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Less Design is More

The phrase ‘less is more’ has been used a lot more than less but can still apply to range of circumstances ( people talking less and listen more perhaps?..) including landscape design. I think it was Oscar Wilde who said ‘brevity is the soul of wit’ and this for me encapsulates a worthy tenant of good design. If you can get your point across with less elements or intervention, the end result should be more effective than if you were to employ multiple elements. So how does this apply to Landscape Design?


Cost of landscape design, again.

As landscape designers we’re often the bearers of bad news when it comes to letting people know how much their design brief will cost. And while I have touched on this in the past, it is such a constant I think its worth revisiting.

First lets look at the returns a good landscape can provide in terms of a property’s worth. What I've read talks about anything between 10-20%. So if we take a conservative approach and look at 10% you’ve still got a nominal budget of between $50,000 and $100,000 for the average property in Brisbane. Now while this may not buy everything in your brief its enough to get some good results, with the right design, that should give you a return down the track. Also don’t discount the return in enjoying your landscape in the meantime (Gratuitous image of FLW landscape below)


Designing for impact not cost

Heard an architect proclaim that the quality of fittings in a project has less than 10% impact on how well a space works. This got me thinking how this might relate to landscape design projects. While I’m a firm believer that you never get quality at a low price, with budgets on all projects being tight to say the least its worth considering where you might save on the build without compromising on the result. So here in no particular order are some ‘lower cost’ strategies that might help stretch your landscape design dollar. A quick disclaimer, by low cost I’m talking ‘lower than other options’ cost that provide long term value ( no point saving today if you have to pay to replace it tomorrow, think cheap landscape lighting)


Best Product for your Design

Further to my last entry here is some more information which, if you’re engaged in a landscape design project, should be of value. Its the name of the my favourite suppliers .While it may not sound like much but its taken me years to gather (through trial and error) and when I consider some of the suppliers I’d list under ‘error’ I know you’ll be doing yourself a favour at least to use these suppliers as a starting point. By product I means sculptures, planters, furniture, lighting etc and keep in mind all these elements need to work successfully outside, year round, day and night. So perhaps you can see why the list of those we don’t recommend for your landscape project is a lot longer. One more point, none of these are bargain solutions,more along the lines of investment pieces. Cheaper options are on that longer list of what doesn’t work.

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