When the sun is shining, the flowers are in bloom and the wildlife is at its most interesting, just sitting outside having a drink or something to eat and watching the world go by can be hugely relaxing. Of course, even if you have a great space for doing just that, the right furniture is an important part of making your patio, garden, or pool area a true, usable extension of your home. Here are some tips to help you get it right!
Choose the Right Materials
There are really three ways you can go with patio tables and chairs – wood, metal, or plastic. All of these will withstand the elements to a decent degree and will be easy to clean after a storm or heavy leaf fall, but which you choose depends not just on the look you like but what kind of conditions you are dealing with. Plastic furniture can be great because it comes in lots of modern colors, is easy to store away, and is lightweight enough that you can buy extra chairs for guests and just bring them out when needed. However, in a windy location, they can be a pain to anchor down and keep in place, and they can also require regular cleaning as they can really show the dirt. Wood gives you a nice, natural look and will withstand most conditions, however, it can take a long time to dry off if it rains and does require regular maintenance in terms of staining and preserving the wood.
Metal is a good all-around choice that offers resilience and is attractive (particularly traditional wrought iron style designs), but it can be heavy and needs to basically become a regular fixture on your patio or lawn rather than being brought out just for entertaining.
Choose a Configuration That Works for You
Don’t just plump for what you think looks good. Choose something that will work for how you most use your outdoor space. If you are a couple who rarely have people over and want some nice seats to enjoy your morning coffee or eat at, then choose two comfortable chairs and a small, delicate-looking table, with some additional plastic chairs you can bring out when people come to visit. If you are a family and eat outside a lot, a wooden picnic bench can be perfect, allowing people to squeeze in as and when needed and making it easy to fit an umbrella or shade. If you mostly have parties and are used to people coming and going, a big table with a nice assortment of chairs and loungers will make your garden area feel like a welcoming and attractive place they will always enjoy, and it will be easy to set up for dinners.
Choosing the right garden furniture will make your garden area just as usable as any other room in your house, and you will probably find that in good weather you spend more time out there than you do in your living room if you and your friends or family enjoy the outdoors!