When I visit with clients I get asked all the time about building a curved deck or creating a design that has curves on some of it sides. There is something magical about curves on deck that breaks up the hard straight lines that are usually required.
Unlike a patio, curves on a deck are much harder to build and pull off, so in turn they are somewhat rare, which makes them quite unique and special. Most homes are generally architecturally boring in the back, more attention is paid at the front to create the desirable “curb appeal”. A curved deck can break up the monotony and add grace to the back.
Curved decks are more natural looking in their environment. When you think of nature you don’t see perfect straight lines, think lake shore, creek, path, boulders. A deck with curved design in turn matches that and looks more like it belongs or “it grew up there” and is more in tune with nature. It also provides a greater viewing area for the surrounding and can direct your view to a certain part of the landscape and direct it away from other parts if desired.
I believe the greatest benefit is added to the inside of your home. When looking out of your living room, kitchen, or dinette what will you see through the window and once the deck is constructed. One of the many things we consider when we design a deck. With a curved design you would look at a graceful curve and maybe a railing that accents that as well, so now instead of looking a boring deck you are looking at a show piece year around even when you are not using it. In the evening when your company is over the deck lighting is accenting the curve and shining through your windows, you have just created your own natural landscape, you might not have much to look at through you back windows but now you do. This will entice any visitor in your home to go outside and see, we call this the “draw effect”. It’s one of our goals here at Woodland to draw your family outside, because we believe that life is better spent outside.
With the invention of synthetic/man made decking materials curved decks are growing in popularity and are lower in maintenance. They still can be constructed with wood or man-made materials, but the low-maintance option seems to be more popular. In short if the material of choice is some sort of plastic or PVC the straight boards are heated up in a bending oven and then formed to the radius and cooled, which then leaves the board in its new curved shape. If the material is aluminum (mainly used for railings) then its cold rolled much like steel, and the curve is created that way.
In a nutshell curves can be created with almost any material anymore just the process might vary. One thing that is usually consistent is that they take much more time and materials to build, which in turns equates to costing more. In our preliminary meetings we discuss this in further detail and try to establish realistic expectations on design and cost.
One thing is for sure that a curved deck will have a look and feel to your deck that your neighbor’s straight line deck can’t match.