Lisa Miller 4/4/24 11:00 AM 11 min read

Use Natural Stone to Enhance these 4 Outdoor Living Trends

We were excited to see this article about this year's outdoor living trends from Better Homes & Gardens that begins with, "Homeowners are focusing on upgrading the design and functionality of outdoor spaces." The combination of visual impact and functionality makes natural stone a great choice for outdoor living projects, and there are many ways to use it that can complement your family's lifestyle and taste. Here are four of the six trends Better Homes and Gardens discusses that align with natural stone, and how to incorporate them into your leisure space this year.

American Mist Ashlar Accent Wall and Step Risers

American Mist Ashlar Accent Wall and Step Risers.

1. High Quality Investment Pieces

The more entertainment is centered outdoors, the more important it is to invest in "timeless and high-quality" materials over disposable, trendy ones." This is true for every aspect of the build, and why factors such as durability, climate condition, and sustainability point to natural stone as an ideal material. It enhances various outdoor living areas with a sense of permanence and refinement, and leaves plenty of room for creativity! The photo above shows a unique way to combine quality and purpose in an outdoor leisure space: a backyard putting green featuring American Mist Ashlar for the accent wall and step risers. This feature by New England Landscapes, Inc. is definitely one to enjoy--and remember!

Sterling Tan Flagstone Patio and Walkway

Sterling Tan Flagstone for the Patio and Walkway Supplied by Landcare Stratham Hill.

2. Continuity in Design Elements, Both Inside and Out 

 According to Better Home & Gardens, using materials to connect indoor and outdoor spaces is increasing in popularity. Natural stone's durability, charm, and versatility make coordinating materials between interior, exterior and landscape designs easy. It can be used in indoor spaces for features such as fireplaces, accent walls, and backsplashes, (among other uses). Most outdoor applications of natural stone are flagstone patios, walkways, pool coping, stone veneer (or full-bed) walls, fireplaces, accents, siding, and more. In the project above designed by Woodburn Co. and crafted by Piscatua Landscaping, Sterling Tan Flagstone is used for this walkway and patio, which connects the indoor and outdoor dining and entertainment areas, and adds a warm, indoor feel to the open-air space.

CT Blend Roughly Squares & Rectangles Outdoor Kitchen

Connecticut Blend Roughly Squares & Rectangles Outdoor Kitchen and Accents Throughout the Outdoor Design.

3. Luxury Upgrades 

Homeowners and designers are currently interested in luxury features that "increase the comfort and usability of outdoor areas" and also increase property value. The top upgrades include some of our favorite natural stone projects: fire features, entertaining spaces, and outdoor kitchens! The outdoor kitchen featured above by Landscapes by Aurelindo offers ALL of the amenities for warm-weather fun, dining, and hosting company with some cover from the elements. From the spacious counter and seating area and built-in appliances to the outdoor TV, stunning pool and waterfalls, and cozy firepit (not pictured) Connecticut Blend Roughly Squares & Rectangles ties the design together from multiple aspects to add a touch of elegance to the fun!

Liberty Hill Sawn Flagstone PatioLiberty Hill Sawn Flagstone supplied by our Authorized Dealer, NH Thinstone.

4. Added Greenery for Living Energy 

Embracing nature is also a top priority for outdoor living projects. While being in nature evokes feelings of connection and peace, the landscape design also influences the space. Creating the right aesthetic relies on creative choices and building materials. Plants and greenery create a more immersive outdoor experience and add definition, especially when combined with a natural stone wall or walkway. In the photo above, the Liberty Hill Sawn Flagstone walkway and the landscape design create a one-of-a-kind lakeside experience at the hands of the talented Green Monster Landscapes team!

Today's outdoor living projects include functional features with visual impact that lasts. Natural stone enhances personalized outdoor spaces, connecting them to nature, various design elements, and most importantly, the individuals who revel in leisure time within them! We look forward to seeing the incredible outdoor living projects in 2024 as trends continue to evolve and homeowners optimize space, materials, and creative designs. For more inspired ways to incorporate natural stone into the home, download our "Natural Stone Residential Design Guide!"

Natural Stone Residential Design Guide