• Sarah Kay

Designing for a small awkward space - an E5 Courtyard

My clients were looking to maximise use of their irregular shaped courtyard as a low maintenance entertainment and relaxation space.


The key issue with this North facing space was the irregular shape and awkward angles of the boundaries. My design seeks to address this using key design tools; following the geometry of the house to draw the eye away from the boundaries, the use of focal points and the dissection of the space into distinct usable areas.



The views from the study are enhanced using focal points and the vertical spaces. The existing Wisteria is trained around a large mirror and along wires above wall planters containing a variety of plants with contrasting forms and foliage.



The space is dissected into two distinct areas using contrasting materials. A dining patio following the geometry of the house is defined with encaustic patterned tiles, repeated on the floor of the lightwell next to the kitchen door. Clay pavers, laid horizontally to increase the feeling of width, lead up to the patio with gravel surrounding the


Hardwood features include a bench which is made from the central area of the existing brick raised bed, hardwood wall planters and a large cube planter containing an focal point architectural plant, like an Acer with colourful foliage.


A bespoke wooden storage box painted the same colour as the new fencing and trellis will house the bbq and tools and will have a green roof of shade tolerant plants. This can be viewed from the kitchen along with a striking Dicksonian Tree Fern.



Planting in the raised bed with be hardy shade tolerant ferns and perennials with grasses and the Wisteria dominating the corner.

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Sarah Kay Garden Design, London E5

T:07967201333    E:sarah@sarahkaygardendesign.co.uk

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