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Before and After: Creating an Outdoor Room for Entertaining

This Craftsman home gets a matching backyard.

Maria and Paul Kaye love the authentic details of their 1920s Craftsman-style home, but the stark backyard does not have the same easy flow as the home's interior. In the 2-1/2 years that the Kayes have lived in their house, they have only once used the backyard for eating and have never used it for entertaining. Paul and Maria want to spend many cozy evenings in a new garden space.

Although Paul and Maria are ready to stucco the back wall themselves, they are eager to meet the three designers who can reconfigure the rest of the yard and have it match the integrity of their craftsman-style home. The designers who present their ideas to the Kayes are Barbara Lampson, the design team of Lois Mancuso and Gary Douglas Smith, and landscape architect Christopher Cox.

Barbara Lampson envisions a natural, private oasis that has soft circular edges and soothing sounds. To enhance the meandering quality to the garden, she designs an antique gate entrance in the side yard. A craftsman-style pergola and a naturalistic fountain are other highlights in her design. Designers Lois Mancuso and Gary Douglas Smith propose a sub-tropical style yard with multiple levels for entertaining. They also plan to incorporate stepping stones to replace some of the concrete areas in the driveway and patio areas. Christopher Cox focuses on reshaping the driveway in a geometric zig-zag pattern, and recycling the excess concrete pieces into stepping stones. He would also create several outdoor rooms within the backyard. After a week of tough deliberation, the Kayes decide that Barbara Lampson is the designer for them.

Paul and Maria have enjoyed taking part in the transformation of their yard and pitched in on many aspects of the job. A new deck now extends from the bedroom and leads down to a separate patio area. A craftsman-style pergola helps to define the dining space on the patio and two stained-glass windows help provide privacy. The custom boulder fountain provides a wonderful focal point. Barbara has also added soft touches like zoysia grass and a floss silk tree (Chorisia speciosa). The Kayes can now come home to a soothing retreat to relax in after a hard day at work.


    • Barbara Lampson
      Barbara Lampson Land Design
    • Gary Douglas Smith
      Landscape Designer
      TLamco Inc.
      Laguna Woods, CA
      Phone: 818-783-0569
    • Christopher Cox
      Landscape Architect
      We apologize no further information is available.
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