Stamped Concrete Patios
Time: 03:48
Cohen shows some of his favorite patterns and techniques for stamped concrete patios and walkways.

A colored and stamped concrete patio is the perfect decorative "flooring" for outdoor entertaining areas, offering all the beauty of an indoor floor along with the superior durability and weather resistance of exterior concrete. More homeowners are also realizing that a stamped concrete patio can give them the high-end look of natural stone, but at a much lower price tag. “We charge around $15 per square foot for stamped concrete, while pavers typically cost around $20 per square foot, and real flagstone or bluestone approaches $30,” says C.J. Salzano of Salzano Custom Concrete, Centreville, Va. What’s more, the money you save by installing a stamped concrete patio can be set aside for other enhancements to your outdoor space, such as a pergola or concrete fire pit.

Stamped concrete patios give you a vast array of decorative options not possible with other patio materials. The patio can be poured in any shape or size to fit the space, and you can choose from many different stone and brick patterns and even wood-grained textures. Using stains, powdered pigments and antiquing agents, contractors can color your patio to look identical to natural stone or customize the color to complement your home and landscape. You can also set off your patio with a decorative border in a contrasting color and pattern.

See these stamped concrete patio project examples:

Tiered Concrete Patio Mimics Grouted Stone

These homeowners wanted the look of a natural stone patio, but didn't want to pay the high price. Concrete stamped in an Old English Slate was the perfect solution. To give the patio the look of natural bluestone, the base concrete was colored with a pale blue color hardener and then accented with custom-mixed highlight colors. Faux grout lines between the stones give the patio a beautiful, hand-laid stone appearance.

A Stamped Concrete Patio and Pergola Transform a Boring Backyard

When this home was newly constructed, the backyard was nothing but a colorless, flat expanse of dirt. On this barren canvas, the homeowners created an inviting outdoor space for entertaining by installing a stamped concrete patio with separate zones for a large pergola and a stone-faced fireplace. The warm terra-cotta coloring of the concrete patio was achieved by using integrally colored concrete in a canvas shade and enhancing it with a dry-shake color hardener in a sun-baked clay hue. The surface was then stamped with texture skins in a Roman slate pattern.

Colored Borders Add a Decorative Touch

A decorative border is a great way to set off and frame a stamped concrete patio, especially free-form designs. This new patio and set of steps is colored in beige with walnut accent coloring, and the borders are stained with a darker ebony acid stain. An ashlar slate stamp was used for the pattern and texture.

Concrete Patio Is Designed for Outdoor Entertaining

Equipped with an outdoor kitchen and bar, a pergola, and multiple areas for dining and conversation, this two-part stamped concrete patio is ideal for outdoor entertaining. A concrete walkway, stamped with the same ashlar slate pattern used for the patio, leads down to a second more-secluded patio with an outdoor fire pit. Seat walls made from concrete pavers retain the yard’s sloped terrain and create an attractive patio border.

Concrete Patio Replicates Travertine

For this beautiful 1,200-square-foot patio and outdoor entertaining area, travertine stamps and stone-textured form liners were used to replicate real stone, creating a high-end look for a reasonable cost. An ashlar travertine stamp was used for the main surface and a hammered-edge form liner was used to impart a stone-like texture along the edges. The realistic coloring effects were achieved with a buff-toned dry-shake hardener accented with a combination of sandstone, charcoal and sandalwood water-based stains. A walnut antiquing wash gives the surface a weathered look.

Formal Backyard Patio Showcases the Beauty of Natural Gray Concrete

When the design of a concrete patio is conceived with the landscaping firmly in mind, beautiful things happen. That was the case for this backyard patio project in Silverdale, Wash., a collaborative effort by Northwest Construction & Landscape LLC, a company specializing in the installation of stamped concrete patios, driveways and walkways, and landscape architect Emily Russell of Russell Design Source, the designer of the formal backyard garden.

Patio Makeover Turns Plain Concrete into Decorative Stone

When this gorgeous stone-clad home in Wantage, N.J., was built, a raised concrete patio was installed, but it lacked the character of the home’s natural stone and log details. “Structurally, the concrete was in good shape, but not aesthetically pleasing,” says Todd Fisher of Unique Concrete, whose company was brought in to transform the patio. They installed a concrete overlay stamped in a fieldstone pattern and hand stained to match the color of the stonework.