The outdoor space of any home usually serves many purposes. If it is adequately arranged and dressed up, it does not only beautify the house, but also provides a place to read, relax, dine, unwind or have fun in the sunlight/moonlight and fresh air.
Choosing the outdoor furniture can be overwhelming especially when the variety ranges from the lightweight cane to the sturdy wood or wrought iron. The available ranges of accessories are the pieces of wall art, statues, bird feeders, bird baths, bird houses, fountains, lanterns and different types of light fixtures. The most confusing part is to choose pieces that are elegant yet practical and also weather friendly.
This article provides in-depth information on choosing outdoor furniture and accessories with respect to the outdoor space available, the climate of the surroundings and the lifestyle of the home dwellers.
Choosing according to types of outdoor space
The number of people that a space can accommodate and its proximity to different rooms of the house decide the type and the number of furniture pieces and accessories to be chosen for it.
Yard or patio
The yard or patio should be a place for family and friends to relax, talk and to have fun together. In fact, the yard or patio should be designed as an outdoor living room minus the TV and sometimes the privacy too.
However, the yard or patio furniture may not be bought keeping in mind that it has to be a living room replica. Often a dining table or a coffee table with a garden bench is good enough for the yard. If the space allows a swing or a relaxing chair can also be placed.
The best accessories for the yard or patio are the potted plants. However make sure that the plants are neither thorny nor allergens.
Terrace or balcony
The terrace or the balcony is usually a small open adjacent mostly to the bedrooms. It means that the furniture there should have the provision of accommodating two people at the maximum. It would be a good idea that the place is made a little getaway for having breakfast or candle light dinners.
The suitable furniture for a balcony might be two chairs and a small table. The best accessories are wall scones with candles. (They light up the space in the perfect romantic way). If the space and budget allows, a romantic piece of outdoor art can be hung on the wall.
Lawn or garden
Too much furniture would never look good in a lawn or a garden, for its basic purpose is to have a place for the grass and the plants. However, seating for two or four can be arranged there. Sometimes, if the size of the lawn allows, devoting a place to be the children’s play area also proves to be a good idea.
The accessories for the lawn or the garden can be statues or even fountains, if the space and budget allows that. Other than that, installation of electric lanterns and/or spotlights can be a good idea. The bird baths, bird feeders, and bird houses can also be introduced.
Choosing according to types of climate
The climate of the place dictates the choice of material of the outdoor furniture and accessories.
Hot, dry and sunny
The sun is not kind to any type of material. However if the place is dry, it would be a huge bonus. The absence of moisture in the air means that there would be no chance of rust. So, for dry areas iron or wrought iron furniture pieces can be chosen.
The wooden, cane or bamboo furniture also remains in good shape in the places with low moisture content in the air. However, wood, cane, or bamboo pieces should be placed only in the shady or semi-covered areas to provide protection from the sun.
Rainy, humid, snowy
The materials, which remain the most unaffected from the moisture, are the plastic, glass, fiberglass, and steel.
Choosing according to the lifestyle
Busy, hectic lifestyle
Busy and hectic lifestyle means that on one hand, the home dwellers might not have time to maintain the outdoor furniture and accessories but on the other hand, they might want their outdoor space to be their relaxing haven.
The least maintenance materials for outdoor furniture are the steel and parachute cloth. The reclining chairs lined with parachute cloth are simply great for both reading and relaxing. The low or no maintenance accessories are the ones that do not accumulate much dust. The framed wall art is the best for this purpose.
If the garden has a tree, it would be a good idea to affix colorful bird houses on some of the branches. They add a dash of color and only require seasonal maintenance.
Somewhat relaxed lifestyle
People with some time (for example an hour from a weekly holiday) to devote to the outdoor space maintenance can have furniture with a little details. However, they must be living in areas with lesser traffic, so that the dusting remains only a weekly requirement.
The bird baths make a great accessory for the outdoor spaces of people with little time on their hands because they require weekly cleaning and refilling.
Very relaxed lifestyle
People who have a lot of time to invest in outdoor space maintenance can go for any type of furniture and accessories. For example, they can buy cane furniture, which is elegant, light weight, and classic but requires constant attention because it is delicate and intricate too.
They can have bird feeders, which require daily filling and cleaning routines. Even the iron accessories can be maintained in humid regions with constant care and attention. Such people can have water ponds or pools with ducks or turkeys in their garden. Alternatively, they can have fountains with statues. In short, with daily maintenance routines any type of furniture and accessories can be maintained.
However, keep in mind that the outdoor space should reflect a refined taste and should stick to a theme. No matter how much time one may have on hands, an outdoor space must remain personal with only required furniture and limited accessories. If there are too many things in an outdoor space, the pieces may seem to be fighting with each other for attention or the space would end up looking like a showroom.
Personal knowledge, experience, and insight