Backyard Renovation With Pool, Water Garden, Patio and Firepit

January 24, 2019

We created this backyard oasis in collaboration with an electrician, a fencing contractor and a pool contractor. After moving in to what they hope will be their forever home, these homeowners asked us to completely transform their blank slate of a back yard. Now, their tranquil retreat includes a patio with a knee wall, a cascading water feature, a swimming pool, a fire pitnight lighting and many various plantings. We also installed significant drainage work that can’t be seen.

If you or anyone you know is interested in transforming their backyard into an oasis, contact us today for a free consultation.

Pool and Patio Round Stone Patio Stone Patio Curved Edges
Encircled Stone Firepit Cascading Water Garden and Patio Side Angle Water Garden

Chapel Hill Stone Walkway and Columns

February 28, 2017

We just completed a project in a Chapel Hill front yard where we created a stone walkway and added columns to a garden wall. Before, the entrance was a standard sidewalk leading both to the home and an enclosed garden. The garden was surrounded by a brick wall with a large white gate serving as the garden’s entrance. The original design had a functional blue print, however, it lacked character and elegance. This client wanted a customized style with more polish than the previous one.

Stone Walkway and Columns (more…)

Chapel Hill Water Feature

February 14, 2017

We just completed a custom formal water feature in an exclusive Chapel Hill neighborhood. We designed the water feature using a natural stone facade and bluestone coping to create a smooth top surface. From the bottom of the pool, one hundred lights illuminate the water and serve to enhance the welcoming entrance after dark. The large shear water fall adds tranquility and elegance to the entrance of this beautiful Chapel Hill home.

This particular project was unique in that it began as a natural water feature. We transitioned from a natural design to a more formal one by constructing it similar to how we would do a swimming pool. The natural stone facade, bluestone coping, lights and water combine to provide this home with elegance, beauty and tranquility. Most importantly, this Chapel Hill water feature makes for a welcoming entrance for any guest.

Contact us today to get a free estimate on creating a welcome entrance with your own Chapel Hill water feature, and view our water gardens portfolio for ideas.

Large Patio and Pool Installation in Raleigh

February 1, 2017

Natural Designs just finished one of their first Raleigh pool installations. We are excited to be venturing into the business of designing and building pools.  Given that we have done an increasing amount of water features and hardscape installations in Raleigh, expanding our patios to be able to include pools naturally became our next step.

We designed and installed this particular pool and patio using travertine stone. We also created a wall and staircase with natural stone.  The stone from the patio, wall and stairs merge beautifully with the surrounding trees to create an organic and serene backyard escape. The thoughtfully placed lights not only provide safety allowing people to use the backyard at night, but they also add to the tranquil feel of the space. This family is now ready to enjoy their backyard both day and night all year long.


Hardscaping Step Replacement

November 10, 2015

Redoing steps whether at your front entry or in your backyard can make a big difference in the overall design of your home. Many clients come to Natural Designs to replace steps that are old and craking or in poor structural shape. Other clients simply want to improve the look of their home.

Natural Designs provides complete services for new stone and masonry steps. We’ll come out to your property, discuss layout options and materials and provide an estimate. Below are a couple of examples of new steps we’ve recently put in for clients. Please call (919) 522-3886 or contact us to schedule an appointment.


Patio Replacement Raleigh

October 15, 2015

Our latest project involved removing an existing brick patio in Raleigh that had become dated and no longer in very good shape. During removal of the old patio, we discovered that the drainage had been poorly installed and there were some damaged pipes. The poor drainage and damaged pipes caused water to enter the crawl space so fixing these issues was a core part of the project.

Regarding the design and installation of the new patio, the homeowner wanted an updated look with a more classic and elegant design. After discussing the options, project and design characteristics they were looking for, we recommended and decided on a cut bluestone using a “french” pattern. As you can see from the pictures, the updated design matched the design of the home much better and created an outdoor living space the home owner could enjoy and entertain guests.

If you’d like to discuss replacing a worn out or out of date patio, please contact us online or call (919) 522-3886. We welcome the opportunity to discuss how Natural Designs can improve your home.


Cary, NC Water Feature Installation Project Completed

May 29, 2015

This was a challenging Cary Waterfall Installation project located at parkside commons in Cary/Morrisville.  The difficult portion of this installation arose because the walls were built without any consideration for the water feature. The location and steepness of the site was also challenging, requiring heavy equipment (exactors) to locate each boulder.  This was a risky and time consuming waterfall installation, but came out beautifully. Most of the people involved, including engineers and site managers, had a hard time visualizing how it could be done, but we assured them of the plan and everyone was extremely pleased with the end results.


Recent Stone & Masonry Project in Chapel Hill

January 28, 2015

mb after4Recently we completed a Chapel Hill stone and masonry project for homeowners that had just purchased the home and wanted to transform the backyard which was steep, overgrown and unusable. The goal was to create a space the family could use for relaxing and enjoying the outdoors. They wanted to keep the new stonework in line with the look and feel of the original masonry, most of which had been installed about 70 years ago.

Natural Designs stepped up to the challenge of working within this steep terrain and matching previous stone work from seven decades ago. We were able to excavate a level area using stone retaining walls and utilized natural stone slabs to create a unique step pathway which leads down to a terrace. The terrace features a natural stone fireplace crowned by the homeowner’s one-of-a-kind eclectic bullhead. (more…)

How an outdoor living area can add value to your home

July 10, 2013

Having a patio means you’re your living space transcends the walls of your home. Creating a well built, fully functional outdoor living space in your home will not only cultivate a great atmosphere to entertain friends, it will also make your home more appealing to potential buyers. An outdoor living space provides a tranquil space to relax and unwind with friends while preparing dinner and still enjoying the weather. The outdoor kitchen provides a creative, easy way for busy families to spend time with children and friends.

Studies show that patios are one of the top 10 features potential buyers look for in a house and more than half are willing to pay a premium for the additional space. The outdoor area also offers added square footage to your home while setting your home apart from others. Energy efficiency is an added bonus of an outdoor kitchen, avoiding turning the oven on will keep the home cooler in warm summer months.