Contemporary Garden Design Ideas 2020 | Contemporary Garden UK

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Contemporary Garden Design Ideas 2020

 Contemporary garden design 2020

2020 may not be turning out how you expected but that doesn’t mean you can’t make the most of what you do have. We’ve put together our favourite contemporary garden design ideas for 2020 that will make your outdoor space sleek, modernist and a great place to enjoy. Whether you can have friends and family around or it’s just your household, you can make your garden a relaxing, modern haven. 

Contemporary Garden Design Ideas UK

Whether you’re looking for contemporary garden design ideas for a small garden or a large plot, some trends can be applied to all types of spaces. In our list below, we’ve outlined the key areas of garden design and how each can be focused on a contemporary feel.

Contemporary Garden Layout 

You might not have a choice when it comes to the size and shape of your garden but you can change the flow using several clever tricks. Most garden designers will use sectioning such as fencing and shrubbery to provide zones within a garden. This not only establishes dedicated areas for entertaining and relaxing but will also create the illusion of more space. For the ultra modernist version, build these sections on different height levels using some of the materials we’ve listed below. If you want to go the extra yard than opt for a sunken seating area which will provide that exciting modern feel while also providing extra privacy. 

Contemporary Garden Lighting

Often forgotten about in a garden, lighting can make or break an outdoor space, especially if you want to entertain once the sun has gone down. It’s less than impressive to your guests if you have to jump up every five minutes to wave the motion sensor light into action. Uplighters around your garden boundary, as well as in front of any impressive plants, provide a flattering light for parties. While carefully placed downlights or outdoor parasols with lighting can provide suitable lighting for dining. If you want the ultimate contemporary look, then lighting along pathways, walls and even under seating will give your garden that sleek ‘bond villain’ vibe. Nothing sets a contemporary garden apart quite like the right lighting. But please make sure you always use a qualified electrician to install your lighting.

Modern Material Ideas

When we think of contemporary design trends, we often think of the materials used to make a modern statement. Natural materials of stone, wood and ceramics have been used throughout centuries of garden design but the use of their 21st Century counterparts is what will make your garden the talk of the neighbourhood. Below are our favourite materials for 2020. 


We love black slate paving which gives a Japanese stye look when paired with classic Asian foliage shrubs and trees like magnolias and cherry blossom. Contrast any black stonework with white to strengthen this look;  furniture, opposing stone masonry and fencing. For a modern take on decking, purchase stone paving that has a wood effect. This pairs well with other wooden elements in a garden but gives you the easier maintenance of stone paving.


The timber trends for garden design are focused on the use of traditional materials but it is the shapes and styles that have changed. Slatted fence panels are THE fencing of the contemporary home. It’s the style we love most and that’s why we sell it at Contemporary Garden. Instead of traditional fencing, slatted fence frames give a novel shape to your boundary and are highly adaptable to your unique style. You can also match slatted fencing with decking as well as seating areas creating a cohesive look. We also love the trend of freestanding garden furniture that features intricate cutout designs that showcase their craftsmanship. Weaved outdoor seating is also making a comeback this year but it needs an update to make it modern. A classically mid-century modern look, the weaved back chair or sofa, can look perfectly well placed in the 21st century when painted in a block colour rather than in its natural timber hue.


Our favourite uses of glass this year feature frosting both white and in sea glass colours. We love the hues that are available but they should be used sparingly. Frosted glass as partitions or as a way to diffuse light will give you that high-end look. Using any type of glass for furniture, such as for tables, is often cited as a way to make a small space feel larger but we find most glass furniture chunky and cumbersome. Tile designs this year has seen some gorgeous new patterns. We think the use of tiling for both flooring and walls is reminiscent of many Mediterranean holiday destinations, so is an excellent way to bring the holiday home to you.

Extend the season

The end of summer shouldn’t herald the end of your garden. By utilising a few contemporary garden accessories you can extend the garden season for several months. It’s all about heating and protection from the elements. As we discussed in the layout section, using partitions and putting your seating area on a different level can provide some privacy. It can also provide some shelter from the weather. If you have opted for a sunken seating area, then think about installing a fire pit in the centre. Not only will this provide a focal point for your seating area but will keep you toasty on those cooler autumn nights. If you don’t have the option for a fire pit, then purchasing some heated parasols will provide you with heat, shade and lighting around your seating area. Lastly, an awning or pergola that shields you from the rain on those downpours that happen on even the sunniest of days, can make sure your garden party isn’t a washout. There are many different contemporary designs and styles these days to choose from. Block colours will provide you with a more minimal look than the traditional striped canopy, and automation means you can opt for awnings that fold away at the click of a button. 

Contemporary garden design ideas from the experts

If you’d like some help deciding on the right contemporary garden design for your home, we offer a complete garden design service. We can provide advice on a whole host of garden features. Contact us at or 0114 303 5052, we are always happy to help.