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Patio Ideas Inspired by Japanese Gardens

Hi there! We are enjoying the city of Kyoto this week but I wanted to share one last post with pics from Tokyo since we saw the Emperor’s Palace, Temple Gardens, and Tea Houses.  I thought it would be fun to whip up a mood board with my favorite elements from the outdoors.

Japanese patio ideas
 (click on the little thumbnail above to take you to the source page!)
1.  Artichoke finials are common in palaces and gardens.  This one from the Emperor’s Palace aligned all of the surrounding fences. They had a beautiful patina. SONY DSC
2.  Temples, Shrines, and furniture are often finished in an orange or red laquer.  Not something I’m usually drawn to but I love this red lacquer bench for a pop of color in a beautiful garden.
SONY DSCSONY DSC3.  Of course bamboo and palm trees are everywhere in Japan but abundant in gardens.  Make sure to have a little container garden of your favorite local plants, especially if you live the city! SONY DSCSONY DSC
4.  The pagoda shape lanterns and sculptures are beautiful and made from all sorts of material. It’s common to see dragons and other embellishments on them.  SONY DSC
5.  A Japanese patio wouldn’t be complete without some form of Buddha.  It represents complete enlightenment in one’s self.  By the way, that Buddha art piece is actually for outside!  There are also so many great garden statues of buddha that are easily found.  SONY DSC
6.  Paper lanterns represent the pretty globe lights I saw everywhere at the Emperor’s Palace and Gardens.   I love the contrast of their shape and color against all of the greenery. SONY DSC
SONY DSC7.  There are so many water falls and koi ponds in Tokyo, a water feature is important for the zen aspect of Japanese culture.  It also adds a peaceful sound to any space.
SONY DSC8.  Along with water, gravel is often seen in meditation gardens and pathways.   I love that the neutral rug can add a texture and pull a space together indoors or out. SONY DSC
9.  This pillow might be my favorite element.  I love Koi! Nothing says Japanese gardens like these colorful fish.  SONY DSC
Weather permitting, I also love seeing large Oriental bowls full of live gold fish on a patio or in a foyer!
Okay lovelies, off to explore more of Japan! signature-clearSONY DSC


  1. I love the garden statues that the Japanese have in their gardens. I think it adds personality to the garden. I like how you mention the Buddha. I would like to get one for my garden to represent some form of personal enlightenment on my part!

    1. They are so beautiful aren’t they! After living in Japan, I think Asian art will always be a part of our decor. 🙂

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