Outdoor Living Furniture
How To Transform Your Life
And Your Yard
Outdoor living furniture alone
does not a room make.
only happens when your furniture enhances the aesthetic, increases
your comfort, and adds purpose and functionality.
And who said entertaining is the only
legitimate purpose of an outdoor room?
about secluded alfresco bed and bath suites, wooden garden furniture, outdoor showers, and fresh air studios, retreats, and outbuildings,
and open-air offices, and outdoor kitchens?
there's outdoor living furniture for all these rooms!
And to be well
dressed, you need art and objects d'art!
These little treasures infuse your outdoor
rooms with indoor ambiance.
final layer that adds style, anchors your space, and takes function
to the limit.
The Guide helps you choose the right
casual living outdoor furniture for your alfresco
And helps you define the line between really
fabulous outdoor living furniture and just a table and some chairs
stuck out back.
Outdoor rooms are the last frontier in home
decor. And outdoor living is here to stay!
With so many
manufacturers stepping up their game, outdoor living patio furniture
ain't what it used to be.
Today's offerings rival
any choices you have for indoor comfort and style.
Teak, red cedar, molded plastic and wrought
iron are all traditional favorites.
But today, we have more
choices than ever before.
Now, there's cast aluminum, galvanized metals
dipped in zinc baths, rust-resistant steel with enamel finishes,
faux wicker and rattan, and exotic woods like ipe and
And don't forget mix
Wood tables pared with woven chairs and outdoor
chair cushions. Woven seats on metal frames.
seats attached to wood chairs.
And stone slabs that make
seriously stunning tables when perched on top of wood and stone
Powder-coated cast aluminum looks
like wrought iron, but it's lightweight and
Furniture made from recycled plastic looks just
like wood, and you don't have to paint them, and they don't rot.
Every season brings new
reasons to gather with friends and family outdoors.
So be ready for any
occasion in any weather with stylish outdoor living furniture pieces
layered with big cushy pillows, overstuffed upholstered sofas
wrapped in expressive fabrics that harmonize with nature, and
that are outfitted with storage ottomans.
Wood - $$-$$$
Teak and other tropical hardwoods
Redwood, cedar, cypress and pressure-treated is
Classically blends with the outdoor
Sturdy and withstands windy areas
Doesn't retain heat or cold
Non tropical woods need a regular coat of
Can last up to 40 years
Needs pillows for comfortable extended
Woven - $$
Marine-varnished reeds, plastic-wrapped fabric
fiber, or acrylic strips
Sturdy metal frame
Comfortable woven covers
Last up to 30 years
Comfortable with or without cushions
Furniture Seating Styles
Swings, Rockers &
Gliders - $-$$
Bar Stools - $-$$
Chaise Lounges - $-$$$
and napping favorite
for pools, patios, & decks
awkward in a grouping
Cushioned Chairs & Sofas -
furniture style and comfort
mix and max for groupings
finishes and fabric choices
Garden Benches - $-$$
Hammocks - $-$$$
Built-in - $$-$$$
Outdoor living furniture
that complements your style makes the most of your outdoor space by
accommodating all your fresh air activities.
alfresco? An obvious choice is a traditional patio dining
set. Practical doesn't have to be boring. Some dining set styles
have a center bowl that doubles as a
Got a party that's been simmering on the
back burner? Outdoor sectionals with weather resistant
cushions work well. Group pieces around a low table to encourage
conversation and lingering over beverages. Sometimes limiting
seating can even inspire guest to
your solo time for reading outdoors? Get a hammock and the
hardest decision you'll have to make is whether to turn the page or
take a nap.
your space limited? Don't let a small space cramp your
outdoor style. Use space-savvy furniture like bistro tables, hanging
swings or chase lounges that convert to a chair with a removable or
Furniture Table Tops
Wood - $-$$$
Teak, cypress, ipe, mahogany are most
All need protective finishes
Glass - $-$$$
Purchased as is or
Lots of colors, patterns,
Can chip, fade and crack
Weather can wreak havoc on exposed
surfaces. So show you care and keep yours looking like new with
Inspect furniture at the
beginning of each season for rust and loose hardware
Wash hard surfaces with mild
soap just before storing them away
Use only UV protectant cleaning
products on wood furniture
Treat metal furniture at the
first sign of rust
Only use acrylic latex paint
with built-in protection for painting outdoor living
Expect to paint wood
surfaces every 3 years to keep them looking like new
Prevent peeling, warping,
and splintering by sanding the furniture and applying a
weather resistant sealant
Shelter furniture pieces when
the weather is bad
Cover pieces with heavy tarps
when it's not practical to move them under cover
There are lots of outdoor fabric
innovations, patterns, textures, and colors that let you show off
your personal style and personality.
Have you heard about the new
They have bold, pronounced
surfaces and quiet patterns. And they look and feel like posh indoor
fair but they're completely weather resistant.
And don't be afraid to bring
indoor comfort to outdoor upholstery and pillows by using cozy
throws, sweeping draperies, and breezy curtains made from silks,
sheers, velveteen, chenille and terry cloth.
Have you ever looked out of your
office window and wished you could be outside? Then let's get to
work on your fresh air office!
An outdoor office headquartered just
a quick trek from your backdoor is a great way to mix business with
You'll need a desk, a chair, a
clock, a laptop, waterproof electrical and phone connections, and
handy storage that shelters filing cabinets.
Design the desk as an L-shaped,
foldaway that can be secreted when it's not in use. That way, your
office space can do double duty by making space for other activities
on a whim.
Metal and wood surfaces are
both good choices. And if your area is breezy -- no worries --
use magnets on metal or stones on wood to hold papers in
Design storage to hold your filing
cabinet, desk, chair, phone, calculator and other miscellaneous
If you only need a few supplies to
get the job done and you don't mind carrying the supplies back
and forth, forego storage and save some money.
My personal home office is
headquartered out on the front deck -- up in the trees.
My desk options are both
portable. I use a wooden TV tray when I feel like
sitting up. And I use resin chairs filled with oversized
When I'm in the mood for the chaise
lounge, I use lots of pillows on it too. And my laptop sits on
this little Japanese table that rests across my lap.
I don't need lots of supplies to do
what I do.
I typically have my laptop, a
few papers, and the cordless phone that I cart back and forth
between the deck and house as needed.
And I have electrical and
cable hook-ups installed on the deck that power a TV, a radio and
a personal fan. All my outdoor living furniture
and accessories live on the deck all year.