A garden design relates to the house by using the house's proportions. Designers (usually) play with a grid based on the proportions. This contributes to unity, which is key to the feeling of ease you want in a garden.
This private garden in Herne Hill, south London, shows the principle. Here the brick frame in the paving is offset from the house, and you can see the edge of the pond is offset from the back door.
Brick edge sets out other areas in the garden. Planting softens the edges and provides a range of textures. The square terracotta tiles are used in a grid pattern elsewhere, but in the sun lounger area they are placed to give a false perspective, so it seems longer.
Using brick provides unity of detail, as it is the same colour and size as the house brick; the terracotta colour connects with the lintels. Just using two hard landscaping materials keeps the design simple and harmonious, a good structure for the riot of plant textures.
I'm a grower, gardener and qualified designer living and working in South London. I teach horticulture at Capel Manor College, at their site in Regent's Park, and I coordinate the volunteers of Garden Organic's South London Master Gardener programme.
Please visit my business website to find out about how the garden design and horticulture training services I offer - vivekagardens.com
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