4 Considerations for Choosing Outdoor Furniture

Posted June 16, 2021

Outdoor Fireplace

After spending more time at home during 2020, many homeowners are looking at their outdoor space with a new eye. Furniture that is more for looks than use no longer works when you are spending more time using the pieces to relax and entertain. When you’re extending your living space into the privacy of your patio or garden, you should be choosing outdoor furniture that is equal parts function, comfort and style. While it can be fun to keep up with the latest trends, we advise you lean towards a balance of classic main pieces and use accessories to incorporate trends. Here are four considerations for choosing furnishings for your outdoor living space.

Aesthetic

Typically, the simplest way to choose an aesthetic for your outdoor furniture is to coordinate it with the style of your home’s interior. When you take this approach, the decor style, color scheme, patterns, and more can flow easily from inside your home to the outdoor living area. However, it is most important that all your outdoor furniture pieces coordinate with each other. A simple way to achieve this is by selecting furniture that comes from the same designer – even if the pieces look different there will be a common thread running throughout the arrangement.

Materials

When choosing the type of materials your outdoor furniture is made from, the key factors to consider are durability and weather resistance. Natural materials such as rattan and wicker offer a classic warmth, but there is a chance they can wear down with time if exposed to the elements. It may be best to keep these sensitive materials in a covered area. Natural materials that are more weather-resistant include marble and wood such as teak, white oak, redwood, and others. Synthetic materials are popular but are often not the most sustainable choice. Metal furniture made with materials such as powder-coated steel or wrought iron is durable and often comfortable, since cushions are typically added to the metal base.

Arrangement

The most beautiful furniture does nothing for your outdoor living space if it isn’t arranged correctly. How you arrange your outdoor furniture should depend on several factors: the size of the furniture, the size of your lawn, and any focal points. The largest, or longest, piece of outdoor furniture should face the focal point in your space, such as a swimming pool, fireplace, or a beautiful view of the house or surrounding landscape. If your outdoor space is large and open, consider creating zones using your furniture. An example of different zones could be a dining area, an outdoor bar with stools, an area with a large sofa and coffee table, and an area with chairs surrounding a fire pit. Essentially, the arrangement of your outdoor furniture should lead guests to socialize in a natural and comfortable flow.

Accessories & Trends

When accessorizing your outdoor living space, you have more freedom to look toward trends for inspiration and use pieces that add more character to the overall look of the arrangement. Elements such as outdoor rugs, accent lighting, ottomans and side tables can easily be changed out to freshen up your outdoor decor. Using accessories, you can transform the style of your space from traditional to eclectic with only a few small changes. Accessories provide an excellent opportunity to incorporate design trends into your outdoor living space without having to redo the entire arrangement. For example, outdoor bar carts are a rising trend that you can easily add to your space. There are a number of different bar cart styles, so don’t be afraid to branch out from your typical style to choose a unique piece. Remember, it’s only an accessory and can be easily changed – but sometimes it’s the smallest of unexpected details that can make the biggest difference.

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