10 Styles for Backyard Fences

Nice fence

When it comes to styles of backyard fences there are no shortage of options. However, before you blindly pick the prettiest style you can find there are few things you need to consider. Apart from its style and decorative value, fences also serve a very practical purpose.

The first thing you need to do is figure out is whether you want a semi private, private or a purely ornamental fence. A private fence totally shields you off from your neighbors and provides zero visibility of the outside world. Semi private fences on the other hand do provide slight views of the outside area.

The next thing that you need to consider is the type of material. You can go for wood, vinyl, aluminum, iron, or even concrete. Each material has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. For example, a wooden fence looks traditional but requires regular maintenance whereas as vinyl requires zero maintenance but often lacks the grandeur of wood.

After you decide the type and material you can jump right in selecting the different styles. If you are looking for backyard fence ideas, here’s our list of 10 styles that are sure winners.

Most Popular Styles for Backyard Fences

Lattice: Lattice fencing is style of interweaving strips of wooden panels. It gives a partial view of the outside and its opacity depends on the spacing between the weaves. This means, if you want a bit of privacy you have to go for a tighter pattern rather than a pattern with large gaping spaces. The lattice design is often incorporated on top of full wooden fences to give them a kind of dual styled look. However, there are many houses that use full lattice fences to border the boundaries. Lattice is a semi private fence style and is constructed using different types of wood panels or vinyl.

fence Lattice

Photo: Lattice fence

Picket: The charm of white picket fence is undeniable. Apart from the traditional design there are several different styles of picket fence. To add a bit of reinforcement and style consider installing some capping. You can also create a dual colored look to match the paints of the house. As you would have guessed, picket fence does little to offer privacy. However, they look great, especially near gardens and greenery.

Simple Metal Iron: If you want something that’s durable and strong, then nothing beats a metal fence. Aluminum, steel, and wrought iron are three of the most popular materials used to construct these fences. Apart from their durability these fences also requires very little maintenance. Thanks to the spacing between the metal rods, metal fences offer almost no privacy.

Paling: Paling fences are undoubtedly one of the most popular styles of backyard fence in the US. It’s typically built by joining parallel wooden posts together leaving no or very little space in between. These fences have a very solid appearance and provide excellent privacy. However, due to high use of timber these fences demand regular maintenance work. Apart from installing a sturdy frame, consider capping the paling fences to provide an extra bit of reinforcement.

Corral: Also known as horse fence, corral fencing are often seen in ranches and farmhouses. Apart from keeping animals from wandering off, corral fences can also be cleverly incorporated to create a rustic look in modern homes. These fences are also great to decorate pathways and gardens. Apart from a variety of wood ranging in durability and price you can also use vinyl to create a corral fence.

Corral fence

Photo: Corral fence

Dog Eared: Subcategories of paling fences, dog eared fence pickets have a typical inverted ‘U’ shaped pattern on top. This gives the fences kind of a wavy top instead of flat top. Dog eared fences typically offer superior privacy and requires fair bit of maintenance. You always however install vinyl pickets instead of wood save yourself from regular maintenance chores.

Split Rail: Officially this falls under the corral fence category but have a very distinct difference. These fences are made using unpolished rough wooden rails. Like the name suggests these rails are constructed by splitting logs and retains a rough exterior. These fences are great for creating the ultimate rustic look. However, they also require a fair bit of maintenance.

Chain Links: If you are looking to layout a sturdy protective fence and have a limited budget, chain link fences can easily come to your rescue. These steel fences are highly durable, require very little maintenance, and are typically inexpensive. On the negative side chain link fences seldom look as good as wooden fences.

Chain-link fence

Photo: Chain-link fence

Sculptural: If you are looking for something contemporary why not adopt the sculptural design. The fences has no frame and are only constructed using tall metal several blades spaced 8 inches apart. These fences are typically made from COR-TEN, a type metal alloy that protects itself from weathering and corrosion. However, you can also use steel posts or pipes to create a similar design.

Stepped: If your house is built on a slope or a hill then stepped fencing maybe the best option to border your property. You can also install a stepped fence to give your fence a stair styled design. Stepped fences are typically opaque and provide a great degree of privacy. Stepped is a type of construction and the finish of the fence depends entirely on the individual wooden pickets.

Stepped fence

Photo: Stepped fence

Updated: January 3, 2015 — 6:13 pm
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