As with almost any element of outdoor design, choosing the right paving design is all about tying it in the design goals of the rest of your space. You need to have a clear idea of the design you are trying to create: do you want to create a modern space? Are you trying to create something more traditional? Depending on the answer to that question, you will need to consider different paving designs.

If you are thinking of installing a patio area, let us provide some advice on the kind of paving styles and patterns that will complement your outdoor design.

To discover how much it may cost for a new patio to be installed if you’re in the UK, check out Primethorpe Paving’s patio cost calculator.

Keeping it traditional

If you are trying to achieve a traditional style with your outdoor space, then the pattern for your paving designs shouldn’t be over-complicated. The aim of a traditional space is to act as one cohesive space; no single feature should draw the attention away from the eye. Therefore, your paving pattern should flow with lots of random placements and no long, straight lines.

Patterns like this are perfect:

image001 Popular paving designs for your outdoor area

A selection of tiles in varied sizes that fit together by design is going to make it easy to create a random pattern like above.

Creating a modern space

There are so many ways to create a modern space and there are no hard and fast rules. With a traditional space, there are naturally a lot more rules to follow to ensure it is in keeping with tradition. But with modern spaces, the rules are much looser, and you can get away with stamping your own mark on your space without compromising on the design.

A lot of the focus of modern designs is to highlight individual features of an outdoor space by creating contrasts or installing other features that draw the eye in one direction. There are lots of ways you can use paving patterns to complement it and give it an even more modern feel.

As a guide, there are still certain rules you should keep in mind:

  • Straight lines are encouraged.
  • You can use contrasting colours to highlight different areas.
  • Smooth surfaces feel more modern.
  • Repeating patterns are more modern than random.

Really, you can let your imagination run wild when trying to create a modern space. But hopefully, the above points help get your imagination running. Below are some specific examples of the patterns that can help create this type of space:

“Stretcher Course”

This pattern creates long straight lines by laying the slabs end to end:

image003 Popular paving designs for your outdoor area

“Single Size Stretcher”

This pattern is a step further than the mixed size stretcher course. By using slabs that are all the same size, you can create an even more organized pattern to make the area stand out even more.

image005 Popular paving designs for your outdoor area

Herringbone Pattern

This is the pattern to go with if you are willing to put the extra effort into the installation in order to create a truly standout feature.

image007 Popular paving designs for your outdoor area

“Stack” Pattern

The final pattern appears the simplest but takes a lot of effort to get right. By ‘stacking’ the pavers on top of each other, you create the maximum amount of straight lines across the entire patio. This will create a fantastic perspective effect thanks to all the straight lines, no matter the angle you are looking from.

image009 Popular paving designs for your outdoor area


There are tons of options in terms of patterns, but it’s important to know whether you are trying to keep the space traditional or you want to create a modern space. There are more rules to follow if you want to create an area that sticks to traditional values, but if you want to create something more modern, let your imagination run wild and choose whatever pattern you see fit. We’ve provided as many options as we can and hopefully one of these stands out to you!