Category Archives: Rooftop Decks

Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio Explores the History of the Backyard Deck

Kettering, OH dream deck winnerToday’s deck is not your father’s deck.  Not the plain Jane deck by any means. Decks have become the centerpiece of the backyard. Looking into the history of our favorite backyard destination, believe it or not, have much to do with the industrialization and the post-war economy of America.

 

THE HUMBLE BEGINNINGS OF THE DECK

outhouse“It’s another Pleasant Valley Sunday, charcoal burning everywhere…”

The popular Monkee’s song from the 1960’s conjures visions of backyards and barbeques.  Interestingly, until the 1950’s and 1960’s, the backyard was not the focal point of fun and relaxation as it is today.  It served a more practical purpose of being sustainable to support the family.  Families kept cows for milk, chickens for eggs and meat, and pigs as garbage disposals.  A garbage pile was located near the far end of the property many times along with an outhouse, so the backyard was usually filled with malodorous odors that made it less than conducive for relaxing outdoors. Quite a different picture than what the backyard is today — What had once been a place to grow food and sustain families has become a place of leisure and relaxation.

As we evolved so did our backyards. The American culture itself changed.  The evolution of the backyard began when households shifted from being self-contained and supportive to supporting the local economy of shops and stores.  Gone were the animals and odors once indoor plumbing and sanitation became standard practice. Gone too, was the labor of toiling for that night’s dinner.  Now there was actually time for leisure and relaxation.

civil war era photoAfter the Civil War, porches served as a place to relax and converse after a meal.  In the 1920’s, with the invention of the radio, families started to gathering in the living room to listen to the evening’s entertainment.  Because of the fear of automobiles blowing up, garages were placed to the rear of the property, taking up part of the backyard. Starting in the 1950s, the garage was then attached to the house, freeing up space.  The backyard was no longer thought of as a practicality. The idea of having your own little piece of green space behind the house in order to relax and to play was the new vision. The backyard became our haven from life, our refuge.

Ruins of the Fortress Masada in Israel

Ruins of the Fortress Masada in Israel.

While no one knows exactly who invented the concept of the deck, there is evidence to suggest that patios were used in ancient Israel, either on the rooftop or the courtyard as a place of leisure and entertainment.  Decks in America were born out of the desire to entertain outside, becoming a key element to our homes, defining the backyard, part of our lifestyles,  just as the porch did in the front of the house earlier.

It was not until the early 1980’s, however, that decks really started come into their own as homeowners began to think about decks as an extension of their interior living space.  Previously, most decks were a simple 8 x 10 foot platform.  As Americans began having a more active, outdoor lifestyle the inside was brought outside.  Outdoor cooking, “grilling out” became the trend that made the deck an extension of the kitchen.  From the simple grill, the deck is now a fully equipped outdoor kitchen, with cooktops, refrigerators and warming drawers—even the kitchen sink.

cookout

Backyards are now customized to form an individual’s artistic expression and style, just like any other space in one’s home.  Today, decks can be integrated naturally with the house and surrounding property including natural elements of rocks, trees and running water into the design.  Other amenities that can be incorporated into the design are even more elaborate structures such as multiple levels and innovative shapes as well as pergolas, gazebos and roofs.  Because the decks are versatile in their design and entertainment value, they have become the outdoor great room where you can swing in a hammock, curl up with a good book or soak in the hot tub.  As a stand alone structure, or as an element in an entire outdoor living environment, today’s multifunctional deck does it all.

Custom fabricated pergola on Spring Valley OH deck

The custom fabricated pergola adds valuable shade to this deck in Spring Valley, OH.

The one aspect that homeowners often dislike about their deck is the chore of maintenance. During the 1970s decks were solely built from of wood which requires annual maintenance. The last decade has seen an upsurge in wood alternatives such as all-plastic lumber and composites, which mix plastic with wood fibers. Synthetic materials currently account for about 15 percent all decking material sold in this country.

Here at Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio we are continuing the legacy of the backyard deck in the Dayton and Cincinnati region. We specialize in custom deck designs designed from wood, hardwoods and the highest quality synthetics on the market. Let us build the deck of your dreams and let your imagination run wild.  With so many options and amenities available to the homeowner, you can create your own style and have a truly unique outdoor living space customized specifically for you.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Contact us today to learn more about getting the most out of your outdoor living environment with a deck upgrade, redecking or new deck addition today. You can reach us at (937) 848-7040 or (513) 897-2040. You can also email us at wcohio@archadeck.net.

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

 

Sometimes the smallest details make the biggest impact– our recent rooftop deck in Oakwood, OH, is proof!

Oakwood Ohio rooftop deck

Oakwood,OH, rooftop deck.

Our recently completed project in Oakwood, OH, brings to mind the relaxing, melodic lyrics from a beloved old song;

“When this old world starts getting me down
And people are just too much for me to face
I climb way up to the top of the stairs
And all my cares just drift right into space
On the roof, its peaceful as can be
And there the world below can’t bother me”

– from “Up on the Roof” by the Drifters

Why, you may ask do I find myself humming the melody of this particular classic each time the project crosses my mind? The answer is easy. This relaxing outdoor addition consists of a custom-designed rooftop deck loaded with vintage details —  with the modern elements that make this deck a breeze to maintain and enjoy!

Oakwood OH AZEK deck builder

This low-maintenance beauty is located just off the 2nd story sitting room.

The panels on the rooftop deck in Oakwood OH were designed to mimic the home's vintage entry door

The panels on the rooftop deck in Oakwood OH were designed to mimic the home’s vintage entry door!

Archadeck Outdoor Living designed this rooftop deck to match the vintage details of the clients’ timeless Craftsman style Oakwood, OH, home. If you look closely the panels used on the deck’s railing mimic the homeowner’s vintage front entry door. In addition we used tapered corners on the decks’ columns, built from cedar, to keep the architectural flow of the addition in keeping with the existing home.

Oakwood OH custom deck designsWe also designed this rooftop deck with low maintenance materials to ensure more time is focused on enjoying the deck, instead of maintaining it! The deck is built with wonderful AZEK decking with wooden rails. The homeowner is planning to paint the rails in the coming weeks to match the home’s trim color.

  • Fun Fact; The city of Oakwood is steeped in history and tradition. According to the Oakwood Historical Society, “In 1804, Colonel Robert Patterson purchased uninhabited land along the Miami River south of the city of Dayton. Patterson built a homestead along Brown Street in Dayton, and his farm, mill and out buildings occupied Northern Oakwood near Rubicon Road and along Schantz Avenue. The area grew to become home to farms, families

and even summer houses along the way. In 1913 a flood destroyed much of downtown Dayton, Ohio. Demand for Oakwood homes increased as many city residents sought new homes and were comforted by the high elevation home developers touted in their advertisements. Oakwood’s population boomed during the 1920s and 1930s. By the end of the 1950s, the City of Oakwood was essentially the size it is today. The cities of Moraine, Kettering, and Dayton had surrounded the City of Oakwood.”

Oakwood OH custom deck designs

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

If you are ready to embark on an adventure in creative and unique outdoor living designs perfect for enhancing your lifestyle, such as a rooftop deck or other outdoor structure addition contact Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio today to learn more at (937) 848 – 7040 or (513) 897 – 2040 and by email at wcohio@archadeck.net

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

See more examples of our award-winning outdoor living spaces by visiting our extensive photo galleries located on our website.

A romantic dinner, rooftop, at sunset — need I say more?

rooftop deck courtesy of HGTV

Rooftop deck courtesy of HGTV.

When it comes to placement and design of your anticipated outdoor living space design many homeowners are not thinking out, instead they are thinking up! The size of your yard and lot constraints may sometimes restrict how you can extend your home or the placement of an outdoor living space addition. In these cases a rooftop deck may be the answer you are looking for!  Even if you have no problem with yard space, a rooftop deck can take advantage of your view or just serve as a private space away from ground level. This is why we are seeing a return in the popularity of these classic outdoor oases across West Central and Southwest Ohio.

  • Rooftop deck in Oakwood, OH

    Rooftop deck in Oakwood, OH.

    Will a rooftop deck work for me?

While there are many cutting-edge designs for rooftop decks that have emerged in recent years, there are also those tried-and-tested, old-fashioned rooftop deck designs that have been fixtures on houses and buildings for some time now. We have been asked to refurbish (redeck) many existing rooftop decks for homeowners in the city of Oakwood within Montgomery County, which is close to Dayton. One of the main reasons for the  interest in regards to rooftop decks in this particular area is because many of homes which are dominant there have the structural components necessary to facilitate rooftop deck additions, this is because the configuration of the roofline is conducive to the consideration. Much of the architecture that is present within the Oakwood community is rich in history and reflect styles that make good candidates for the addition of a rooftop deck, these architectural styles include; Prairie ( which is almost synonymous with architect Frank Lloyd Wright ), Victorian, Art Deco/Art Moderne, Federal, Craftsman/Arts & Craft, Jacobean Revival and, of course Bungalow style architecture.

In order for a rooftop deck to flow with the integrity of your existing home there is much more to take into consideration that just the home’s architectural style. Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio recommends mimicking the elements used on your home and carrying them into the rooftop deck design. For example, on a recent rooftop deck addition we used the Asterik pattern used on the facade of an Arts & Craft style home and included it in the design of the railing used in building the rooftop deck. This married the repetition of the pattern into the addition and created a space that looks original to the home, both from the deck itself and looking up at the deck from the street. Even though we used a low-maintenance composite deck with wooden railing, by mimicking this dominant pattern we kept the originality of the home intact. There are many focal elements that can be used to unify the design of your rooftop deck with your home, railing is one way and others may include columns, materials, colors and even trim details. We pride ourselves in creating outdoor spaces that keep the integrity of your home in mind first, and foremost.

Rooftop deck using AZEK porch

Rooftop deck built using AZEK porch.

  • Today’s rooftop decks

Throughout history the rooftop deck has been a symbol of elegance and upscale outdoor living reserved for only the upper echelons to enjoy, but not anymore. A rooftop deck is a wonderful place to escape from the pressures of everyday life. Whether it be for an intimate dinner, or to read a book, or to host a party with friends and family, a rooftop deck is a magical space where all can relax and enjoy life! There are so many ways you can design a rooftop deck and there are many features you may consider to include. Whether your intention is to use it to entertain guests or as more of a private, personal space — it is all up to you.

Rooftop deck courtesy of Southern Living

Rooftop deck courtesy of Southern Living.

Here are a few ideas to enhance your ideal rooftop deck:

  • A built-in fireplace as a charming focal point or for those chilly evenings.
  • A BBQ or Big Green Egg smoker with a dining area for enjoying meals with family and friends.
  • A built-in bar complete with refrigerator.
  • A hot tub to enjoy all year round.
  • A container garden or trellis/arbor that is easy to maintain yet gives the feeling of being close to nature.
  • A private sunbathing area, maybe with a lounge chairs or even a hammock.
  • An outdoor bedroom reminiscent of an open air “sleeping porch”.
  • Integrated low-voltage deck lighting to enhance ambiance

Of course, when you entertain the idea of a rooftop deck, one of the most important benefits is the stunning 360 degree views they provide. Who can resist the temptation of a romantic dinner, rooftop, at sunset — need I say more?

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

If you are ready to embark on an adventure in creative and unique outdoor living designs perfect for enhancing your lifestyle, such as a rooftop deck or other outdoor structure addition contact Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio today to learn more at (937) 848 – 7040 or (513) 897 – 2040 and by email at wcohio@archadeck.net

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

See more examples of our award-winning outdoor living spaces by visiting our extensive photo galleries located on our website.