An outdoor space is just space outside your home. However, when you add great patio furniture, that same outdoor space becomes an extension of your home. Comfort and function transform your patio or deck into a gathering spot for everything from lounging to celebrating.
A spacious table and comfortable chairs turn a brick patio into an elegant outdoor dining room. A plush teak sectional makes your wood deck an outdoor living room. A wicker love seat and fire pit instantly bring ambiance to any home date night.
And don’t assume you have to have a big patio to benefit from great outdoor patio furniture. Balconies and pocket gardens can be outfitted with slimmed down seating that’s both space-friendly and comfortable.
Use the following tips to select the best patio furniture for your garden, deck or patio, so you can create an outdoor living space you’ll love for years to come.
7 Tips to Select the Perfect Outdoor Patio Furniture
1. Start with Your Priorities
It may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people overlook this one. As you think about buying patio furniture, you want to begin by considering how you want to use your outdoor space. Will this be a gathering place for family dinners? Do you want to host cocktail parties? Are you planning to spend peaceful moments outside with a good book or your other half?
Make a list of your priorities and use these as your guide to selecting furniture. It may be that a large table just isn’t quite the right fit if what you really want is a space to lounge.
2. Sit for a While
Set some time aside to actually shop for your patio furniture. By which we mean, set some time aside to go sit on some patio furniture. Like shopping for a bed or a sofa, you don’t want to just sit down and then get back up. Make sure that the pieces you’re considering are as comfortable after 15 minutes as they look on the showroom floor.
3. Consider Durability
Patio furniture is an investment – and probably not one you want to make every single year. While some big box stores may sell chairs and tables for less, make sure you take a look at how durable their selection is. Read reviews. Consider how long you plan to use your patio furniture. As is often the case, buying quality items can not only give you a more enjoyable finished look, but save you money in the long run.
4. Consider How Much Maintenance You’re Willing to Do
Not all patio furniture is created equal. Some materials and designs require more maintenance than others. For instance, real wicker shouldn’t be left out. It ideally should be stored every night to protect it from the elements. All-weather wicker, on the other hand, can withstand practically anything Mother Nature throws its way. Teak and most metals are also durable. However, some require the occasional warm water and mild soap scrub.
5. Keep the Color Neutral
While we’re big fans of bright throw pillows and statement accessories, we generally recommend neutral patio furniture. A hot pink chair might be fun at the moment, but that baby is going to age and become out of style relatively quickly. Natural tones promote the longevity of your outdoor furniture. With natural tones, when you want to change up the style of your outdoor space, all you have to do is replace some cushions and/or pillows. This makes an update easy and affordable.
6. Consider Pieces that do Double Duty
Have more than one priority for your outdoor space? It might be that you can select pieces that will do double duty. For instance, a sturdy end table can also double as a seat in a pinch. You might also appreciate benches with hidden storage or fire pits set into tables – offering a table and fire pit in one!
7. Don’t Overlook the Importance of Light
It’s a rare moment when you want to sit in the dark – especially when you’re with a group. Make sure not to overlook the importance of light as you design your outdoor space. One of the easiest ways to add light is with an LED solar lantern. It charges during the day and can then be placed anywhere you desire at night – without chords restricting its placement!