Garden gates: 6 front gate designs and tips for a stylish exterior

Looking for gorgeous garden gates? Set the tone for your outdoor space with these inspiring ideas...

Garden gates, tips and ideas
(Image credit: Leigh Clapp)

Looking for some gorgeous garden gate ideas? Whether you are revamping your garden or transforming the exterior of your property, picking the right gate really sets the tone for your outdoor space. So follow our expert tips and be inspired by our stylish finds...

Find more garden buys, from garden gates to hard landscaping, and all the best suppliers in our garden sourcebook. Head over to our gardening hub page for more ideas and inspiration. 

What to consider when choosing a new garden gate?

It's not just about the garden gate's material durability and its initial looks. There are lots of things to think about to create the kerb appeal you're after.

1. Your gate could have a useful security role

Can you fit a padlock or keypad entry system? If so, consider how post might be delivered, and how you will be able to identify and admit visitors from inside the house. Adding lighting around a locked gate will help you with identifying visitors and provide extra security, too.

As well as keeping intruders out, consider whether your gate needs to keep pets and children safe, which might mean that you simply position any latch too high for little ones to reach.

Traditional style picket fence

If picket fencing suits your outdoor space, then this little Pale garden gate will allow easy access. H90 x W90cm, priced £49.99 from Homebase

2. The style of gate should suit your garden

Creating a country cottage garden? An intricate metal or simple timber garden gate will suit. Contemporary home? Think flush finish, streamlined and crisply painted. Urban period terrace? Look for something that reflects what might originally have been at the top of your garden path.

wavy top fence and gate

When you need to combine a low fence with a gate, this Hampton design, H100 x W100 x D4.5cm from Forest, creates a pretty effect, £103.99

3. Go for a garden gate that complements your fencing

If you're replacing garden fencing as well as the garden gate, why not create a boundary that's visually continuous. It will give your garden a smart appeal. If matching materials don't work, consider whether what you choose to have your gate made from can still complement your boundary's material. Cast iron gates look fabulous matched with period-style brick walls, for example, and wooden gates work well with wicker fencing panels. 

Spear top wrought iron gate in brick wall

Secure a side path with this elegant Montford tall gate. H183.5 x W77 x D2cm, it’s topped with a classic arrowhead design, and galvanised and powder coated for resistance to corrosion, £84.49 from Grange Fencing

4. Remember your garden gate may require planning permission

Particularly if you live in a Conservation Area, it's always worth checking first that the gate you're planning to buy will be accepted by your local planning authority. 

black wrought iron gate

The Sheshan range of gates from The Wrought Iron Gate Company are available in

5. Don't forget the posts for your garden gate

Ensure that the gate posts or structure that will support the gates is strong enough for the purpose, and if not upgrade them. Use quality fixtures and fittings designed for the purpose.

period style wrought iron gate and fence

Commission a bespoke creation from Rayment Wire. This wrought-iron gate has been handcrafted from British steel to fit the space. H90 x W100 x D5cm, it is finished in Antique Etch on galvanised steel, £700

6. Your gate will need maintenance

At least once a year, clean and grease the hinges of your garden gates to keep the mechanism moving freely. Take care of the gate's material, too. It will need painting and staining to keep it sounding and looking as good as new.

Check out our pick of the top fence stains that you can use to maintain wooden gates. If you have chosen metal garden gates, head over to our guide to cleaning, repairing and repainting old iron railings gates

wooden oak gate set in a hedge

Use a gate to create a focal point with this bespoke seasoned oak example from Garden Trellis. H210 x W100 x D20cm (plus frame), it costs around £5,000, including posts and arch

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