At this year’s International Builders’ Show it was quite obvious that bringing the comfort and style of indoor spaces outside is a big trend in outdoor living. Nowhere is this more evident than in decking.
Best of Both Worlds
Composite decks made of wood fiber and resins have been preferred by many builders and homeowners for some time now. The most up-to-date version of this material uses a wood composite core wrapped in a polymer shell. The composite core provides strength and does not warp or rot, while the polymer cap is highly resistant to fading, staining, scratching and marring.
Looks Like Wood, Feels Like Wood
TimberTech, one of the most highly regarded innovators in capped composites, has employed both technology and art in creating polymer shells that that not only have remarkable wear characteristics, but also look convincingly like real hardwoods. In their Earthwoods Evolutions Legacy Collection, for example, the surfaces have a hand-scraped appearance, looking very much like stylish interior hardwood floors. The company has also developed manufacturing techniques that produce variegated colors and grain patterns strikingly similar to those found in real woods.
Style is in the Details
Today’s decks are, without question, outdoor rooms – living spaces that are stylish in their own right. Deck posts, caps and railings come in numerous, distinctive styles that give a deck an enhanced sense of design in much the same way that interior molding and architectural woodwork add to the character of an interior room.
There are also several style options available when it comes to filling the space between rails and posts including aluminum balusters, stainless steel cable and glass that offers an unobstructed view of the world beyond.
Light for Night Life
And, then, there’s the lighting. Whether it’s for mood, ambiance or serious work like outdoor cooking, integrated lighting is a big part of today’s deck design. It can be seamlessly incorporated into post caps, vertical surfaces, stairs and even the decking itself. TimberTech’s lighting systems, for example, are designed so that the low voltage runs inside the railings completely out of sight.