the herring-bone laying pattern

5. Don’t be afraid to create diagonals. Diagonals are dynamic and different. They add movement to a space, take the eye in an unexpected direction and can even be used to break up a large area by adding a herring-bone pattern as a feature.

Contact us for more details of our DesignBoard composite decking or to discuss your deck ideas with us.