17 Stunning Decks to Inspire Your Backyard Transformation
Think outside the standard wood platform with smart design ideas for a range of settings and budgets
Nary a backyard retreat is complete without a deck built for entertaining. Just like any indoor space, this exterior structure can be customized to your wants and needs. Multiple levels, shady overhead structures, and spa-like amenities are all within the realm of deck design possibility—with a little planning. Take inspiration from these 17 creative deck ideas for a relaxing space built just for you. (Feel free to share it with others.)
Consider your deck an opportunity for a bonus room. Here, a diehard salvage fanatic used his findings—and years as a glass installer—to bump out his entertaining space with a handsome deck sitting room.
Pick up more ideas from the video tour of this reader's prize-winning cedar deck
Find other ways to bring creature comforts outdoors by creating a room with a view
A young family turned a brick patio and decrepit deck into an inviting backyard escape that's safe for little ones. A sprawling deck provides ample room for secluded seating areas within a perimeter of mature ficus trees.
See other ways the family outfitted the wood deck and brick patio area for playtime
Check for any signs of trouble in an existing deck with this six-step plan
A variety of decking materials will bend to your deck design whims. A round-table-style conversation is possible without the added furniture due to this deck's curved construction and matching table/planter.
Discover your dream deck design with these enviable possibilities
Build a conversation-spurring embossed metal planter
Ease a minimal height transition into a cottage's garden with a small deck just a few steps up. Various surface textures and heights keep the eye traveling in appreciation of the greenery.
Explore the other ways the homeowner filled her cottage's small backyard
Deep deck steps leave plenty of room for displaying a lush container garden. Overflowing containers help cancel noise and define the outdoor area as a separate space.
Get the answers to your burning (container and more) gardening questions from a pro gardener
Fill containers with these foliage-heavy combos for living pieces of art to last through the season
An at-grade deck can get past its plain appearance with the added architectural dimension of a full-width pergola. Add trained climbers to these overhead structures and you get built-in shade.
See ways to make these elements work for your space with standout reader arbors and pergolas
Lush trees appear to hug a multi-level, curved deck structure with copious room for entertaining. Building a deck to fit in with the angles and height of existing foliage adds a sense of luxury that only customization will allow.
Learn more about synthetic materials for a high-tech, low-fuss deck
Perk up your old digs by cleaning and restaining a weather-beaten wood deck
Off the family room, a simple, low deck—that still fits the character of a handsome 1720 Georgian—gave a couple of avid DIYers extra outdoor room.
See other examples of smart design in a remodeled Revolutionary War-era relic of a house
Brush up on your composite decking know-how with our guide
A series of steps—and tons of fill—reclaimed a backyard's steep incline. Double-decker decks provide views of the landscape and capitalize on what used to be a steep drop.
See the transformation of the rest of this Shingle-Style house
Take your entertaining outside with these 39 budget-wise outdoor room ideas
Get more use out of your multi-use deck and patio area by creating an open-air structure. It will extend your outdoor area's use and become your family's favorite gathering spot come chilly nights.
Build a round patio with a fire pit for entertaining in cool weather
An outdoor kitchen positioned against a wall makes it easier to connect electrical and plumbing. Plus, a sliding window above the countertop means easy passing of plates and other kitchen essentials. A second-floor deck creates more outdoor enjoyment, without the entertaining efforts.
Make your open-air kitchen a prize-worthy cook space with this recipe for a great outdoor kitchen
Add outdoor dining spaces in other places with smart ideas for outdoor kitchens and dining
If your idea of paradise includes a hot soak outdoors after a long day, look no further. It's all about the view here, with a spa sunk low into the deck surface and encased in matching deck planks and subtle railings to keep the profile unintrusive and leafy views in check.
Other ways to take a vacation without leaving home