10 patio paving ideas to make the most of your outdoor space

  • We earn a commission for products purchased through certain links in this article.

  • Gone are the days of gray, uneven slabs with moss growing between them, now as with the rest of the home, we all want beautiful patio paving ideas – something sleek and sophisticated to reflect our personalities and the many paving styles out there.

    The right design could transform your backyard to give you more space to entertain, spend time with family, and make summer last longer. Inviting friends and family around becomes a pleasure if you have a relaxing place to sit. And there’s no reason you can’t enjoy your new space in the colder months with the addition of an outdoor fire pit, throws and patio heater.

    Small patio ideas are just as important and can transform your outdoor space by creating an outdoor room you didn’t know you had.

    Patio paving ideas to inspire

    Patios are easy to maintain and could add value to your home, check out our looks below to see if there’s a style that’s right for you or view these patio ideas.

    1. Make it seamless from the inside out

    Image credit: RAK; Fashion Stone from £45 per m2

    Make your outdoor space feel like part of the main house by using the same paving throughout. Not only does it give you a seamless look, it will open up to make both spaces appear larger. The added benefit of not having a threshold means there is less risk of tripping.

    This natural stone look is a tough porcelain. In a linked space like this, think about your furniture choices and color palette, so the whole area blends together for a cohesive look.

    “The way we use our outdoor space has changed dramatically in recent years.” Says Abbas Youssefi, director of Porcelain Superstore. “The garden has become an extension of the house, an outdoor living space used for entertaining and relaxing. So creating a space that looks – and feels – like part of the home has never been more important.

    2. Mix the flagstones and the gravel

    patio with paving slabs and gravel

    Image credit: Quorn; Light Mist Porcelain Pavers, from £60 per m2

    If you don’t like the look of a large expanse of paving, mix it up with areas of gravel, not only will this give the space a different look, it will also help with drainage.

    For a truly Mediterranean look, choose white gravel and cream paving. Here, large slabs create a stylish dining and seating area with more slabs used as ‘stepping stones’ around the flower beds and to create a path.

    Choose colors that go well together, in this case the gray sofas, gray dining chairs and umbrella with a white and metal dining table. Since gravel is cheaper than pavers, this idea also works as an inexpensive patio paving idea.

    3. Create a design statement

    decorative patio tiles

    Image credit: Tile Mountain

    Paving slabs do not need to be smooth. Create your own unique design by pairing a decorative slab like these petal pattern pavers with plain slabs to accent different areas like this dining room.

    The same petal design has been used on the step to add to the overall look and make it stand out, which has the added benefit of reducing the risk of people tripping. It would work well as a small patio idea too.

    Buy now: Hardblue Gray Decor porcelain tiles, £39.99 per m2, Tile Mountain

    4. Create a terrace effect

    wood-effect porcelain stoneware terrace slabs

    Image credit: Tile Mountain

    Thanks to technological advances and the versatility of porcelain, it is possible to have different looks rather than just square pavers, like these wood effect plank tiles that will give you a wooden deck effect but without the upkeep. It is a good choice if you want a warmer look, if the garden faces north for example, and an ideal idea for a small terrace.

    Porcelain tiles are also water and stain resistant, so no more labor-intensive pressure washing every spring.

    “Thanks to recent advances in technology, porcelain is now available in a huge range of textures, colors and sizes.” says Jo Oliver, director of Stone & Ceramic Warehouse. ‘Porcelain is the perfect material for outdoors as it is virtually maintenance free. It does not fade in the sun, does not foam and is non-slip.

    Buy now: Nebraska oak wood effect exterior tiles, £41.95 per m2, Tile Mountain

    5. Opt for traditional pavers

    gray paved courtyard patio

    Image credit: Mandarin Stone; Limestone Flags, from £98.40

    If you have an older, more traditional home, why not try classic pavers? These limestone pebbles are made of natural stone, so each one is different.

    Here they have been mixed with limestone flags to give a patchwork effect. It is a great contrast to the main house and has an individual and classic look. It would be perfect for a backyard too.

    Buy now: Ballanstone Rolled Outdoor Limestone Pebbles, from £119 per m2, Mandarin Stone

    6. Embrace the latest trend

    terrazzo terrace

    Image credit: Mandarin Stone

    Terrazzo has been making headlines lately on floors, walls and even accessories. This is a great idea for a small patio as it has small pops of color that work well in a more compact space and will add more interest than a plain tile.

    Buy now: Jagger Medium Gray Terrazzo Effect Outdoor Porcelain, from £58.80 per m2, Mandarin Stone

    7. Enhance a country garden

    Garden patio with plants and rattan hanging chair

    Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Young

    Natural sandstone is a classic paving idea for patios and walkways and works well in traditional and country gardens. Sandstone is available in a variety of sizes and colors, so you can choose any pattern you want, and comes with a smooth or distressed finish.

    As a natural stone, it is durable, and cream or yellow sandstone will add a warm, honey color that works well with relaxed planting.

    8. Connect house and garden

    Rear garden with stone lawned driveway

    Image credit: Future PLC/Brent DarbyLink between house and garden

    Limestone paving is a great choice for any style of home, its light gray hue suits most properties and again, as a natural stone it is hard wearing and will look great for many years to come. Using the same stone as stepping stones on the lawn leads you towards the house, through the archway and connects the two areas seamlessly.

    9. Start with the design

    garden with terrace and paving

    Image credit: Future Publishing Ltd

    Make the tessellation the beginning of your design. This contemporary patio is all about hard surfaces. They create paving, are used above raised beds and also for a raised breakfast area.

    A cool gray and white color palette gives the space a contemporary feel, further enhanced by the sculptural planting. The water feature with split face cladding is a lovely focal point.

    10. Add character with a rustic finish

    Garden terrace area with kitchen

    Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Young

    If you want a rustic look, these small distressed tiles are ideal. They are similar to traditional Norfolk clay pammets and would work great as a small patio idea or as an inexpensive patio paving idea. The neutral color means they would suit many schemes, it’s the perfect English country look.

    What can I use instead of a slab for a terrace?

    “There are two main types of tile suitable for outdoor patio use. The former are natural stone tiles such as granite, limestone and slate, these are aesthetically pleasing but will require grouting during installation and can be expensive. says Colin Lincoln-Evans, Buyer at Tile Mountain. cobblestones, and come in less traditional forms such as planks with a wood effect finish.Porcelain tiles do not require grouting, but should be between 18 and 20mm thick and have an anti-slip rating of between R9 and R12.

    What is the cheapest way to pave a garden?

    “If you are considering tiling your patio, remember that it must be durable and able to withstand all weather conditions. You want to make sure it will last you for years and you only want to do it once. says Kamila Swiatecka, Brand Manager at tile giant.

    “20mm outdoor porcelain has very good slip resistance, non-fading, frost resistance, and resistance to algae and moss, unlike natural pavers or wooden decking, which can be very difficult to maintain and maintain in perfect condition.”

    “To reduce costs, think about the installation. Laying your slabs as stepping stones on grass or gravel is a good DIY solution, saving you money. However, if you opt for a fully tiled terrace, we advise you to hire a professional, but consider a raised pedestal system because it will allow you to take your terrace with you if you move. It is also a good option if you are a tenant.