How large should your patio be? The answer depends on many personalized factors — including how you intend to use it, your budget, and the size of the yard. So, how can you find the perfect size and scale? Here are a few methods anyone can try.

1. Mark It With Twine. To see the overall size in actual terms, get some garden stakes and a roll of twine. Stake out the layout and location of your proposed patio, using the twine at a height tall enough to make a visual imprint as you assess it. This method works best for the borders and large sections of the patio rather than small details.

2. Make Chalk Lines. Want to visualize not just the boundaries but also individual furnishings or planters? Standard backyard chalk is a great choice for flat surfaces such as pavers since it comes off with water. It's best for choosing how to lay out smaller details.

3. Use Spray Paint. If you're working with a base of unimproved landscape, old beds, or a lawn, chalk won't work. In this case, try a can of upside-down spray paint to make lines on uneven ground. Because paint doesn't come off, though, you may need a strategy for trying different options. You might use different colors for different patio ideas or unique colors for different furniture items.

4. Bring Out Furniture. Sometimes, a line on the ground isn't enough to help you visualize properly. If you don't have the outdoor furniture you plan to use, why not bring out some indoor furnishings as stand-ins? This is a temporary measure, of course, and should only be done when the weather is good. But indoor furniture of the same rough size or use — like a small lounge, dining chairs, a table, and indoor potted plants — can be the guide you need.

5. Step Away From the Patio. Another important factor is the way the patio works against the rest of the yard and house. A small patio can be swallowed up by a large yard, whereas a large one can overwhelm it. To determine if this is happening, step away from the patio area and view it from different places — including the corners of the yard, the alley or street, and even a neighbor's property if possible.

Which of these methods could help you find the perfect size for your new patio? No matter what approach you use, visualizing it in your actual space will help you build a great outdoor area while respecting the rest of the yard. Get started by meeting with an experienced patio contractor in your area today. 

For more information, reach out to a local paver patio builder.

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