We’ve gathered our favourite creative garden design ideas to inspire you this summer. With more and more of us investing time and energy on creating outdoor sanctuaries and entertainment spaces to enjoy with family and friends, it’s clear that our gardens hold a special place in the nations’ hearts. That’s why we’ve gathered our favourite creative garden design ideas to inspire you this summer; From landscaping ideas to natural paving options, garden accessories and even planting suggestions, we’re sure you’ll find something you love in this mix!

  1. Create a living wall 

Whether you’re short on space, need a splash of vibrant colour or want to disguise a distasteful wall or fence, creating a living wall could be the perfect solution.

 You can get the look by attaching a simple trellis or wall planters to your space with lots of lovely trailing plants or go all out and invest in an all singing, all dancing living wall kit. 

We love this living wall which has a beautiful country cottage feel due to the eclectic collection of colourful plants and wildflowers. 

Garden wall with overgrown wildflowers
Image credit: Annie Spratt
  1. Patchwork paving 

As society becomes more eco-conscious, new trends are beginning to emerge and patchwork paving is one of them! 

Inspired by letting nature take its course, patchwork paving embraces imperfect beauty with gaps between paving slabs for plants to grow freely.

The softness of wildflowers against hard, natural stone paving creates a perfectly balanced and harmonious garden design that not only encourages wildlife but also creates a modern look and feel. Take inspiration from Andrew Smith-Williams’ stunning patchwork paving at the Chelsea Flower Show or go for a more modern feel with our Cheltenham sand porcelain paving slabs like in the image below. 

Porcelain paving slabs laid in modern garden
  1. Create a circle patio

Circle patios have long been a popular choice for creating a focal point in UK gardens, and they’re not going anywhere, anytime soon!

By creating a softer contrast between paving stones and lush green grass, flowers and plants, circle patios can be really impactful when carefully thought through and executed well. Whether you use your circular patio for alfresco dining, entertaining family and friends or simply escaping the world with a cup of tea and nice book in hand, the versatility of circular paving means you can keep your options open. 

Our top tips for creating a beautiful circular patio are:

  • Match your choice of circular paving stones with the rest of your patio for an elegant look
  • Carefully consider the location of your circular stones in terms of sunlight and flow of your garden
  • To create a softer feel, plant flowers around the edges of your paving or simply add a few potted plants to blur the edges of your patio and give a more natural look
Circle patio slabs in sunny garden

  1. Add a relaxing water feature 

Adding water to your garden can provide a welcome source of calm and relaxation and become an important feature to build the rest of your garden design around.

Whether you love the sound of flowing water or simply want to provide water to encourage wildlife visitors, there are many options when it comes to adding a water feature to your English garden. 

In the example below, our Cotswold Manor Trough provides an authentic and rural texture that will add charm and character to any outdoor space.

Traditional country trough water feature
  1. Get creative with stepping stones 

Stepping stones are a brilliant way to divide your garden into zones and provide interesting and characterful focal points within your space. With many styles, shapes and materials to choose from, you can really make stepping stones your own!

If you prefer a clean and modern look, use straight stepping stones in dark colours like our Bath grey porcelain paving slabs to create more contrast between nature and stone. If you want to go the extra mile, creating tiered stepping stones will make for a very contemporary and stylish look as they appear to float above ground.

grey porcelain stepping stones that appear to float

If you prefer a more charming and traditional look, using irregular stepping stones in lighter colours can create a softer and more playful feel. We love how our winding Japanese stepping stones have been used here to create a beautiful pathway leading to the entertainment area. 

Japanese stepping stones laid in garden

  1. Unique planters

Gardens wouldn’t be gardens without an abundance of colourful plants and flowers.

We encourage you to celebrate them with unique planters that make your beautiful buds stand out. Planters are a quick and easy way of creating an elegant and charming look whilst keeping your garden neat and tidy. 

ornate garden feature
  1. Embrace informal planting 

Spending time in nature is vital for wellness and relaxation.

Embracing a full and informal style of planting can really help to create a peaceful and unfussy space that’s perfect to unwind in after a long day. We love this example which incorporates a range of colours and textures to create depth and interest. This style of planting softens the garden gravel pathway for an organic, country feel. 

Gravel pathway in English country garden
Bruce A
  1. Go wild with garden edging 

Often overlooked, garden edging is one of the easiest ways to transform your outdoor space. Add the finishing touch to your outdoor space by adding garden path edging along pathways, borders and other areas you want to highlight. 

If you love modern gardens, why not use black edging which will pop against colourful flowers to create a stark contrast and urban feel? We love the example below which utilises our Victorian rope edging

Victorian rope edging along flower bed
  1. Blur the lines between outdoor and indoor living

Indoor-outdoor living has become one of the most popular modern garden trends, and for good reason!

Blurring the line between the two can lead to a much better quality of life as it can make us feel more connected to nature whilst going about our daily lives. If you’re lucky enough to have a garden office or summer house, take inspiration from the example below and go wild with planting to create a really cosy and beautiful space to relax in. 

Summer house in sunny garden
Jean Carlo-Emer
  1. Get creative with garden gravels 

Garden gravels are often an afterthought, but what if we put them at the centre of our garden designs?We think you’d be surprised by how eye-catching and beautiful they can be. Gravels look great against colourful flowers and plants and as they are available in a range of colours and hues, they are extremely versatile.

If you prefer a modern garden, pair black paving with a light-coloured gravel like our Snowshill Shingle for a dramatic monochrome contrast and sleek feel. If you’re more into the style of a traditional country garden, our Tatton and Barrington shingles lend themselves well.

Rockery of stones and plants

Here are some ideas to get you thinking outside the box when it comes to incorporating gravel into your garden:

  • Instead of creating a circular patio with paving slabs, you could use path edging to create a border and infill the area with decorative garden gravel in a tone to suit your space. 
  • Why not use gravel to create steps that complement the landscape? Adding grasses along the edges can enhance the look by adding additional texture and colour. 
  • Create a rockery that incorporates water features, plants and stones of various sizes to add an element of zen to your garden. 

We hope you found some ideas you love! For more garden inspiration and tips on how to make the most of your space, head to our inspiration area