We’ve previously talked about the beauty and scale of English gardens. But it’s true; those are largely geared to country living. What about if you live in the city, and don’t have a back garden? Well, a rooftop terrace can be the perfect alternative. Here are just a few handy tips to get you started on designing your rooftop terrace.
Rooftops are generally relatively small spaces from a design perspective, so with that in mind, before you do anything you’re going to have to make some major decisions first. What are you going to be using it for? Lounging, or eating? Reading, or partying? Parties and social spaces especially are going to need some pretty careful forethought – you don’t want to be too raucous if you live in the middle of a built-up area, or you may well find that your neighbours won’t be too happy. In such social situations, our balustrades systems are vital components of your terrace – not only do they look great, but they’re critical safety features in potentially unsafe environments like rooftops.
Speaking of safety, this leads us onto a very important point – make sure you get planning permission! Even if you know exactly what you want, you’re going to need official assessments and approval in order to build it, or you could well be ordered to take it all down again. What’s more, professionals can help you assess the space to make sure that what you want is safe to build, and help you with aspects like efficient water drainage.
Once you’ve made your decision and gotten the go-ahead, decide early on your furniture. It’s one of the biggest elements of your rooftop terrace – both figuratively and literally – so you’ll need to make that decision first. It’s helpful at this stage to make sure it fits the theme and purpose of your garden; maybe you’ve got your eye on a particular sofa for socialising, or a certain comfy armchair for long Sunday afternoons in the sun.
With your furniture settled, you’ll get to flex your creative muscles with the limited space you have left. Resist the urge to fill every available gap – a bit of open space here and there will work wonders for making your garden feel spacious and roomy. Our frameless glass balustrades are perfect for lining your rooftop terrace if you want to give this impression. Or, if you’d prefer to give yourself a bit more privacy, we’ve got balustrades that are great for that too.
Plants are obviously going to be a big part of any rooftop garden, so this is another decision you’re likely going to want to make early. It’s best to use lightweight pots and furniture, especially in such limited spaces. Shrubs and small trees can give a neat sense of scale to your garden, while small, colourful clusters of flowers are wonderful for adding bursts of vibrancy – especially if they contrast with the neutral tones of your furniture. Try not to have too much colour splashed about your terrace. One accent colour, supported by one or two more, is best. (Any more can make your space look garish and crowded.) Tall vegetation and plants can give a strong sense of verticality to your rooftop garden. They can also serve a neat dual purpose, supporting your balustrades as an added natural “wall” if you’re the private sort of type.
Above all, make it comfortable. This might sound obvious, but you might be surprised at how often it’s overlooked! Your finished terrace might look fantastic, but you’re the one who’s going to be spending the most time there, so how well it photographs comes secondary to how cosy it feels. Planning permission, water drainage and safety aspects are all mandatory factors to consider, but otherwise most of the style points we’ve outlined above are simply guidelines. If you have an idea you think will look and feel great, don’t be afraid to go for it!
To find out how we can help you make your rooftop space look and feel amazing, contact us by calling 01254 825 594, or emailing us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Published: 6th January 2017