It can be challenging to know where to start with so many options, metal or wooden, compact or expansive, with pillows or not. So here are some top recommendations from experts.
Enjoying lazy summer days outside, the warm sun, and enjoying the outdoors is the best way to feel the warmth.
Outdoor furniture can make your life much easier. It can be as relaxing to lounge out in the open air as it is to relax in your living room. Or just as uncomfortable as sleeping on an old sofa.
Martyn Lawrence Bullard, an interior designer from Los Angeles, designed Harbour Outdoor’s furniture. It is a space. It should feel comfortable and well-thought-out. ”
Collecting furniture is more than just randomly buying pieces in a shop or online. Planning will be a big help. This includes deciding how you want to use the space and planning to keep it clean.
We asked landscape architects and interior designers for their advice on how to furnish outdoor spaces.
Create a Plan
Before you purchase anything, it is essential to think about your larger vision for outdoor spaces.
Celerie Kemble is an interior designer based in New York and Palm Beach, Fla… She designed outdoor furniture for Lane Venture. There are three types: outdoor furniture that can be used for dining outside, lounging by the pool or in a living area, and outdoor furniture that can be used indoors. Each type of furniture has its own rules. ”
You can use a lot of space outside to make a space that serves all three functions:
A dining room with tables and chairs
A living space with couches, lounge seats, and a coffee table
Sunbathing area with chaise longues
It is possible that you don’t have enough space for all these activities. Choose one thing you love the most. You may be a great cook and entertainer, so turn your outdoor space into a place to eat. With sofas, you can enjoy a relaxing outdoor space for your friends and family.
Brook Klausing, Brook Landscape’s Brooklyn-based partner, suggests avoiding chaise longues in areas with limited space. They are often romanticized, but they can take up more space than other furniture and are less frequently used.
He stated, “People want them, but they end up being crammed into.” If you don’t have enough space, don’t bother. ”
For sunbathing, you will need one. Follow the example of Klausing and do your projects. Hooks can be added to a fence or wall to hold the chaise longue up when it is not being used.
Know Your Materials
Outdoor furniture manufacturers use a wide range of materials. They can be classified into two types: impervious elements that keep their original appearance for many years or those that can develop a patina.
Imagine your outdoor furniture looking new for many years. There are many materials available.
Powder-coated steel or aluminum.
Plastics resist ultraviolet light.
But even these materials can have an effect on the elements over time. For example, there may be some fading or staining, or corrosion.
Noah Schwarz, the creative director of Design Within Reach and the design director for Herman Miller Collection, stated that it was possible to find high-quality, UV-resistant plastic. It can look beautiful and last a long while. It is best to either work with a supplier of powder-coated metals or buy from a company that uses high-quality powder coats. They can be of variable quality and may not last as long. ”
You can also purchase pieces made from wood like Teak ipe and eucalyptus. These pieces are vital but can eventually become weathered. You could also opt for brass or another metal with a gradual patina.
David Sutherland is the founder of Perennials and Sutherland outdoor furniture and fabrics. He said that Teak was the “king” of woods because it has enough oil and silicates for high durability outdoors.
While it is possible to oil and seal teak from time to time to keep it looking fresh, Mr. Sutherland doesn’t recommend it. Because the finish on the Teak wears off, it becomes a problem to maintain.
Instead, embrace the wood’s natural age. Mr. Sutherland said, “I like when it gets that gold color.” Teak furniture should be watered once a week to maintain its beauty and weather resistance. This is the same as watering your plants. ”
Teak can build up dirt on the surface. He suggested using detergents to remove it.
The most important decision when shopping for outdoor furniture is whether you want to purchase cushions. They can provide comfort, but they can also pose problems when it comes to cleaning and maintenance.
You can also opt not to use pillows at all. Klausing said that too many pillows could cause soot buildup in urban areas. We choose furniture with mesh netting or cushions that are as comfortable as possible. ”
According to Amber Freda (a New York-based landscaping designer), this method is excellent for elevated terraces. She said that many people don’t want cushions blowing about on a roof or deck. A tie can be beneficial. )
Comfort is not the only thing that designers should sacrifice. “I want my outdoor furniture extremely comfortable — that is the No. 1 ingredient,” Mr. Bullard said. I like to use lots of upholstery. There are many options. These indoor-outdoor fabrics can be made in different patterns and colors to give your space personality and character. ”
Fabrics made from solution-dyed acrylics such as Sunbrella and Perennials will not fade. This is because the yarn’s colors have been dyed and printed before the end of the process. Ann Sutherland, CEO of Perennials and Sutherland, stated that the thread does not fade in the sunlight like nylons and polypropylenes.
For cushions that are quick-drying foam, you can keep them dry for several more days after a rainstorm. This is because it allows water to flow quickly through it and is often referred to as “reticulated” or “open-cell,” according to Mr. Schwarz.
You don’t need to decide whether you want cushions. He suggested instead that you find a compromise. For example, get comfortable furniture that doesn’t have pillows but has cushions that can be used for extended lounging.