4 Steps To Creating The Perfect Patio

By Kiley Faulkner | July 27, 2020 |

Outdoor living has never been more important. And thanks to smitharc’s Jason and Signe Smith, building a backyard oasis is within reach. We chatted with Jason to get the scoop on these Dallas digs.

smitharcSW11-0001.jpg“There’s some physics behind the pavilion form-making here, and the openings in the porch roof,” explains smitharc’s Jason Smith, “so they can enjoy their backyard even when there is no breeze.”

1. The Concept

“The homeowners are empty nesters who were recently married and starting their second lives together.  They wanted to create their own shared space, and they found this great corner lot. … They wanted to spend a lot of time outdoors, so it was important to create an absence of boundaries in terms of where the interiors stopped and the exteriors began.”

2. The Team

“Signe’s and my firm, smitharc, designed the house. The builder was Kienast Homes, who we’ve worked with on a number of projects. The interior designer was Jean Liu, and the landscape architect was David Rolston.”

3. The Materials

“We used western red cedar and Lueders limestone for the exteriors, and white oak for the floors. That was pretty much it, other than glass and painted steel. They wanted a glassy-feeling house, which is why the pavilion has such high windows, and they wanted a very clean, neutral palette.”

4. The Outcome

“Both the husband and wife are native Texans, and they wanted a modern home that felt warm, so we ran with the idea of creating a modern version of Texas vernacular. Essentially a third of their livable square footage is outside, which was important to them. Because they wanted to be outside a lot, we designed the house as a series of pavilion forms that step up and rotate as they move toward the back of the lot, which looks cool but also serves the purpose of moving breezes through the porch.”

Photography by: Stephen Karlisch